From Freeport to Bath is a quick and easy drive down US Route 1. In Bath we found Mariner’s Compass Quilt Shop on Front Street. A friendly staff greeted us with the invitation to take photos in their row by row photo “booth”. It was a clever wall decorated with their row, made with reverse appliqued raindrops (available in two color choices-rainbow and blue gradations), and a rainbow (made from covered pool noodles) along with stuffed raindrops hanging from above and a cute umbrella to pose with if you do not want to have raindrops falling directly on your head. We thought it was a great way to encourage people to spread the joy of visiting their shop on social media. Next year, we predict more shops may join that trend. The store owner was at the Maine Quilts show so her mother, Wendy Ulmer, a children’s author, who recently wrote her fourth book, “My Twelve Maine Christmas Days” was tending the shop along with another employee. Wendy told us all about the reproduction ship figurehead in the shop, named Amanda Fenwick. It is a reproduction that was from a ship built in Massachusetts and found in Fenwick Island, Delaware. The shop owner is named Amanda so it was very fitting. Apparently, on holidays the figurehead is dressed in costume, another fun feature from this nice store. They’ve already had a row by row winner and the quilt was hanging in the shop. Elizabeth also learned that the Whoopie Pie is the state snack of Maine from reading Wendy’s book.
What can we say? We loved this shop! It has A LOT of really nice contemporary upholstery weight fabrics. They specialized in making pillows and have many from which to choose under the name Molly Hutchins Designs. They also have a nice selection of quilting fabrics, webbing, and laminated fabrics. Both Molly and her store helper were very friendly and helpful.
Their row was two whales and were very reminiscent of the sea coast. The whales face each other and have a heart in between them. Cute and they should go together fairly easily and quickly.
We got a bit off track following directions to Alewives in Nobleboro when the GPS said we were there and we obviously were not, so we reevaluated by consulting an old fashioned paper map and soon we were back on track. Talk about a lot of fabric. This store really had a large selection; lots we had never seen before. Liberty of London prints and many samples of bags and clothing were on hand to help sell patterns. That really does make a difference. Some of the items we bought were purchased because we had seen a sample made up. They also had some lovely hand screen printed panels for sale. Their row features appliqued starfish on a background pieced of many squares.
The final quilt shop of the day was Maine-ly Quilts. We drove right past, luckily seeing the sign as the GPS told us we had another mile to go. Fortunately, the driver was proficient in making U-turns. This shop had a lovely quilted stained glass ceiling window over the cash register. Lots of batiks lined the walls of the porch and the store had many notions and other fabrics as well. Upstairs was a 40% off sale room. Who can resist fabric at 40% off. Their row features elephants playing in the rain.
5 quilt shops and a yarn shop in one day and yes, we picked up the row by row pattern, the license plates and made purchases at every single store! Now it was time to continue driving to Lincolnville and our rest stop for the night.