Monday, June 10, 2013

McCloud Retreat!

Every year by best quilting buddies and I go to northern California for a retreat in the pines in the tiny, historic town of McCloud. There we stay in a 100+ year old building with an inn (and huge classroom) on the top floor and shops and restaurants on the main floor fronted by a wide porch with benches and flowerboxes. It's pretty much the same as it's been for decades except for the upgraded rooms at the inn. Along with the wavy glass in the extra tall windows and antique-looking fixtures, the bathrooms and beds are pristine and plush and the reproduction wallpaper (including William Morris designs!)--Delightful!

I vowed not to buy any fabric even though we stopped at 2 quilt shops on the way. I have more than my sewing room can tolerate as it is! but we had a vendor at the retreat with really good prices on really nice fabric and since my batik and 30s stash is pretty meager, I purchased 5 yards in 1/2-yard pieces (middle row in the photo). Then we played a hand of "Batik Poker". There were 15 of us taking part so 5 of us tossed a fat quarter of batik into the pot and drew a card. Highest card won all 5. I won with a King! This was repeated with 2 other groups of 5. At the end there were 3 of us with 5 fat quarters each. All 3 of us set our winnings on the table for an all-or-nothing draw of a card! First card was a 9, next card was a King, my card was. . . an ACE!!! I won all the fat quarters!! There they are along the left side of this photo.

Then we had an Auction with all proceeds going to the American Cancer Society. There were about a dozen wonderful prizes on display at each of us could bid on. Where do the prizes come from? They're donated by us quilters, of course. There were big baskets of yummy foods, fancy bags of fabric, home and yard decorations, anything you could think of! I had my eye on the fat quarter tower that came in a delightful basket-purse and ended up the high bidder!! (Its on the upper right in the photo next to the column of fabric that came inside it). I also bid on a basket full of wonderful Sunsweet items donated by a lady who runs the Sunsweet Growers Store in Yuba City, CA. It's the best gift shop I know and I use their shipping service every year to send delicious and useful items to loved ones at Christmas.

So all totaled, 13.5 yards of fabric!! I should be ashamed of myself. . . 

 I figure I sat at my sewing machine for about 28 hours from Friday afternoon until Sunday at noon. WELL--a girl's gotta EAT! I brought 4 projects to work on but only ended up doing two: an apron from a darling pattern I found, and the 1st and 2nd months in the BOM I'm starting (a Nancy Rink pattern through ThimbleCreek Quilt Shop in Concord CA) and a paper-pieced pattern I've been putzing with for a couple of years. 

I started with the BOM because the quilt has 68 fairly intricate blocks and this BOM is only 6 months! Yeah. . . do the math! I spent the first 13 hours making the blocks you see on my design wall. That's all of month one and 1/3 of month 2. But if you see the finished quilt you'll know why I couldn't resist!

Next I made "My Neighbor's Apron", a pull-over-your-head apron sort of like a smock and just adorable! Well, that left not too many hours to sew. I did a little paper-piecing on an on-going project the rest of the time. 

Aren't retreats the greatest?! Why not sign up for one yourself? And take a look at Judy's Design Wall Monday while you're at it!


Quilting Nonnie said...

My MIL used to live in McCloud. I think the town is cute. The retreat sounds marvelous. I love the old places that have glass that's wavy. You BOM looks wonderful. I went to Paducah's and looked at the whole quilt. I can see why you'd want to make it. Good luck to you.

Churn Dash said...

A friend was working on that BOM at a retreat in April. It was only seeing the whole quilt that you linked to that I now see the appeal of the quilt. It looks like you got lots done!
I've got a four day sewing marathon starting tomorrow. I've got to go into the shop for the background for a swap I am taking part in, but I hope I don't get tempted by something else!

Mary said...

28 hours of quilting time sounds wonderful. I'm heading to a Retreat next week. I've been on two others this year, including a Quiltmaker Block Party, lucky me!

Mary said...
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