We woke to the call of loons on the lake. I really should have roused earlier to watch the sunrise over the lake, but the mattress was much too comfortable. Instead, we took our time: enjoying the view, listening to the loons, and watching campers cook their breakfasts over smoky fires.
I noticed a young fisherman down on the dock. We moseyed on down to ask how the fishing was going. He responded with a fisherman’s tale about the big one that got away and was swimming under the dock. When I asked of its size, his hands showed about 12 inches while his dad showed about five.
We had almost a 2 hour drive to get to our first shop of the day, Cabin Quilting, in Cook. I had featured them last year which you can read about here. This long stretch of Minnesota country was just perfect for listening to Garrison Keillor’s Prairie Home Companion and watching the ditches for purple, white, and yellow wildflowers.
I love wildflowers. “Oh, look at those yellow ones,” I pointed. “Sow thistle,” my husband responded. “Those other yellow ones are ragweed and those purple ones are Canadian Thistle. Weeds” he pointed out. “Wildflowers,” I insisted. (In my defense, we did find some patches of beautiful wildflowers, but there were plenty of patches that were all weeds. Tu-Na Helper)
After leaving Cook, we turned North for another long car ride to International Falls and then we found:
Today’s Top Shop on the Hop
As we parked our car, we couldn’t help but notice the barn quilt on the side of this quilt shop.
The front door invited us to come on in.
As we entered the shop, the bright and roomy entry continued to welcome us.
The upper level is bright and cheery with shelves holding fabric and unique items holding many fat quarters and other items.
These displays, alone, are worth the drive up, to see them. In addition to the 2500 bolts of fabric ranging from north woods themed to bright and modern, Up North offers quilting supplies and notions, patterns, and wool. All of these are artfully displayed using vintage items.
The Up North Quilt Shop will be three years old in December. Missy Ruelle, the owner, was out doing an errand when we stopped by but hurried back to show me around and visit. She previously had worked part-time in a Chiropractor’s office as well as working at a local quilt shop in town for 5 years “…to support my habit,” she said.
When that quilt shop closed, Missy’s husband encouraged her to open her own shop. They looked for nine months and finally her husband found this building that had sat empty for three years before it was put up for sale. Finally, the deal was made and this Mennonite church building was theirs. Later, Missy found out she had family connections with the building; her Aunt and Uncle were married in this church.
Missy settled on the name of the shop, Up North Quilt Shop, because “this is pretty much as far north as you can get without going into Canada,” she said.
The lower level houses a classroom. She offers beginner classes during the fall and winter and may be offering a paper piecing class soon. Missy’s future plans include putting a longarm in the lower level as there is space just waiting for the right time.
Missy’s advice for new quilters is to start simple and small. She says, “A lot of quilters want to make a queen-size quilt and get discouraged and don’t finish.” She suggests making a table runner and placemats for good first projects.
This is the Up North Quilt Shop’s second year on the hop and Missy has been enjoying talking to quilters who stop by. Her and her staff recognized Tu-Na Helper as being there last year.
You can find more information about this shop including Missy’s online shop on her website here. “It’s worth the drive up,” Missy invites. We think so, too, and when you make your way up north, stop in and say Hi! to Missy and tell her that Tu-Na sent you.
We checked out of the Northeast Region while at the Up North Quilt Shop and received our incentive prizes.
After leaving International Falls, we shut off the Google Maps app on the cell phone as we were almost at our max of data usage for the month. “It’s an easy drive down to Blackduck,” Tu-Na Helper said. So we sat back, enjoyed more Garrison Keillor, and watched the miles roll on by. After what seemed like too long, my husband checked and we had somehow missed a turn 30 minutes earlier. We were not even close to Blackduck. A course correction was made and we hurried along hoping to make it to Blackduck and then continue on to Sadie Rae’s before closing time. My sister lives close by and we’d be spending the night as their house guests so we wanted to get as close as possible.
We eventually made it to Sadie Rae’s with only a minute to spare. We’ve had several close-to-closing-time races this year. Sadie greeted us at the door and we were told by her staff that we could take our time to look around. I was disappointed to hear they had sold out of the cute, artsy, ceramic, sewing machine clocks on the first day of the hop. I had been thinking of that clock all year since I had seen them at Sadie’s last year on the hop and was hoping to purchase one this year.
After spending too much time and money, we headed into Bemidji to eat supper and look around before heading to my sister’s log cabin by the lake for the night.
Block of the Day
I don’t remember if I forgot to ask for block kits when visiting the shops today or if I bought some and they are nestled in all the bags in the back of the car. So I chose to make one from a previous day.
- Day 10 post
- Update on Johnny’s quilt
- A look at the loot
The Quilt Minnesota Shop Hop has now concluded and we are back home. I will post the above items as soon as I can.
- Tu-Na Quilts: Starting the New School Year Right with Breakfast and a New Apron. The post is written and scheduled to publish on Aug. 21st for the Back to School Blog Hop hosted by Jen at Faith and Fabric.
What I Learned Today:
- There is a lot of truth to Garrison Keillor stories. “…a mother’s on threat alert orange at all times.” (Garrison Keillor) I could not have said it better myself.
- If I see something I want, think twice before walking away as it may not be there when I come again.
- Be persistent and go after your dream.
- Accepting a nudge from someone you love is helpful, too, in accomplishing that dream. Best of luck on the shop, Missy!
Question: Do you have a clock in your sewing room/studio? I have a small, plain one but never seem to look at it. I thought a cute artsy one would be fun. Time seems to fly when I’m sitting and sewing. I’ll need to be doing a lot more sitting and sewing this year to use up all my new purchases from the hop.
I read and appreciate every comment I receive. I’ve been busy finishing up writing posts or sewing up those blocks so I haven’t had time to reply but I do plan to do so soon when I’ve recovered from the trip. Thank you for all your kind words and encouragement.
Thanks for stopping by and do come again.
Karen, Tu-Na Quilts
See my other posts about the 2017 Quilt Minnesota Shop Hop:
All the links to my posts for last year’s Quilt MN Shop Hop can be found at the top of this blog under the Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats title. Click on the Shop Hop tab; in the drop down menu, click on 2016 Quilt MN Shop Hop Posts. You will find pictures and links to each of the posts for that year’s hop.
At this time, I have no affiliation with any of the shops, products, companies, or services that I mention here on Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats.
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