I really try for exceptional customer service at Whimzie Quiltz. Not just with the extreme care and attention I put into designing and making custom quilts, but by going a little further / trying to do a little more to make your WQ experience extra special.
Part of that is surprising customers with a “gift with purchase” – an additional quilted item that often complements their custom quilt order. Sometimes, though, especially with returning Whimzie Quiltz customers, I struggle to find the perfect gift with purchase.
I’d already made a toddler quilt for Jodi S. and included a quilted dinosaur checkerboard game for her little boy. Next she asked me to make a custom memory quilt for her husband (you may remember, he’s the one who had a lot of his high school and college diving memorabilia stolen and the quilt was the perfect solution for keeping what he had left safe.) Since her husband is in the Army, they move a lot, so a large pillow sham or something else that would be difficult to pack was off the table.
Thinking of her being on the move all the time finally triggered the perfect idea ~ one of my quilted backpacks!
I found a great Army-themed embroidery over at SWAK Embroidery – it’s a Army star parachute with the sentiment “Home is where the army send us”. I appliquéd it on a background of camouflage fabric (the same fabric that lines the backpack) and added it to the charcoal fabric flap. For the backpack itself I used a coordinating khaki fabric and finished everything off with camo straps.
It seems like Jodi likes it ~
May I just say how much I love the backpack??? Holy cow! … We will use it often and appreciate everything you do!
Super cute and super useful – that’s the Whimzie Quiltz sweet spot 😀
You know that feeling when a someone asks your advice on a custom quilted gift idea and you absolutely nail it? Yeah, it doesn’t happen every time, but when it does…
Customer Carrie N. was looking for a special gift for her sister ~ her sister who may be the world’s biggest Pearl Jam fan. First row seats at multiple concerts every tour biggest Pearl Jam fan. My suggestion? A quilted backpack. Carrie liked that idea because her sister did a LOT of waiting in lines for those exclusive tickets.
We both wanted the Pearl Jam “stick man” logo embroidered on the backpack, but finding the right guitar fabric was surprisingly hard. I eventually sourced some out of Canada of all places. This is the final piece –
I don’t post identifiable photos here on Snip-Itz, but Carrie did send one of her sister opening the gift. It’s literally the most surprised I’ve ever seen a human being. 😲
As Carrie said,
Best reaction I have ever seen to a gift. Lol. Thank you
Want that kind of response to the gifts you give? Contact Whimzie Quiltz and let’s get a special gift for your loved one started!
Along with the last quilt for customer Beth M.’s daughter, I sent a quilted backpack as a “thank you gift with purchase”. I thought a young girl might find it fun to carry a few things around with it. Beth, though, seemed to have other ideas… she told me it was so cute, she almost kept it for herself!
So what do you think I made as a thank you when I finished her latest quilt? Well, a backpack just for Beth, of course!
You can read all about the process of designing and creating the Princess Mildred and the Pea quilt, but part of the story is that I went to four different fabric stores to find enough of the 1930s reproduction kitten fabric for the backing. It really was the purr-fect choice, though, and worth it, even though, as a quilt back, it will rarely get seen.
Using that same fabric for the backpack, though, means it finally gets the attention it so richly deserves. After adding a pink gingham and a black dot, Beth finally has an adorable vintage backpack of her own!
One of the things I like to do here at Whimzie Quiltz is include with every custom quilt a gift-with-purchase – a little somethin’-somethin’ for you, the customer, to go along with your actual quilt. With a bed quilt, it’s often matching pillow shams, but with smaller quilts, it’s maybe something you wouldn’t normally expect.
Here’s the scoop on a couple of recent surprise somethings that Whimzie Quiltz customers have received…
Movie Night Right
William M.’s Favorite Things quilt pattern was a mix of all of everything he loves – cats, Boy Scouts, England, music – done in a black and white palette. That color scheme inspired his gift-with-purchase… a black and white checkerboard! Knowing his affinity for old movies, too, I chose a vintage-looking film strip fabric for the border. After all, I figured, what could be better than playing a few games while you wait for the DVD to start?
Hitting the Right Note
Originally, Katherine M. wanted a quilt that featured her love of music, but it had to be purple, too. The first fabric I purchased just wasn’t purple enough, which resulted in changing the whole design and creating an ombre purple Triple Braid quilt instead. I still wanted her to have something with the music theme, though, so I used the original fabric to create a fun quilted backpack that lets her “carry a tune” 😀 wherever she goes.
DeVon D.’s email read,
“I am a runner. I would really like some type of tote made from [all these race shirts and race bibs that are just sitting around.] Any thoughts? Feel like tackling this?”
13 years of custom quilting and I’d never made a quilted tote bag! But, hey, I love a challenge, so I said, “Sure!”
While waiting for her marathon shirts to arrive, I decided to do a trial bag. That’s how I ended up with this ENORMOUS beach tote. I mean, it’s big. REALLY big. Like “hide the pregnant actress’ belly because it’ll ruin her character’s storyline” big.
With a few adjustments, though, I felt ready to take on DeVon’s projects. She sent me enough shirts that I ended up quilting her both a beach tote and a book tote.
And, I threw in a quilted backpack, just for the fun of it.
These were definitely a fun little digression from regular quilting. I liked having to figure out the math as I went along to get to a normal size on the bags and the instant gratification of finishing a small project is always nice.
And DeVon seems pretty happy with them, too. She posted yesterday on the Whimzie Quiltz Facebook page,
“I knew you were the right person to hand that project over to. The totes are all great and I just adore the fun Jingle Bell Run back pack. Such creativity!”
While putting the final stitches on 2016, I realized a few Whimzie Quiltz projects from the year didn’t get posted. This one is from late August…
One of my cousins turned 50 this year and celebrated with a tropical pineapple themed birthday party. We gave her a quilted backpack to fit the theme (yes, it’s another quilted gift. The joy of having a relative who sews…)
When we visited her home on Thanksgiving this year, this backpack was hanging right next to the front door. I smiled, but didn’t say anything. As we were leaving, though, she pointed it out and said she uses it all the time!
A couple of years ago I gave my mother-in-law a quilted backpack. She fell in love with it, to the point where she carried it with her everywhere she went. The airport, the store, the beach, the library…
She especially loves dropping by the library and filling her backpack with great new reads. Last Christmas, we got her a beach cruiser so she can ride the mile and a half there to pick out books any time she feels like it.
All that travel, shopping, beach going and reading was hard on her backpack, though. During her most recent visit, I noticed it was showing some wear and tear. So I decided she need a new one, preferably one that would match her adorable teal bike. Mission accomplished!
Now both she and her books can ride in style!