Saturday, September 30, 2017

Retreat Action

A whole week-long quilt retreat is time for some major productivity! And that's exactly what happened when six of us set up sewing machines and got to work.

We stayed on the fourth floor of a six-story condo in a lovely Kissimmee resort. Disney World isn't far away, so every evening we could see and hear fireworks from one attraction or another.

Though there were six quilters on our retreat, not all six of us were together at the same time. At the most we had five quilters sewing in the living room. Then, for several days it was just four of us.

Throughout the week, the camaraderie and conversation was amiable. We ate healthy meals, enjoyed good snacks, and watched movies!

Australia - Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman
Florence Foster Jenkins - Meryl Streep and Hugh Grant
The Brave One - Jodie Foster
The Dressmaker - Kate Winslet, Judy Davis, Liam Hemsworth
The Lake House - Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves
The Light Between Oceans - Michael Fassbender and Alicia Vikander
Unfaithful - Diane Lane and Richard Gere
War Room - Priscilla Shrier

I have a difficult time picking a favorite, but I'll say that "Australia" is very special. After watching it at least five times, it never disappoints.

I had three complete finishes, finished a quilt top, made good progress on my LindaNova English paper-piecing project, and did a fair bit of machine and hand quilting on Urban Trek.

I made this Bowties quilt, a free pattern from the Moda Bakeshop site.

I pieced it in baby boy colors, in a baby boy size: 35-1/2" X 46-1/2". 

Bowties is made entirely with a tumbler template. Though the paper template can be printed with the pattern, I cut out the fabrics using a lucite tumbler shape that had already been used to make this "So What's Your Point?" quilt back in 2001. What's old is new again, isn't it?

To pin baste, I cleaned the master bathroom floor, and got down on my hands and knees. I'm glad the quilt wasn't any bigger! 

I used my Bernina Aurora 440 to free motion quilt circles in the center of each bow tie. Then, with the Bernina #72 ruler work foot and a straight Fine Line Ruler (by Accents in Design), I quilted lines in the bow ties.

When the bow ties were done, I added FMQ waves - I think they look like bed springs -  in the Kona Silver background. Simple quilting that will do for a child.

Binding is Moda Bella in the color Little Boy Blue. Too perfect! Backing fabric is Zen Chic.

This Octagonal Orb block (free pattern here) has been an orphan for several years. I quilted it using Westalee Sew Steady Circles on Quilts Template Set 1.

I sewed it into an envelope-backed pillow that will be stuffed with an 18" square pillow form.
This 24" X 24" Cross Check Mini Quilt is a free pattern from the modern quilt TV show "Fresh Quilting" by Yvonne Fuchs - QuiltingJet Girl. She explained transparency in a segment of season 2, episode 6, and offered the Cross Check Mini Quilt pattern with that episode. (You need to be a member of the Modern Quilt Guild to view these links.)

Quilting one spiral design is all this quilt needed. If you haven't tried spiral quilting, here's a link to my tips and tutorial for successful spiral quilting.

Moving forward on a WIP (work in progress), I foundation paper-pieced four more blocks to make a total of 16 blocks for a "Rainbow Rounds" quilt.

I now have a 58" x 58" quilt top that needs backing and quilting. 

Rainbow Rounds is a pattern by Jo Avery (MyBearPaw of Edinburgh, Scotland) that appeared in Love Quilting magazine. The magazine named the design Rainbow Rounds, but Jo (who I had the pleasure of meeting in person earlier this year at QuiltCon!) calls it Bufferwheel.

So much sewing and quilting and movie and friends time! I also played my ukulele, briefly, on two occasions, and power walked twice. Suffice it to say that it was wonderful! And it's nice to be home and back in my cozy sewing room too. No doubt there's more sewing time ahead. Linda


  1. Love everything you have/are making Linda. Thanks so much for all the contacts for the freebies! :-)
    Dont you just love the weekends away with the girls - quilting!
    Im off to the NZ Quilt Symposium in Christchurch next week, for a week. :-)

  2. Looks like you had a wonderful time away - and so productive too.

  3. I'd say you were very successful in your sewing plans, given all those movies you watched! I'm glad you enjoyed the film Australia! Can you believe I've never watched it? But The Light Between Oceans is a favourite of mine.

  4. Looks like fun and productivity was had by all! Your quilting is fabulous on the bowties and other projects too! Glad ya'll had a great time!

  5. Wow! A whole week. I can't imagine a week long retreat but it seems you made really good use of all that time.

  6. What a fun week you had and so much accomplished!! Well done. I love all the quilts you worked on and I am currently printing off the Octagonal Orb instructions, that looks like a lot of fun to make!! I am hoping to start learning how to quilt with rulers, still need to get the ruler foot and then some rulers to work with. Glad you had a fabulous time.

  7. I just love seeing all your projects--you have so much energy! I have always loved your "Buffer Wheel" quilt, so am glad to see you made progress on that. All the other projects are great (loved hearing about how you quilted them, too) and I'm totally impressed that you got so much done. Thanks for the list of movies. I just watched Light Between Oceans and now have some others I can add to my Netflix list!



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