Fun Quilt Shops from Our Trip to Montana

This should be my last post about our trip to Montana, but I wanted to show you two of the shops we stopped at.  (We stopped at more, but I only took pictures at two of them).

First, we stopped at Dakota Quilt Company in Spearfish, South Dakota. 


Just the outside of the building is enough to make me stop.   Check out this pretty garden area –


Isn’t that cute?


Inside is fun too.  Here is a pattern designed by the shop owner, Kim Ellis.



She also designed this cute block-of-the-month –


She likes to do special things like this for her customers.  Sorry about that person sleeping on the shop couch.  I tried to wake him and get him out of the way.  I think I may have seen this same guy sleeping on another shop couch somewhere. . . . .



They had other fun displays too and more places for quilters to hang out.  If you are in the area sometime, stop in and say Hi from me.  While you are there, drive down Spearfish Canyon.  It’s beautiful. 


I also have some pictures from the shop that I taught at in in Belgrade, MT, called Quilts on Broadway.  It’s in a pretty, older home with lots of character.  Some of the projects that are coming out in my new book were shot on their front porch.  Here’s their front entry –



The shop is owned by Peggy and Sue and they have so many of my quilts made up, that I couldn’t even begin to take pictures of them all.  

(my Around the Block quilt is on the right)



My Double Takes 1 quilt is made up in the center of the photo. 


It looks so different from my version, but I like them both.

Double Takes 1 color  option (500 x 450)


Here is their version of my Tea Setting table runner, from the book shown.  (By the way, they now offer online ordering)



and their version of my Vanilla Latte pattern from the book Sweet Life.



In addition to enjoying seeing what they had done with my designs, I also enjoyed their displays.  They do a grouping based on a fabric line, see below.


I love when shops display fabric this way.  If I go into a shop that just has different color walls, I often don’t buy anything.  But, if they have all their new lines displayed in groups, I am often persuaded to capture that look and bring it home with me!  I love shopping within a line, as you know the colors are all going to work together.  Many of you commented on my blogiversay post about my use of color.  I really can’t take full credit for that.  The designer of the fabric line gets the credit for the colors, I just have to decide how to put the fabric  together and try to show off the colors, not detract from them.  I wanted to be sure to mention this, after having so many people ask me about putting colors together.  Shop within a fabric line, and rest a little easier!  

So, now I’m curious.  How many of you shop within one line and how many of you do your own color coordinating?

About Heather Peterson

Quilt pattern designer
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38 Responses to Fun Quilt Shops from Our Trip to Montana

  1. Sequana says:

    I do a lot of “one line” work – It often puts colors together that I never would have attempted on my own. AND the values are always right.

    Thx for the pics of those lovely shops

  2. Elaine says:

    I shop both ways, but shop from a line much more often. The colors just “work” together. The pictures of MT have been beautiful. Hope to visit someday.

  3. Cindy says:

    Thanks for the tour! I love to use a “line” of fabric, but almost always try to add a couple of pieces out of the line to make the quilt my own.

  4. Michaela says:

    The guy on the couch made me snort my tea out my nose. He looks like my husband while I’m shopping.

  5. Sherri says:

    What a great shop! I generally shop a fabric line but then add a few things to mix it up. But some of my scrap quilts have turned out to be my favorites!

  6. Roseann says:

    Love the quilt shop pics. Wish I lived near these shops! I usually like to shop within a line, making it easier to coordinate.

  7. Marisa says:

    Great pictures! Every town needs a quaint little quilt shop! I usually pick out a main fabric and try to coordinate the rest using my own fabrics from my stash, which is obnoxiously large considering I have 2 preschoolers and very little time 🙂 Ahh… someday!

  8. Stephanie says:

    Thank you for sharing these inviting quilt shops. Lots of charm and personality. I’m a bit eclectic when I put fabrics together for projects. I don’t always like every fabric in a line so I love to mix and match.

  9. Linda says:

    I buy fabric both ways. A fabric line is so beautiful and you can start sewing right away. The mixing, matching, searching and hunting way is time consuming, but finding that just right fabric is like being on a treasure hunt. Sometimes I can’t find the perfect fabric and redesign my quilt but somehow that makes the quilt better. I just have both types of quilts being made at the same time.

  10. Mary Flynn says:

    I buy fabrics that I love, love, love…goes both ways of getting a collection of the line or yardage of one that I want the whole bolt of. Loved the show and tell quilt shop btw. Always fun to peek into another’s quilter’s world.

  11. Kate says:

    Lovely photos!

    I usuall work within a line of fabric, as someone has already done all the hard work and figured out what goes together.

  12. Julia says:

    I’m totally new at this quilting business so I like to use the same line. I get scared looking outside. But I really need to try to do that. I don’t think I’d mind doing it, if I knew what I was doing.
    Great pictures of the quilt shop! I love the guy on the sofa! Are you sure that wasn’t your hubby. You can never tell when their mouth is hanging open. LOL!

  13. Shelly says:

    I prefer to stay within a collection to ensure the colors work well together but try to venture out and mix in other fabrics for a more original quilt. No two quilt shops are alike and it’s always fun to see how they display the quilts and fabric and what makes each shop special.

  14. dot says:

    What sweet quilt shops. I love to stay within a collection but I can definitely be convinced to stray a bit especially when someone shows me a great example!

  15. carla says:

    I’m just beginning to freehand machine quilt, I’ve been using pantos on a short arm machine. Questions about the Cotton Candy quilt. Did you ‘stitch in a ditch’ around the inner border or do you just freehand different images in the different areas to set them off?

  16. Kristan in California says:

    In the past, I’ve always selected my own fabric. Since meeting you (even though we’ve never actually met), I mostly stick to a line. I love it. Layer cakes are the best! I recently made your Square Dance quilt with Charisma.

  17. glenda says:

    Hi Heather
    I too prefer when fabric is displayed in the fabric line instead of by color. I’m too distracted to select fabric by color and love to see all the coordinating pieces together. I liked how the shop displayed the samples near the fabric line. How fun to see so many of your quilts in there.
    Thanks for sharing.

  18. Patty says:

    Our local shops are small and only carry a few of the fabrics in any line. I enjoy searching for fabrics to go with them, the hunt is half the fun. It makes each quilt truly unique. It also helps keep my local shops in business. A fabric line works together but many are almost too coordinated resulting in quilts that are rather bland without any spark or surprise to them.

  19. Kris says:

    Hi Heather! Those look like wonderful shops. Especiallly the first one….the house is so inviting!!
    When I first learned to quilt, I found that selecting fabric was the hardest part! But now, I almost always shop within a fabric line. It takes away all the guess work, and still leaves you so many different choices! BTW, I bought your book Anka’s Treasures yesterday and I can’t wait to make the Pumpkin Table Topper (Harvest) for my house! I am a freak for pumpkins and all things Fall!!!

  20. Jenn says:

    I love buying whole lines! Ah, the joy of layer cakes and such, that I can buy an entire line and not have to spend the retirement money on it! I have done quilts that are mixed ans matched, but I have a weakness for quilts from one line

  21. Janice says:

    Oh these do make me so envious of places like these as i not found anything close to this in the UK not that i found many quilting shops i know there are more in the south of the country than where i am but i could almost go shopping from these photos so may be it just as well they are just photos lol very nice
    Hugs Janice

  22. Trudi says:

    Janice is so right about UK shops, with much smaller premises its hard to fit it all in sometimes. I love to see the pictures too! I like to mix up my own colours, but sometimes one line or in fact a designers pallet is just too good to mess with.

  23. jaybird says:

    i shop both ways.. but i do like when lines or designers are grouped together! that crazy eight block of the month quilt is great!! they need to share that with more shops or have an online site!

  24. A Betty says:

    That was a very interesting post. The Christmas /winter sampler is wonderful. I like fat quarters from a line but generally pick the background, backing and binding later and not always from the same line. Sometimes I just have to wait until the right pattern or idea comes. The displayed Vanilla Latte is at least 1000 times prettier than the one I made.

  25. Kim H says:

    I usually try to buy within a line of fabric. I tend to buy alot of Thimbleberries and Kansas Troubles and I know even if just stay with a specific designer my fabrics will go together. Thanks for the Dakota Quilt Shop picture. I have visited that shop both times my husband and I have been to the Harley rally in Sturgis. Isn’t Spearfish Canyon just the most beautiful?? The Spearfish Canyon Lodge is also a beautiful place to stay.

  26. Leslie L says:

    Thanks for the pics. I love virtual visits to shops.
    I’ve been shopping within fabric lines lately because I’m taken with all the Moda (and other) precuts. I do feel a little like I’m cheating, though, because I’m not picking out the colors myself. So I guess it’s really more satisfying to choose my own fabrics. But the precuts are just so easy!!

  27. Sam D. says:

    I go both ways. Sometimes I find one fabric and go to 3 different shops to find stuff I like with it adn sometimes I buy a line of fabric because they already did the work for me.

  28. Wendy B says:

    I usually bring in fabric from all over the place but at my last workshop I decided to run with a line…….magnificent….all the hard work done for you and it looked fantastic. I know what I’ll be doing more of from now on!!!
    Thanks for the lovely views – I rarely get away from where we live due to hubby’s work commitments, so lovely to trip around with others through their blogs!
    ;o) Wendy B

  29. SarahB says:

    What a beautiful quilt shop! I like to get several pieces from the same line and then pick a few extras from the color-walls that coordinate.

  30. NiCoLe says:

    I like using things from multiple lines. Its fun to see what kind of combinations i can come up with. My eye is usually drawn to collections though. I usually can’t afford to get everything at once!

  31. Kim says:

    I love those fabric lines, it always makes me want to buy the fabrics. Thanks for taking us on your little shopping trip, beautiful shops..

  32. Tracy P says:

    I shop both ways, although with the wide variety of fantastic lines that keep coming out I seem to be going that way more often lately!

  33. Christy says:

    I’m a definite stay within the lines kind of girl (both with fabric and color books!). It’s so easy and they are always so gorgeous! Loved all your pictures! It’s so fun to see the patterns in different color combos! So many possibilities….

  34. Junelle says:

    When I learned to quilt they didn’t have the lines of coordinating fabrics the way they do now–I enjoyed the challenge of hunting for just the right fabrics…now, however, I have enjoyed picking from a line of fabrics. It’s easy and fun to not worry about if they “go together”. Thanks for the fun pictures from your trip!

  35. Kathleen says:

    Without a local quilt shop to buy from, I do most online…and stay within a designed line. Saves the guesswork as to what might and might not work. But if I do shop in person, I like to stash build!

  36. Vickie says:

    Honestly … I am both. I love design lines, it’s easy and quick, but I enjoy trying new combinations and colors. Ok … so I just really like the shopping part of quilting, and the piecing, and the ironing … but don’t like the quilting or binding part. 🙂

  37. Michelle says:

    What a great tour – thanks!! I love to mix and match, personally. I like the eclectic feel and how original it comes out in the end.

  38. heidi says:

    I love your blog and was just reading old posts. My husband is from Belgrade, MT and Quilts on Broadway was one of my favorite quilt stores. We visited in September 2012 and the store was having a closing down sale. Very sad. I fell in love with your Sanibel fabirc at that store!

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