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About Peace & Applique Quilt Shop



peace & Applique Quilt Shops were founded to provide a beautiful space to showcase quilts while inspiring those around us to join in the experience of making their own masterpieces.  We have two brick and mortar shops as well as a huge online presence. Our fabrics include a wide selection of batik, contemporary, traditional, novelty and designer fabric lines.specializes in modern and contemporary quilting fabrics and patterns. We are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week online. Subscribe to our email list, like us one facebook, follow us on instagram, and subscribe to our You Tube channel to be the first to know about new fabric arrivals and activities at the shops.

HISTORY of the SHOPS -Established 1997

These exciting shops had a humble beginning.One of Lois's daughters who lived in New York decided to grace the Weissberg family with their first grandchild.  Becoming a grandmother caused Lois to want to become a quilter.  Off she went to the Saturday PBS show to find instruction from Eleanor Burn's Quilt in a Day program. Lois created a Teddy Bear Around the World quilt for her first grandchild Erik.  That's all it took to making quilting a part of her DNA.

For one of her following birthdays, Lois’s daughter gave her an overnight quilt class at the only local quilt shop which was located in Auburn, IL. Lois and Gretchen (and her newborn daughter Maddie) met there to learn how to piece on their first large quilts, Friendship Star in a Log Cabin.  Again - that was it, now they were both hooked! At the end of the class they enjoyed breakfast on the Auburn square then ventured back to Rochester.  They headed to the corner of John and Main (the only retail space in Rochester at the time.  Gretchen said - “It’s easy, we’ll just buy the shop and move it here”. A couple months later, that’s what happened.

In 2016, almost twenty years after starting the first shop, we decided we needed a space closer to home for the Quistgaard’s.  We found a cute retail building to buy in Bloomington.  The intention was to provide a Bernina Sewing Machine shop and a  establish a sewing machine repair space for all brands. Of course when we got into the space, we needed to decorate. Quickly there were beautiful quilts on the walls and stunning fabric on display shelves. The shop was so popular we knew we would need to expand.

Driving one Sunday from Peoria to Bloomington, we took an early turn onto Mitsubishi Parkway.  At the end of the road we took a quick left and right, and drove up a hill to a quaint mid-modern house and barn.  Just think!  We could move the shop to the barn and finally have a retreat space!   So that’s what happened next.  May of 2018 was the opening on the peace & Applique Quilt Barn and Retreat Center. 

Who knows what is next!  

Welcome to peace & Applique Quilt Shop!

We are so glad that you are visiting us today!  peace & Applique is a family-run quilt shop on Main Street in Rochester, Illinois. Currently, we have over 7,000 bolts of fabric, lots of books,patterns, and notions. You will find four huge rooms with inspiration every step of the way.  Our panoramic pictures below show just a glimpse of the exciting things on display at the shop. Every room is colored with our latest creations.

The first room contains our beautiful forty foot color wall on the east side.  The opposite brick wall showcases six of our large quilts. Our wood floors have all the charm of our 150 year old building.  Collections include a huge assortment of contempory fabrics from Kaffe fassett and Rowen, a charming set of William Morris prints and many of the popular moda lines we have all come to love. One corner is dedicated to Kansas Trouble collections with all their beautiful rich colors.  Of course, no shop would be complete without a large collection of 108" wide backings to get those quilts into their finished forms. 

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Next in the line is our second room featuring our Bernina Sewing Machine line.  Stop and sit in one of our comfortable red six-way chairs and play on the newest machines.  From the cutest little 215 Bernina to the world-case 830 Quilter's Dream machine, we have something for everyone.  Of course we have lined the walls with stunning batiks that show so nicely in this well-lit space.  From Hoffman to Laundry Basket, we have the largest batik collection in downstate Illinois.



Take a break at the coffee spot located between the second and third room, but keep moving there is more.

As you enter room 3, you will see a whole new set of fabric collections.  To the right are the stunning Civil War and Reproductions you need to complete the histroic quilt you have been waiting to do.  Many exquisite samples will help inspire you.  To the left are the thirties reproduction fabrics, followed by our full lines of bright and children's fabric.  Young and old alike love this area as it includes those fabulous novelty fabrics as well.  The men in our world just love looking at pieces ranging from Route 66 to their favorite tractor.





Keep on moving though as you still have a couple spots left to visit.  The Hoosier cabinet area holds a huge selection of precuts, great to use when you want a whole line of fabric without having to do the cutting.  Across the aisle is a wonderful selection of wool, felt and flannel yardage.  Kits and precuts abound as you can choose from a wide range of colors and textures.



Room four is the final destination as it holds many of the incoming collections, our holiday fabrics and lots of specialty yardages.  From oil cloth to minkee, we have something to use that will spur your creativity.  Our classroom and main book collection is located in the back, so once you get there, stop, sit for a while and enjoy that cup of coffee while catching up on the latest publications.

We hope you enjoy your visit to the shop, and remember, we are always happy to send you our latest products, just order on the web or give us a call.      And as we say "Every day is a great day to peace & Applique!"
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The peace & Applique Story 

After quilting all night in their favorite quilt shop, mother Lois and daughter Gretchen decided to take their love for quilting one step further...they were going to buy that shop and embark on a new and exciting quilting adventure as shop owners!  They moved the shop from its location in Auburn, IL to Lois' hometown of Rochester, IL on July 11, 1998. 

Now, quite a few years later, the shop has grown tremendously in size and in inventory, from 750 bolts to now more than 7000 bolts!!  We have also added BERNINA SEWING MACHINES.  We are an authorized dealership and repair center for Bernina and love every minute of working with these machines. 

peace & Applique celebrates its anniversay every year in July with our Annual Charity Quilt Show.  Please join us for this festive celebration as we all enjoy the years of being in the fabric, quilt and sewing machine business. Thank you so much for your support over the years. We are so grateful to our loyal customers for your patronage and support over all this time.

The heart and soul of peace & Applique is our staff.  These dedicated and hardworking people will do everything in their power to make your quilting experience the best it can be.  Let's introduce you to some of the folks...please stop in anytime so that we can meet you too!

Gretchen is one of the shop owners.  As a full time engineer and mother of five, Gretchen loves to spend her "free" time in the shop.  Gretchen has a wonderful eye for color, is extremely creative, and has a fantastic ability to teach and design quilts.

Frank, Gretchen husband, is our talented and clever BERNINA machine expert, who repairs other sewing machines too.

Lois is co-owner of the shop and provides regular support for the operation of the shop and is in the heart of everything peace & Applique does.  Lois' creativity and enthusiasm make every project and class fun.  Quilting is the second love of her life, behind her husband, 4 daughters and son-in-laws, and her 13 grandchildren.  Lois frequently bakes fresh cookies and treats for classes and groups, so sign up now!

John, Lois' husband, plays a huge roll by working quilt shows and special events.  When he is not working as a Construction Observer, you will find him overseeing the continuing remodeling of the building, preparing for shows and classes, or just helping out.  His help and support is invaluable, picking up the pieces of lots of different projects.

And the rest of our team...

While you are visiting us, don't forget to stop by Rochester's other great shops.  The old bank building acress the street houses a wonderful coin shop called "Dollars & Cents".  Down John Street toward Route 29 is "Petals & Company", a delightful flower shop with a wide selection of fresh and silk flowers and gift items.  The newest retail shop is a wonderful chocolate shop, Cocoa Blue.

The Silo Center is home to Remarkable Resale (formerly Kid's Closet), which geatures clothing for all ages, along with home decore and furniture.  The Cedar Closet is also at the Silo Center and they have women's clothes on consignment.  Razzo's Italian Restaurant is on John Street and is open from 4 pm to 10 pm and prepares delicious food.  We are proud of Rochester and hope you will visit soon.