Thursday, September 6, 2012

Martingale tour

Hi everyone:

During my recent summer vacation, we travelled to Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington in the United States. While there I was fortunate enough to have a tour of Martingale's offices in Bothell, Washington, near Seattle. 
Martingale's offices
If you're not familiar with Martingale, they are a book publisher of crochet, knitting, craft and quilt books. You will find their titles at various booksellers on-line as well as at most local quilt shops. They also sell their books through their website, which has recently been revamped and includes a blog, free patterns and tutorials
Front entrance at Martingale
I'm fortunate enough to be one of their book reviewers, so I was eagerly looking forward to seeing where it all happens. 
Yup, this is the place!
The tour gave me a chance to see their offices and meet some of the quilters who work there. Quilts from recent books published by Martingale were hung in the building. Due to copyright, we weren't allowed to take photos, but I was thrilled to see quilts from many of the books that I have in my library. I was especially delighted to see two quilts from Kay Mackenzie's recent book, Scrap-Appliqué Playground. You may recall that I was a stop on Kay's Book-A-Round 3 tour and made her Crazy Hearts project from the book.

I was also happy to finally meet Mary Burns, Marketing Coordinator, at Martingale. Mary and I have been emailing back and forth for awhile, but we've never met in person. As I walked in the front doors, Mary was there to welcome me - okay, I think she was actually unloading some books, but still... We had a great chat prior to the tour and she graciously allowed me to take some photos of the two of us. 
Mary Burns and I in her office at Martingale
Do you recognize the quilt behind us? I knew it looked familiar and Mary confirmed my suspicions that I'd seen it in one of Martingale's publications. It's Flying Shuttles from A Baker's Dozen, which is a collection of quilt patterns from the staff at Martingale. This particular quilt was designed, pieced, and hand appliquéd by Mary, with the quilting being done by Karen Burns, who is the Acquisitions Editor at Martingale.

Photo courtesy of Martingale
After the tour, the fun really began as we were given the opportunity to purchase books that had been published more than 6 months previous - at a substantial discount. I managed to add a few (more) books to my quilt library at great prices. Surprisingly enough, I didn't duplicate any of the books that I already own - I say surprisingly, because with over 300 quilts books in my studio, the chances were high that I might buy a book that I already owned. 

I thoroughly enjoyed finally seeing Martingale's offices and meeting several of the staff. I appreciated them allowing us to interrupt their workday - it can't be easy to concentrate with a group of quilters oohing and aahing their way through your workplace. 

If you ever find yourself in the Seattle area, be sure to book a tour of Martingale's offices - and bring some cash and a large bag.

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