Quilt Retreats

Quilt Retreat Inspiration and Projects

2 weeks ago today, at this time, I was on a bus back to Central Oregon after a relaxing 4 day/3 night quilting retreat at Sew N Go Retreats.

So I think I better finish up my series of posts on the 2017 annual quilt retreat I attended with my Quilting Sisters. I have a backlog of other blog posts ideas in my head and unless I finish this series I will not get to them.

If you are starting here, below are the links to the previous four posts in this series:

Relaxation Can Lead to Inspiration

For me it was a mellow and laid back quilt retreat experience. I did not even bring my sewing machine, only hand sewing projects. I did not drive, I took the bus (see post The Road to Retreat (via Bus!).

And, I spent a bit of time here, instead of in the quilt retreat center:

My special “quilting retreat seating”
I can see the quilting retreat center from here, does that count?

Looking at this:

Hello, impossibly blue sky with a couple fluffy clouds over Portland, Oregon region

Or this:

Hello, beautiful sunset!

I also spent a lot of time going on walks (see post Quilt Retreat Animals) and found inspiration in nature, surrounding farms, and a stump with moss and fungi! (see post The Beauty of Moss and Fungi):

Area farm
Lovely little shed, tree and old bike vignette discovered on a walk
The infamous NW slug
The beauty of moss and fungi

Sewing did actually occur, primarily by my quilting retreat sisters, however I have a couple projects to report.

Quilting Sisters’ Projects

Before they were projects, they were this nest of sewing machine, fabric, patterns and supplies! (one of my quilting sister’s stations):


Here is a montage of the projects the other quilt retreat attendees worked on:

One of my quilting sisters was working on a project she found on Pinterest and reverse engineered how to do it (she is mighty crafty!) The project involves scrappy log cabin piecing of roses, set in scrappy pieced green log cabins:

I got a kick out her workstation as she worked on the quilt, it was highly organized with scraps of various colors:


Inspired by Others

One of my quilting sisters worked on this quilt, with a lovely collection of bee themed fabric:


The fabric line of the fabric with the printed designs is Bee Inspired by Deb Strain for Moda Fabrics and it was very darling:

Photo credit: Moda fabrics

She gave me her scraps, which I turned into English Paper Pieced (EPP) hexagons during the retreat:


I had so much fun trying to “fussy cut” the scraps into hexagons with specific images. I have many more hexagons to make before this can become a future project; and I will do a future blog post on this project (like in 2018 when I get to working on these again?!?!).

The same quilting sister was working on another project that I got to benefit from, this time on an even larger scale. She brought several “UFOs” (unfinished objects) including one from a class she took many years ago involving a mixture of embroidered blocks and non embroidered blocks. She did not select the fabric for the class it was part of the class kit. Now revisiting it, years later, she was not sure she liked the fabric or the design of the quilt:

Small sampling of the blocks, not all blocks put up on wall

The fabric did not match her home decor and she did not have someone in mind to make the quilt for as a gift. I offered to take it off her hands and she gave me the blocks already made and all the remaining fabric/scraps.

Now it has become a “Challenge Bag” (see post Basket of Challenges) and I will feature it in a future post when I finish redesigning it into a different piece:

Challenge Bag added to the “basket of challenges”, hoping to become a quilt someday

Tierney’s Projects?

So Tierney, besides fleecing one of your quilting sisters for her scraps and even an entire project, did you work on anything??!?!

Why yes I did. I worked on my stack of EPP rosettes (getting the rows between each hexagon sewn together:


And I worked on an appliqué wallhanging that I started in a class in 2016 (see post Adventures in Appliqué):


I really enjoyed blanket stitching and the more I practice the better I get (at least in my mind). Blanket stitching and other hand stitching is very relaxing and even meditative.

I might be tied with another quilt sister (she knows who she is) for the title of “Least Productive” but I had an incredible and relaxing time. The quilting sister who shared my lack of productivity was also the one going on wonderful walks including the one in which a local farm invited us over for a visit!

Inspiration All Around the Quilt Retreat Center

The Sew N Go retreat now has two classrooms: 1) the original retreat center/classroom which is a separate building on the farm property; and 2) a brand new classroom which is the converted garage to the main quilt retreat house.

Throughout the quilt retreat house and in both classrooms are many quilts, quilted wallhanging and little sewn projects. Below is a montage of some of the inspiration that surrounds you while you are quilt retreating:

Nancy, the quilt retreat hostess, did a demo on how to make a gift wine bag from a pair of old jeans:


In addition to quilted/sewn inspirations, there are also wood crafting inspirations (Nancy also holds class in her barn on making wood working crafts):


She also had a very creative way to display Lori Holt’s Farm Girl Vintage blocks (one of my other someday to finish projects, see series of posts  Farm Girl Vintage Blocks)


I did have material for a Postscript section but this has been a very long post and I am sure you are exhausted now from slogging through all these photos (but maybe you are inspired to go create something!)

Thanks for joining me as I recapped the annual May quilting retreat with my quilting sisters. For me this year’s retreat was a very laid back. There was no “Floor Show” this year or stand up comedy (see post Quilt Retreat May 2016: The Tools & The Stories) but it was still exquisite to hang out with my quilting sisters and enjoy the beautiful Vancouver, WA countryside.

I did learn about a “new tool” for quilters at the retreat and I will close this post with the adorable information I found on this tool posted on the edge of one of the design walls at retreat:


Special thank you to Quilting Sisters Lisa and Kathy on providing additional photos for this post.


30 thoughts on “Quilt Retreat Inspiration and Projects”

  1. It looks like you had a wonderful time, and I hope you have no regrets or concerns about the way you used the weekend. We all need to recharge some times.

    Your EPP rosettes are looking lovely. But oh my! the log-cabined roses! Those are beautiful! I’d love to see how she uses them.

    I spent this morning cleaning floors and bathrooms. It might sound like a funny choice for the day after our quilt show, but I feel a lot better about the status of my house. And as I told Jim, “Now I’m done with all the housecleaning for June.” 😉 Not really, of course, but we’ll be gone some, so there won’t be much to do. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Just once a month housecleaning and then your house stays sterile the rest of the month?!!? That is magical, ha! Oh yes those log cabin roses were incredible and my photo did not do them justice. Also my friend is so good at seeing something on Pinterest and then figuring it out, she is a craft genius! Yes I have no regrets, a quilt retreat does not have to be a “quilting sweat shop weekend” – ha!
      Thanks for your comments 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Tierney…I am so proud of your tree and acorn! Gad to see you are still working on it. Now for the words….call me if you need more help. I am just a stitch away!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Yes I am saving the scariest stuff for last. I did find some online resources on stitching words so I will practice on some muslin and then see. Will bug you if I get stuck, thanks 🙂


  3. That looks wonderful! I love the pieces that might become a quilt someday and the roses!! I hope you can share the completed rose project when she is finished. I’m glad you enjoyed your time and thanks for sharing the inspiration.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I will ask my friend Dana if we can have a photo of her completed roses quilt and then post it. It is pretty spectacular and the fact she figured it out from a photo online!


  4. Your works are so beautiful,. I av a lot of pieces I just refused to throw away after sewing with the intention of making something out of it 😂😂 I might just start joining them to create a pillow case maybe 👌👍👍👍. You are giving me some inspirations ❤

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  5. Love all your pictures. The retreat location is so beautiful. I would find it hard to get anything done other than walking around looking at the scenery. Loved the display of the Farm Girl blocks and the old wood bird houses.

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    1. I know that was such a creative way to display Farm Girl blocks without making them into a quilt! Well you see I was distracted and spent most my time walking around, and relaxing looking at the scenery, ha! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Looks like a truly magical retreat in a lovely place. How exciting to get some new fabric/blocks, and to have had the time to make more hexies and piece together more rosettes. So much goodness and creative inspiration, here. 🙂 Love the tootsie tool (good for keeping away the shakes!, lol)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This was a very fun post. I enjoyed looking at all of the pictures and the various quilting designs. I LOVE the quilt blocks displayed with the ladder. My favorite is the black sheep with the gingham body.

    I am so glad that this was a very relaxing and enjoyable retreat for you. Even if you didn’t do major projects it was good to get inspiration and spend enjoyable time with fellow quilting Sisters.

    I’m looking forward to seeing all of your projects come together and seeing what you come up with as your challenge pieces.

    Still loving your hexies. Did I mention I’m painting my LR a burnt orange color? Those pieces wold fit well…just saying! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much! Ooh I bet your living room will look fantastic in that color! I too am looking forward to seeing how all my projects come out – ha! I am looking for some “magic finishing dust” to sprinkle over them 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Also, I have nominated you for the Mystery Blogger Award. Please don’t feel obligated to participate, you really do deserve this one! Your nomination will post on Friday.


  8. Thanks. I’ve painted the orange and sponge painted red over the top. I still have to do the yellow over all that–also sponge painted. It sounds weird but it’s turning out quite well! It actually looks like the sample in the painting book I have. It is almost a leathery looking texture with the colors mottled. Although at the moment my LR is very bright! I will tone it down with the room furnishings and such, but one step at a time!

    I’m loving all these orange fabrics you’ve been show casing as well!!

    Hmmm if you find any of the finishing dust, let me know. I would like to borrow some!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I like your approach to this retreat. So many times I go and work non-stop at my projects barely stopping to enjoy the surroundings as well as to relax. Way to go for doing so! Love the new quilter’s tool. Especially the “lick and stick” feature.

    Liked by 1 person

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