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Monday, 1 September 2008

Cotton Patch at The Cotton Patch

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We were delighted to welcome Carolie and Tom Hensley from The Cotton Patch, Lafayette, California today. They stopped by The Cotton Patch shop whilst touring in the UK. It follows a very interesting trip to Switzerland which they had won as a Bernina prize as a result of a very successful year for Bernina sales - they had the opportunity of trying out the fantastic new Bernina long-arm machine that will be out in the UK next year.

Carolie founded The Cotton Patch in the US 30 years ago and has been a cornerstone of the patchwork and quilting community in the US, having also founded the successful book publisher C&T Publications, now run by her sons Todd and Tony. C&T Publications (Carole & Todd!) began in the book business when Roberta Horton was teaching at The Cotton Patch. She was looking to put a book together and Carolie had the idea of publishing it for her. Tom took a trip to the library to find all the books he could find on book publishing and the rest, as they say, is history!


We first met them at a Quilt Market in the States, more years ago than any of us could remember precisely. We were sitting at a large round table having lunch, looked across the table and saw the same name on their name badges as was on ours! We swopped stories of how our respective shops had begun.

Each year when we go to Quilt Market we see Todd, who married Jennifer Sampou. Jennifer has designed some wonderful fabrics, originally for P&B and then for Kaufman so quilting is very much still in the family.

If ever you're in the California area, we would recommend stopping by and saying hi to Carolie at The Cotton Patch.

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