Owner: Toni Katz - I started Klassy Katz Quilts in 2000 and added BERNINA's in 2003. It has been a wild but extremely fun ride of a lifetime. I have sewn since 7th grade and had a mother that wouldn't even sew a button on. It was a need that I had and sewed mostly clothing all through high school and college. I made extra money hemming and mending other girl's things. I sewed to keep my sanity while raising children. I started quilting in 1990 and have never looked back although I still do clothing sewing and embroidery and software. I love it all. I love the new technology of sewing and all the gadgets. I always say I had a checkered background, degree in Food and Resource Management (water management), retailing and handled emergency parts at an airline. Life has been an interesting journey. As we all know that have been around for a while, you can't do it all alone and I have been married to Bob for 34 years and he has been supportive of my ventures. I'm the lucky one.Plus, who doesn't want to be married to the guy that can fix your sewing/embroidery machine! Ha.
Our Team - I am so proud of the amazing talent and variety of styles and interests my staff has to offer. It makes us a better shop and offers you a wide variety of quilting/sewing classes so we're not limited. Two things I look for in a new teacher or staff are, are you willing to continue your sewing/quilting education and be part of the team to serve our customers. For me, it's not the years in sewing but the expertise and skills you are willing to master or have mastered that you bring to the plate for us. Meet our staff. Each brings unique qualities to the shop and we need each and everyone of them to make the shop "sing".
Pam Block - Pam and I met at a quilt shop in the 1990's and we've been working together on and off for years. She has been with me the longest of any of my employees (was here when the shop first opened) and teaches the beginning piecing and quilting classes among many other quilts. Her flute playing with the Bartlett Community Concert Band and Bartlett Flute Choir plus playing piano for her church make her an extremely busy person. We affectionately call Pam the "Queen of Paper Piecing" for a good reason. Check out some of her samples.
Tish Brister - Tish bought a machine after retirement and somehow adopted me. We love retired librarians since they seem to know everything I don't know or how to get to it. She started quilting and then found out that she loves embroidery so now she hosts our Software Club once a month. Her other serious passion (besides Ronnie, her husband) is counted cross stitch. I can't get her to give it up. Go figure! The other thing you all don't know about Tish is her wicked sense of humor. She is not the sweet little lady you think she is. I have the emails to prove it.
Penny Collins --
Debi Frease - Debi loves quilting and is not afraid to use lots of color as you can see from her scrap quilts. She also loves to embroidery and will be creating some cute embroidery quilts for us to do. Debi purchased a Sweet 16 and can make that thing sing. So much so she is now teaching advanced Quilting classes especially for the Sweet 16. This is an awesome machine and Debi has proven you can quilt lovely things on it and teaches you the steps to getting there.
Kit Rogers - Kit has been quilting longer than anyone in our shop since she started in 1977. She worked at another quilt shop until it closed and came to join us. She does beautiful quilts and is now venturing into computers and embroidery. Go Kit. She can give great suggestions for color and fabric choices while you are picking your quilt so don't hesitate to ask her advice.
Polly Stone - Polly adds another dimension to the staff. Nothing flusters her and she is laid back and fun to work with. Also, need some advice with your Sweet 16 or Avante, Polly can help you there. Her quilting on her own Sweet 16 is amazing. She likes the challenges of new types of quilting and new gadgets. I'm inspired by her.
Mollie Swindle - Now, this is the woman who marches to another beat and proud of it. I'm not sure when I met Mollie but we were both so excited about arty type clothing and embellishments and lots of other sewing techniques. Mollie can fit anyone and I mean that. She fits you in the clothing classes and then will challenge you to step out of the box. Her classes are always lots of fun and if you didn't think sewing clothing can be fun, I've got news for you. Her day job is as an system engineer but we feel lucky to have her grace our shop.
Kathy Troughton -
Becky Williams (no relation to Derri) - Becky decided that she would like to play with us in the shop and boy are we lucky. With a CPA background and her work with the Red Cross and many other agencies plus being extremely well published, we're lucky to have her around. At least I'll have someone to edit all my typos among other things. Her willingness to learn and to help others is a great asset and she has taken over teaching our children clothing classes. She is also teaching my binding class since I'm tied up on the floor and getting ready for future adventures.
Derri Williams - Derri will be helping us out on Saturdays in the month that her river boat husband is on the river. Her real job is managing a law office so now you know why she finds putting bolts away relaxing. She can help you with software and machines if you need any assistance. She has really saved the day many times.