Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Sewing and Quilting Retreats

Since I've been sewing a long time (I'm afraid to put down a number of years, it's such a scary number!!) I know a lot of other people who sew.  Lots.  Members of my family, friends, ladies at church, members of quilt guilds and the American Sewing Guild.  One thing we have in common is that we love to share our projects and experiences.

I've read about a lot of sewing and quilting retreats.  There are groups that go to the shore, or on cruises, or just 'up north' or away from home to get together and sew.  Sometimes these are week-long events, and sometimes they're for weekends. 

My extended family has an almost-every-Friday night sewing get together.  It's not a retreat, but it IS very social.  It started a couple of years back with a family quilt project.  People signed up, everyone made a number of the same quilt square (one for each person who signed up), and they were traded so everyone ended up with one square from every other person.  After those projects were all done, we just kept getting together -- aunts and cousins and second cousins and in-laws and whoever is around come for the fun.  Sometimes we sew and sometimes we just eat and think about sewing. 

We've made quilts, start to finish.  We've remade a couple of UFOs that were inherited from other people.  We made skirts and dresses for the little girls and their dolls, and Halloween costumes.  We made a camouflage prom dress and other interesting stuff -- no project too challenging!  

Twice a year some of the ladies go on a quilt retreat in Central Wisconsin.  I went once, and -- well -- it wasn't exactly my cup of tea.  The place we were using wasn't all that well lit, and the project was BIG.  I'm not a late-night person and people stayed up late sewing or playing games.  Plus since I work full time at a fairly challenging job, I need my weekends to rest, and this retreat lasted from Thursday night to Sunday afternoon.  I did finish my project at home later.  I loved the pattern and my quilt turned out well.

I went on another sewing retreat one summer with a different group.  We were having so much fun I stayed up later than I should have.  Now, let me tell you, I have never watched the Tonight Show or Jay Leno on purpose!  By 9:30 or 10 p.m. I am usually out for the night.  And I must have eaten something that didn't like me because I ended up in the emergency room with the worst migraine headache I'd had ever.  It was the worst trip of my life to that point!

I skipped the next couple of retreats because I wasn't prepared to spend time and money to repeat a bad experience.  But I do love spending time with family members working on projects!  So once again I've forked over the deposit and kit fee for a retreat in February.  I'm telling myself that if it's tiring or boring or I just don't like it, I have permission to leave early!  And I'm going to bed by 11 or so at least one night.  Promise

We planned some extracurricular activities too.  Lunch at a Chinese restaurant, a little antique shopping on the side, a book on my Nook in case my hands get tired, and a couple of alternate projects.  I'm sure we'll have fun.  And maybe I'll have to call in that Monday with a hangnail or something.   Hmmm, you don't know my boss, do you?  Don't tell!

Sewing with friends is a lovely thing.  Sew and tell is an excellent way to get ideas and inspiration.  Years ago women had sewing bees for the social aspects, and because they had so little time to visit that a joint sewing session was permission to get together.  I highly recommend sewing with friends, even if you can't 'retreat'.

I'll let you know how it turns out!

Keep on sewing...

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for your visit today!