Featured Shop: The Quilt Haus

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A bird’s eye view from the front door of Quilt Haus.

“Predictable” and “easy” are two words that aren’t in Deanne Moore’s vocabulary. She attributes her nontraditional outlook on life to being a middle child, and its influence can be seen from her first quilt to the way customers can expect the unexpected when they visit the Quilt Haus in New Braunfels, Texas. From moving 1500 bolts of fabric into an empty suite for a blow-out weekend sale, to hanging king-sized quilts from a rug fixture she bought from a defunct furniture store, Deanne’s not afraid to try something new. “My ideas tend to be overboard, but if I’m going to do something out of the box, I do it big,” she says.

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Author and Quilt Haus owner Deanne Moore

Deanne’s love of quilting started when she learned to hand piece as a child, from her father’s relatives. “During the Depression my grandmother had ten kids and made survival quilts—precision, accuracy, and heirloom quality were not a consideration at that point—keeping people warm, was” says Deanne. “They had a quilting frame that hung vertically from the ceiling so kids of all different heights could help quilt.”

Quilt Haus High Ceilings

High ceilings allow for inspirational quilts everywhere!

Quilt Monster Quilt Haus

The “Quilt Monster” displays up to 30 quilts, including several king-sized.

 

While Deanne learned to quilt from her dad’s relatives, it wasn’t until she finished getting her chemistry degree and was teaching at two different colleges that decided to take a formal class. While her mom watched her young children, Deanne tried her hand at a first quilt. The pattern she decided on? “I dove straight into Dear Jane,” says Deanne. “Even if I’d known it was hard I would have done it anyway, because the challenge is the most fun part.”

Quilt Haus Pre-cuts

Precuts dominate one wall of the Way to Sew side of the store.

 

In 2002, a month after Deanne had moved to New Braunfels, the owner of the local shop put up a For Sale sign. “I couldn’t stand to live in a town with no quilt shop, so I bought it,” she says. Two years later she moved the shop to its current location, just off I-35, a convenient stop for quilters traveling through from Austin and San Antonio. The shop’s offerings reflect her wide range of customers and fabric lines extend from Civil War and 30s repros to modern prints. Quilt Haus also carries an extensive line of “basics,” including the top 100 colors of Moda Marbles and lots of Cross Weaves and Essential Dots.

Quilt Haus basics

Basic fabric lines, including over 100 Moda marbles, dominate the right hand side of the shop.

 

Deanne can’t say enough about her Moda rep, Jim Salinas, who’s been in the industry for decades and who she describes as “down-home Texas friendly with a wealth of knowledge.” She appreciates his interest in her business and that she can bounce ideas off him. “I’ll call him up and say, ‘Can I buy your lunch and pick your brain?’” says Deanne. “He has credentials in the industry like you wouldn’t believe. Moda is lucky to have him.”

Quilt Haus new showroom

Last summer’s expansion added 2,500 square feet, the full range of Pfaff sewing & embroidery machines and sergers, and three different HandiQuilter systems.

Deanne talked with Jim when contemplating a shop expansion into the next-door suite. She made the move last summer, adding Pfaff sewing machines and sewing furniture. Quilt Haus has been a HandiQuilter dealer for 11 years and the new space also houses two longarms that customers rent by the hour. The classroom is busy with a Marti and Me club, a strip club, sew-ins, periodic “schoolhouse” sessions that introduce customers to new classes and products, and charity quilting groups (one recently produced more than 80 quilts for Texas flood victims.).

Quilt Haus classroom

The 500 sq ft classroom accommodates 15 students, with design walls everywhere.

In addition to her shop, Deanne designs patterns under the name Creative Sewlutions. “The whole thing started with a Moda panel,” says Deanne, remembering the Kathy Schmitz fabric that came into the shop. Customers loved it, but weren’t sure how to use it. With her chemistry and math background, Deanne decided she could design a pattern for it and when the samples she made were popular, she created the pattern for sale. She’s now got 24 (some available through United Notions) and last fall Martingale published her book Change the Fabric, Change the Quilt.

Quilt Haus notions wall

The Quilt Haus has over 20 linear feet of notions and 18 feet of thread cabinets.

While Deanne’s got a lot of energy, she knows she couldn’t do it alone. She calls her staff of nine “amazing, so customer-oriented and friendly.” Her customers are instrumental, too, volunteering 400 hours last year to “reinvent” the shop. “They sorted and folded fabric, they dragged in their husbands with power tools, they built a cutting table,” she says. “It was a great big three-day party.” Deanne’s willingness to try the unexpected keeps the Quilt Haus an exciting place. “I guess I’ve got a little of my dad’s engineering and problem-solving skills,” she says. “I’m not afraid to say we’re gonna do this, it’s gonna be massive, and we’re gonna do it next week.”

Quilt Haus sale room

The 12′ x 16′ sale room holds 600-800 discounted bolts, as well as some kits, books, patterns, and notions.

 

 

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14 comments on “Featured Shop: The Quilt Haus

  1. Nancy says:

    My kind of gal! My first quilt? A Storm at Sea, a block with lots of pieces. My second quilt was a mini Baltimore Album – 4 1/2 inch blocks. That was back in the 80’s and I’ve been at it almost every day since. I have a needle in my hand like others have their smart phones. 🙂 Would love to visit this shop! Thanks for the pictures

    • Linzee McCray says:

      Wow! Those are challenging places to start quilting! I sometimes think it’s best NOT to know that something is “hard,” because then you’re not intimidated. And think of all you learn when you try something like this! Love to hear you’ve quilted every day since you learned!

  2. Mary Andra says:

    Great informative posting. Sounds like a great shop.

  3. loosecannon2 says:

    As Nancy says; I would love to visit this shop! My very first quilt was a king sized, appliquéd wild flower quilt which has given me the confidence to make most anything.

    Modi, after you complete your “featured shops” you could offer special tours for those of us interested. Thank you ever so much for this lovely visit today. Lovely write up & photos.

    • Linzee McCray says:

      As I said to Nancy above, tackling those challenging quilts early on teaches you so much! Well done, loosecannon2! And glad you enjoyed the post.

  4. Patricia Cash says:

    This shop is about 1 hour away from me and I did not know about it! It is time for a day road trip!

  5. Sharon Kern says:

    Does she have an e mail address? rfk7629@yahoo.com

  6. Lynne Wurzer says:

    This is my quilt shop! Deanne and all the gals at Quilt Haus are friendly and knowledgeable. I just love walking through that front door. And this year they have added embroidery thread and stabilizers for all of us who enjoy machine embroidery. So glad to see this posted here!

  7. ruthquilts55 says:

    Looks and sounds like a place I want to visit, well maybe occupy for a few days… Unfortunately the odds of me getting to TX are very very slim. I have a non-traveling husband and don’t want to actually put dynamite beneath his hinder to get him to move it out of the neighborhood for a couple of weeks or so.

  8. Carol Smith says:

    Hi where are you located?

  9. What a fantastic shop. A model of inventiveness and community building for sure!

  10. Brenda Ackerman says:

    I really enjoyed reading about this shop and owner. Knowing information about a business and its owner motivate me to shop there. Thank you for sharing and I hope that you have a wonderful day!

  11. Rose says:

    I stop in every time I am in the area. See you next week.

  12. Yolanda says:

    I love, love, love The Quilt Haus! My husband vacation in New Braunfels/Gruene often and I make it a point to stop and shop for fabric. It’s eye candy when you walk into the store. My favorites are the kaffe Fasset and Amy Butler fabrics.

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