Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Modern Retreat

From last Thursday through Sunday I retreated with 20 other quilters from the Central Florida MQG. It was a wonderful time! This is what our sewing room looked like.

For the first time ever on a retreat - and I swear I've been on at least 40 of them - I took along paraphernalia to do free motion quilting. This is my pre-trip pile that includes two sewing machines, and three tables!

I'm tired of having a stack of quilt tops waiting to be quilted, so retreat put me a long way toward catching up. If you're following my Pfaff Grand Quilter quilting saga - skipped stitches and breaking threads - the machine continued to do that on retreat, though not quite as frequently. Frustrating though, nonetheless.

First I quilted "Cartwheels Quilt," a foundation paper-pieced pattern by Lee of FreshlyPieced. I'll be teaching this project in the Beyond First Time Quiltmaking class that begins Monday, September 26. Registrations for this two week workshop are now open at the Lifelong Learning College. I'll also be teaching domestic machine quilting.

I spent most of Monday taking pictures of the process for sewing binding to the Cartwheels quilt. While I typically would have chosen the gray background (Widescreen) fabric for binding, the photos are needed for a binding tutorial. Aqua and pink fabrics as binding show up better in contrast to the backing color.

Cartwheels has a single layer of Quilter's Dream Poly, and is quilted with Aurifil 50-weight thread.

Machine-sewn mitered corners
I also began quilting The Rebel quilt, a pattern by Libs Elliott. Oh how I love this one! This 72" X 72" quilt is destined as a gift for my cardio-vascular doctor. He's taken such excellent care of me with PAD, and atrial fibrillation, and is going through his own very difficult business problems, so this is the least I can do to show my appreciation for his medical skill and attentiveness.

After quilting three large spirals on it, I decided to take a break so as to put it up on my home design wall to assess where the rest of the quilting design is headed.

The last project I worked on at retreat was this "Building Fun" quilt by Geta Grama. Each castle block is fast to sew, once all the fabrics have been chosen. Background fabric is white Widescreen, and all the colors are Blueberry Park... still a favorite collection. Three more castles to go!

Our guild is booked for Luther Springs again next year during the same time frame. I'll be there, and hopefully will accomplish as much as I did this time. In any case, it's sure to be fun! Especially if I can spend it with these same good friends:

From the top left: Laura, Debbie, Diane, Jamie, Judi, Cindy, Kathy, Kelly, and Lynne
From the bottom left: Monique, Mel, Janice (AKA Mamasita), Karen E., Linda T., Dee, Karen T., Jill, Carol, Sue, Lora, and me! Linda


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  2. You did achieve a lot!! Love your new houses projects- such fun colours together! And what a generous gift to your cardiac doctor! I am sure it will be a wonderful surprise which will be cherished for a long time! Will you be keeping "Cartwheels" for yourself?

  3. Looks like a fun time. We're off to,one in two weeks time. Can't wait!

  4. Dont you just love retreats. I do, but there doesn't seem to be enough of them!! Your Doctor is a lucky man, but then so are you that he has taken such good care of you. I love the quilt you have made for him! p.s. have a look at my blog Linda. :-)

  5. Lots of work got accomplished. Retreats are truly fun and productive. I like the Rebel quilt, too. What thread do you use for quilting?

  6. I seem to remember that in the past, you said that you are from Iowa. If so, I suggest you speak with the repair person at West Side Sewing in Cedar Rapids, about your skipped stitches. Many machines need a bit of tweeking for free motion sewing. I read your IG posts, and think a second oppinion might offer another slant on your problem. I just want to help!

    1. Hello Sharon T.! I'm unable to reply to your comment because your settings are "noreply-commenter," so I'll respond here. Yes, you remember correctly that I USED to live in Iowa. That was nearly four years ago! :-) Now I live in Florida. I have taken the machine to a Pfaff dealer who had it for four hours, talking with Pfaff tech support and trying everything, and they were unable to prevent skipped stitches! It was returned to me at no charge because the problem remains. This is the second tech I've taken it to. Next I am going to Tampa, Florida to see "the guru," according to quilting friends. If he can't fix it, no one can. Then the machine will officially become my boat anchor.

  7. Your 3 quilting projects are wonderful. I think your doctor will love his quilt. That is my favorite of the 3 pictured. Your retreat 'buds' look like a lot of fun too. I'm scheduled for a retreat in June, but our accomodations look nothing like yours. No room for 3 tables to free motion quilt, I'm afraid. Hope to get some UFOs further along though. I've still got way too many of them, and am determined to finish them in my lifetime!!!

  8. Looks like your retreat was a lot of fun and you got a lot done. I need to start working on my pile of tops too. :)

  9. Just discovered your blog. So glad to hear you are doing well in sunny Florida. I am still struggling with my domestic machine quilting a new book on the subject is so exciting.



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