Friday, November 18, 2011

It's So Hard To Say Good-Bye!

About 11 years ago, I was living here in Manhattan Beach.  I can't for the life of me remember what made me decide to take a quilting class.  I don't even remember how I discovered Luella's Quilt Basket or what motivated me to want to learn how to sew.  I didn't even own a sewing machine.  For whatever the reason, I signed up for a sampler quilt class at Luella's Quilt Basket at her original location on Sepulveda Blvd, taught by Luella herself.  She taught us 6 different blocks all with different styles of quilting techniques.  I fell in love with fabric and sewing and got my first mini Kenmore sewing machine.  I finished the quilt with my machine and gave it to my mom where it is still being displayed beautifully in her living room.  

Many crazy things have happened in my life since than, but the one thing that has remained consistent is my love for sewing.  I believe that Luella had a huge hand in helping develop the passion and skills that I have today.  I took a few other classes with her over the years.  She moved her store from Sepulveda Blvd in Manhattan Beach to Aviation Blvd in Redondo Beach, but always Luella was there ready to help with any sewing issues or questions.  She had fun, new classes, great teachers, and amazing workshops.  When I moved back to Manhattan Beach two years ago, I was dying to take another class at her shop.  Unfortunately, I haven't had the time and/or money and now it is too late.  Luella has announced that she is closing down her shop and retiring from being a store owner.  *Sad face*

I am happy for Luella, though.  She's no spring chicken and I've spoke with several local shop owners around the South Bay who have said the last two years have been the worst years in history, financially speaking.  Rent is not cheap, so how they make the ends meet, I don't know.  I imagine this, along with it just being time for her to say good-bye and move on to the next phase of her life, are the reason she decided to call it quits and hang up the "Closed" sign for good.  

Luella's is still open through December.  I went in the other day and made my last purchase.   I know life will go on and new quilt shops will appear, but Luella's Quilt Basket will always have a special place in my heart <3!

Where it all began!

Luella herself at the cutting table

My last purchase at Luella's :(
Thank You Luella for inspiring me and introducing me to this great skill that has kept me warm, clothed, stylish, creative, inspired, fed, and oh so happy.  :)

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