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Stitching together traditional, modern
A retired ATF geographic profiler has returned to her first love by opening a quilt shop in Spotsylvania.

 The Crazy Cousin will host a trunk show of Amy Bradley's quirky patterns this month.
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Date published: 11/4/2012

By Cathy Jett

RHONDA TRAHERN planned to be an art teacher but wound up working in law enforcement.

Now retired, she's gone back to her first love and on Saturday opened a quilt shop called The Crazy Cousin in Chancellor Center shopping center on State Route 3 in Spotsylvania County.

"I had a great career. I traveled the world and got to help other officers out," said Trahern, who was one of eight certified geographic profilers in the world. "Now I'm getting to do what I truly enjoy."

The Kansas native, who has always loved art, color and fabrics, got interested in quilting after joining the group of women at her church, Tabernacle United Methodist in Spotsylvania, who make prayer quilts.

When Trahern had a hard time finding the materials she wanted, she decided to go into business offering fabric, patterns and equipment that aren't available locally. Among other things, The Crazy Cousin will sell, service and give classes on using Handi-Quilters, a brand of long-arm quilting machines. Previously, the closest place to get them was in Hughesville, Md.

The Crazy Cousin is also stocked with a variety of quilt patterns, new and vintage fabrics, and vintage quilts. Fabrics appropriate for baby quilts are displayed in an 1880s crib, and there's a "man cave" with a sofa where men can sit while the women in their lives shop.

Trahern, a longtime antiques dealer, chose "Blending vintage roots with modern design" as the main motto for her new business. She said she appreciates the time women used to spend hand-sewing quilts, as well as the new fabrics, designs and sewing machines available to quilters today.

Her other motto is "A place where friends create," because The Crazy Cousin will offer classes and a chance to participate in such things as Project Linus, which provides quilts for children who've been hospitalized.

The store is opening with a trunk show, which will run through Nov. 30, of Kansas designer Amy Bradley's contemporary quilt patterns with comical characters such as Quilt Diva and Bountiful Beauties.

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