Teadoddles Talks #1 ~ Four Peaches Fabric

I’m starting a new series on the blog called “Teadoddles Talks”.  I’ve met so many wonderful people through Facebook groups, link parties, & Instagram I thought it would be fun to get to know them better with an interview.  Then I can share what they do, why they do it, & where to find it!  I’m hoping to do at least one of these a month, so if you know someone crafty that wants to talk, send them my way!  Let’s see who’s talking today…

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Today I’m talking with Wendy Carley, owner of Four Peaches Fabric.  She has a traveling fabric store y’all!  This is fascinating to me & I can’t wait to learn more.  This interview was conducted over a series of emails.  I sent her a list of questions & she sent me answers & photos.  I will have my questions {Q}, her answers {A}, & my response to her answers {R}.

All About Four Peaches Fabric

Q:  Why did you decide to open a fabric store?

A:  I have a deep love of fabric. I love the colors, the textures and I REALLY love putting them together to create something. Each quilt is extremely personal. It is a reflection of the quilter, of their creativity and feelings for whomever they are creating it for. A quilt is love. I don’t sell fabric and patterns, I sell love.

R:  I couldn’t agree more!

Q:  How does a traveling fabric store work?

A:  For those who don’t know, Four Peaches Fabric is a traveling shop. My husband’s work takes us around the country. When we came up with the idea of a traveling quilt shop, I wasn’t sure exactly how it would work, and to be honest, the dynamics are ever changing as the shop needs grow. It involves a lot of organization and a lot of plastic totes! We travel in a fifth wheel RV. Our underbelly storage is FULL of plastic totes. It works well and the storage area is climate controlled, so the fabric is safe. I have forged relationships with fabric suppliers who truly understand the unique needs of a traveling shop. The representatives I work with are wonderful! They mail my orders to wherever I happen to be at the time, which is great.

R:  Wow!  You must have some amazing organizational skills to accomplish all of that!  I feel like I’m running out of space sometimes & I have a whole room for my fabric & crafting supplies.

Q:  What can we find in your store?

A:  My store has a bit of everything. I have bargain cuts, fat quarters, pre-cuts, yardage, patterns, rotary cutters and even the coolest notion I have ever seen the Quilter’s Slidelock.

R:  I saw you using the Quilter’s Slidelock in one of your YouTube videos.  It looks like a very useful tool!

Q:  Tell us about the Veterans Community Project & what we can do to help.

A:  On our last trip to Jamaica, we were floating in the pool and I noticed a group of young men who all had the same tattoo on their arms. I asked one of them what it meant and learned about the Veterans Community Project. The VCP is a fantastic organization run by military veterans. They build tiny houses for homeless veterans in an effort to help them get off the streets and to begin healing the wounds that led to them being homeless. The heart of this organization is amazing and I knew Four Peaches had to be part of it. Going back to my belief that a quilt is love, I would like to see every tiny house have a quilt on the bed, so when that veteran lies down in their new bed, in their safe home, they are covered in love. My goal is to have the Four Peaches Family donate 50 quilts this year. They need twin size quilts. If you would like to be a part, please email me. wendy@fourpeachesfabric.com

R:  This is a great way to give back with quilt love!  My father is a veteran, so this really touches my heart.  I’d like to pledge to have at least one quilt ready by December!  I said it out loud, so make sure to hold me to it y’all!  ; )

Wendy’s Family

Q:  I love the story of how you picked the name “Four Peaches Fabric”, please share with the readers!

A:  Yes, it is a unique name, but it is a name that springs from my soul. When I began dreaming of my own fabric shop, I knew immediately that I would name it Four Peaches Fabric. I have four children, each unique and special in their own way. When my youngest child was a toddler, we had our usual nighttime routines. One night as I tucked him into bed, he placed his hand on my face and whispered softly, “Mama, you’re my  peaches.” “No”, I replied, “You’re all my peaches,” and they were. It was from that sweet moment that the four peaches name was born.

Wendy & her “four peaches” – Left to Right: Bradley, Jeffery, Me, Amanda, Timothy

R:  As I said before, I love this story!

Q:  Tell us more about your family…

A:  I married my high school sweetheart, Lenny, in 1986. We’ve been married 31 years! We have four children: Jeffery, Timothy, Amanda and Bradley (my four peaches!). We have three amazing grandchildren; Ava is 6, Adalyn is 3 and Bryce is 1.

Wendy & her husband Lenny

R:  It’s so great that you are still with your high school sweetheart.  I know that is a special bond, since my parents were high school sweethearts too.  Your have such a lovely family & everyone looks filled with joy!

Q:  I see that you have a pet dog that is a Bouvier des flandres named Fezzik. Please tell us more!

A:  Fezzik is my constant companion. He was bred to be a show dog, but the person who was taking him developed a health issue and couldn’t. I saw a picture of him on a Bouvier board, and sent the breeder a “nice dog” message. We started chatting and became friends. She let Fezzik become part of our family and I can’t imagine life without him. He goes everywhere with us and is usually quite the celebrity. We have had people chase us across parking lots just to pet him. How often do you see a 90lb dog that looks like a bear?

Fezzik

R:  That is one cool dog!  I love his beard!

Fabric Love

Q:  What is your favorite fabric designer?

A:  I love Lori Holt, who doesn’t, but I don’t know that I am limited to one designer. Sometimes fabric just speaks to me and that is what I look for.

R:  I can understand that!

Q:  Favorite color?

A:  I don’t have a specific color that I like the best. I tend to go through phases. Right now I’m a little orange/coral obsessed.

R:  Very different from most!  Orange seems to be the least favorite among many, which I don’t understand.  It’s such a happy color!

Q:  Is it hard to part with the fabric once it’s sold?

A:  I do have an odd attachment to it. Each package I send out is truly like sending out a little shipment of love. Like I share a piece of my soul. It’s a good feeling though, to know that it will go to a quilter who will add her love to it and then share it. I get to be a part of that and it’s awesome.

R:  Love this answer!

Q:  How much fabric do you keep?

A:  For myself? I would say not enough! My husband would say too much! I can tell you that I did order an extra fat quarter collection of Kona’s new solids just for me! I’m working my way through a tote of fabric that I have had for two years. I hardly ever make anything for myself and I am trying to do that now and again.

R:  Ha Ha!  I think most non-fabric lovers just don’t get that there’s no such thing as “too much fabric”!  It’s good to make things for yourself ever so often.  I’m learning how to do that too!

Q:  Do you pet the fabric?

A:  I’m not a fabric petter, but I do like the feel of it. I really like looking at it to see how all the colors play together. I’m not opposed to crossing fabric lines to make interesting combinations.

R:  I couldn’t resist asking this after some of the conversations I’ve seen in the quilting/sewing groups on Facebook!  It’s a fabric lover thing!   ; )

Q:  Does your fabric smell like peaches?

A:  I wish! Fabric from the manufacturer, surprisingly, has little to no smell.

R: Well maybe it’s best it doesn’t smell like peaches, then we’d buy even more fabric!

Sewing History

Q:  Who taught you to sew or how did you learn?

A:  I grew up watching my mother sew. She is a clothing sewer and she also quilts. I’m pretty stubborn, so I never really “learned” in a traditional fashion. I would watch her and then play on her Kenmore making Barbie clothes. 

R:  I’m a self taught sewer, so I didn’t learn the “traditional” way either.  That’s just more fun!

Q:  How long have you been sewing?

A:  Off and on for about 25 years unless we’re counting the Barbie clothes! haha

R:  Of course the Barbie clothes count!

Q:  What do you like to sew?

A:  I have been a crafty sewer for years and I, obviously, like to make quilts. I started out making rag quilts, which I think is a great way to learn the fundamentals of quilting. We spent a year in North Dakota and I had the privilege of being part of a great guild there and made an awesome friend who taught me so much.

R:  Being part of a guild sounds awesome!  There are none in my area & I think it would be so much fun.

Q:  How many quilts have you made?

A:  I have finished about 15, I won’t embarrass myself but admitting to how many UFOs I have!

R:  We all have UFOs & one day they will be finished.  Some things take longer because they have to marinate!

Q:  What kind of machine do you have?

A:  I have a Husqvarna Viking Designer SE with the embroidery attachment. I’ve never actually used the attachment, maybe someday! I do dream of a new Bernina and that elusive long arm…..

R:  I think that’s a dream of most quilters Wendy!

Q:  Do you listen to or watch anything while sewing? If so, what?

A: I like to have movies playing in the background or I listen to 80’s music.

R:  Gotta love the 80’s!  I don’t like it to be too quite when I’m sewing either.

Q:  How about sewing snacks?

A:  I am a snacker at heart. I LOVE Horizon Cheese Crackers and coffee, of course!

R:  Sounds like my kind of snack!

More About Wendy

Q:  Any other hobbies?

A:  I love to read and I have recently begun a 5K running program. I dream of running a half marathon.

R:  You go girl!  I only run if something is chasing me.  ; )

Q:  Where all have you traveled?

A:  Work Related:

  • Ohio – multiple times
  • Pennsylvania – multiple times
  • Georgia
  • Midland, Texas
  • Kansas
  • Colorado
  • North Dakota

For Fun:

  • Mexico
  • Jamaica – multiple times
  • Grand Cayman
  • Nassau Bahamas
  • St. Thomas
  • St. Maarten
  • Miami, Florida
  • Canada – several times

R:  Wow, you’re a traveling lady!  I see you’ve visited my home state of Georgia.  Maybe we’ll get to meet in person one day!

Q:  We are both coffee drinkers! What is your favorite brew & how do you take it?  {sugar, cream, etc.}

A:  I am a bit of a coffee snob. My husband hates getting me coffee when we’re traveling! I like single origin coffee (that means it’s only one kind of bean), dark brew (Sumatra is my favorite) and I add some half and half (organic please!). At Christmas, I do love Starbuck’s Holiday Blend. I have a Yeti (if you don’t have one they are SO worth the cost) and I drink about 3 of these a day. I would swim in coffee if it was an option. Love it.

R:  We are definitely on the same page with the coffee!  I can’t start my day {or finish it} without it!

Q:  Future plans?

A:  My future plans are to keep growing. My fabric hero is an amazing woman in Missouri named Jenny Doan, you may have heard of her. I met her last year and what she has accomplished for her shop and community is mind blowing. She and I share the same idea that quilting is love and that love should trickle down to your family, your community and your world. We are all placed here to spread love and to be more and do more than just serving ourselves. I truly believe that Four Peaches Fabric is more than just a shop. You can buy fabric anywhere. I want people to join our family because we have great items and prices, but also because we do great things. Veterans Community Project is a good start. In the future, you will see the forming of the Four Peaches Foundation to provide for orphans in Jamaica and other parts of the world. I would like to spread love and compassion one quilt at a time and I hope you’ll all join us.

R:  Wendy, I really love your life goals!  They are similar to my own feelings about life & family.  I’m happy to have met you through the quilting community & I look forward to talking to you more!

In Conclusion

I really enjoyed learning more about Wendy & I hope y’all did too!  Here’s where you can find Wendy & connect:

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC0lNwg_XAkYwSi8M35Rw7xg  – She needs 100 subscribers to get a name, so go subscribe!

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6 comments

  1. Guida says:

    Loved hearing about Wendy and her life goals and her shop. Thanks for this idea, its wonderful, I look forward to the next one. Take care Kristie.

  2. Joyce Stratton says:

    Kristie, I loved reading about Wendy and her traveling fabric store. My dad, husband and brother are all veterans and I love the idea of making them a quilt for their tiny home. I have made quilts of valor before so this will go on my to do list.

  3. Skye says:

    Oh Kristie, I love this section, and I loved reading about Wendy and her life ? Wendy got me onto Ella blue, an Australian designer, and got me searching deeper for lovely fabrics from home ? I adore that doggie and want to send it cuddles ? the veteran quilt foundation is am awesome thing to be a part of, I have ex military family and friends too – I think it’s touched so many of our families. Quite a few giggles were had while reading along, my local quilt store has fat quarters that smell like lavender ? so many more things to add but I’ll leave it here. Thank you

    • Kristie Cook says:

      Yay! I’m glad you liked it Skye! So nice that you already had a connection with Wendy. I think knowing the person behind a business makes a big difference. 🙂

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