MOUNT VERNON — Shop ’til you drop has never been better for those quilting enthusiasts. Ten shops will be participating in this summer’s Quilt Spree today through July 31. Shoppers will travel in Columbus and surrounding areas — including two shops in Mount Vernon, Aunt Bee’s Quilts and More and Paw Patch Quilt Shop.
“This is a really huge event and it brings a lot of business to Mount Vernon,” said Carol Skinner, co-owner of Paw Patch, 444 Columbus Road. “We can get about 800 to 900 ladies come through the shop for the shop hop. We have also organized four tour buses leaving from the Columbus area. We do have cheap hotels for the ladies that come from out of state because we can get ladies from all over the United States.”
“We really try to make it a fun, almost party atmosphere,” said Carol Seavolt, owner of Aunt Bee’s at 229 S. Main St. “Many people come out because it’s such a fun time for quilters. They really get a chance to mingle with other quilters and exchange ideas.”
Each shop will offer special discounts on fabrics and other merchandise as well as offer a full list of demonstrations for participants.
With this year’s theme Holiday Feasts, each shop will display their project of a table runner or table topper.
Aunt Bee’s was assigned the month of September and chose to design their project after Johnny Appeased. Paw Patch chose an overall fall theme with table toppers of gourds, pumpkins and maple leaves.
Shop hop participants can also purchase a passport that will give them patterns of each shop’s project. “So when the ladies buy their passports, they are going to get 10 full patterns of the projects that the shop owners have designed,” said Skinner.
Passport holders will also receive discounts on special purchases and, with each stop, receive a stamp in their books. With all 10 stamps, participants can enter a chance to win over 1,000 prizes and there will be a chance to win one of two sewing machines.
Aunt Bee’s will also display their new projects and have two trunk shows of clothesline quilts and demonstrate patterns made by quilt companies.
The shop will have extended hours from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. during the first four days. “So [today], Friday, Saturday and Sunday for us. The rest of the days will be regular business hours,” said Seavolt.
Skinner, and her mother, Jean Hunter, who also owns Paw Patch have participated for five years and were one of the original shops to begin the event. At Skinner’s shop, guests will enjoy fun games revolving around quilting.
“Not every shop does it,” she said. “But we try to make it entertaining for the ladies.”
Understanding the shop hop is in the prime of vacation season, Skinner said this year participants can opt to continue on after the 10 days.
“They can finish and create their own shop hop from August to November. They won’t get the discounted items, but they’ll be able to get other things like coupons and block sampler patterns,” Skinner said.
In December at the Holiday Fest, the women will be able to turn in the passport for an opportunity to win a prize. All the shops on the tour will be represented at the Holiday Fest.
For more information visit www.myquiltspree.com for shop times and locations.