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 31 years and he has been supportive of my ventures. I'm the lucky one.
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".
Dorren Ball - I affectionately call Dorren our resident geek but like I always say, that's with affection. She is the most productive person I know and she has the quilts to show it. She is a jack of all trades so to speak so if you need help with your machine, your software or your Handi Quilter product, she is quantified to help you will all of this. She also is Handi Quilter tech certified and can help you with your long arm needs. She is also BERNINA tech savvy and working with Bob in the repair shop. She makes me check off my lists each day which is a good thing so we're accomplishing much! Ha.
Jessica Ball - Once I hired one young person, I decide why stop now. The youth and life they bring to the shop is wonderful. Jessica is a wonderful person and just to top it off, beautiful and smart. Don't you hate when people have it all? I'm just kidding. Anyway, she will be in the shop on some Friday's and Saturday and is a full time student at the U of M. Her mother (Dorren) just happens to work with us as well so that is actually been fun for us all.Jessica is now making quilts and sewing clothing and made some shop samples for us so the next generation is already here!
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 Embroidery 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 email's to prove it.
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.
Frances Bowles - Frances's specialty is teaching T-shirt quilts and she also makes them for the public. This class is a regular feature on our newsletters. In her spare time she is busy driving her grand daughter to all her activities.
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.
Sharon Jasper - Sharon started sewing with the help of mom in 4H programs as a child. She has sewn clothing for her kids and herself and started quilting in 1990. As a military wife, lots of traveling comes with the job and she ran several of her own businesses such as cake decorating and selling homemade candy. She is a registered nurse by profession but only worked until her first child was born. We are pleased to have her talents in our shop and her specialty is beautiful applique. Take Sharon's beginner applique class if you want to know how to hand applique!
Debbie Moore - Debbie lives in Dyersburg but comes to Klassy Katz! So, the rest of you don't whine that you drive so far! Ha.She is a former Home Ec teacher who has always sewn for the creative satisfaction it provides. But, her love is children's clothing which is what everyone will see in her classes. She is a Licensed Martha Pullen teacher in Serger, Heirloom, Baby and Children's Garment Instruction and BERNINA machines. We look forward to learning a lot from Debbie.
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.
Sharen Schulz - Sharen has been sewing and embroidering for many years and even made her husband Leisure Suits in the day. After retiring as a legal secretary, she embraced the art of sewing/embroidery again and this time all for fun. She has taught many of our totes and bags and basket classes and they are always so beautifully done.
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. With 2 boys still at home and Bama games to go to, she has to squeeze us in.
Kay Thomas - I've known Kay for years and have been asking her to teach and she finally accepted so we have more variety in the shop. Also, she is going to join the team to assist you in the shop working the floor some. With her upbeat personality and great skills, she will be fun to have join the team. She loves wool applique and we share a love of primitive style quilts. With 2 sons in town and her husband, Mark she has plenty to do. We're happy to have her join in all the craziness.
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.