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You can purchase many items from our shop at our web store, via PayPal. http://www.terrycrawfordpalardy.com/apps/webstore/.
You can also email or telephone me to order an item: .978-352-2676;
needlesandpens@comcast.net
Please make checks out to Quilters' Quarters or Terry's Thoughts and Threads Many thanks.

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Stage 2 Step 2 Massachusetts retail re-opening guidelines

Quilters' Quarters is going to postpone crossing over to the Stage 2 Step 2 timeline.  This means that, while other fabric shops are opening their doors to walk in customers as of June 22nd,  QQ is remaining on Stage 1 guidelines, using 'curb-side" pickup strategies (read that: 'storm door" pickup.) Our online webstore will also continue meeting the requests of distance customers, with the use of PayPal invoicing and payments.  At the physical shop, only cash or checks can be used to pay at the time of pickup. 

Customers who wish to come in to the shop to select fabrics or notions will be asked to wear a face mask, and to use hand sanitizer, to minimize the spread of Covid 19. The shop's space will only allow for one customer at a time, and appointments are strongly recommended. Drop-ins unannounced will be accommodated when staffing is available, but calling ahead is recommended.  Terry is vulnerable to the circulating virus due to age and medical conditions, as are other members of the shop, and minimizing health risk is a primary concern for all.

People unwilling or unable to wear a face mask will be limited to the curb-side pickup option. Orders can be arranged by phone or email (see top of home page.) QQ's inventory will continue to be shown on the shop's Facebook page. This week's post at Facebook showcases our collection of threads. 

The fabric inventory is slowing going down in size, as QQ will continue to provide free fabric to face mask makers in our area. Best estimate is that the shop will continue to have fabric for sale (and mask-maker donations) through fall of 2022. Until that point, only fabric specifically requested by members will be ordered from the distributors and manufacturers.  Interfacing, batting, stabilizer, threads, needles, pins, rulers and other miscellaneous items will also be ordered only when specifically requested by members. 

In the fall of 2022, a decision as to the future of the shop will be made ... will it continue to be a retail shop? Will it become instead a workshop where quilt and sewing classes take place? Will cleanings and lessons for self-maintenance of sewing machines continue? There are many unknowns ahead ... decisions to be made ... plans to be explored. Promises are not to be made if they are vulnerable to not being kept. 

Sewists and Quilters continue to be appreciative of the discounts QQ can offer, and are often generous in turn, leaving extra change or dollars at the shop. During the past two school years, these donations were forwarded entirely to the local school department to cover student lunch accounts that slipped into arrears. People receiving face masks from the many makers also often make donations in return, and the mask makers bring those funds to the shop when picking up more free fabric. This spring QQ was able to forward more than $2,000 to our school department to help provide the bagged breakfasts and lunches delivered by our schools to eligible students throughout the shutdown weeks.

During the summer months, while the eligible students receive state funding for extra meals no longer available at school, the donations received at QQ are being sent to a local food pantry. It is called the Abundant Food Pantry at the New Life Community Church on East Main Street in Georgetown. Please let people you know who may need food assistance to know of this local option.  During the last full week of June, QQ was able to send almost $300 to the pantry.

Sadly, as the country continues to re-open widely, the second surge of the first phase of the Corona Virus spread is growing exponentially. Here in Massachusetts, with our slower re-opening, we may see a continued decrease in cases, God willing. It depends on the the continued responsibility of people ... remember, please, and share with everyone who resists: Your mask protects me, and my mask protects you.

Be safe, be well, and be proud that we are able, so far, to do it right, here in Massachusetts.  Wear your mask, wash your hands, and keep a social distance.  Your health ... our health ... is worth it.




Sunday, June 7, 2020

Beginning Stage 2 of Covid Re-opening in Massachusetts

Quilters' Quarters continues to provide free quilt quality cotton fabric to mask makers as we progress into our fourth month of the Corona Virus pandemic. As the shop is not a food source, nor an essential item source, it is restricted to opening only for curb side pickup or distance delivery. Customers, even in limited numbers, are not yet able to enter the shop to browse the shelves. I'll do my best to post new fabrics here at the blog or on Facebook,  as they arrive

Massachusetts'Governor Charlie Baker is a responsible leader who is paying much more than lip service to the scientists at the CDC and NIH, and I respect him for that leadership. During "Stage 2" (beginning June 8th) I am happy to fill customer orders for fabric and notions via "Storm Door" pickup ... bags with customer names are put outside the door during good weather, or inside during storms ... and the shop's regular hours of Thursday through Saturday will resume this week, noon to 5 pm. You can place orders via email (needlesandpens@comcast.net) or telephone (978-352-2676) and payments of cash or check can be made at the door of the shop.  I am not yet able to accept credit cards, but will also accept an IOU from known customers. And your 20% initial or 40% repeat customer discounts will continue as established.  

Here is a new panel that just arrived this week: it measures 24" x 42" and retails, before discount, at $9.00 per panel.  It has a blender fabric that retails for $11.80 per yard. Remember, ALL Quilters receive a discount on their total order with few exceptions.


Butterfly Panel by Timeless Treasures

Timeless Treasures' Blender Bolt
I'm happy to let you know that the donations left here and at other mask makers' homes have helped provide bagged breakfasts and lunches for Georgetown's eligible public school students throughout the months of shutdown.  So far your generosity has provided over two thousand dollars to the lunch program. When school closes, the donations will  then be provided to a local food pantry for the summer months, during which time the Massachusetts will provide food purchase eligible cards to families with eligible students.

And Quilters' Quarters has donated over six thousand dollars worth  of fabric to our mask makers, and those makers have created somewhere between fifteen and twenty thousand masks here in the Merrimack Valley and the North Shore communities, adding to our level of safety here in Essex County.  I appreciate the help of everyone involved in this socially responsible activity.

Please continue to behave responsibly, safely and in good health practice ... wear your mask when you leave home ... maintain your six feet of social distance, wash your hands as often as possible, and share empathy and kindness with everyone you meet, as suffering from worry, depression, loss and anxiety are not always obvious, but are always in need of support.  Thank you for what you can and will do for the common good.
~Terry


Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Two Weeks Later...

I've been tracking the Coronavirus news and numbers and posting updates on my Facebook page, and continue making masks... I've had a generous donation of 1/4" elastic, and have been able to share that as well as sharing quilt quality fabric to others also making masks...

Today is April 15, always known as Tax Day, and in my previous post I promised myself, at the outset of making masks, that I would finish the tax forms and clear that stuff off my couch, finally.  Well, it is still there ... I had to buy an updated computer with Windows 10 to handle the Turbo Tax disk, which is challenging me at every turn ... but the federal and state deadlines have been pushed ahead to July, and my procrastinating self is taking full advantage of that gift of time.

At the end of today, I will have reached the count 200 masks made. Quilters' Quarters has given away well over $1,000 worth (at cost... or $2000+ at retail)  of quilt quality fabrics, and dozens of yards of donated elastic.  People needing these supplies call me or reach out on Facebook, and I cut and package their order and tape them to the storm door of the shop, accomplishing this transfer of goods without physical contact.  One mask maker is part of a larger group, and she comes by to pick up full or partial bolts of fabric. 



Individual folks needing masks (or fabric for masks) use the same process to receive them.  Though I ask them not to donate money,  several have, and I will put that money aside to buy more elastics ... and will share most of those dollars with the schools that are providing bagged breakfast and lunch 'to go' for students at home ... paying it forward. 

The paperwork for taxes remains on the couch ... the dining room table is a cutting station, the sewing room is a mask production area, and the washer and dryer in the back room have been kept busy with yards of fabric. Sadly, one of the panes of glass in the roof of the attached greenhouse blew out of its place during the windy night and shattered on the patio, where it remains until I have time to go sweep it up.  I tried calling a glass repairer but had no answer, probably because of the small business shut down. I left him a phone message, and I will put a bucket under the hole to catch any rainwater (or snow?) I will pray that chipmunks, squirrels and birds don't find the hole before I can find someone to patch it ... as it's about ten feet above ground level it is definitely not something I can patch myself, though I have done so with many lower old panes of glass... clear packing tape is my tool of choice, as most panes can be fitted back together ... but not this one.



If you are making masks, or headbands with buttons to hold mask elastics away from the wearer's ears, or surgical caps ... call and I'll cut for you and leave it in a bag on the door with your first name, for pick up. We are just this week entering the 'surge' of Covid-19, and cities like Salem, Massachusetts are requiring citizens to wear masks when out in public, so I don't think this need will diminish for quite a while. Some say we may not see a virus-ending vaccine until 2022 ... maybe not effective treatments before 2021 ...

Stay at home when you can ... appreciate those who go to work every day to keep us all safe ... to help those in need ... to keep food on the shelves, and other essential goods in our community.

Be well, wash your hands, call your family and friends. We can do this.
~Terry


Wednesday, April 1, 2020

April Fool's Day

I wish I could tell you an April Fool's Day joke, but none come to mind ... an amazing lapse, for someone who spent many years in elementary classrooms treading lightly, wary of tricksters...


I've spent the past six days making fabric masks ... and enjoying the range of fabrics I have in the shop to choose from each day.  More for the police and fire first responders, more for the cashiers at the local grocery, more for family, for friends of family, for grandchildren and for others...

I've gone through several donated packs of elastic, and more is ahead. What I'd ordered, from both Amazon and from my wholesale distributor, won't arrive here until late May - early June. I found some twist-ties at the grocery store (in the pet food aisle, curiously.) There were ten packs, so I bought four of them ... 200 feet in all; not hoarding, for they will be used up by the end of the month, I'm certain. 


NOW IN STOCK!

Speaking of the wholesale distributor, I called to ask whether they were closed down, or still able to deliver product ... they had put all open orders on hold, as most quilt shops are closed for the duration of the state by state orders... I told her my shop is right here in my driveway, so she removed the 'HOLD' order on my fabrics. Maybe in a few days, the beautiful bolt of floral panels will arrive.  They have a wide variety of colors, but this is the one I feel in love with... one bolt, 15 yards ... each panel is 43" and the manufacturer's suggested retail price is $16.50 ... but fortunately, QQ will discount the price. I'm looking forward to using this panel and perhaps bordering it with some soft colors, and then quilting it on the midarm I bought last fall...I'm looking forward to warmer weather so that I can work in the back of the shop, where there is no heat in Rick's absence (he has a wonderful woodstove out there, but I haven't cleared a path to it yet... one day, I will get to it.
I'll add some photos to this page, and though I wish you could come in and feel the softness of these fabrics ... but you know they are from 'good stock.'  They are all from my webstore page, and can be purchased via Paypal, and I will mail them to you. My postage calculations are most often wrong, and I don't learn that until I go to the post office, but I promise you that when it is wrong in MY favor, I immediately refund the difference to you, via Paypal, which makes that very easy.  And if it is wrong in YOUR favor ... well, c'est la vie! Just click the link and it will take you to my webstore page ... beautiful Easter bunny panel ... and a few different packs of 5" charm squares... check them out! 


Click this link to purchase: 
  https://www.terrycrawfordpalardy.com/apps/webstore/products/show/7754459

Click this link to purchase:
https://www.terrycrawfordpalardy.com/apps/webstore/products/show/7142972
Be well, stay home, wash your hands, and share this page...

Please and Thank You ~ Terry

Thursday, March 26, 2020

What is under your needle this week?

I'm continuing to make fabric masks ... I just finished #40,  and am gradually improving my speed.  All of mine go out as soon as theye are finished ... and none have yet made it to a local hospital.  Some went to Boston Children's with a friend of mine, and I brought some to our post office for the counter clerks, and to the cashiers at our local grocery store. The fire and police department accepted several, and family and friends have the rest. 

Tomorrow I must do my taxes and file those returns ... they are a weight on my shoulders that I need to shrug off. I know we have a federal extension of time to July, but the state form date hasn't changed, and can't be completed without the federal, so best to just get it done and file those folders of papers papers papers away.

Once the taxes are done, I will move back to doing more face masks, and if they aren't needed here in town by someone, I will get them to a local hospital. I am having fun making these ... I have a shop full of fabrics to choose from, and as I knew most of the people who received the first few dozen, I picked fabrics I thought they would like.  Here's a photo of some of the scraps from this first bunch of masks.


All of these fabrics are available at QQ, and if you are
using them for charity (ie, face masks, etc,)
I will give a 50% discount.

If you've heard from anyone that "Your masks are ineffective and more dangerous than helpful because they aren't up to OSHA measurements," here's a link that voices a different opinion. 
https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/17/opinion/coronavirus-face-masks.html. That the hospitals are asking folks to make these masks nationwide tells me that they know where they can be used and are smart enough not to assume more efficacy than we can offer. 

I wear my mask whenever I go out of the house, whether to shop for groceries, or to take a walk.  I don't have any reason to believe that I have the virus, or that the people I may pass by have the virus, but by wearing the mask, I'm reminding myself and others that we need to assume any one of us could be a carrier unaware, and keeping our physical distance, washing our hands, and avoiding crowded spaces is our responsibility, to ourselves and to others.

Happy stitching!  

Saturday, March 21, 2020

On a Different Note

I've put some of my quilts  on hold today... a friend shared a link from a hospital asking sewists like all of us to switch gears and start making CDC-approved masks for health care worlers and elder care relatives.  

There are many different links featuring face masks.  While our government, burdened by the extent of this Coronavirus Pandemic, is slow in bringing forth the high quality masks that they are capable of producing,  all we can do is the best we can do ... our 'home made' masks will not be OSHA guaranteed ... getting the right level of filtration to stop the transmission of the virus particles is not something I can stock in my shop ... but I am willing to make these masks, and for now, use a less effective filter. At least I know that when the proper filters may be available to domestic sewists, the masks will be ready to accept them. Until then, I will offer what I can to nurses and first responders who are in desperate need, presently. 

Here is the link for the pattern I've chosen to use. As I said, there are many out there.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BCJcE-r7kcg&t=169s&fbclid=IwAR19MMWtBlbJI3ysXwrP3tCd0RE79DUAGoXMZI7i6iV4vwXyx66Yd6cQLAI&app=desktop

Here is my first finished mask, modeled by yours truly. This mask goes from under your chin to the bridge of your nose, with a pair of twisties in a pocket at the top to adjust to your nose shape (I doubled the twisty, and am doubtful that it will last through more than one or two launderings... It also has an open pocket that will accept changeable filters ... OSHA approved filters, eventually, but in the meantime, folded kleenex or paper towel.

But that is the positive thing about these masks: they are made of quilt quality, washable, reusable 100% cotton.

Maybe you'll join me in making these for health workers near you who deserve much better from our government, but may be at least a bit safer with these until the government gets its act together and supplies our health workers with critically-important Personal Protection Equipment that meet OSHA standards. 

It takes less than a quarter yard, width of fabric, a half yard of elastic, and two used or unused twisties ... Please give it a try.

I'll be back here in a few days to post more photos of fabrics available at Quilters' Quarters ... and I will share photos of the masks I've made for adults and children at risk.


Masks in process

As always, thanks for following and reading the blog. Please feel free to share this email with friends who might join us as well!
~Terry

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

In South Boston, Saint Patrick's Day was the scene of the City of Boston's Evacuation Day parade, celebrating the day the new army under General George Washington succeeded in forcing the British Navy's evacuation of Boston Harbor ... The Coronavirus Pandemic caused the cancellation of the parade this  year ... respecting Governor Baker's State of Emergency guidelines. So if you're home, as many of us are, and looking for projects to keep you occupied ... 

As promised, Quilters' Quarters will remain closed, but our customers can access fabrics and notions via email (needlesandpens@comcast.net) If you are mobile you can come by for curb-side pickup and payment (cash or check) or, if you are self-quarantining, you can pay via paypal (I can invoice you at your email) and I will mail your purchases to you (or, if local, I can deliver it to your driveway.)

I will post some of the newer, and some of the most popular, items here every few days to tempt your creative side ... like these labrador retriever fabrics/blenders... $11/yard ... less your 20-40% discount...























This new Creative Grids curvy log cabin trim tool is now in stock, ... has a video that explains how to use this tool to make a few new patterns from your favorite log cabin block at this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEJrvyaniJk



MSRP: $23.49, less QQ discount
And here is a bonus video ... different quilter, different voice, but beautiful blocks. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WStMbQJvjdw
I am ordering these Cut Loose Patterns ... their manufacturer's suggested retail price is $3.50 ... but remember your discount~ 








By the way, these curvy log cabin blocks work very well with your jelly rolls you've been saving for something special ... or you can cut your own strips with the Stripology ruler ... also in stock at Quilters' Quarters... Three different sizes, three different prices, but always less with your QQ discount~ 

Stripology Rulers ... Three sizes ... XL, Regular, Mini
MSRPs: $64.49, $52.99, $39.99 minus QQ discount.

Stay safe, all.  Be well, and enjoy your time at home!
~Terry