The Quilter: Quilting with Malke

Posts Tagged ‘New York

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Posted on: August 11, 2011

Our mom has not been posting recently because she is really unwell. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers.

Thank you!

I was asked a while ago if I would be willing to be interviewed for an article on Jewish Women in Business and here are excerpts of some of my answers:

What inspired you to create your business? I had just moved into a new house in a new neighborhood and was in between having babies; and a friend of mine who also sewed a lot approached me and asked if I would like to open a sewing store in my basement, foolishly, I agreed.

Were there any areas where you discovered tricks to cut costs? If so, where and how? I started giving classes so that I could save on the cost of a teacher, even though teaching is not my favorite thing to do.  We also are more careful in our ordering pattern. We order to restock sold notions but order new fabrics not more than once a month.  We also moved from a store front bck to my house so tha I could cut down in the rent and other commercial obligations.

Have you encountered any challenges specifically relating to your being an Orthodox Jewish women business owner? Not so much challenges as venues that I cannot participate in because I choose to be orthodox.

If so, how did/do you deal with the challenge? I do not participate in the many shabbos venues for quilters.

What advice can you offer other Orthodox Jewish Women entrepreneurs? Realize that being a woman today is not what will make or break a business.  Being orthodox puts many restrictions on you but you can compensate by working harder and manuvering around the system.  Know your business inside and out, network, and most importantly, take some business courses.

How do you maintain a work-life balance, juggling the roles of a business owner and mother?  Although any job outside of the home is stressful, if your goal is to work for pleasure because you love what youre doing, you can manage.  I love to run my business most of the time.  I have also been given the golden opportunity to work with my children.  They were always with me when they were small and when they got old enough, the girls work for me, either full or part time, and the boys help with stock when they could leave yeshiva.

We’ll be going Thursday, May 26 to the American Folk Art Museum at 45 West 53rd Street in Manhattan. There is an admission fee and we’re planning to be there for the 1:00 tour. We’ll be meeting at the Avenue J train station (Q train) to be able to visit B & J fabrics before the museum. You must call to register.

Another thing on our agenda will be a UFO Day. No, you don’t actually have to finish an object, but you do have to bring in UNUSED FABRIC OBJECTS. You can bring in as  many fabrics as you want to trade- you know… the ones you have no idea why you bought in the first place! Or just leftovers from other projects you don’t want to use again (or eve think about again!).  Fat quarters is the minimum size & 1 yard pieces is the maximum, but you can bring in as many first quality pieces as you wish.  If you are interested, please email me! sewmaterialistic@yahoo.com

Take care,

Malke

Our challenge quilts are due soon and I am pretty excited about it because quite a lot of people bought the challenge fabric.  Remember: they are due the begining of March.

Thanks to all who brought in their UFOs for the contest. But…WE WANT MORE!
Why so shy? All you have to gain is finished projects and cleaner sewing room, and nothing to lose!
Thanks to Susan who sent in  lot of of UFOs:

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Good Luck to all quilters!

2011 Quilt Challenge Guidelines:

Deadline for entries: Sunday, March 27

1) Purchase our challenge packet which includes:

*This fat quarter

2) Create a wall hanging using a recognizable piece of challenge fabric plus fabrics of your own choice.

3) The finished quilt cannot be larger than 24” x 24”.

4) The quilt must be made of three layers top, batting, and backing. The three layers should be attached in some way ie. tying, quilting etc.

5) All quilts must have a sleeve and paper label pinned to the quilt. The label should include your name, phone number, or/and address.

6) Your name should not appear anywhere on the front of the quilt.

7) The quilt must have a title and artists’ statement. Please type approximately 50 words.

8) The quilt must be delivered to SEW MATERIALISTIC by 6:00 on March 27. Quilts will be on display from March 28- May 1.

9) The public is invited to vote for the favorite entry (once a day) until March 18. The winner of the $72 and $36 gift cards will be announced May 2. The exhibit will be closed on May 1.

10) Please pick up your quilt between May 1- 8. We can make arrangements for return shipping.

Quilt Challenge Fabric

 

I’m taking off a day from work today with 2 of my daughters to go to Manhattan to find material for Blima’s wedding.  She wants the color purple for all the family and I’m happy to report if you don’t already know that purple is a hot color this season.  I think I’m too old to actually wear all purple (I’ll feel like a huge grape) but a shade of it will work for me.  I usually provide dresses for all the grandgirls and I’m happy to report that was already taken care of!  We are now trying to decide if all the guys should wear purple ties (or socks—  just joking) or just buttoneers. They seem to be balking at the buttoneers, but I’ll just threaten them a little more. 😉

Congratulations to Silky P. for winning our October Monthly Raffle!

Thank you everyone who participated!

Everyone thinks (and hopes!) they are different and unique.  We all want to feel that we maybe are a little bit different than the next guy.  So, I was sitting and eating my brunch at work, which I very often do, and a young girl of about 11 said she also eats Cheerios with chocolate chips.  Now imagine my utter suprise! I always thought only my kids and I did that!  And here was a perfect stranger saying she loved to eat her Cheerios with chocolate chips!  Maybe she was stolen at birth?

Shocking!  I actually found a pleasant post office in Brooklyn!  When I googled the post office in my area, the reviews were unanimous:  the worst post office ever. I had practically given up hope on finding someone nice in a p.o. when I found this one.  They agreed to hand stamp all my post cards without charging an extra fee, unheard of cooperation!! THANK YOU, whoever you are!

I’ve been making more postcards for this trading group I joined- “Trading Fabric Post Cards”- a group of 25 people who from all over the world who has to also send out 25 postcards. There is no fee and no rules. If you would like to sign up, just google quilted postcard trading group. I still have these in my possession (past the due date) bec. big cities are quite uncooperative in hand stamping… If the fabric postcards were to go through the machine it can be damaged. By me, they charge .44 cents, then .20 cent fee, then $1 for each handstamp!
As an aside, Sew Materialistic offers free postcard workshops, where everyone just sits and sew postcards- lots of fun!

Quilted Fabric Post Cards

Quilted Fabric Post Cards

Quilted Fabric Post Cards

Quilted Fabric Post Cards

Quilted Fabric Post Cards

I recently went on a tour of Greenwood Cemetery in Brooklyn and had a great time! The tour guide, yes- tour guide(!), said the cemetary was the second biggest attraction in the 1800s in NY. My friend and I had been planning to go for 8 years and we finally made it. We were totally entertained and in awe of the place, we are even planning on going back for part 2 tour. Suprisingly enough, there were about 30 people on the tour. We’re not the only nuts! 🙂 

If you are in NY, try to make it for a tour. Great trip!

I went to a quilting retreat last week on the 5.  I think it’s the best kind, the one that I get to spend a day with friends who enjoy the same interest, quilting, even if we do come from very different backgrounds.  We are the Quilters of the Night Kitchen. Yesterday we were able to put together 3 soldier quilts that the Brooklyn Quilters Guild collects to give out to veterans.  We all worked fast and almost finished all 3 tops.  food, music, talk, and quilting-who could ask for anything more?  a great time was had by all.

I think I’ve mentioned it before but I’m going to throw it out again, maybe this time someone will catch it.  Anyone interested in starting a guild?  Meeting to be held on a weeknight instead of on Saturdays.  I know there are a lot of Sabbath observers in Brooklyn that are also quilters.  Would someone like to get the ball rolling?  We can use the store as a stepping off point.  Email me please.

Hi all.

Everyone tells me that they think owning a quilt shop is the ideal job for a quilter, and it is (not to make any of you jealous).  I love most of my customers.  The give and take, and the friendships I hold very dear.  I love shopping for new notions (even though I’m not a gadget person), and being the first to hear about the new stuff available.

I love shopping for new fabrics (duhhh), but deciding what to get can really be a hard job.  Good thing I’m not allowed to shop by myself (I’d buy everything), Blima, my daughter, is always around to slap a hand over my ordering mouth.

I love when I go places, I always bump into customers and they are happy to see me (I have a raging inferiority complex).  There is another side to this article, but that’s another story.  Today, as I write this on Mother’s Day, I’m being upbeat (and I haven’t taken my happy pills yet!).  Every day is Mother’s Day …so have a happy one!

Malke

Original Quilt Postcard post.

Here’s even more:

I Love NY Postcard Quilt

I Love NY Postcard Quilt

Central Park Postcard Quilt

Central Park Postcard Quilt

Brooklyn Bridge Postcard Quilt

Brooklyn Bridge Postcard Quilt

Coney Island Postcard Quilt

Coney Island Postcard Quilt

Ladybug Postcard Quilt

Ladybug Postcard Quilt

Sew Materialistic Newsletter Spring/Summer 2010

Sewing Classes and Quilting Classes are located in our Brooklyn, NY Store at

1131 McDonald Ave Brooklyn New York.

I’m having <CENSORED> [complaining] burn-out.  It’s again the time of year for me to start thinking about another newsletter.  I came up with the great idea of not sending out a whole newsletter but instead only a postcard with a burning match on it.  The idea was nixed by one and all, too bad.

I love my quilting store and I love most of my customers, (I’m sure you are one of them), and thank G-d we are doing pretty good in this economy but I still feel burned-out.  In particular, registration for sewing and quilting classes was way down this quarter.  Now I’m cheap and don’t go in for spending my hard earned dollars on anything but quilting fabrics for my stash but I’m always curious about new techniques and patterns and therefore try to take classes that interest me and allow me to grow as a quilter.

There are a few diehards that do take all the classes that we offer and it gives me great pleasure to see them growing and enjoying the sheer joy in learning something new.  Are we not offering enough new and innovative classes?  Should we be offering more detailed work?  More fast and easy?  I dont know where to go so I dont feel like going anywhere.   So there, I’ve said my piece and I feel better [now i have to see if this goes thru my censors](One Word Censored).

Somebody, who will remain anonymous, sent me this wonderful letter.

“This may not quite qualify as ‘quiltresting’ or as material you would want to share with your readership, but I MUST share it with you!

I just heard about you, ironically, (or perphaps not) from my work colleague. He just called me and we were talking about the fact that my youngest daughter will be leaving for seminary soon and we will be “empty-nesters”. I told him I have taken an interest in quilting and hope that this will help keep me busy while I’m missing my baby!! Who would have guessed that he would be a source for quilting information!! He told me his brother-in-law’s mother (ME!) has a quilt shop in Brooklyn, a website, etc., and he told me about the Holocaust Quilt!! Before I hung up the phone I found the website, the blogs, etc. and I was THRILLED!!

I am the daughter of a Holocaust Survivor (I created a website that you may like to have a look at: http://www.jewsoflatvia.com) and was very interested in seeing the quilt for so many reasons. My mother is an avid quilter who is ALWAYS quilting or crocheting blankets for the Linus Project. I, on the other hand, am a complete novice but have discovered crazy quilts and really want to get started with a sampler.  I finally found the pictures of your Holocaust Quilt by scrolling down in your blog and I was totally blown away. It is the most moving and soul-stirring quilt I have ever seen. Absolutely amazing.

So funny and amazingly wonderful how by mentioning a little something to him (which, by the way, while I was saying it I was thinking – now why would he be at all interested in hearing about my foray into quilting!) could lead me to this treasure trove!

As an aside, my older daughter lives in Washington Heights and I already told her about your store. She said she has a cousin (a wonderful artist) and aunt (from her husband’s side) who were interested in learning quilting, so I will definitely send them to your store! I think they live in Queens, but I will definitely pass on the info.

You are a real inspiration and your work is incredible!! Thank you for sharing it with the world!! Absolutely beautiful!”

Another not my week story. We went out to eat yesterday and although it looked like rain, my husband said we should walk and we would make it back before the “2 minute” rain. Needless to say, the sky opened up just as we left and G-d left the hose on. We were soaked thru and thru.

I ran home with my daughter and her new husband, my husband went to temple. after i drove my daughter and hubby home, I was so glad to get back home just to be able to change into dry clothes but lo and behold, I didnt have the house keys. I quickly ran back into the car, drove to the temple, waited, soaking wet for half an hour for my husband and finally made it home.

The first thing I did wasn’t change my clothes but look frantically for my keys, which I couldnt find and I thought I lost them [not for the third time] but when I finally went to change there was a jangling in my pocket that turned out to be my KEYS. I’m either getting old [a distinct and not too bad a prospect, considering the alternative] or someone is out to get me. there always is next week.

All the live ballots, absentee ballots, oversea ballots, hanging chad ballots and all other ballots have been counted and we have a winner to the 2009 Challenge Quilt Contest!

Madi #4 Sweet Dreams!

Runnerup is Susan #9 “New York Mosaic

Thank you to all of you who voted in my quilting store and online and thank you to ALL of the entries!  They were all fantastic!

Please reference this post about the Challenge Quilt Voting.

A number of people have contacted us regarding the poll not working.  I have put up a new poll so please vote again!   Although this is highly unusual we hope the Florida Supreme Court will uphold our decision.  Hanging chads will not be counted.

Reference This Post

“The Old Stomping Ground” by Linda

“I lived in lower Manhattan when I first came to NY.  I quilted the most travelled route I took in those days between the Lower East Side, where I lived, and the World Trade Center where I worked.  (Ii never took the bus).”

2009 Challenge Quilt The Old Stomping Grounds (NYC)

2009 Challenge Quilt The Old Stomping Grounds (NYC)

“New York Mosaic” by Susan
“The first thing that struck me when I moved to NY from the Midwest, almost 30 years ago, was the non-stop motion everywhere, the lack of patience and the need for everyone behind me to be somewhere else five minutes ago, if not esterday.  To me, NY is a true mosaic, not a melting pot, with each person a unique part of the whole.  This quilt is based on the subway tile station mosaic motifs, trying to incorporate motion, people, landmarks, traffic and some of the many things NY is know for: finance, communication, entertainment, food, etc.”
2009 Challenge Quilt New York Mosaic

2009 Challenge Quilt New York Mosaic

Reference This Post

“Convergence” By Joyce

“I was inspired by the convergence of the people, cars, trains that form New York City.”

2009 Challenge Quilt Convergence

2009 Challenge Quilt Convergence

“All On Time” By Zmira
“I employed a variation of the log cabin block.  My husband and I enjoy traveling to our favorite spots in the 5 boroughs by subway.  “All On Time” was sewn in honor of an artist who was forced by the Great Depression to give up his scholorship to Pratt Institute to work as a NYC motorman. He later came out of retirement to work at a menial job to pay for the tuition of his daughter as a dance major in NYU so that she could fullfill her dream.”
2009 Challege Quilt "All On Time"

2009 Challege Quilt "All On Time"

Reference This Post

“The Maze” By Merri
“Out path starts at the hospital [the bottom subway map starts at a hospital] and ends at the cemetery [the top subway map is the cemetery]. Along the way our loved ones watch over us.”
The Maze 2009 Challenge Quilt

The Maze 2009 Challenge Quilt

“A Wild Ride on the Subway” By Ellen

“‘ A Wild Ride on the Subway’ fits with the theme of transportation that I have been working on.  From boats to taxis to Volkswagons, getting around NYC can be an adventure!  Born and raised in Brooklyn New York, I have been painting for over 35 years.  Over the past five years, I have been experimenting with fiber art, finding it to be freeing and fun. where as my paintings are formal, my quilts are whimsical and playful.”
Challenge Quilt - A Wild Ride on the Subway

Challenge Quilt - A Wild Ride on the Subway

“Sweet Dreams” By Madi
“Some people count sheep to help them fall asleep, I count trains.  It works for me since I live a stones-throw from the Q Train that helps lull me to sleep.”
"Sweet Dreams" 2009 Challenge Quilt

"Sweet Dreams" 2009 Challenge Quilt

“People on the Moon” By Sarah
“People in NY, with it’s great history and diverse cultures, are all on the moon.  Both residents and tourist alike using different means of travel.  Buses, trains, cars and trucks moving over the grand bridges.  Through tunnels, up and down our streets, sometimes at great speed I might add.  Let us not forget the boats that travel in and out of our vast waterways and harbors. We have it all for people on the moon.”
"People on the Moon" By Sarah

"People on the Moon" By Sarah

“Our Day in Central Park” By Perri

“I stared at the challenge fabrics for a long time. Central Park was conveniently in the center of my piece of subway map so it gave me focus, after rejecting the idea of cutting out tiny words from the map and finding fabric to symbolize many NYC destinations.  The quilt became an exercise in fabric scraps and wonder under.”
"Our Day in Central Park" Challenge Quilt

"Our Day in Central Park" Challenge Quilt

“NY State of Mind”

“Our energy, our style of always being on the go and our unique attitudes make us true New Yorkers. that’s why I love every minute of my “NY State of Mind””

"NY State of Mind" Challenge Quilt

"NY State of Mind" Challenge Quilt


Hi, I’m Malke

I've been a quilter for a couple of decades and I decided to share my quilts, methods, joys and thoughts on quilting with the rest of the blogsphere. Please bookmark my blog by clicking the cute "Add This" button below. Read more on the "About Me" page.

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