Quilty Pleasures, longarmed and dangerous
Friday, January 31st, 2014 | Posted by Deborah Mitchel Serval
Gari Jones uses her longarm sewing machine to stitch
intricate patterns on a customer’s quilt at Quilty Pleasures Studio in
Geyserville. (Alvin Jornada / The Press Democrat)
Gari Jones, 51, learned to sew from her mom but 17 years
ago, when she saw a quilt at the Sonoma County Fair, she decided to take it to
the next level.
She learned to quilt, then spent much of her savings
learning how to use a computerized longarm sewing machine to finish quilts by
sewing together the top quilt, batting and backing.
In January, she opened Quilty Pleasures Studio at 112 Schoolhouse Lane in Geyserville. She specializes in repairing and finishing customers’ quilts
using the longarm machine.
Why open a quilt store?
I was a stay at home mom looking for something just for me
when I started sewing with a group of women every Tuesday. My Tuesday women can
now be called best friends, and we continue to sew together.
Most quilters love the art of designing and sewing the top
but are looking someone to finish putting the layers together. Every time I
wanted to finish a quilting project I had to drive to Graton, the closest
quilter, and wait up to three months.
The need was there, and with my machine I can finish the
same quilt in about 45 minutes, depending on size.
Years ago I brought my daughters to the
and fell in love with the town. About five years ago I bought this storefront
How did you get started?
On a pizza box was a flyer for Cloverdale Alliance for
Financial Education, “Did you ever want to start your own business?” That was
the summer of 2013, and here I am now.
CAFE offered an evening class that worked with my mom
schedule. The class went over every detail about how to open a business and
support yourself. I started the class in summer 2013 and opened in January.
What is the big deal about quilts?
Quilts are a lasting memory. People use the clothes from
loved ones to create quilts. They mark a momentous time in my life, like my
first grandchild being born or my daughter graduating from UCLA.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
I’m a retired firefighter, and this is going to pay for me
to travel on medical mission projects. After Katrina I just couldn’t sit in
Cloverdale and not do anything.
My local pastor had friends at Stanford who were planning a
mission, and I joined them. Since then I have gone with the medical team to Ethiopia, Haiti and Lima, Peru
Quilty Pleasures is located at 112 Schoolhouse Lane, Geyserville,