Thursday, April 1, 2010

Guild Retreat part 2

I promised more about my weekend retreat.  Some women started new quilts or spent the weekend on one quilt.  Many spent the weekend finishing UFO's.  That's what I did.  It looks like I did a lot, but most of these projects were almost finished and I took them along to put the finishing touches on.  It felt SOOOOO good!

The first thing I did was finish a quilt for my niece, Melanie.  She made the top and I told her to send it to me and I would turn it into a quilt for her for her birthday gift.  I'm such a good aunt.... I even put the binding on for her. (big smile, Mel!).  I really think she did a great job of grading the colors.

If you look closely at my tootsies, I'm walking around in my stocking feet... sporting the socks I finished last month.

And for my next project, I worked on a quilt that I have had 95% finished for at least 3 years.  I finally have my New York Beauty ready to hang!  I added a hanging sleeve and finished the binding.  I put a super skinny binding on it so it took a while to mess with it.  I still want to do a little embellishing with beads and fibers, but I can always take it off the wall and do that in the future.  For now-- it can be hung!  YEA!!!

There's a story that goes with the NYB, and it probably contributed to my hesitation to work on it this past year.  I showed this on my blog more than a year ago.  A customer saw it and asked me how to make it.  She had never paper pieced before.  Over the next month, I tutored her online, through emails, and she learned the basics of paper piecing.  She was working on some NYB blocks when her health failed to the point when she had to stop sewing.  She lost her life to cancer soon after.  Her last finished quilt is on the gallery on my website- it's called Melissa's Matchstick Marimba.  Somewhere along the line she crossed over from being a customer to being a friend.  I miss you, Joanne.

I made a pillow a few years ago and it was held together with a few safety pins in the back.  I took it to the retreat and tacked the back and took out the pins.

I started this table topper 2 years ago.  It's still not done- I've decided to hand quilt it.  But at least I finished up the top.

This was a big hit with the other ladies.  It's from Karla Alexander's new book.  I blogged about taking the class from her a few weeks ago.  I finished the top and it's ready to quilt.  I love this technique.  I'll show it to you again when I get it quilted.

Have you ever hear the term, "Six Degrees of Separation"?  That's the theory that everyone on the planet is separated by everyone else somehow by 6 people.  Well.... out guild seemed to prove the fact that there is something to the 6 degree theory.

First of all.... we had goodie bags and treats and special things for the ladies who attended.  One of my contributions was a cupcake pincushion.   Guild member, Paula, embroidered "WQG Spring Retreat 2010" on fabric pieces and I stitched them into pincushions and put them in silicone cupcake cups.  We made 20 of them.  I put an assortment of pins in them.

  So... here is the start of the coincidences.  I got the idea for the pincushions from Melinda in Georgia.  We read each others' blogs.  We exchange emails from time to time.  I had trouble getting the pincushions to stick (what was I thinking?  Nothing sticks to silicone... that's the POINT!) so I sent Melinda an email the day before I was leaving for the retreat.  She got right back with me.  Anyway.... Kathy (in the picture) spent most of Saturday making these Letty Bags.  They are a simple pattern that really looks a lot more difficult.  They came out absolutely great!  I just HAVE to make one myself!!!  Kathy showed me the pattern, which is by Two Wacky Women.  I remembered that Melinda has a sister who designs patterns.  Sure enough, Melinda's sister, Robin, is the designer of the pattern!  And just to make this a little weirder, I didn't know Kathy, but we discovered that she used to work with my husband at Intel.  SO... a lady I didn't know who knows my husband went to a guild retreat with me in Oregon, where she made a bag designed by a woman in California who is the sister of a lady in Georga who is a blog buddy of mine.

Enough coincidence?  I think not!  My DH and I used to live in Texas, where we were good friends with Karla and Steve Pendleton.  Karla is a well known china painter, teacher and author.  They moved to Silverton, Colorado a few years back.  Now, Silverton is a tiny town WAY up in the mountains, far away from anything else.  Most people never even heard of it.  So... my ears perked up when I overheard the mother of a guild member (who is visiting Oregon and came to the retreat) say that her home is in Silverton.  Since I knew it was a small town, I asked her if she knows Steve and Karla.  I'm thinking you can guess the answer to that!

Then the lady who shared a sewing table with me knows a good friend of mine... not too much of a coincidence, but I was beginning to think we all had some sort of connection.

I can hardly wait for the fall retreat!!!


QuiltSue said...

You've been busy! There's some lovely quilts you've shown. The NYB is amazing.

joanne lendaro said...

Great pictures, thanks for sharing! Love all of the projects and the pincushions were fun!

Melinda said...

It is a small world isn't it. You got a lot done at the retreat - I love the pin cushions!

Robin said...

It certainly is a small world and the internet has made it even smaller. Thanks for showing pictures of my Letty's Bag pattern made by Kathy. I've never met her in person but she's a friend of my Daughter-in-law Maureen. Looks like everyone had a great time. I love retreats.

Melissa said...

Your niece did a wonderful job on that quilt top! And it looks like you had so much fun at the retreat. I am jealous!