At the end of February I went to Calgary to visit my brother and his wife for our Reading Week break. My Aunty Shelly was coming to hand out with my at Shane’s while my cousin Travis and Jared went snowboarding in the mountains. Shane had to work and Michelle had school, so most of the days were spent with Aunty Shelly and I finding things to do. When we first both decided we’d be in Calgary at the same time I started thinking that maybe we could spend a day in Banff, or maybe Canmore, but what would we do all day? I don’t know what made me think of it, but I decided to search Google for “Banff quilt shops” which gave The Sugar Pine Quilt Company as the number one result.
The Sugar Pine Quilt Company was located in Canmore so our plans changed to include some time spent in Canmore, because this place looked amazing. On the day we ended up heading to Canmore and Banff Michelle was able to get away from school, so the three of us bundled up in -40 weather and headed for the mountains. I was impressed with Sugar Pine before we even walked inside – in a crowded little mountain town this business had an entire parking lot all for a quilt store! We walked into the store though and it was like my excitement completely disappeared. It was crowded, full of older looking fleece, spools of thread, and kitschy sort of souvenir items. I kept wondering what made this place an award winning quilt store, as their website boasted.
We walked around the bottom floor trying to stay positive, though we were all thinking the same thing. That is until we rounded a corner towards a grand staircase with a sign that said quilt shop upstairs…
OH MY GOD! It was like heaven! This place was hands down the nicest quilt shop that I’ve ever been in. Every single quilt on the walls could be found somewhere in the store in kit form. There wasn’t a spot left untouched that didn’t have either bolts of fabric or finished quilts hanging from the walls. It was unbelievable.
None of us left empty handed. Aunty Shelly, who doesn’t even sew, walked out of the store with a quilting kit in hand. Michelle bought a small lap quilt kit, and I hummed and hawed for a good hour before they finally convinced me to buy the quilt I had been eyeing – a Christmas log cabin quilt with bright, funky colours. I also bought a table runner kit because sewing a table runner is on my Project 52 list!
While Michelle and I finished up in the quilt shop Aunty Shelly went downstairs to pay where she found out that the business is owned by a mother daughter duo, and that their business has tripled since they started offering their quilts in kits. An obvious drawing feature considering that was exactly what we had all bought. The mother of the duo was kind enough to offer all three of us a 10% discount on our purchases in light of their upcoming sale. She also told Aunty Shelly that Sugar Pine has been featured in The Quilt Sampler, a BH&G magazine. Based on what we saw, I am not at all surprised!