Local quilter goes commercial with shop on WashingtonAug 31, 2017 By Alejandra Silva, Staff Writer
A renovated building at 710 E. Washington St. will house Riverton's new, and possibly only quilt shop in town.
Judie Slinker opened Country Cottage Quilt Shoppe earlier this month but is planning for a week-long grand opening celebration Sept. 5-9, when upgrades will be finally complete. A ribbon-cutting event by the Riverton Chamber of Commerce will be held at 9 a.m. Sept. 5. There will be specials and giveaways that week.
The store sells quilts and more than 200 fabrics, such as the basic cottons and flannels, as well batik, fairy frost and others. Also for sale are quilting books, patterns, needles, batting material, supplies for measuring and cutting and sowing machines. She features special patterns and designs including from one of her favorites -- Judy Niemeyer Quilting Company.
Slinker won the Peoples Choice Award in the quilting division of the Fremont County Fair this year with a Niemeyer pattern. She said it took her 2 months and 42 yards of material to make the quilt.
Country Cottage is also a dealer of Tin Lizzie 18s, which are the long arm quilting machines. Slinker said she offers a financing program for machine buyers so they can make payments on their purchase.
Quilting is huge in Fremont County and throughout the state so it's a little surprising that Riverton doesn't have a quilt store, Slinker said.
"In Colorado, every little town has a quilt store," she said. "It's big all over the U.S."
Stinker and her husband previously lived in Colorado, where she also operated a quilt store but before that lived in Riverton for many years. At that time, she had a small quilt shop out of her basement when she lived just north of Riverton on 19 Fox Springs Drive. She had an established clientele then, but she believes there's more buyers now.
"As soon as they all heard that I moved back to town, immediately they were asking me and my family if I would open a quilt shop," Slinker said. "Then we bought the building and people stopped everyday before I opened and they kept asking."
That's why she opened doors before the building updates were done.
Slinker and her husband Scott Slinker purchased the property from Black Hills Energy, who recently purchased SourceGas. They're renovating the rear of the building so they can live there, Judie said.
It would be a convenient move for her. She explained that she's up doing her own quilting early in the morning because by the time they open at 10 a.m. people start coming in, she said.
The building has new ceilings, flooring, lighting, windows, doors, signs, and a new roof.
"It's really coming along...I wish we could do this with every empty building in downtown Riverton," she said.
People don't have to travel to Casper or Salt Lake City to buy quilting supplies, she noted, because they have their own hometown quilt store.
The store is open Tuesday through Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.