As many of you know, National Quilt Day is Saturday, March 20th. I know, I know, quilters celebrate their craft everyday, but hey…..”they” gave us a day…so let’s make something of it!
We wanted to take this opportunity to introduce to you a couple of our customers and friends. They have both impacted our store and sewing community in such a positive way. Many of you know these two beautiful women and if you don’t, let us introduce to you Barb Schmaus and Creuza Squires!
Many of the beautiful quilts that are displayed in Enchanted Room have been created by Barb. She has been working for us since we first opened our doors. She started sewing garments and purses as well as items for children. She then moved onto quilting.
Barb’s history with sewing is very interesting. She remembers sitting at her Mom’s feet with her girlfriend and sewing buttons on scraps of fabric while her Mom was sewing. She made her first dress for herself in the fourth grade and it has been non-stop since then. Her creations include suits, pants, wedding dresses, baptismal gowns and prom dresses. For many years she ran a successful alternations business from her home, but has since retired from that. Her husband, Pierce, often helps her as well. As a master brick layer, she said he is very good at math and placement. He also created large tables and workspaces for her that make working with quilts easier.
Barb’s large sewing area is actually her two kids’ rooms that were transformed after they were grown and left the house. She spends most of her time in those rooms and enjoys every minute of it. She recently upgraded one of her machines to a larger embroidery machine which she has enjoyed learning about and creating new projects.
We always look forward to having this lady visit the stores. Her happy smile and ready for anything attitude make her an important part of our team. We also envy her ability to quickly get her sewing projects completed. Thank you, Barb, for everything you do for Enchanted Room and for being our dear friend.
Meet Creuza Squires. The first thing we think of when seeing this lovely lady is joy. She radiates pure joy with her comforting smile and contagious laughter. She is a master seamstress that loves to share her craft with others.
Born and raised in Brazil, her mother taught her how to make men’s shirts as a young child. For one of her birthdays, her godfather gave her a cow for her birthday. That cow had a baby and she sold both. With that money she bought her first sewing machine which was a Phillip pedal machine. She gained experience sewing for a family that her father worked for making clothing, draperies and everything in between. Her entire family also enjoyed clothing made by Creuza. Later she attended a private school to learn how to make patterns.
Creuza met her husband, Jim, while he was working or the Peace Corps in Brazil. They were married and in 1968 and moved with her new husband to Montana. Speaking very little English, she began her married life in a new country. She told the story of waking up in her husband’s parent’s house and Jim had already left to work on the farm for the day. Her mother in law asked her to come downstairs where she met a man that had two sewing machines sitting out. As they asked her which one she liked the best, she didn’t understand what they were saying. Frustrated, she waited until Jim got home for the day and asked him what was going on. He told the story with a chuckle and said he told his new wife “My mother wanted you to pick out your new sewing machine”! This new machine allowed her to make clothing for her new in laws. Creuza said sewing was her salvation during this time of transition.
She became a master at her craft. She has created numerous wedding dresses, prom dresses and every type of clothing. She began to add quilting in the 1980’s. At that time there wasn’t rotary cutters or rulers so she made her own rulers with scissors and cardboard. She loves creating and her favorite part is hand applique. She finds pictures of wall hangings and quilts for inspiration and makes her own patterns. When she went through a cancer battle, once again she mentioned that working with her sewing machine was her salvation. It kept her mind off of what she was going through and her spirits up.
Spending a few hours with Creuza and her husband was such a delight. This lovely lady has such a gift and is so willing to share and encourage others to learn sewing and quilting. Thank you, Creuza. For being such an inspiration for so many people in our community. Your caring, servant heart is so valuable to so many of us!