Business Member Spotlight: Bill Volckening Quilts

This month we're featuring Bill Volckening! Here is what Bill had to say about his company:
The name of my business is Bill Volckening Quilts, and it started up when I began receiving requests for appraisals from people in the quilt community. I took the appraisal skills classes in Paducah to learn what quilt appraisers do, and decided to be an independent appraiser. Although I didn’t promote the business and wasn’t expecting a lot of activity, I appraised more than 500 quilts in the first two years.
What are your hours and location? Other info? (Phone number, website)
My hours are by appointment. E-mail: or call 503-327-3202, web site:

What’s the best thing about owning your particular business?
Serving the quilt community. That’s how the business started. And of course, meeting so many great people and seeing lots of wonderful quilts.
How long have you been in business?
Almost two years.
What’s been your favorite order/customer/memorable moment as a business owner?
My favorite moment was when I visited the new home of a client, who told me the appraisals served as proof of assets in the process of being approved for a loan on the house. It was very gratifying to assist a first-time homeowner.
my logo
What other jobs/businesses have you worked/owned?
I’ve done a lot of things, but never owned a business before. For ten years I was editor of a magazine for a sports organization with 50,000 member/subscribers, and midway through that time, I led the creation of a new magazine.
What made you want to go into this field of work?
When I first started sharing my collection in lectures, I didn’t realize it was anything out of the ordinary at first. The quilt community recognized it and grabbed hold of me. The knowledge I gained over years of collecting had value. That’s when people started asking for appraisals.
Do you still have time to do your own quilting and sewing while owning your business?
I’ve never done much sewing. Truth is I can’t see small things close up, and threading a needle is really difficult. If I look at this question as “do you still do the things you enjoy?” it’s an absolute yes! All the activities that led me to start a business are things I continue to do every day.
Does your store have classes, get-togethers, or special events you’d like to mention?
Although I haven’t done any special events with the business, I have curated four exhibitions in the last three years, two from my collection. The next show will take place at Latimer Quilt & Textile Center in March and April 2014. In 2015, I will exhibit 50 quilts in France following the release of my book with Quiltmania.

pieced quilt from the New York Beauty collection, c. 1868, Kentucky
What would you like to see PMQG do to strengthen the quilting community in the Portland Metro Area?
I already love what PMQG is doing, and honestly don’t see much room for improvement. Just keep delving into all things quilt-related, keep interacting with other quiltmakers, and have fun!  
Thanks to Bill for sharing with our Community. We love our Business Members!