A Retired Nurse Turns Entrepreneur

By Jenn Hall St. Joseph News-Press, Mo.

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Meet the former nurse who is reigniting a passion for quilting. So much so, she's launched a quilting business completing about 30 projects. She's even opened a store on Etsy.

GOWER, Mo.

Jane Dreon wanted to keep busy during her retirement.

The registered nurse retired from Mosaic Life Care's intensive care unit after more than three decades. She wasn't idle for long. She picked up work right away stitching quilts from her home business, Sew ... anyway, in Gower.

When she was younger, a neighbor got Dreon into quilting. Back then, she learned pieced quilts, which means smaller sections coming together.

"I have done quilts for nieces and nephews over the years, and I hand quilted those," she said. "But as I got older, my knuckles would hurt, arthritis maybe, it got harder to grip a needle."

That got her looking into long-armed sewing machines. In 2012, she decided a quilting business would be her Plan B.

"That's what I want to do. After I retire from nursing, I won't be bored out of my mind," Dreon said. "I will have something to do that could actually create a little bit of a business."

She didn't want to get too busy with the machine at the time because she was still working full time.

Dreon officially retired from Mosaic in August 2017.

"Now that I'm retired, I'm wanting to get out there and learn more and just have more customers and market myself a little bit," she said.

Long-arm quilt machines have been around for more than half a century but the integrated technology aspect is relatively new in the last decade or so.

The software that came with it allows her to program in different decorative patterns to the quilts. "It's very functional," she said.

Since getting her machine, Dreon has spent countless hours with professionals who have taught her the software and other new techniques.

"I can spend the money now to go to some of those seminars and learn more," she said. "Because some of this can be very, very detailed. Very decorative. It's not just functional for a snuggly quilt. It can actually be a work of art."

She admits she's not to that point but she will be.

Dreon puts quilts together and provides the service of the stitching. She does stitching for both whole cloth quilts and pieced quilts. Since she retired, she has completed about 30 projects and started her own Etsy shop where she currently has about 11 baby quilts available.

For more information call 816-424-3925.

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