The week's business goings-on:
True Kids 1 to host movie-making workshop for kids
True Kids 1 will team with Apple to bring a two-day workshop to Taos next week at Vagrant Hearts gallery. We Make Movies, an Apple-sponsored organization that promotes filmmaking skills and interest among young people on a national scale, will lead the event. The Apple team and six professional New Mexico filmmakers will mentor the 24 elementary, middle and high school students from 10 schools who are slated to attend. For more information, visit the We Make Movies website: wemakemovies.org/smartphonestudio.
The students will work in groups of four, and each group will create a two-minute film using iPhones and iPads provided by Apple. No piece of equipment will cost more than $300. At the end of the workshop on Tuesday (Nov. 5) at 5:30 p.m., the students' films will be screened at the Harwood Museum theater along with other student films from the New Mexico Film Foundation. Students will have a chance to speak about their experience.
In addition to the We Make Movies staff, the mentor team will include New Mexico filmmakers Tony Estrada from Wild Horse Films; Brad Stoddard from Stoddard Communications; Dustin Sweet from Rainbows and Unicorns; Taos High School Dual-Credit Media Program with UNM-Taos; and Aaron Lopez, whose short film just won a New Mexico Film Award.
Retired New Mexico educators to Meet Nov. 11
Michael Torrez, resident of Ranchos de Taos who was recently elected president of the New Mexico Association of Educational Retirees, has announced the organization's first meeting, which will take place Nov. 11 in Albuquerque.
As his first action in office, Torrez has organized a task force to look at the future of NMAER, and examine the changing direction of demographics of the organization and the changing needs of NMAER's local units. Torrez also said that under his leadership, the group will continue to do volunteer work across the state and to work with the Legislature in Santa Fe to improve retired educators' health benefits and improve their annual cost-of-living increase.
"We invite retired educators in the Taos area to join our local unit here and volunteer with us," Torrez added. "This year, NMAER logged nearly 400,000 hours of volunteer work statewide."
Taos Adobe Quilting celebrates 15 years
When Jan O'Donohue opened Taos Adobe Quilting in 2004 at 102 Teresina Lane, it was a gamble. Could Taos support a full-time quilt and fabric store? Would locals come down to the plaza to shop? Happily for her, the answer to both those questions was yes. The store is celebrating 15 years of serving Taos residents and visitors this year.
In today's internet-driven economy, keeping a brick and mortar store running requires a creative approach, according to O'Donohue. "The internet has definitely impacted our business," she said. "Luckily, fabric is something that people like to see and touch in person. The colors usually don't translate well on a computer screen."
Sue Stack, a local quilter and member of the Taos Quilt Guild, agrees. "Buying fabric on the internet often brings unpleasant surprises relative to color and texture," she said.
Taos Adobe Quilting has thousands of bolts of cotton fabric from Alexander Henry, Free Spirit and Timeless Treasures and other suppliers, as well as sewing accessories, fleece and oilcloth. The store also carries a large supply of upholstery fabric in Southwest and other designs.
"We sold and serviced Pfaff sewing machines for a long time," O'Donohue said, "but it wasn't sustainable given the size of the town and the competition from the internet." As a result, the store has an inventory of sewing machines available at hugely discounted prices. "If you've been thinking about buying a quality sewing machine please come and have a look," she says. "A lot of the machines we are basically selling at cost."
O'Donohue said that support from locals has been the pivotal factor in the store's survival over the slow Taos winters. "I can't tell you how much we appreciate the locals who come here for fabric," she says. Taos has a local quilt guild that meets in the back of the store once a month. "Local quilters, Pueblo residents who make their own clothing, locals who are looking for a gift for a relative who quilts or sews - these are the people who have kept us going. If we had just depended on tourists, we would have closed that first year."
Southwest fabric is her bestseller, O'Donohue said, but she stocks material in almost every color and style. "The Frida Kahlo fabric has been really popular the last couple of years," she says, "and the oilcloth. But outside that, it's difficult to predict. I just buy what I like and hopefully everyone else likes it too."
Her only mild complaint is that running the store leaves her less time to actually quilt. A recent completed quilt netted her a first-place blue ribbon at the Taos County Fair. "I just moved my long-arm quilting machine into my house," she says, smiling, "so now I can quilt at home a little more."
You'll find Taos Adobe Quilting at the northwest corner of the plaza near the Alley Cantina. Hours are 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and Sunday noon until 4 p.m. Visit the store's website at taosadobequiltingandmore.com or call (575) 751-3219.
Living Río Campaign to hold kickoff event Nov. 2
The Río Grande is in crisis, and WildEarth Guardians' Living Río Campaign serves to restore the Río Grande as a living river throughout New Mexico. Come find out what the campaign is all about and take action for the Río Grande. The event will take place this Saturday, (Nov. 2), at Taos Public Library, 402 Camino de la Placita, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. It's free, and light refreshments will be served.
For more information, contact Galen Hecht at WildEarth Guardians: firstname.lastname@example.org or (505) 501-8572.
- Compiled by Doug Cantwell
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