Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Get to know the QQQ's - Patti of Sleeping Cat Creations

Hi! I'm Patti Laird of Sleeping Cat Creations 

How did you come up with your shop name?
My former husband came up with the name because at the time, my cats were always hanging out with me in my sewing room and were often sleeping. My cat, Biloxi, is my shop mascot these days. 

Where do you live?
I live in Chambersburg, PA. I was born in Washington, DC, and lived in Maryland most of my life. I relocated to Pennsylvania to take a job after my divorce in 2008. After I quit that job, I considered moving back to Maryland, but I met my current husband and decided to stay here. I still consider Maryland "home," though. I could never live anywhere other than the East Coast. I love that we have four seasons here!

When did you start making quilts? When did you become interested in quilt-related items (fabric, patterns, etc? 
I've been sewing for more than 40 years. My mother was a professional seamstress, and she taught me to sew at a young age. 
I began by sewing my own clothes (as well as clothes for my dolls and Barbies). I sewed all my own clothes through junior and high school and into college. When I married, I sewed curtains for every room in our house and set about learning to make slipcovers and do upholstery.
I took a basic quilting class through my local Viking sewing dealer. The instructor quit halfway through the class, but I was lucky enough to get some help later that summer from a quilting instructor at Mid-Appalachian Quilters (MAQ). The year was 2003 or 2004 (I didn't know then to put a label on my quilts!). Since then, I've taken dozens of classes, attended many quilt shows, and some of my quilts have won awards, including a Best of Show at the Frederick Fair in 2007 for my interpretation of McKenna Ryan’s Storybook Farm pattern

I began teaching quilting in 2006 at my local Joann's store. I have since taught at several quilt guilds and teach at local quilt shops. I also give lectures and present trunk shows. 

I have made quilts in many styles, but my focus these days is making "memory" quilts--quilts made from clothing, that contain photos or other mementos, or that are made for a special occasion. This is a quilt I made for my husband for Christmas in 2015. 

In my business these days, I make quilts and work on my original quilt patterns, which I sell directly on Etsy and my own web page and that are distributed through Checker Distributors to quilt shops

What are your favorite colors and quilt blocks? 
Purple is my favorite color, and I often choose it for quilts I make for myself. Here are two quilts I made that use purple. This one was a mystery class shortly after I began quilting: 

This one is a Round Robin. I made the center block and then friends added rows. It's among my favorite quilts! 

Do you have a favorite quilting tip? 
As someone who has taken and taught a lot of quilt classes, I always urge students to "try it my way" during class. You may have a favorite way of making something, but we can all learn new techniques. So, try it the teacher's way during the class. If you don't like it, go back to your way after class. I also think you can never stop learning; take classes whenever you can! 

Do you have any other hobbies? Pets? A garden, kids or volunteer activities?
I love to read, and I try to read some from a novel every day. I like traditional paper books, but these days, I read on my Nook more than paper books. My eyesight is not what it used to be, and I like being able to enlarge the font! 
When my husband and I met, we each had 3 cats. So, at one point, we had SIX cats! LOL Until recently, that number had dwindled to 3. We vowed we would never have more than 2 again. (Two are long hair, and the constant cleaning of cat hair is getting to us!) However, over Thanksgiving weekend, my husband noticed a small kitten licking up the grease under the smoker we had used to smoke the Thanksgiving turkey. She was obviously hungry so we fed her for a few days. We eventually trapped her, took her to vet, got her spayed and microchipped, and now we're the kitty-parents of a 5-month-old kitten named Sparrow! :) Never say never, Of course, given my shop name, I can't live without a cat or two for company. 

Do you do charity sewing?
Yes. My guild has embarked on a 4-year project to make quilts for all the beds in a hospice in each of the 4 local counties we serve. A friend and I have made a quilt each of the first 3 years. This is a photo of our 2015 quilt. I also sew for Quilts of Valor, Project Linus, and--most recently--Rare Bears. 

Do you have any business tips to share?
Keep good records! Hire a professional to help with taxes (and payroll, if applicable). Know what's required to run a business in your state/county/municipality and follow those requirements. I tried to do my taxes myself for a couple of years, and I paid more in penalties for not doing it correctly than I would have if I'd paid a professional. I now pay someone :)

Where in the world would you like to visit?
I want to go to Australia. But the cost and the long flight deter me. When we can "beam" around the world (a la Star Trek), that will be the first place I visit :). I spent my last semester in college living in London, and my roommate married an Aussie she met there and lives in Australia now. I'd like to visit her and some other Aussie friends I've met via the Internet! 

For the past 3 summers, we have traveled to visit family in Missouri and Texas. Along the way, we stop at quilt shops and I collect the Row by Row patterns. I haven't gotten around to making the 2015 and 2016 quilts yet, but here is my 2014 quilt. 

Last summer, I was thrilled to go into a shop and see that they were offering a class on one of my original patterns. The shop owner asked to take a picture of me with the shop sample. It was so cool to visit a place that sold one of my patterns! 


Social media


Follow QQQ on:


  1. Such talent Patti! So many beautiful pieces, and I love the name of your shop!

  2. What a wonderful article, how wonderful to learn about team members.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. OOOPS I thought the whole thing would delete ... I made some spelling errors typing too fast LOL So here it is again corrected
    Wonderful to 'get to know you' Patti, what a talented lady you are, and if you do ever get to Aus, don't forget to hop across to Tasmania for a visit :-)

  5. Enjoyed getting to know you! You've accomplished a lot in the world of quilting, Patti!