Monday, May 30, 2016

Secret Project Revealed!

Happy Memorial day to those in the USA. A bitter sweet day if you've lost loved ones during their service for our country. You have my many thanks and much love. Freedom isn't free and I appreciate those who have secured it for us.

I promised to reveal my secret project and it's a whopper! Not a book, or another Craftsy class, but a whole sewing machine shop!

This is the shop where I've been working. Sew Simple is a Janome dealership and the only sewing machine repair shop that I know of in south-central Virginia that services all kinds of sewing machines.


After 30 years of serving the Lynchburg and surrounding areas, Mr. Heckman is enjoying his retirement. At 89, and having had several recent surgeries and losing his beloved wife in February, he deserves to spend his days however he wants.


The shop is a bit of a diamond in the rough, but he's the real jewel. He is going to be sorely missed. He lives next to the shop and I hope he'll pop in to visit from time to time. The shop is in need of decluttering, updating, and I'm hoping to make it a source of inspiration and fun. Of course there will be classes and fabulous Janome machines.


Instead of barbecuing, I'm spending my weekend and the next few days cleaning, reorganizing, painting (bye bye country blue from the 80's) and getting the shop set up to suit me and my family. The first thing was to set up two areas for my kids to hang out in while spending time in the small shop over the summer. They're heading out for nearly 3 weeks away after this week.


Then it was time to start painting. So much work to do. I think I'll be painting little bit by bit for the next month or so. We're only closing the shop officially for one day for the change over in ownership, so I have to do what I can when the shop is normally closed (Sunday and Monday). Fresh paint on the door is a must.


I also have to get ready to show my customers the brand new Janome 9400! I've got a whole bunch of machines coming soon and I can't wait to set them out and show how they can make sewing and quilting so much more fun. We all need good tools to do our work. I feel a bit like that commercial (Was if for men's suits or an electric razor? I can't remember), "I liked it so much I bought the company!"

This isn't a quilt shop by any means. We have no fabric. That might change eventually. We do have plenty of accessories for Janomes and other machines too. We even have feet and parts for a lot of vintage machines.

My husband is now the machine service man and he's really enjoying it. He's always been a "fixer." He's a whiz at fixing machines, big and small. As he's gotten older, especially after having cancer, the appeal of fixing smaller machines inside a climate controlled building has sounded better and better. He's already attended Janome service training in 2004 and has studied with a sewing machine repairman from NC, as well as learned a lot from Mr. Heckman.

I never thought we could really buy this shop. Plenty of people wanted to see Sew Simple continue, but this isn't a cheap undertaking, nor do we have the kind of funds that most small businesses need to start up. But you wonderful quilting people? You made this possible! YOU! Every cent that we could save up from my Craftsy classes, ruler foot and ruler sales, even tiny bits of money from ads on my blog and YouTube channel was used to pull this off. There was no money to put into the shop from my husband's job or even a business loan. So this is all from my wonderful quilting peeps.

Pardon me while I shout it, "THANK YOU!"

What does it mean for the blog? Not much should change. In fact I'm hoping to see a bit more consistency in my posting and creating as it feels like I've been living two separate lives. Work in the shop and work at home for the blog and Craftsy classes. I'm merging my home studio space, the online shop inventory, and all the overflowing shipping supplies into the shop.

That's all for now, my paint is ready for another coat.


68 comments:

  1. Congratulations! I love that it's all come together for you, and your excitement bubbles over in your post. In the unlikely event that I ever get from Kinglake Australia to Virginia, I will certainly plan. to visit.

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  2. AHHHH THIS IS SO EXCITING!!!!!

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  3. Wow! Congratulations...this is so exciting! A new chapter in you and you family's lives. Best wishes for a successful venture...can't wait to hear more.

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  4. What a wonderful challenge for you and family. You are so talented that I am sure that once the transition stuff is completed you will be on your way. I have a dear friend who added fabric to her shop about 5 years ago. Good glory, a major success in a land of many independent quilt shops. What ever you choose to do I wish you the best of luck!

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  5. Wow that's super exciting. Good luck and enjoy!!!

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  6. Wonderful news. Congratulations and best wishes.

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  7. Congratulations, and best wishes for success in your new business!

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  8. So excited for you!! All the best in this new adventure!!

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  9. Congratulations! Best of luck to you in your new endeavor.

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  10. Congratulations! What an exciting adventure. Wishing you great success and enjoyment.

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  11. Omigosh! I never would have guessed that this was the news you had for us! HUGE congratulations! I hope it all goes terrifically well for you and that you're truly happy in your new endeavor! :D

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  12. Congratulations, I'm so happy for all of you. Including Mr. Heckman, I'm sure he will need to stop over from time to time. That shop is part of him and especially since he has also recently lost his Mrs. I'll pray for him to adjust to all the change well and your new business to thrive.

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  13. Congratulations! I am so glad everything came togethe for you! may God bless and prosper you and Sew Simple!

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  14. Congratulations!! I am thrilled to hear this news! You have helped so many people with skills and abilities and self confidence. Mid we have helped even a smidgen, we are all so happy to do so. Can't wait to see more photos!

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  15. Herzlichen Glückwunsch aus Deutschland! Viel Freude und viele glückliche Kunden in Ihrem kleinen Landen wünsche ich Ihnen und Ihrem Mann.
    Heike

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  16. Terrific! All the best for a successful venture.

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  17. Amazing news and look forward to seeing your shop evolve. You have been so blessed in many ways. It was just meant to be. Best of luck!

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  18. Congratulations!!! What a feat!! I know how this feels for you, built my own quilt fabric shop. I am so happy for you and your family to start such a great adventure. It sounds like it is going to fit with your husband and you perfectly!!

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  19. Wow! That's an exciting challenge - congrats and good luck!!

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  20. This is great news - congratulations! I don't live too far away (NC) and hope to visit sometime. What an inspiration you are Amy!

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  21. Congratulations, my wonderful fwend! I'm so excited for you! I loved your write up on Mr. Heckman. What a wonderful tribute to him.

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  22. Congratulations! I know this is going to be a dream come true for you!

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  23. Congratulations, may you and your husband enjoy many years to come, working together to provide for your family.

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  24. Congratulations! So happy for you and your family. Hoping for continued success.

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  25. Amy, the best of luck to you! This is wonderful news. From now on, instead of trying to obtain new feet from my local useless dealers, I am going to ring you up to see if you have what I am looking for. And, should I ever get a new machine I am getting it from you.

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  26. Congratulations and good luck with your stupendous challenge. Lucky sewing public of South-Central Virginia.

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  27. Wishing you all the best in your new venture. Congrats.

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  28. This sounds like a winning situation all the way around. Best of luck on your new endeavor!

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  29. Wow! A dream come true!! Congratulations.

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  30. Amy! I couldn't be happier for you. Reading your blog it's obvious you and your family are hard workers. If I were close by, I would help you paint! It is exciting, too, when you can take a space and make it your own. Now you'll have that empty room in your house too! We're all excited for you. I watched some more of your Craftsy class last night. Congratulations!

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  31. Congratulations and best wishes on your new undertaking. It's a huge step, but based on your blog and history, one that is in the right direction and will only grow as you see new opportunities. I'm in California, but hope one day to get to see this cute little shop!

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  32. Congrats! Imagine, shortly after I started following your blog you had made some comments about being camera shy. Now look at you - Craftsy classes, you talking on your blog and now a shop owner!! You are one amazing lady!!

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  33. This is awesome news!! Congratulations and I'm sure you will make a big success of it just as you have of your other endeavors! I wish you all the luck and happiness you so richly deserve!!

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  34. Good luck! That is wonderful news

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  35. Congratulations, Amy! I'm happy for you!

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  36. Congratulations Amy! I am so proud of you. You are truly a testimonial of focus and hard work making a difference in your family and your life.
    Love your blog, your You Tube videos and your Craftsy classes. Please keep them up. You are changing the quilting world one stitch at a time!

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  37. Congratulations Amy! I hope it all goes well for you and your family.

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  38. Hi Amy-- I am so proud of your accomplishment. I continue to be amazed by women like you who turned their passion for quilting into a viable occupation. There are so many successful women who have started with literally nothing and gone on to be a major influence in the quilting world. At the same time they were providing for themselves and their families. Can't wait to see where this next venture takes you.

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  39. Amy: it has been an adventurous year for you. Wishing you and your family well on this adventure. Enjoy your blogs and your classes. You go girl.

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  40. Amy: it has been an adventurous year for you. Wishing you and your family well on this adventure. Enjoy your blogs and your classes. You go girl.

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  41. Amy: it has been an adventurous year for you. Wishing you and your family well on this adventure. Enjoy your blogs and your classes. You go girl.

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  42. Way to go, Amy! I'm so happy to hear that this is coming true for you. It just goes to show that all your hard work and perseverance really does pay off! Congratulations and best of luck on your new adventure.

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  43. Congratulations Amy! Hard work and the love of quilting will prevail. Best of luck on you attempt.

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  44. Congratulations!Wishing you great success and enjoyment. You should be so proud of your self and your husband working together for a better life!

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  45. Wow, that IS exciting! Congratulations, Amy, and best wishes for this new adventure!

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  46. Congratulations Amy! Enjoy and wish I lived closer as I'd be a daily visitor.

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  47. Congratulations sounds exciting

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  48. Congratulations! That is so wonderful for you and your family and how great that you have a place for the kids to be part of it all.

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  49. Congratulations! What a wonderful story! This will be so wonderful for you.
    Mary

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  50. Good for YOU! What an undertaking for your family. I wish you much success and maybe even get to your shop someday.

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  51. Sending even more congratulations on your big new venture!!!This was definitely in the stars as it is right along the path you've been forging the last few years. It's even better that it is turning into a family business!

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  52. Your blog is very impressive and have the useful information it is really caught my attention.


    great work

    تصميم مواقع





    good job Beautiful! :)

    حراج السيارات

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  53. It's probably getting "old" by now but CONGRATULATIONS!!! I am truly so happy for you. I've followed your blog for a couple of years now...read through the archives...taken your Craftsy class ....watched all your videos...I'm a fan, can you tell? Anyway...I live on the Virginia/West Virginia border and was looking for Virginia quilt shops....I usually travel to Sew Biz in Radford but found A Needle Runs Through It in Oilville, and Sew Simple in Lynchburg. It was there on their Facebook page I saw that you and your hubby had bought the shop. I had NO IDEA that was your secret project. lol....I figured it was a book deal! Anyway, I am so happy for you. I'm a Bernina/Brother/Juki user in addition to a Handi Quilter Avante longarm...so while I won't be shopping for Janome accessories I will check out your class listings and hope you expand to include fabric some day. Blessings....and I wish you a most prosperous and satisfying future....Kathy in WV

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  54. Wow! This is terribly exciting news. I'm super excited for you. All the customers are so lucky to meet you in person. As for fabric. Have you thought about starting small and offering just solids?

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  55. Oh wow what an exciting storey!

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  56. Congratulations Amy!! This is fantastic news! Wishing you all the very best for your success!

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  57. congratulations....this is so exciting for you I am sure...best of luck in your new venture and much success!

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  58. Have been following you for some time, although I do not often write. Congratulations to you and your husband in this new adventure. May you have the success that you so richly deserve.

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  59. Congratulations! Sounds like this is the perfect match for both you and your husbands' talents! Please keep posting more of your progress with the shop!

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  60. Good luck Amy --wish I lived close enough to be a customer!!

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  61. Hi Amy!
    I am so happy to be reading about your shop. I haven't visited your blog in some time, every since, I got too addicted to the internet and forced myself to stop and get something done, instead of reading what everyone else was doing.

    What a perfect fit for you and your husband, this venture.

    You have been such a tremendous help to me with all your videos and other instructions. Thank you so much. Good Luck for sure! You deserve success!!
    Allie

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