Franklin and Beyond. . .


Franklin, Massachusetts was a riot.   There were quilters waiting in line in front of both the front and back doors of Emma’s Quilt Cupboard before the store opened.  


Now, those who know me will get a kick out of what was right next door.   I had to be on my very best behavior!  You know, you can take the kid out of  the Catholic School . . .


The Drivers

When I pulled up in front of Emmas, it turned out that I backed into a Rhode Island quilter who came to see me while I was trying to parallel park (I’m not the best driver, but I’m fast)!  Now, she came out of the car hootin’ and hollerin’ but, for cripes sake, do you think she could have stayed in her own damn parking space instead of using a quater of mine?  🙂



The Accent

I love that everybody  sounds like Norm from THIS OLD HOUSE and I never passed up the op to tease!  


“Naaaaam, paaaass me the ham-mah!” 

“Heeeeaave you heaaad ow-ah chow-dah?”  

The Shop and Staff


The shop was big and beautiful.  Only in the biz for about 4 years, the staff really had fun decorating the place for the crowd who came in for a visit.  The place was packed and I had the best time meeting with the local (and not so local) quilters.   

Here are a few quilters looking over my new blenders, ELEMENTS.  They were a hit (of course, what were the darlings  gonna say?  “Maaaaaak, they-ah butt ugly!” ?


This is Cyndi, the own-ah.  She’s adorable and while I lost the bet as to how many would show up (I said 20, she said 100 — and there were more than that.  I signed autographs for just about 3-full hours), the terms of our bet agreement stands (and is known only to a select few who were sworn to secrecy — but I want to video it).    She has great instincts and taste and it’s refreshing to see a store, in these economic times, really doing well!  As you can see below, I’m trying to get a little of her mojo to rub off on daddy!


Here’s a group of visitors with some staff .  One is nicer than the other!   They’re all so sweet up there! 


I want you to meet my buddy, Kathy Rich, who is also a part of this crew but whom I met when I taught in Henniker NH, last year!


Everytime I see her she showers me with snacks to enable my lard-ass!  fat-buttThis time it was 4 pieces of the most fabulous local pizza and my all time favorites, Nonna’s Anise Cookies (I don’t know where she finds them but they are fricking YUMMY), which I polished off just yesterday (private stock — no family mitts allowed in the cookie bag).


img_1220 Barb and me

Speaking of fat asses, Barb (me, not Barb), who works at the shop, crafted this giant cupcake for me to hide behind during photos!  LOL  You see, they weren’t planning to Photo-shop!  🙂    As a matter of fact, the whole theme  was “cupcakes.”   Kathy had a cupcake shirt she made, there were cupcake badges for me to sign and cupcakes being served. Barb made a cupcake apron.   Thus, I will continue to autograph “Quilt Naked, Cupcake!  xoxo”


Cyndi behind the counter!


This is Emily who made the award winning doll, Pearl (named after a bar and grill)


The lines for fabric, notions and Quilter’s Home were long (two giant boxes of krakow Fat Quarters and some whole bolts of the stuff sold out within hours)!  Notice me hiding behind Barb’s giant cupcake (above)!  franklin-mass-trip-22009-021

The Drive Home

On my drive home, I stopped at a nearby quilt shop, call Quilters Stash in North Attleboro, Massachusetts, whom I had heard sold my califon fabrics!   Imagine my surprise to see my Northcott sign in their window!



Here’s the best part — they’re right next to a Burger King!   burger-ind

I have to ask. Wouldn’t this “king” have scared the shit out of you when you were a kid?  What was their marketing agency thinking?   He’s fricking scary!  I would choke on my Triple Whopper if I saw him turning the corner… not to mention a back alley!

Speaking of Burger King — look what was on their menu . . .


Oh, yeah, baby!   Sliders that might actually taste good!   white-castleMove over White Castle and pass daddy the BK Shots! (I loathe White Castle).

While I was at Quilter’s Stash, I noticed a lot of my califon being used, among other tasty have to have patterns.


I loved this califon quilt.  It’s from the pattern, Town Square by Four Paws Quilting.

This quilt beauty caught my eye, too.   It’s from the pattern Cinnamon and Ginger by Allison Quilt Designs.


These art blocks are done using some califon . . .






This pattern/idea came from the American Quilter magazine.     Now I have to tell you, based on the article I wouldn’t have tried the technique, but after seeing the results, it’s so worth a try!


This is me with the owner of the shop, Sue.  There wasn’t a giant cupcake to hide behind so I insisted that that photo be taken, “tits up” to avoid the shock, awe and  horror of my obesity(I really need to get this under control).


One More Stop

I tried to get to Quilter’s Crossing in West Nyack, New York to check out a shop there but they were closed!   Drat!   So I pressed my nose to the window and left a business card in their door.    Oh well  . .



My Next Trip . . .

I’m off to the Sewing Expo in Puyallup, Washington on Saturday.  

I’ll have my credit card in hand and an extra suitcase!   WhoooHOOOOO!   (Hell!  I am SO good for the economy — I stimulate myself!)  Now, stop your filthy mind! 


See you there, cupcakes!   xoxom

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12 Comments on “Franklin and Beyond. . .”

  1. Cindie
    February 24, 2009 at 4:52 PM #

    I am so happy you were able to stop by Quilters Stash! That’s my 2nd favorite Mass quilt shop (after Tumbleweeds, of course – on the Cape – Mark, you’ve got to visit there – maybe on the way to P-Town for dinner this summer?). Anyway, the Stash has grown every year since it opened. Wonderful owner and fabulous taste in fabrics as you can see from their califon blocks. Now it looks like I’ll have to visit that Franklin shop too. BTW, you look radiantly happy in the photos. xoxo


  2. February 24, 2009 at 5:29 PM #

    you crack me up! Please blog more often & COME TO TEXAS!


  3. February 24, 2009 at 7:51 PM #

    We had so much fun with you in Franklin. Thanks for making us laugh.


  4. Traci Suzanne Marvel
    February 24, 2009 at 8:13 PM #

    I will be there too Mark,
    Stop by the Bear Thread designs booth and say hello to me, Traci!


  5. February 24, 2009 at 9:38 PM #

    Now Mahk, we all say owah ah’s up heah…sounds like ya had a pissah of a time
    Can’t wait fah class at MQX.


  6. Bonnie
    February 24, 2009 at 10:43 PM #

    Thanks for the laughs! Great blog.


  7. Kathleen
    February 25, 2009 at 2:18 AM #

    Can’t wait to see/hear you in Puyallup on Saturday night, Mark!

    Kathleen in Kennewick


  8. Linda
    February 25, 2009 at 2:44 AM #

    Re: White Castle – Hubby tried to talk me into trying my 1st hamburger(???) at the ripe old age of 47. He opened the bag, and I gagged – I mean I really gagged! This clearly is not anything I’d EVER put in my mouth…To this day, just the thought of it makes me throw up a little in the back of my throat. Nothing against White Castle – they’re probably all really nice people that can sew 1/4 inch seams with their eyes closed – but dammit hamburgers come from the cow in the field (yep, farm girl) not a white greasy bag. BTW Hubby says you have to grow up with sliders. I grew up with naming our next meal while it was on “the hoof” which kinda gags him.


  9. Brenda
    February 25, 2009 at 12:26 PM #

    Hi Mark,
    I had a great time Saturday. I really do love your new blenders!
    Thanks for the coffee.


  10. February 25, 2009 at 1:21 PM #

    Sounds like a great trip! So glad to know someone besides me loathes White Castle!!


  11. February 25, 2009 at 4:30 PM #

    Greetings from a neighbor in Califon! Have been reading the blog for a while and love it. You especially got me with the RI/MA accents. I grew up in Little Rhody and whenever I go back, I can’t understand what they’re saying! I have to get my mom to translate. Next time go back in the summer for a Del’s Lemonade.


  12. Dawn
    March 7, 2009 at 8:05 PM #

    Hey, Mark. I was heading into Emma’s as you were headed out to hit the road. It was my first time in Emma’s and I was unaware of your celebrity appearance that morning. I saw you and thought, “Hey, that guy looks like Mark Lipinski…. naaaahhhh.” I wish I had worked up the gumption to tell you how much I love your magazine. And I’m glad you got to visit Quilter’s Stash as well– my other favorite quilt shop.

    As for local eats, next time you are passing through Rhode Island be sure to ask around for the best place to get some “wee-nahs.” When I first moved up here I had to have a new friend say the word 5 times before someone finally told me he was talking about hot dogs.


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