A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words – Part Two

After lunch, we continued our tour.  The Quilt Branch were there sharing their new book – I’ve Been Framed which showcases their Creative Grids House ruler as well as the Cottage ruler.  To see a complete listing of their products, visit:  http://www.checkerdist.com/products/search?v=Q100

Carolyn Friedlander was one of the up and coming young designers who shared her talents by renting a booth…(visit http://www.checkerdist.com/products/search?d=34156)

The Quilted Fish was one of my favorite booths.  They had a craft table and invited quilt shops to sit down and make a sample for their shop.  The booth was packed the entire Market.

Why not incorporate this idea into your next shop event?  The table was so inviting, it was impossible to resist!

She was featuring projects from her new book, An Apple a Day.  To see the complete line of her products, visit:  http://www.checkerdist.com/products/search?v=T237

Landauer Publishing is dear to my heart because they are my publisher – and this is Kitty who looks this good vacuuming the floor!!!  For a complete list of their books, visit http://www.checkerdist.com/products/search?keywords=landauer&relatedto=

The Fab Shop booth was fun and inviting.  Why not try using these big letters somewhere in your shop???

My personal vote for best booth was this one by Need’l Love!  Don’t you just want to crawl up and take a nap???  Electric votives are hanging in the glass globes – which are hanging from a section of lattice that they bought at the hardware store.  I have five grandchildren under five – and this is going to be a princess bed for the girls (as long as I don’t break a leg turning on the lights)!  To see the entire line of their books and patterns, see:  http://www.checkerdist.com/products/search?keywords=need%27l+Love&relatedto=

Judy Niemeyer’s booth is always a dream!  http://www.checkerdist.com/products/search?keywords=niemeyer&relatedto=

Quilted Crow Girls Designs had a striking booth.  I loved the individually framed blocks.  What a striking wall display!  http://www.checkerdist.com/products/search?keywords=niemeyer&relatedto=

The most noticeable trend at this Market was the emergence of many young, new designers.  There were a lot of new vendors who were making their dreams come true.  As we get these new lines entered into our system, I will be sharing them with you.  But, for now, Kansas City, thanks for the memories!

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words – Part One

Spring Market was so much fun I wanted to share a day at Market.

Every morning before Market opened, Checker sponsored a series of Take and Teach classes.  All of them were sold out!!!  Several shop owners said that they always attend our Take and Teach sessions because our designers and products have “guts”.  They know that they get a lot of bang for their buck – techniques, product demonstrations, and marketing ideas.  What a compliment – and we promise to continue to start your day with a smile!   Karla Alexander had standing room only in her class on curves…

Then, I walked the floor and ran into some of my favorite designers.  For you “Whimsicals” fans, Terri was having a great time launching her new book and fabric line (more to follow).

Gudrun from G.E. Designs launched a new book, Big Blocks Big Style…

Nancy Halvorsen, always the over-achiever, launched not one – but two books!  Curiosities and Mischief is sure to please the little ones in your life.

Christmas Favorites is an adorable block of the month…

La Todera’s booth was simply eye-catching.  The umbrella’s hanging from the ceiling are adorable – and would be a great way to showcase the Asian prints in your store.

Spring was everywhere – but these flowers will last forever…

Sew Unique Creations featured wool projects as well as pieced quilts with applique highlights.  A few of my favorite things…

Nick Edens signed up customers who wanted the Checker app on their phones as well as sharing the finer points of Checker You.  What other distributor brings an IT staff to answer all of your questions???

Rob Krieger explained the benefits of Cut Loose Press – a new pattern company launching this summer.

Edyta Sitar of Laundry Basket Quilts shared quilts from her latest book, Scrappy Firework Quilts…

Checker replaced the mirror above the main demo table with a T.V.  so everyone could witness every demonstration.  In between demonstrations, we even had commercials…

The folks at Olfa  were kind enough to supply us with rotary cutters and mats for all of our Take and Teach classes and demonstrations.

Margaret Travis was all smiles in her black, white and pink booth – she even dressed the part.  Now that is dedication!!!

How can you not smile???

Atkinson Designs with you in Mind

I don’t know how she does it – and believe me, I have tried to figure out why she is consistently sew successful Market after Market, year after year.

And this Market is no exception!  Two of her new patterns use clear vinyl – which could be one of the reasons she is so popular.  By incorporating a product into her projects that is outside of the norm, she gives quilt shops an opportunity to teach something new.

Bridget’s Bagettes includes three different sizes in one pattern – and she has incorporated an easy finish so these whip up very quickly.

Item #ATK162  Retail $6.50

Classmate was the star of the booth.  Look at the detaill on this carryall!  I love the handle, the clasp, and her color choices are wonderful!!!

Yes, it includes a little light – of course it does!!!!

But her photographs are much better than mine….

Item #AT164  Retail $9.00

And, yes, we carry the clasps as well…

Item #ATK510AB  Retail $3.29

Item #ATK511N  Retail $3.29

Hot Stuff is adorable!  Who would have thought a classic could become a must have – gotta love the flower that forms around the top.  It comes in two sizes – 3 quart and a 9 x 13 size.

Item #ATK163  Retail $9.00

These will be arriving by the end of the month – just in time for those summer cook-outs.  I predict that all three will be in the top twenty shortly after they arrive.  Are they going to be buying them from your store or a competitor?  That’s the bottom line!

Saturday and Sunday at Market

Take  Teach Sessions


Rita Fishel
Learn to piece “Curvalicious” and Storm at Sea blocks with these Creative Grids strip rulers.
Penny Haren (sponsored by Landauer Publishing)
Come learn how to create quilts using paper-pieced applique  and hear about an upcoming Technique of the Month program.
Karla Alexander and Swirly Girls Design
Be the first to see the new generation of circle cutters from Creative Grids.  Big, bad, beautiful dots!

Kathy Brown
Join Kathy Brown as she shows how the Creative Grids Fat Quarter Cutter turns Fat Quarters into Quickie Projects.
P.J. Anderson
Use the perfect tool to create the perfect points.  Seminole style piecing has never been easier.
Creative Grids Booth


9:30 – 11:00 P.J. Anderson
11:00  12:30 Swirly Girls Design
12:30 – 2:00         Erin Underwood
2:00 – 4:30           Rita Fishel
4:30 – 6:00           Karla Alexander

9:30 – 11:00 Erin Underwood
11:00 – 12:30        Swirly Girls Design

12:30 – 2:00 Rita Fishel
2:00 – 5:00 P.J. Anderson

Checker Distribution Table


9:45       Gudrun Erla – Big Blocks/Big Style

10:30    Shea Henderson – Empty Bobbin Sewing Studio

11:15      Kathy McGee – Hemma Designs

11:45      Janice Liljenquist & Marcea Owen – Abbey Lane Quilts

1:00        Janice Vaine – Applique & Embroidery Fundamentals – Landauer Publishing

1:45        Carolyn Friedlander – Paper-Piecing Demonstration

2:30        Carol Hopkins – Civil War Legacies, Martingale & Company

3:15         Debra Gabel – Quilts Around the World, C & T Publishing

4:00        Denyse Schmidt – Modern Quilts, Traditional Inspiration – Stewart Tabori & Chang

4:30        Karin Hellaby – Sew Simple Pinwheels Patchwork Techniques


9:45         Swirly Girls Design – Darling Demo featuring Dill Buttons

10:45      Linda Pumphrey – A demo of the latest Accuquilt products

11:30       Nick Coman – Kandi Corp – See the deColourant process in action!

12:30      Donna Babylon – Appli-Doodle – a little bit of applique a whole lot of stitching fun

2:00        Rebecca Yaker & Patricia Hoskins – Fabric-by-Fabric One Yard Wonders  Storey Publishing

As you can see, there is never a dull moment so stop by often!

Friday at Market…Let the Fun Begin

Market begins for us before the doors even open!  Checker is sponsoring several Take and Teach Sessions and participating in others that feature Creative Grids rulers as well.  Take and Teach sessions are classes that begin at 8:00 each morning.

Take and Teach Sessions – Friday

Karla Alexander will share how to use a series of Creative Grids rulers that make sewing curves simple and easy – and share the book published by Martingale that features them all!

Karen Montgomery will show you how to quick trim your way to perfect Flying Geese and never draw another line again!  The magic is in the ruler!

Creative Grids Booth

Several of the Creative Grids designers will be sharing their new rulers – and books and patterns that support the rulers…

9:30 – 11:00      P.J. Anderson

11:00 – 12:30    Karla Alexander

12:30 – 2:00     The Swirly Girls Design

2:00 – 4:00       Erin Underwood

4:00 – 6:00       Rita Fishel

Checker Demonstration Table

9:45                Cathy Wierzbicki – Triangle Genie Jr. Tool

10:30             Jill Guffy & Marny Buck – Modern Quilt Relish

11:15               Jean Ann Wright – Quilt Sashings & Settings, The Basics & Beyond, Landauer Publishing

12:00              Linda Warren – Learning Curve Ruler

1:00                 Becky Goldsmith & Linda Jenkins – Applique with Attitude, C & T Publishing

1:45                 Jane Sassaman – Patchwork Sassaman Style

2:30                Edyta Sitar – Scrappy Firework Quilts, Landauer Publishing

3:15                 Allison Harris – Cluck Cluck Sew

4:00                Deirdre Bond-Abel & Leonie Bateman – The Quilted Crow Girls

4:30                Karla Alexander – Dynamic Quilts with Easy Curves – Martingale & Company

What a way to open the show!!!  You can still call Checker to make an appointment to meet with a sales rep at Market….there is always something going on…..

And so it Begins…Fab Shop Dinner and School Houses

Fab Shop Dinner

As you know, the Fab Shop Dinner is the kick-off to Spring Quilt Market.  It always is scheduled the night before school houses – and is a sneak peak at what to expect at Market.

This year, the dinner will be held at the Marriott Downtown – right by the convention center.

There is still time to sign up at:  http://www.fabshopnet.com/registration-orderform.asp#Membership-Dinner

Now, I know that you all go to this dinner to socialize and share ideas with fellow shop owners all over the country.  The prizes are just a bonus – but oh, what a bonus!  Everyone receives a door prize valued at a minimum of $50 retail and has an opportunity to win additional prizes — including a $1,500.00 credit memo from Checker!  Where else do you go – and get more in prizes than the price of admission!

Checker will be sharing advances in technology – including the Checker App and Checker You.  Join us at:

Wednesday, May 16, 2012 at 6:00pm

Kansas City Marriott Downtown
200 West 12th Street
Kansas City, MO 64105
Phone: 1-816-421-6800

Second Floor, Marriott Tower: Basie Ballroom A

School Houses

Checker is sponsoring twelve school houses on Thursday, May 17.  These events are all about education and sharing ways to increase sales in your shop.  Check out this line-up:

10:40 – 10:55    Kathy Brown

Fat Quarter Quickies + Ruler = Sold Out Classes

11:00 – 11:30   Jean Ann Wright

Successful Demos = Increased Sales of Tools and Gadgets

11:35 – 12:05    Rita Fishel

Turn those Specialty Rulers into Maximum Sales

12:10 – 12:40    Karen Montgomery

Bottom Line Customer Service

12:45 – 1:15    Karla Alexander & Swirly Girls Design

What’s New with Circles???

1:20 – 1:50    Roseann Kermes & Swirly Girls Design

Get Rich Quick

1:55 – 2:10    Pam & Nicky Lintott

A New Pattern Line by the Creators of the Jelly Roll Book Series

2:15 – 2:30    Janice Pope

Jiffy Binding for All Your Customers

2:35 – 3:05    Janice Pope

Boost Add-On and Peripheral Sales

3:10 – 3:40    Checker Distributors

Time is Money – Save Time with the Latest Technology

3:45 – 4:15    Checker Distributors

Five – 5 Minute Demos that will Increase Sales and Inspire Classes

Featuring:  Karen Hellaby; In the Patches; Fiskars; Steady Betty; and Oliso Irons

4:20 – 4:50    Erin Underwood

Innovative Techniques Create Fan-Tastic Fan Work!

Come join us!  We are in the same room ALL day – so come for the day, learn from the best in the industry, and be eligible for prizes at every event!

Start your Monday with a Smile!

These little monsters, by Basic Grey LLC, are intended to be gift card (or cash) holders, but I see them as so much more…

School is out next month – which means mothers will be bringing in their children while shopping.  Why not have these little guys at the register as rewards for good behavior???

Meet Gerda….

Item #BGFAB-8007  Retail $5.00


Item #BGFAB-8006 Retail $5.00


Item #BGFAB-8005 Retail $5.00


Item #BGFAB-8004  Retail $5.00

As a grandmother who has five grandchildren under four, these are going to be GREAT Hide and Seek toys!  I am already collecting little treats to hide in them – Hot Wheels cars; barrettes; bubbles – you get the picture!  But, what kind of grandmother would I be if I didn’t let them keep one…..a different one at each visit?

My oldest is starting to read so she will find one of these little guys under her pillow with a special note from Grandma.

I am going to add a snap hook so they can attach them to their book bags and belt loops.

Item #SKD1005SH  Retail $4.00

Beanie Babies step aside….the monsters are arriving any day!!!

Post Cards for Quilters

These quilter’s post cards, by Villa Rosa Designs, are glossy and the size of a postcard with a quilt on the front and instructions on the back.  At just $2.00, they are the perfect impulse buy!  I can see your customers collecting them like baseball cards…


Item #VRD268352  Retail $2.00

Double Delight….

Item #VRD268369  Retail $2.00

Iced Tea…

Item #VRD268390  Retail $2.00


Item #VRD268437  Retail $2.00


Item #VRD268482  Retail $2.00


Item #VRD958354  Retail $2.00

There are currently 36 cards to choose from – and more coming at Market.  Order now for the best selection:  http://www.checkerdist.com/products/search?keywords=villa+rosa&relatedto=

Button, Button, We’ve Got the Buttons

Buttons have become a fashion accessory – but that can sometimes come with a high price tag!  That’s why I was so pleased with this new line.  The quality is there at a reasonable price!

These 1/2″ shank buttons retail for just $5.50 – which makes them the perfect counter display….


Item #BGFAB-8016  Retail $5.50


Item #BGFAB-8017  Retail $5.50


Item #BGFAB-8018  Retail $5.50


Item #BGFAB-8019  Retail $5.50

This series is a little larger – 11/16″.


Item #BGFAB-8020  Retail $5.50


Item #BGFAB-8021  Retail $5.50


Item #BGFAB-8022  Retail $5.50


Item #BGFAB-8023  Retail $5.50

Many of you are preparing for Shop Hop season – and these are great impulse buys.  These should be arriving any day – and if you order them now, they will be arriving in your shop soon as well!