Ellen learned to knit when she was nine and to sew when she was in high school. She made many of her own clothes, but found herself short on time in college, medical school, and eventually, Cardiology practice. She
maintained her knitting, and began teaching knitting techniques at a local yarn shop about 10 years ago. She started an after school knitting club at Sacred Heart School and continues to volunteer there. Ellen added weaving about 6 years ago, but didn’t get back to sewing until she retired 5 years ago. Initially, she intended to go back to garment sewing, specifically planning to make “little girl dresses” to complement children’s sweaters that she had already made, but realized that sewing techniques had changed significantly in the many years that had passed. She took a basic quilting course simply to relearn sewing techniques, but became fascinated by the interplay of color and pattern inherent in quilting. She attended classes at the Old Country store and at quilt shows, learned long arm quilting, and now works as a “longarmer” for the Old Country Store. Several of her quilts have been sold at the store as well.
Ellen loves fiber arts of all kinds, and particularly the interplay among the different disciplines, which she uses in her teaching. She also has a strong interest in IT and enjoys using computer techniques in her quilting, weaving and knitting design.
On a personal level, she is married, with two children. Her husband is a retired university professor who also taught for years at the Pennsylvania Academy of Music, and now teaches privately. She and her family have been in Lancaster since 2004.
Donna started doing needlework as a child, beginning with embroidery, and moving on to knitting, crocheting, needlepoint, and counted cross-stitch, in addition to garment sewing. In 1992, while on a shopping trip with a friend, she came upon a quilt shop that offered classes, and has been quilting ever since. She enjoys working with traditional patterns and reproduction fabrics, but is always open to new ideas and techniques. Sampler quilts are her favorite projects, because of the challenge of making a variety of blocks.
As an elementary school teacher for 27 years, she instilled in her students the belief that learning does not end when one leaves the classroom, and encouraged them to become lifelong learners. She applies that philosophy to her quilting by trying to incorporate a new technique into each quilt.
Donna lives in Paoli with her husband, Joe, who supports her passion for quilting by accompanying her to shops and shows. Daughter Sarah has been the recipient of many of her mother’s projects. In her free time, Donna enjoys reading, playing the piano, and spending time with her family and friends. She is interested in history, particularly its connection to women’s arts such as quilting, and enjoys learning the history of blocks and patterns. She is a member of the Penn Oaks Quilt Guild and the Tredyffrin-Easttown Historical Society.
Ann Bertorelli began making quilts soon after the birth of her third grandchild in 2006. Once started it became a passion. However she has been a ‘maker’ her entire life, inspired by her mother who expressed her creativity through knitting, needlepoint, crochet, sewing and painting. “In my household everyone was a maker in different mediums--it was just something that we all did.” Before she took up quilting she made clothing as well as her own ballroom dance costumes for competition.
Ann has a background in teaching from being a high school teacher for 11 years, a corporate trainer, as well as an executive coach.
She likes making modern quilts (which she always labels), and is a long arm quilter.
Susan began sewing at the age of 10. Her mother also taught her how to crochet and to do counted cross-stitch. Through high school she made her own clothes, and when she got married she made her wedding dress. Sue continued her love of sewing by becoming a formal wear seamstress.
About 12 years ago, quilting for Susan blossomed and flourished; so much so that in 2020 she bought a long arm quilting machine. She continues to pursue her love of quilting.
Susan and her husband Dennis have 4 children and 8 grandchildren. They farm with their youngest son in Oxford.
JoAnn grew up in Lancaster County and began sewing as a young girl. Under her mother's protective wings, JoAnn sewed clothing and crafty items on her trusty Singer sewing machine. She also loved learning new things in Home Ec at school.
In the early 1990s, when Thimbleberries came out with a Block of the Month club, JoAnn discovered a love of patchwork and quilting. Today she still enjoys piecing quilts, doing machine embroidery, and sewing pocketbooks, bags, and accessories.
In February 2017, after retiring from 36 years in the banking industry, JoAnn happily accepted a part-time position on staff at The Old Country Store. Here she satisfies a long-time desire to be more involved with quilting, sewing, and helping others.
JoAnn and her husband, Malcom, have three children and two grandchildren. JoAnn enjoys being Grammy, motorcycling and traveling with Malcom, and gardening.
Clare began sewing as a middle schooler. She started with simple clothing patterns using her mom’s Singer. In the mid-1980’s, she assisted her former Girl Scout Leader (Chris) with her very busy, at home, Bridal Gown business. She thought she could help Chris by doing handwork, and assist in the re-design of Clare’s mom’s wedding dress for her sister Cathy’s upcoming wedding. She never looked back. Several years of bridal/bridesmaid/Mother of gowns soon found Clare sewing her own gown in 1988.
Home ownership offered the challenge of drapery and home accessory sewing. Garment alterations were ever-present, and the machine never seemed to cool down.
Clare has always had some sort of needle in her hands. Most recently she closed her knitting shop to retire. COVID has precipitated a new garment sewing phase. She is inspired by color and texture. Simple designs are a canvas for creativity. The machine is again heating up, but these days compete with a long list of knitting and needlepoint projects.
Mary Alice began her interest in fabrics as an eight-year-old involved in 4-H. That interest evolved into an education career, teaching sewing and tailoring, fitting, serger techniques, embroidery, software, and quilting.
Mary Alice lives with her husband on a Century Farm near Lititz. Together they enjoy hiking, biking, and taking “walking” vacations around the world.
At home, Mary Alice enjoys working in her vegetable and flower gardens, cooking, knitting, reading, and passing on her love of “creating” to her seven wonderful grandchildren. Her latest passion is digitizing appliquéd children’s quilts.
Donna loves to sew and embroider small projects and has sewn the project samples, led the Embroidery Club, and taught other classes for Hinkletown Sewing for the past 15 years.
Donna likes to spend time sewing charity projects with friends. They have made walker bags for local retirement homes, pillows for breast cancer patients, pillowcase dresses to send to orphanages in other countries, and many other worthy projects.
After 42 years in their first home, Donna and her husband, John, recently designed, built, and moved into a new home just outside of New Holland, PA. “It was quite a project,” Donna says, “but the large, bright sewing room with a great view of the countryside was worth it!”
Donna and John enjoy travelling (especially to the Bernina factories in Switzerland and Thailand) and watching their great-nephews race stock cars.
After selling the family steel and recycling business, followed by a short period in retirement, John began working part time for Bernina of America and Hinkletown Sewing. Over time his work load with Hinkletown Sewing continued to grow and he stopped traveling to quilt shows for Bernina. Today he continues to manage special events, provide software support, and oversee other computer related projects for Hinkletown Sewing.
John enjoys traveling to Bernina University each year for Hinkletown Sewing and has traveled to the Bernina factories in Switzerland and Thailand. But most of all he enjoys working with the Zimmerman family and all the great Hinkletown Sewing customers.
In his spare time, he enjoys fishing and working on dirt track race cars as a chassis tech.
Wanda grew up in northern Lancaster County. She occupied her younger years with hand embroidery and related crafts. She learned how to sew clothing from her grandmother, a skill which then occupied her summer free time.
Sewing took a back seat to her career until her mother needed quilt tops to hand quilt for charity fundraisers. Numerous quilt tops led to a new sewing machine, her first Bernina. In 2014, Wanda expanded her interests to include machine embroidery. Now she enjoys sewing and embroidering items for family, especially her grandchildren. Being three at Christmas means you receive a handmade backpack, which they enjoy.
Wanda enjoyed and benefitted from classes offered and thought about the possibility of sharing her interest with those new to and those experienced with machine embroidery. Realizing we all have something to either learn or share makes the class experience rewarding.
Andrea has been sewing ever since she was a little girl. Fortunate to have a mother who was a Home Economics teacher, she learned to sew and do needlework at a very young age. She grew up sewing her own clothes, participating in 4-H club, and entering her creations in the local county fair.
A Sampler Quilt class in 1991 awakened Andrea’s love of quilting, and she has been stitching quilts ever since. She enjoys all forms of quilting, including hand and machine piecing, appliqué, and hand and machine quilting. She has entered her quilts in the Elizabethtown Fair almost every year for the past 25 years.
“Modern Traditionalist” best describes Andrea’s style. She loves all things vintage, which is reflected in her work. The exploding online quilting community has only fueled her passion for quilting, and as a result, she has “more quilts in her brain than she will be ever be able to stitch in this lifetime!” Andrea enjoys sharing her knowledge and experience and delights in introducing sewing and quilting to others.
Andrea lives in Elizabethtown, PA and also enjoys cooking, gardening and blogging.
Ruth Ann considers herself very lucky to have had a talented father, who started her on a very long creative path. Quilting became a very important part of her life after she made first quilt in 1985. In 1998, she had a chance to take classes with Jane Townswick. She then feel in love with appliqué and still enjoys it today. In down time from quilting she can be found knitting or doing needlepoint. She always has something in her hands to keep busy.
Ruth Ann and her husband live in King of Prussia with their two dogs. They are the proud grandparents of three teenagers.
Amanda enjoys all things creative and crafty. As a young adult she took classes in painting, drawing and photography. She carried her love to create into her education after high school where she attended The Culinary Institute of America for two years. Following her time there, she attended Messiah University and then spent 10+ years in retail management with a company specializing in high end cookware and home furnishings.
In 2016, Amanda took a sewing class with a friend to learn how to sew a zipper pouch. Learning to sew a zipper opened up the world to making bags. She took several more classes on bag making at her local quilt shop and became hooked on patterns by Noodlehead, Sallie Tomato and Sotak Handmade.
In 2018, Amanda opened an Etsy shop to start her small handmade business called Glue & Stitch. She sells sewn handbags, wallets, clutches and accessories. Amanda loves to use quilting cottons in bright, modern and bold prints paired with subtle linens, denim and canvas. Amanda primarily sells her bags on her website and at local Makers’ Markets and craft shows in the Greater Philadelphia and Lancaster areas.
Amanda lives in Phoenixville, PA, is married to her husband, David, and has 3 kids, Kieran, Greyson, and Lila. She runs her small business out of a studio space in Spring City near her home. Amanda loves to make quilts as her hobby in her spare time and has a “modern traditionalist” style. Her favorite fabric designers include Ruby Star Society and Rifle Paper Co. She never seems to have fewer than three quilts in progress at a time.
Maureen has spent years working in the publishing industry as a graphic designer and illustrator. She has sewn clothing since her youth, and has been a quilter for over 35 years. She is an active Modern Quilt Guild member.
She has combined her love for modern art and design with her passion for quilting, creating exclusive modern quilts. She loves to quilt by hand and by machine, and is excited to share her passion for sewing with you!
Mary has been an avid quilter for over 25 years, creating countless quilts for her children, her home, her nieces and nephews, friends, for weddings, births, graduations. Building on this passion, for the past ten years she has been exploring the field of fiber art. In 2009 Mary began to make "quilted home portraits" of houses, using a technique she developed and perfected. By 2012 Mary was creating portraits of people and entering art shows. The photo to the right is of Mary and her "Quilted Poe" at the Delaplaine Art Center in 2013. She has won awards and competitions and sold pieces locally and around the country.
Dee is a retired pharmaceutical clinical researcher who has now become an avid quilter. Growing up in Lititz, PA., Dee was blessed to have had a paternal great-grandmother and grandmother who quilted, tatted and knitted as well as a mother who was proficient in garment sewing. These women were great mentors, and in addition to learning from them she learned while smelling Wilbur chocolate! Early childhood sewing for Dee included doll clothes and doll blankets and then progressed to personal clothing, handbags and totes as well as clothing and quilts for three sons and seven grandchildren. In retirement, the extra time for large quilting projects became available and Dee’s usual projects include over-sized king-size bed quilts as well as projects that combine quilt making with decorative stitching and machine embroidery. Learning to cut and piece accurately has become a staple in Dee’s quilt making repertoire and has become so much easier with the help of her new favorite tool – the Accuquilt Go cutter. Dee now lives in Pennsburg, PA with her husband, Tom and her two Airedale Terriers.
Tom Marino started quilting in 2018, after retiring from Temple University where he was a Professor for 38 years. An avid photographer, Tom’s goal was to be able to take his photographs and make fabric art. His wife, Dee, is an accomplished quilter, and was able to help Tom get his start. Under her guidance he learned many of the basics of quilting, embroidery and appliqué. Taking classes he learned how to use thread painting to enhance his work. Recently he has been using free motion quilting and rulers on the Bernina Longarm Q24 and trying to develop his quilting skills.
Carol’s earliest memories of quilts involve playing under the quilt frame while her Grandma was quilting, and being thrilled when the collection of heirloom quilts was taken out of storage to be shown to guests. Carol’s mother taught her how to sew her own clothing, but she learned to quilt while working at The Old Country Store. In turn, she had the privilege of teaching her mother how to quilt.
“My passion in quilting is collecting antique fabric, preferably late 19th century fabrics, and creating miniature quilts. I love the challenge of taking a large quilt block pattern and resizing it into a smaller block,” says Carol. When she is not sewing with antique fabrics, she is dipping into her stash of reproduction Civil War fabrics.
Currently, Carol is employed as a care giver for senior citizens in their homes. Her hobbies, in addition to quilting, are nature photography, working in her flower gardens and motorcycle riding with her husband.
Jan, like so many others, began sewing doll clothes at a young age. Her mother and two older sisters fueled her curiosity and creativity, encouraging her to enter Sewing 4-H and submit completed craft and sewing projects to the local farmers’ fairs.
She graduated from sewing doll clothes to making clothing for herself, and later, for her children. More recently her projects are less garment-oriented and are more patchwork and quilt-inspired.
“I have always loved creating things with my hands, imagining ways to put color and texture together, and marrying traditional craft with modern technique. Owning the Store, buying fabric for both the “bricks” and “clicks” stores, and relating local quilters and crafters is a dream job!” she shares.
Jan and her husband Dean, owners of The Old Country Store, live in Smoketown, PA. They share a rivalry in Scrabble and enjoy flower gardening together. Their three daughters also caught the sewing bug and give Jan’s two Bernina machines a real workout!
Kelly took her first sewing class at age 12 at the Singer Sewing Center. All through high school she made her own clothes and learned the love of creating with your own hands. Pregnant with her first child, 44 years ago, she saw a picture on the cover of a magazine of a quilt and decided she wanted to learn how to quilt. Mostly self-taught, these were the days before good books, patterns, rotary cutters, and great fabrics.
Once the children were gone and after a career in Real Estate, she returned full time to quilting, lecturing, and teaching classes. She likes everything from antique quilts to modern quilts.
Kelly and her husband Bob live in Downingtown where they raised 4 children and like to spend time enjoying their 9 grandchildren.
Kandra’s sewing journey began in an elementary 4-H class, but really took off in high school when she started experimenting with fashion designs. She turned jeans into a purse and sewed her own Victorian-style prom dress, among other projects.
Following in her mother’s footsteps, Kandra requested a sewing machine instead of a diamond for an engagement present! She’s put her new Bernina to good use, sewing window treatments, dress clothes, and kids’ toys. While Kandra has dabbled with quilting, she really prefers sewing and altering clothing.
Kandra lives with her husband and family in Lititz. When she’s not sewing, she may be found chasing bunnies out of her vegetable garden or reading stories to her two young boys.
Sally's sewing journey began at age 10. With her mother as her teacher, Sally took on the challenge of an un-pressed pleated skirt for her first project. As a young wife, she taught herself tailoring by following the most complicated Vogue patterns.
Sally's first quilts were made for her young sons, following her grandmother's example of using coloring book illustrations for applique motifs. Since moving to Garden Spot Village, Sally has enjoyed the opportunity to continue learning new techniques from other experienced quilters.
For twenty-three years Sally served as a missionary in the Philippines with her family. Her professional training in Christian education prepared her to teach all ages. Today her life is balanced by Bible study and sewing, teaching adults and teaching children. She writes patterns and creates sewing projects using the label Sally’s Stitches.
Sally and her husband enjoy ministry, world travel and keeping physically fit. They have three sons and four grandchildren.
Jackie first learned to sew at the age of nine. When her children were young, she had her own home business making children’s clothing. Jackie got hooked on quilting in 1998 when her mother took her to her first quilt show.
In 2008 Jackie met Deb Tucker and took Deb’s Rapid Fire Hunter's Star class. From that point on Jackie fell in love with Studio 180 Design tools for their precision and accuracy. Jackie became a Studio 180 Design Certified Instructor in 2014, and has had quilts published in Deb's books, Hidden Treasures and Royal Treasures. Now she loves teaching and watching the excitement on her students' faces when they make their first cut and see the precision they can achieve using the Studio 180 Design tools.
Jackie spent nine years on active duty in the Air Force, and 38 years as an OB/GYN Nurse Practitioner. After retiring in 2018 she pursued her dream job of teaching others to quilt and instilling in them the love of the art of quilting.
In her spare time, Jackie loves spending time with her grandchildren, fishing, and spending time in the outdoors.
Sherry learned to sew in Home Economics Class in High School. She made clothing for herself and family members. In nursing school, her interest in quilting was piqued when she learned to hand quilt at a friend’s house. After retiring from nursing, Sherry returned to her first love of sewing and finally learned to quilt. She enjoys sharing her craft with others.
Sherry and her husband, John, enjoy traveling, watching old movies, and exploring quilts shops and bookstores. She also leads a Bible Study group at her church.
Sue is a country girl through and through. She loves mountain lakes, seaside docks, bird (and critter) watching, walking down quaint village streets, visiting barns and farm animals and even the occasional daytrip to a big city. They all supply the inspiration for her unique quilt designs, through which her company, “Sweet Season Quilts” was born, offering these special places to others through her patterns and kits.
As an award winning quilter with over 20 years experience, Sue has tried every technique that has come along, but her two personal favorites are fusible web machine appliqué and her type of quilting as you go. She loves telling her class quilters to be ready to learn a bunch, laugh a lot and get ready to be amazed at what they can accomplish in one day!
When she’s not teaching, traveling or designing, she’s puttering around the house with her kitties, trying new recipes, mowing the lawn (or shoveling snow), helping hubby with one of his many “projects”, or just singing along with her favorite radio station.
Sue and her hubby are originally from southern Pennsylvania, where they married, moved to northern Vermont, started a family, and later relocated to upstate New York in the little village of Schaghticoke. You can reach Sue through her website; www.sweetseasonquilts.com.
Sally has had a needle in her hand since she was in elementary school. She started with simple embroidery, but by junior high school she was sewing much of her own clothing. In 1976, bi-centennial year celebrations piqued her interest in doing patchwork and quilting.
Since that time, Sally has taken many classes from nationally known teachers. She has also taught quilting classes for quilt shops, evening schools, and quilt guilds.
Shortly after her retirement from secretarial work, Sally and her husband, Fran, chose to move to Garden Spot Village in New Holland. She has an active lifestyle in the community, enjoying casual bike riding, ringing hand bells, taking bus trips, and of course, teaching quilting. Sally and Fran have two adult children and five grandchildren.
Rachel has been sewing as long as she can remember! She started hand-sewing her mother's scraps together as a little girl and is now the proud owner of Rachel Rossi Design. She loves creating quilts that are fresh and draw in a new generation of quilters.
With a degree in Interior Design and a passion for all things creative, Rachel is always up to something! When she's not at her sewing machine, you can find her outside in the garden or in the garage with a can of stain or a sander in-hand.
Rachel lives in Lancaster County with her husband, Steven, and her daughter, Alina. Both are as much a part of the business as Rachel is, "Steven not only built and maintains my website, but I couldn't ask for a better business partner," says Rachel. "Little Alina is the reason I wanted to go into business for myself, but it turns out she's my biggest inspiration too."
Kim began sewing at a very young age while sitting on her grandmother’s lap and pushing the pedal of the treadle machine. In high school, she took every sewing/designer sewing class her schedule would allow, and was making three piece suits for her eventual husband in the 12th grade. Her passion grew into sewing everything she wore.
In 1994, Kim made her first quilt when she joined the local guild of Leesville, LA. The guild invited a teacher who had just published a foundation paper piecing book and demonstrated the steps using this new technique. Totally hooked, she loves this method to make pillows to king size quilts and everything in between.
Her husband served 27 years in the service, so Kim has been blessed meeting and learning from so many quilters all over the country. Her fondest memories are piecing quilt blocks around the dining room table with new military wives in a brand new town.
After her husband’s retirement in 2009, they moved back to their roots of PA and live in Mount Joy.
A creative lifetime quilter, Annie Unrein of ByAnnie.com and Patterns by Annie has been designing patterns and teaching since 2000. Her easy-to-understand patterns include complete instructions to guide makers every step of the way. With a focus on practical and useful projects, Annie's patterns appeal to sewists of all ages and levels and serve as a great base for classes.
Annie is the creator of ByAnnie's Soft and Stable, an innovative product she designed to add body, stability, and a professional finish to purses, bags, home dec items, and more. A popular Bluprint/Craftsy instructor and BERNINA Ambassador, Annie has a broad range of information to share from using the proper supplies and equipment to easy techniques that give professional results.