Quilting has never been much of a man’s activity, until now, as the owner of a southeast Iowa sewing shop says guys are having a “stitch” with what’s usually seen as a woman’s hobby. Kathy Hopkins of Mount Pleasant wanted to get more customers and decided she was only reaching half the population. While she offers several quilting classes forwomen at her store, Quilter’s Paradise, she experimented in July with a class just for men. Hopkins says four men, all in their 40s and 50s, took that first class, picked out their own fabrics and even brought in their own sewing machines. They included an executive, a software engineer and a school administrator. She says they created quality quilts in “masculine” colors, though one said he might give his finished quilt to his granddaughter. Hopkins says the men are good students and had the same kinds of questions as women and they dislike the same things too, like pinningtheir quilts together before starting the sewing process. One difference, Hopkins says the men don’t talk and socialize like the women — they just like to get to work on their projects. Hopkins says the first “man class”went so well, several of the guys wanted more — so she plans to offer another males-only class on a more complicated style of quilting in October.
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