Quilt Retreats, tierneytravels

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part VI: Missouri Quilt Museum

This is my last installment in my series of posts about my trip to Quilt Town, USA to attend a Missouri Star Quilt Company (also known as “MSQC”) quilt retreat with my long time quilting friends.

If you are just joining us, here are the 5 previous posts in the series:

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part I: What I Worked On

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part II: Quilt Town, USA 

MSQC Retreat Part III: Inside the Shops

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part IV: Greatest Fabric Scrap Sale of All Time 

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part V: The Retreat Center Experience

Included in our MSQC retreat was a trip to the Missouri Quilt Museum (which is housed in an old school), and this post will share photos from that visit! There was so much to see, I’ve curated my photos to just share my favorite exhibits at the museum.

MINIATURE QUILTS

When we first entered the museum, we spent a bit of time in the Miniature Quilt Exhibit! The work that went into these tiny doll size quilts was amazing!

The photos above has a lap size quilt on the wall and to the right of it, the miniature version of that quilt!

FULL SIZE ANTIQUE QUILTS

There were many antique full sized quilts displayed around the museum, here are a couple samples:

ANTIQUE SEWING MACHINES

There were endless examples of antique sewing machines. I especially got a kick of the antique Bernina sewing machine.

TOY SEWING MACHINES

Even more amazing that the exhibits of antique sewing machines, was the exhibit of TOY SEWING MACHINES!

NATIONAL QUILT MUSEUM GALLERY

The also had a gallery of quilts on loan from the National Quilt Museum:

Here are a couple of my favorites from those quilts. The second one has dogs incorporated into the trees in the quilts, so look carefully.

COOL “MODERN” QUILTS

They also had some cool “Modern” style quilts on display include the head of Albert Einstein, a quilt made entirely from fabric selvages, and an amazing denim quilt:

It was amazing, strange and interesting to see such a jam packed museum of quilting history in a small town!

Thanks for joining me on the six part series about my visit to Quilt Town, USA!

Quilt Retreats, tierneytravels

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part V: The Retreat Center Experience

Time to continue my series of posts on my trip to Quilt Town, USA to attend a Missouri Star Quilt Company (also known as “MSQC”) quilt retreat with my long time quilting friends.

If you are just joining us, here are the previous four posts in the series:

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part I: What I Worked On

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part II: Quilt Town, USA 

MSQC Retreat Part III: Inside the Shops

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part IV: Greatest Fabric Scrap Sale of All Time 

Now to share with you what it was like to attend the retreat at MSQC and stay at the retreat center.

The retreat center, known as the Sewing Center is in the middle of downtown Hamilton, MO and is an old building converted to the retreat center and accommodations. I have photos below but if you want to see the official photos/info here is the link from the MSQC website – Sewing Center.

Here is the retreat sewing area:

Our group of 6 sat by the front windows. Here are photos of our assigned sewing area for our group when we arrived, and then when we got settled in!

We rented BabyLock Sewing machines from MSQC for the retreat since we were all flying in from various places across the country (Denver, CO; Seattle, WA; New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Sacramento, CA) and did not want to deal with lugging our sewing machines to the retreat via airplane.

The retreat center sewing area has a large kitchen and a snack table area. The photos below include the snack table at the beginning of the retreat. I should have taken a photo a couple days in as it was packed with all the snacks quilters brought and put out to share.

Our meals were served at the kitchen and they were nothing to write home about, but they were okay. They did have some great desserts a couple of dinners. But here is an example of one of the meals:

You could also go out to eat at various restaurants around town. We went out a couple times to eat, and several of my quilting friends discovered an amazing Mexican restaurant in town.

We also discovered a brewery in town, Levi Garrison & Sons Brewery and several of my quilting friends and I had a nice pint while chatting with the wonderful bartender who told us stories from her life and town history.

The brewery did not serve food, so we picked up food at a local eatery and brought it in to have with our pint.

In addition to a couple meals out and a visit to the local brewery, we also had a delicious ice cream treat at the local sweet shop one day!

It was like 17 or 19 degrees Fahrenheit outside, but it is never too cold out for ice cream! (We did eat it inside the sweet shop before re-bundling up to go back to the retreat center).

The sleeping accommodations at the retreat were upstairs. The twin beds had very comfortable mattresses. The main challenge was you had to like going up and down stairs – lots of stairs. (The retreat center did have a stair lift in the back in case you were “differently abled” and needed assistance to get upstairs).

I thought it was funny they had a chair on the landing of the first flight of stairs, in case you needed a break.

They also had a seating area at the top of the stairs when you finished your second flight of stairs to get to your room:

The bathrooms were lined up dorm style – they had plenty and they had decent showers (but no soap, you had to bring your own soap):

Here is an example of one of the rooms, it is the room I stayed in:

Here are a couple more photos of the upstairs sleeping accommodations areas:

One evening we were treated to a glorious sunset outside our window of the retreat center:

Everyone was out taking photos and of course it was cooler than my photos show.

During the retreat, we would periodically head over to the Main Shop and put stuff in our boxes to be shipped home. As I mentioned in previous posts in this series, they provide free shipping (of unlimited boxes) of whatever you purchase and any projects you worked on during the retreat, to retreat attendees.

I’ll close this post with a picture of me, taken by my friend Kathy, as I am leaving the retreat to take the shuttle back to Kansas City, Missouri to fly home:

Fabric Scraps Obsession, Quilt Retreats, Quilt Shop Tours, tierneytravels

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part IV: Greatest Fabric Scrap Sale of All Time

This post continues my series of posts on my trip to Quilt Town, USA to attend a Missouri Star Quilt Company (also known as “MSQC”) quilt retreat with my long time quilting friends. The previous three previous posts in the series are:

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part I: What I Worked On

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part II: Quilt Town, USA 

MSQC Retreat Part III: Inside the Shops

First of all, do not judge. I have a fetish for fabric scraps – ha! Okay that sounds a wee bit weird, but I would rather make things from fabric scraps than cut into yardage. I only buy fabric by the yard when I absolutely have to or the fabric is so amazing I cannot leave it in the shop (and it looks at me with puppy eyes saying “Tierney take me home…”).

So when I heard that while I was at the MSQC week long retreat there was a “Scrap Bag Sale” at the Penny’s Quilt Shop I shivered with excitement.

This not my first rodeo as they say, I’ve been to lots of fabric scrap sales where you fill a bag for a specific price, with as much fabric scraps as you can fit in (and yeah, I am ALWAYS up to the challenge to see how much I can fit in the bag they provide without it breaking).

But, I’ve NEVER been to a “scrap bag” sale where 1 yard, 2 yard, and even 3 yard pieces are considered scraps!!! Yes there were a couple pieces here and there that you might call “scraps” – like quarter and half yard pieces, but most of what was in their bins were larger pieces that I definitely would not classify as “scraps”.

What I heard from another quilter during the feeding frenzy (photo below) was that Missouri Star will pull pieces off the bolt that are 3 yards or less and put them away for the scrap sale.

Oh my.

What you are about to see was what could be considered a “super spreader event” as no one was wearing masks, but luckily the pandemic is tapering down in my part of the world.

Here is the FEEDING FRENZY:

And yes I was right in the middle of it. I stepped out to take photos.

Actually everyone was so patient, thoughtful and kind. It was the nicest frenzy you could imagine. Quilters would yell out what they were looking for and we would pull for them and toss to them what they were looking for. I got so much Kaffe Fassett fabric this way from the bins.

Also people would take a break from being in the bins and make way for other quilters waiting in queue. Actually you had to take a break for a while as it was sort of exhausting sifting through all those yard pieces of fabric and a bit claustrophobic.

You also needed a break to stuff your bag!

Besides finding AMAZING top quality quilting fabric (of like every fabric line you could imagine) one of the most fun parts of the whole experience was laughing with everyone there as you tried to stuff your bag as full as possible.

Here were the early stages of packing bags with “scraps”:

Notice how no fabric is reaching over the top of the bags.

Here is my pile of bags starting to grow (I did stop at 4 but later got one more) as I left them among the pile of coats (it was getting warm from all those people foraging through all those bins of fabric):

Then we heard that the shop did not really care how full you got the bag as long as all fabric was “touching” the inside of the bag. So things got creative…

Here are a series of photos on my quilting friends and I engaging in “creative scrap bag stuffing“:

We were laughing so hard! It got to be a real game of “what else can we fit in there?

Here are a couple of my long time quilting friends and I resting after our scrap foraging. We were exhausted but happy! (Note, not all our group attended the scrap sale, some were back at the Retreat Center being productive working on their projects!)

And here I am with another expression of “pure joy” like in the previous post (and note it was not just because of the amazing deals but that I was hanging out with friends, lol):

When we returned to the Retreat Center, Jessica, one of the Retreat Coordinators, challenged us to see how much yardage we had inside one of our bags.

One person had 27 yards of fabric inside ONE of their scraps bag. Yes that was 27 yards of fabric for $10.95! Most people had between 20 and 26 yards of fabric packed into ONE scrap bag.

One of the attendees actually ironed and folded her finds (show off, ha!):

I did not. I took all my scraps from the sale to the Main Shop for packaging up to send home to me! As I mentioned in the first post in this series (I think), MSQC will ship whatever you bought or worked on for FREE to you if you are attending a retreat so you don’t have to figure out how to get it home. (Yes they are encouraging attendees to shop to their heart’s content).

So, a couple days after I returned home from the retreat I received two boxes in the mail:

And here are the “scraps” I got from the sale:

I won’t tell you the total amount of fabric, because I did not even count the yardage.

I just ironed the fabric and incorporated it into my stash…while giggling…

Quilt Retreats, Quilt Shop Tours, tierneytravels

MSQC Retreat Part III: Inside the Shops

So I downloaded 81 photos for this post from my Amazon Photos (I backup all my photos to Amazon Prime Photos) account, and then I realized that is ridiculous!

This post continues my series of posts on my trip to Quilt Town, USA to attend a Missouri Star Quilt Company (also known as “MSQC”) quilt retreat with my long time quilting friends.

The first two posts in the series are:

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part I: What I Worked On

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part II: Quilt Town, USA 

I tried to make the first post in the series about what I worked on during the retreat, trying to make you think I was oh so productive during the retreat.

Actually I spent a lot of time with my friends wandering around the 13 specialty quilt shops they have in the town (if you’d like to see the full list see this link – MSQC Quilt Shops), in addition to the non quilting shops (like the yarn shop)! Here are some photos from those wanderings.

…and there might have been some purchasing involved…

FIRST STOP: THE MAIN SHOP

Our first stop was the Main Shop where we picked up our badges that got scanned with every purchase.

The Main Shop has numerous little “vignettes” previews of each of the 12 other shops, which are specialty quilting/craft supply shops, so you can see a sampling of what you might find in each shop. Here is a vignette of the Modern Shop inside the Main Shop as an example:

The second day of the quilt retreat, they sent us on a scavenger hunt to see all the shops and get a little treat/prize at each shop. Some of the photos below are from the scavenger hunt on the second day and some of from our first day wandering (as soon as we got into town, our feet hit the pavement to shop!)

Me on the scavenger hunt with my friends, yes that is the look of pure joy 🙂

They gave us cool bags as part of the scavenger hunt, at one of the shops, to hold our goodies from the scavenger hunt.

THE YARN SHOP – ONE BIG HAPPY YARN CO.

A couple photos from inside the yarn shop. I was well behaved as I have a decent stash of yarn and I am not a proficient knitter or crocheter (I get by), but it was fun to look!

Yes are you into the fiber arts, I bet those photos above were “yarn porn”, at least they were for me!

BATIK BOUTIQUE

Now pretend you hear the below statement read by Rod Serling writer/narrator for the classic TV series – The Twilight Zone…

Imagine if you will, a quilt shop, that only has batik fabrics…in every color and style you can imagine…

Here are photos from our wander around “The Batik Zone“!

I just realized, it would be too much to share photos from every shop so I will just stick to some of my favorites.

MAN’S LAND

They had an area connected to the Machine Shed shop called Man’s Land where husband’s could hang out while their wives went crazy shopping around Quilt Town, USA!

Here are some photos from Man’s Land. It was quite cozy, but no they did not serve any “adult beverages” there, even though it looks like it would be a nice comfy pub to hang out in!

THE MACHINE SHOP

The Machine Shop connected to Man’s Land was a cool shop where you could buy sewing supplies. Here are some photos from that shop:

PENNY’S QUILT SHOP

One of my favorite shops was Penny’s Quilt Shop, which was the old JCPenney’s Department Store (Hamilton, Missouri is the birthplace of James Cash Penney who founded J.C. Penney Company) into a quilt shop.

This quilt shop specializes in solids and blenders, and here are some photos from that shop:

It is also the shop that on Thursday of the retreat had the Scrap Sale, so I spent extra time in this shop. I share more about the dream Scrap Sale in another post in this series.

FLORALS

The most beautiful and serene shop (in my opinion) was the Florals quilt shop. The photos I share below do not do justice to how lovely this shop was decorated.

Here is my friend Judy making some yummy selections in the shop:

Thanks goodness I had recently re-organized my fabric stash at home and gave myself a limited budget for shopping (as I do not really need anymore fabric), otherwise I would have gotten in my trouble in this shop!

MODERN

I have so many photos that I had to cut it off somewhere so the Modern Shop is the last shop I will share photos of from our wander. As the name implies it was filled with “modern” fabrics with lines such as Cotton + Steel, Ruby Star Society, Riley Blake, etc.

Hope you enjoyed virtually wandering about some of the shops with me (or you are now really tired and need a nap).

Next post I will talk about the amazing Scrap Sale and the “aftermath” when my boxes of my purchases arrived home post retreat!

Quilt Retreats, tierneytravels

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part II: Quilt Town, USA

For Part I, see the post MSQC Quilt Retreat Part I: What I Worked On.

In early 2018 before all of our lives would change, my quilting friends and I first discussed the idea of doing a cool “bucket list” thing: visiting the Missouri Star Quilt Company, also known as “MSQC”, in Hamilton, Missouri. It wasn’t until 2021 after a year and a half into the pandemic, we decided: “let’s do it, not just visit but attend a quilt retreat there!”. I have to thank my friend Judy (the one who got me into quilting back in 1999) for her amazing facilitation and coordination of our adventure.

If you are not a quilter, or just never heard of MSQC, there is a wonderful story behind it.

Basically a quilter moved to an economically depressed small rural town in Missouri, opened a quilt shop which evolved into a quilting empire, essentially a “Quilter’s Disneyland” and saved the town.

It’s a pretty amazing story and you can read more about how MSQC came to be on their website at this link: About Us; or read one of these stories below from other sources:

One Family Revitalizes A Small Town With, Yes, Quilts (NPR)

How Jenny Doan Created the Disneyland of Quilting (CBS News)

The Disneyland of Quilting (Forbes)

My long time quilting friends and I have ordered from the MSQC website over the years and have been familiar with their story for about six years. So it was pretty exciting when we arrived in town on the shuttle van we took from the Kansas City airport. Here is what we first saw from the shuttle van and then immediately walking around when we arrived in Hamilton, MO:

Some of the different quilt shops
The main shop building
Our retreat center
Mural on the side of the building of the retreat center
Sign about town
The iconic mural across from the retreat center

The “downtown” is filled with speciality quilting shops. Here is the map from the MSQC website page MSQC Quilt Shops:

missouriquiltco.com

There are 13 specialty quilt shops, plus a yarn shop and other little gift and boutique shops. We did a scavenger hunt the second day of the retreat which took us to all the shops (well we did explore most of them on our own the first day) as well as several local businesses.

Once you visit Hamilton, MO, you will see why it’s called Quilt Town, USA!

Well that is enough for this post (I think there will be a lot of posts in this series, ha!). Next post I will share photos from my adventures in the shops with my quilting friends.

II’ll also have a future post coming up on the Scrap Sale we attended (fill a bag for $11 to the brim with scraps…that were not really scraps – they were 1 yard to 3 yard pieces!!!); and how they will ship all your purchases (and anything else you can fit in the box they provide) home for you for free – OH TROUBLE FOR THE WALLET! (but good trouble…)

One of the wonderful signs they had in the quilt shops around town
Quilt Retreats, tierneytravels

MSQC Quilt Retreat Part I: What I Worked On

As I mentioned in the introduction in the past severals posts, I recently returned from a nearly week long quilting retreat with my long time quilting friends at the Missouri Star Quilt Company in Hamilton Missouri. My next series of posts will be about that retreat. It was one of those “bucket list” experiences.

For this first post about the retreat, I thought I would do a follow up to my February 8, 2022 post Preparing for Quilt Retreat and show you what I actually worked on during the retreat – one thing – the first 20 blocks for the Tula Pink’s City Sampler 100 Modern Quilt Blocks quilt:

image from amazon.com

As I shared in the 02/08/2022 post Preparing for Quilt Retreat , I cut out the fabric from my scrap collection for the first 20 blocks and made them into little packets to take to the retreat:

I had so much fun at the retreat opening up each packet and working on it. Each packet was like a surprise as I forgot what specific fabrics and colors I cut for each one.

Here are the blocks in progress on the design wall I sat next to at the quilt retreat:

And here are the completed 20 blocks which took me a couple days to complete (because there was a lot of shopping and wandering around “Quilt Town USA“, but that is another post), and it was all that I worked on despite the other projects I had prepared and brought:

Now I have the blocks home and up on my design wall at home (each block measures 6.5 inches by 6.5 inches), and it will be time to try to make another 20 to get me closer to the 100 I need to complete for the quilt!

I am daydreaming about the day I complete all 100 blocks and then have to decide on my block setting options – the end of the book has so many awesome setting options!

Quilt Retreats

Preparing for Quilt Retreat

Next post I will finish up sharing more about our North Carolina trip, but I thought I would share that I am currently preparing for an upcoming quilt retreat with my long time quilt friends from California, Washington, and now NE England and South Carolina.

I decided to be very prepared for the quilt retreat and pre-cut a project so I can have more time to just relax and sew and visit with my quilting friends.

I’ve decided to work on making the Tula Pink’s City Sampler 100 Modern Quilt Blocks quilt. I’ve had the book on Kindle for years and I also found a copy at a thrift store.

image credit: amazon.com

The blocks are all 6.5 inches by 6.5 inches. Over the past couples days I’ve cut out 18 of the 100 blocks. I think I am going to cut out about 25 blocks to work on for the week long quilt retreat, that should keep me busy!

I organized the cut pieces for each block into little packets:

I had a lot of fun digging through this box of scraps and putting together the fabrics for each block.

I can’t wait to open each packet I’ve made at the quilt retreat (one at a time of course) and work on the blocks!

I have one other project for the retreat that I’ve prepared so far. I have a collection of Marcia Derse fabric scrap strips.

I love her fabric designs, and if you check out this post you will see how I got all “fan girl” on her when I met her in person a couple years ago at a Sewing Festival – Fabric Fangirl Frenzy.

Some of the scrap strips are fairly thin (under 2 inches, some are an inch) and besides a “string quilt” I was trying to decide what to do with them.

Well I came across a method of piecing small strips/small scraps of fabric using adding machine tape as a foundation while watching quilting videos on YouTube:

So I bought a couple rolls of adding machine tape for $1 at a thrift store and I am going to try it out with the thinner of the Marcia Derse fabric scrap strips.

I put together a packet of smaller scrap strips that I ironed (so they would be ready to use at the retreat) to pack in my suitcase.

I will let you know how it goes. I will probably open up my laptop at the retreat, watch the video while listening on my headphones, and follow along with the instructions.

I might also bring my English Paper Piecing hexie project I’ve been working on for a couple years, just to have some handwork with me.

The retreat is a week long but I am sure it won’t be “sweat shop quilting” where we do not take breaks to do other things. So I do not want to bring too many projects!

By the way, my tierneycreates Beastie is excited because I am going to bring her on the quilt retreat. She might even do a “guest blogger” post about it!

Her dog, Mikelet, won’t be coming. Just her and her Beastnina. So I need to be sure to leave room in my suitcase for her and her machine!

Bags Bags Bags, Quilt Retreats, Quilt Shop Tours

A Drawstring-bagalicious Retreat, Part II

Good Morning and here is part two of my story of the “Drawstring-bagalicious Retreat” I attended August 9 – 12, 2021 with my Washington based friends Judy and Dana. In Part I (A Drawstring-bagalicious Retreat, Part I) I shared that what began as a “bring your own project to work on quilting retreat” turned into a “let’s just make drawstring bags for 3 days obsession”!

We did do other things than make drawstring bags during our stay at the Riptide Retreat on the waterfront/beach in Shelton, Washington.

WE ENJOYED OUR COZY RETREAT CENTER

It was cluttered at times (this is what happens when you get a bunch of crafters together) but here are some scenes from the quilt retreat center (including while creativity was in progress):

In addition to the upstairs and its deck overlooking the water, the retreat center also had a downstairs with a cozy seating area, additional beds, and access to the downstairs deck.

There were only three of us at the retreat so we had plenty of space (the Riptide Retreat is set up for up to 10 attendees). Judy and Dana took the upstairs bedroom and I had the downstairs to myself – I had my own apartment! I would wake up each morning and look out on the water – it was pretty yummylicious (another fake English word like “bagalicious”, ha).

WE ENJOYED GORGEOUS VIEWS

One of the challenges of being at the Riptide Retreat (okay it was the only challenge) was not getting distracted by the gorgeous views. We keep being lured outside to sit on the upper deck and look at the water, instead of working on our drawstring bags.

I sat outside each morning with my tea and when I was not too distracted with the quiet peaceful views I worked on a blog post or two.

WE WENT SHOPPING!

The owners of the Riptide Retreat also own Annie’s Quilt Shoppe a very reasonably priced quilt shop in Shelton, Washington. We got a discount on some items because we were staying at their retreat center.

All I can say is we might have visited this shop more than once during the retreat!

During one of our visits to this quilt shop (oops I just gave our secret away) I discovered that there is actually a National Sew A Jelly Roll Day on Sept 18, 2021. So quilters get your jelly rolls ready to participate – ha!

WE HAD YUMMY FOOD

The three of us are pretty laid back when it comes to our food selections and when we eat, so we had whatever/foraging for breakfast each morning among what Judy and Dana brought (I didn’t have to bring any food since I flew to the retreat). For lunches and dinners we either ate out, ate leftovers, or Judy/Dana made a wonderful meal.

We discovered this wonderful sort of “hole in the wall” place in downtown Shelton which was actually an awesome (and super delicious) family run eatery – T’s Cafe. There I discovered the most scrumptious meatball sub on the planet:

We enjoyed dining “al fresco” on the upper deck of the retreat for several meals:

And yes, those are homemade frozen margaritas in our glasses (and I am happy to report all three of us are of legal drinking age, ha!).

WE WALKED ON THE BEACH

From the downstairs deck you can walk down another level to the beach along the water. I had a nice solo walk and with my friends on the beach.

WE DID A LOT OF RELAXING

I think some people consider a quilt retreat (or a drawstring bag retreat, ha) time to get all those projects done you could not get done at home. Well we consider a quilt retreat time to actually “retreat” from the busy world and do some relaxing.

We spent a lot of time on the upper deck reading, blogging, playing iPad games, walks around the neighborhood, catching up with each other, and watching boats go by on the canal.

Sometimes I forget just how beautiful the Pacific NW is (and I lived there for over 20 years between Washington and Oregon) until I visit it again.

Bags Bags Bags, Quilt Retreats

A Drawstring-bagalicious Retreat, Part I

Before I get into this post, I just want to clarify for anyone reading this in which English is not your primary language, that “bagalicious” is not a real word – ha!

“Drawstring-bagalicious” was the best way I can describe a small quilt retreat I attended at a beautiful location in Shelton Washington in August 2021 with my friends Judy and Dana where we ended up making drawstring bags for 3 days!

We stayed at The Riptide Retreat, a house/retreat center right on the waterfront:

I think for this post I will focus on our drawstring bag making obsession during our retreat and next post share the photos of the beautiful waterfront, the inside of the quilt retreat center, the awesome quilt shop we visited, and the yummy place we ate.

We each brought projects to work on at the retreat, and I brought some pre-cut and pre-fused fabric to make a couple drawstring bags.

Well you know how crafters are when we get together – before you knew it everyone wanted to make drawstring bags and put their planned projects aside.

Judy made several lovely bags (5 or 6 total) but the photo I took of them included some surprises/gifts for mutual friends, so I am not going to post the photo of her bags.

I will just share images of some of the bags Dana and I made.

Here are Dana’s first set of drawstring bags, including some fun photoshoots she did with her completed bags:

Dana started out making one extra large drawstring bag with the Ruby Star/Sarah Watts fabric – Purl (which I now own in several colorways the fabric is so yummy!) and then she became obsessed and made them in every size from on the pattern (we all got the pattern for the drawstring bags by Sotak Handmade)!

I plan to totally copy Dana’s interpretation of the pattern design and make the same drawstring bag. The photos do not do it justice – it was so freakin’ cute!

She went on and made more and along the way we worked out ways to make the drawstring bags faster and more efficiently. We basically had a Drawstring Bag Workshop! I can now make them in my sleep!

Here is an example of a trick to make sure the seams stay flat that Judy came up with and Dana used on one of her bags – press the seams open during early assembly:

Dana also got creative on her drawstring bag design and started added labels made from the fabric selvage:

Another idea I am totally stealing when I make more bags in the future.

Here are more of Dana’s completed bags and her fun photoshoots on the deck against the waterfront:

And here are some of the bags I made and some fun photoshoots I took with the waterfront in the background off the back deck:

If you haven’t figured this out from the photos, part of the fun of making the drawstring bags is not only selecting the external/outside bag fabric but also choosing a coordinating interior fabric. We had fun sharing fabrics and picking up more from the local quilt shop! We also had fun selecting the ribbon/cord for the drawstrings and went on shopping adventure one day just to buy more drawstring materials! Yes we were obsessed!

We even made the same bags when we’d seen another’s completed drawstring bag and want to make it also (any everyone was so generous with sharing their fabric and our dwindling supply of interfacing).

More to come on our retreat to including what we did when we weren’t sitting around making drawstring bags (and photographing them)!

Outside Adventures!, Quilt Retreats, tierneytravels

A Jaunt About Poulsbo, WA

This is a follow up to my previous post Mini Quilt Retreat, January 2020, on the the mini quilt retreat (just 4 quilters) I attended several weeks ago in Poulsbo, Washington.

As promised, here are some stories and photos from my adventures outside of the quilt retreat, in Poulsbo.

Ferry to Poulsbo

Wikipedia has a nice little write up about Poulsbo, Washington (Washington State in the Pacific Northwestern coast of the U.S. for my international blogging friends, not Washington D.C. which is on the Eastern coast of the the U.S.): Poulsbo, Washington.

As explained in the link above, Poulsbo is located in northern Kitsap County at at the north end of Liberty Bay, a sheltered arm of Puget Sound (an inlet of the Pacific Ocean) and one of the common ways to get there is by ferry.

Washington State has an extensive ferry system. I lived in Seattle, Washington for 8 years (1997 – 2005) and rode many ferries to the peninsulas and islands that are part of the Pacific Northwest.

It really is an exceptionally beautiful part of the U.S. with the Olympic Mountains in the background, except it rains all the time and can be very gray in the Winter (for example one winter a friend reported they went 60+ days without sunshine, this friend eventually moved to Denver, Colorado to get more sun in her life; I moved to Bend, Oregon in 2005 to get sun in my life).  

Living in Denver, Colorado, I am now “land locked” and I do miss the Pacific ocean. So it was very exciting to take a ferry ride to Poulsbo on my way to the retreat. Although it was chilly, I spent most of the ferry ride on the upstairs outer deck at the bow (or maybe it was the stern as the ferry just moves back and forth on its route) watching the water and the approaching land.

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Inside the ferry they had wonderful topographical maps of the area and the ferry routes:

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Port Gamble

After a day of sewing at the mini quilt retreat, it was time to go out and explore the area so we spent an afternoon in Port Gamble, Washington on the northwestern shore of the Kitsap Peninsula.

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We had lunch at a lovely restaurant – Scratch Kitchen, a farmhouse restaurant which appeared to formerly be historic building as it had a Puget Mill Co. vault inside.

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Quilted Strait

After a delicious lunch, we wandered around historic Port Gamble:

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And ended up at the quilt shop right by the water, Quilted Strait.

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We had a wonderful wander about the quilt shop with its friendly staff and inviting atmosphere. During my wander I was tempted by the line of fabric (whose name I have now forgotten) that one of my fellow retreaters, Karen, used in her wonderful piece I shared in the previous post.

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A mysterious but wonderful fabric line…actually I think it is Northcott who also makes my beloved Stonehenge line

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Karen’s piece she worked on during the retreat

But I did not buy any as I am getting ready in the next couple of months to move (an update on that in a future post) and I need to control my fabric purchases! Perhaps as a housewarming (or new studio warming) gift to myself I will contact Karen and asking her what that awesome fabric line was…


Postscript

We did have several delightful indulgences during our mini quilt retreat time, and they came from a stop at Deliberate Chocolate.

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The chocolate was so good it was a mystical experience to eat it!

As we wandered about shops in Port Gamble, I came across this sign that made me smile:

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Quilt Retreats, tierneytravels

Mini Quilt Retreat, January 2020

Well enough about me.

In my recent posts From the Basket – English Paper Piecing, and What’s on the…Design Carpet, I shared what I worked on during a a mini quilt retreat with a couple quilting friends in Poulsbo, Washington.

Well it’s time to share what the other quilters worked on at the retreat!

But first let me share a little about the venue.

Quilter’s Cottage

We stayed at Quilter’s Cottage in Poulsbo, Washington. It is a house turned into a quilt retreat venue. You provide your own food and supplies (but some basics are provided like an ironing area, cutting tables and work spaces). It is a three bedroom home and you can fit up to 6 quilters.

There are images on the website (linked above) but here are some of my photos of the venue:
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2020-01-09_11-41-34_935I happily wore my robe most of the retreat...except when we went outside and to visit quaint little historic downtown Poulsbo!

Getting to Quilting!

There were only 4 of us at the retreat, but the retreat center looked like there were 20 of us with our projects and supplies strewn everywhere!

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And here is what the other quilters worked on…

Judy and Dana

You might remember my quilting friends Judy (who got me into quilting) and Dana (another one of Judy’s quilting recruits!). Well they were each working on a Moda Fabrics C.O.L.O.R. Cuts Dessert Sampler, using different palettes

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Here is Judy’s in progress:

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And here is Dana’s

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Looking through the Dessert Sampler book and their fabrics, made me want to make this sampler also, but I do not need another backlogged project in queue – ha!

Karen

The fourth quilter at the retreat, Karen, is a newer quilting friend. I met her through Dana and Judy. She is very creative and likes to start with a pattern and then put her own spin on it.

During the retreat she worked on an amazing quilt, originally from a pattern, that she improvised the design on.

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Pretty cool, huh? It looks quite different (and more vibrant) than the original pattern (which I forgot to take a photo of, oops!)

Next post I will share a little about my travel to Poulsbo (ferry ride!) and the sweet afternoon we had wandering around old town/historic Poulsbo when we needed a break from stitching (which included a visit to a quilt shop of course)!


Postscript

There was some very interesting art hung at the quilt retreat, my favorite were the pet portraits.

My understanding is the mother of the woman who now owns the quilt retreat (it was formerly her parents home before they passed), painted the paintings about the retreat.

Here is a sampling of my favorites for your enjoyment:

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Adventures in Paper Piecing, Quilt Retreats

From the Basket – English Paper Piecing

This is a follow up to my previous post Inside the Basket. I realized I should try and catch my blog up to what I have been posting on @tierneycreates on Instagram!

One of the projects inside my basket of hand work is an ongoing English Paper Piecing (EPP) rosette quilt project.

My plan is to make this quilt from the cover of Quiltfolk Magazine, Issue 1:

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Image credit: Quiltfolk.com

As you can see from the image above, this quilt is comprised of 99 EPP hexie rosettes appliquéd onto 99 squares for a 9 x 11 quilt.

Last weekend I joined 3 quilting friends for a mini quilting retreat in Poulsbo, Washington.

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Image credit: vacation ideas.com

While at the retreat, I worked on my EEP project and completed stitching together 38 rosettes of the 99 I need to make:

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If you do the math, I have 61 more rosettes to make, and my sweet friend Dana, organized my remaining EPP hexies into groups of 6 for the outside hexies on the left side of my “box of hexies” and the solid color center options on the right side:

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“True friends will organize your EPP hexies for you at a quilt retreat” – Tierney

I have enough matching hexies to make about 30 more rosettes, so it is going to be time soon to create more EPP hexies.

The hexies I currently on hand have a lot of sentimental meaning/value, as they were all created by my late husband Terry (aka “Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH)“) who used to be my assistant on crafting projects. So I am also finishing this project in his honor.

My partner John and I are moving along in getting his house ready for sale and have been actively house hunting. So it might not be too long until my studio gets unpacked and I am no longer limited to only hand projects.

Over the next several posts I will share more projects and stories from the mini quilt retreat I attended in Poulsbo!


Postscript

I had to relocate my “Basket of Hand Work” that I discussed in my previous post.

Our real estate agent wanted us to move my comfy leather chair in the living room up to the master bedroom, so I also relocated my basket of hand work. Additionally I tried to tastefully arrange some craft related reading I want to do and several projects into a bookcase in the bedroom.

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Life in B&W, Quilt Retreats

October Quilt Retreat Part IV: In Black and White

Here is the final installment of the series of posts on the quilt retreat I attended in October.

If you are just joining us – here are the previous related posts:

This post is the fault of Claudia @Claudia McGill – she encouraged me to share more Black & White photography.

As I warned my readers in the post New York City in Black and White, the “Noir” setting on my iPhone camera is a dangerous thing in the hands of an imaginary photographer! 

But Claudia just had to comment on this post:

“You’ve got a good eye. Enjoyed these. More, please!”

And, all I needed was a tiny bit of encouragement and now you all are stuck with some more…

Quilt Retreat in B&W

During the quilt retreat I wandered around the retreat center and the surrounding rural areas and snapped endless photos in B&W. Here are my favorites.

Wandering Around Outside

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The Quilt Retreat Center

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And of course this collection of photos would not be complete without Abbey the Quilt Retreat Kitty in B&W!

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Quilt Retreats, Tula Time!

October Quilt Retreat Part III: Tula Time Continues

She was staring at me. Over her glasses. Like in judgment.

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Yes, tierneycreates Beastie was wondering why I have not done my posts on the October Quilt Retreat I attended. After all she did her posts – Guest Blogger: October Quilt Retreat Part I  and Guest Blogger: October Quilt Retreat Part II , a couple weeks ago!

She said my excuses are weak: a four day quilt retreat at the end of October; followed by a four day trip to Santa Fe, New Mexico; then followed by a four day work conference in Chicago (which I just returned from on Friday evening).

Then she threatened to pull out her laptop and work on the rest of the posts about the retreat herself! (She even took out her laptop and started setting up).

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I convinced her to put her laptop away and that I would get back to posting on the blog immediately. (If you are new to my blog you can read more about tierneycreates Beastie in the series of posts – Beastie Adventures)


October Quilt Retreat: Tula Time

During the October Quilt Retreat, my quilting friends Judy, Dana and I worked on our Tula Pink All Stars themed quilts that Judy and I started at our September Tula Pink Retreat (see posts Tula Pink “All Stars” Retreat (Part I), and Tula Pink “All Stars” Retreat (Part II)) and Dana started at our May 2018 retreat (see post The Votes Are In!).

Dana’s Tula Blocks

Judy and I accept that Dana is a bit of an overachiever, and by the October retreat she had all her blocks done (we agreed to each make thirty-six 12.5″ x 12.5″ blocks to create a nearly Queen-sized bed quilt).

She began laying them out and deciding the final setting. After testing out various setting options (and many opinions from the other quilters at the retreat – you know quilters are so opinionated when it comes to design ideas!) she decided on the Tula Pink All Stars stripes as a lattice/sashing with solid pinwheel setting blocks, from the same fabric line, between the lattice/sashing.

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Here are photos from her work on her quilt during the retreat and close ups of some of her star blocks:

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Judy’s Tula Blocks

Judy and I are working more slowly (for me that means plodding along) on our 36 blocks. Here are Judy’s blocks that she put up during the retreat:

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Tierney’s Tula

Well I’ve completed 24 blocks so far (only 12 more to go)! I brought my 14 completed blocks to the retreat; and completed 10 more blocks during the retreat – yay!

I started laying them out at the retreat and playing with the striped sashing concept using Dana’s already cut strips:

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Tentatively I plan to use solid squares in various colors for the setting between my striped lattice (I think pinwheels would be to busy for this already VERY BUSY quilt).

Now that I am back home, I’ve put the blocks up on the large design wall in my hallway (narrow hallways, difficult to take good photos):

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And I am sorting out what solid color, dots and feature fabric combinations I have not used yet, as I am trying for no combination repeats (which can be tricky for 36 blocks):

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My plan is to finish up the remaining 12 blocks and get the quilt pieced by the end of January (or earlier!).

I have one more post to go about the October Quilt Retreat. I was thinking of skipping it but then tierneycreates Beastie would start staring at me over her glasses again!


Postscript

Just wanted to share this fun photo of a GIANT ball of prepped fabric strips and batting for a Jelly Roll rug that Judy worked on during our quilt retreat:

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Here is what a completed rug looks like, Judy brought and example to the retreat:

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I think she is now addicted to making them.

(Oh no – I sure hope Chela @Chela’s Colchas y Mas doesn’t see this post as we know what she will be working on next – ha! I remember what happened after she saw my post on making jelly roll bowls, “Throwing Pottery” on the Sewing Machine” – she became the bowl making queen!)

Beastie Adventures, Guest Blogger, Quilt Retreats, Tula Time!

Guest Blogger: October Quilt Retreat Part II

This post is a continuation of the post Guest Blogger: October Quilt Retreat .

I have returned today as the Guest Blogger after I was interrupted by Halloween and then Tierney announcing the winners of the tierneycreates 5th anniversary giveaways in yesterday’s post.

Do I need to introduce myself again? This is tierneycreates Beastie. I am a monster, but the good kind of monster. You can learn all about me and catch up on my adventures in the series of posts Beastie Adventures.

Okay so now that the introduction is over, let’s return to how I was left to wander around the Quilt Retreat because Tierney would not let me help the other quilters cut their fabric, sigh.

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Not allowed to actually use the rotary cutter, only teased with it!


Wandering Around the Retreat (continued)

In the last post I shared the Penguin Party blocks that 3 of the quilters were working on. Here are some other works in progress and a completed jelly roll rug:

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There was also some major Tula Pink All Stars action that is a follow up to this post – Tula Pink “All Stars” Retreat (Part II), but Tierney want to milk stories from this retreat for as many blog posts as possible so that will be covered on another post (Beastie eye roll).


Quilt Retreat Food

There was all sort of interesting foods served at the retreat, a quilter could never go hungry! There was also a birthday celebration for some of the quilters and birthday cake:

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And what’s under this dome?

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Well it’s Pineapple Upside Down Cake! (No worries it was not served on the same evening as the birthday cake – ha!)

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Inside the Quilt Retreat Center Main House

The Sew N Go Retreat in Vancouver, Washington has a quilt retreat center where all the sewing happens; it also has the main house with the sleep accommodations, living and dining rooms and a classroom.  Here are some images from inside the main house which is decorated with…you guessed it – quilts!

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Tierney always brings the host, Nancy a handmade gift each time she attends the retreat and here are a couple of her gifts from previous years displayed – a miniature kimono and sets of coasters:

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Road Trip!

During the quilt retreat, we had to do a little road trip to a quilt shop! We went to the quilt shop Country Manor in Battleground WA.

I got to wander around the aisle of the quilt shop.

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I like yarn shops better as they can lead to more Beas

The best part though was the road trip to the quilt shop, I got to ride for a while in the front on one of the quilter’s shoulders!

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Road Trippin’!


Take a Hike!

You can’t just sit around and sew and eat. You have to get some exercise! Sew N Go is located in the country with lots of farms around and the quilters went for daily walks. Here are some photos from their walks:

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Abbey the Quilt Retreat Kitty

As with previous retreats, Tierney visited with Abbey the Quilt Retreat Kitty.

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Abbey was chewing on one of her “hot spots” on her tummy and did have to wear a “collar of comfort” for part of the quilt retreat:

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That did not slow her down from trying to get pets from Tierney (I could not pet her with my limited Beastie arm motion, plus she might have thought I was a toy!)


Inside the Classroom

The large garage of the Sew N Go Retreat main house was converted into a classroom a couple of years ago. It is an impressive garage conversion! Here are a couple project going on in the classroom.

Quilts of Honor

Nancy the owner of Sew N Go and her friends have a Quilts of Honor (like Quilts of Valor) where they make quilts for Veterans and then present them in a special ceremony. One of the quilters volunteering on this project makes incredible embroidered labels for each Veteran’s quilt that is customized with their name. Here is a section of one of those labels:

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Cool Carry All

Not sure what you would officially call this, but in the classroom were examples of an awesome carrier for quilting or other supplies that were recently made. Tierney bought the pattern to make one herself:

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Back Home

I was exhausted when we got back home, it was a long weekend for a Beastie! Tierney and I took the Central Oregon Breeze bus to Portland for the retreat and back home, and it is about a 4 hour bus ride (why does she live in the middle of nowhere?!?!).

But the best part of returning back home for me, was being reunited with my dog Mikelet who was so happy to see me!

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I can feel the love!


Postscript

There are more posts to come about the retreat, this time by Tierney, but she and I are going to take a little break from blogging after 31+ days straight (and you can get a break from reading these crazy musings!).

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Beastie Adventures, Guest Blogger, Quilt Retreats

Guest Blogger: October Quilt Retreat Part I

Wow we made it through 5 days of giveaways – seems like that would never end! Now finally I can tell you about my first quilt retreat.

Oh, hi there – this is tierneycreates Beastie, the guest blogger for this post. Tierney took me on my first quilting retreat last weekend and I have been patiently waiting for all those boring 5th Blog Anniversary Giveaway Posts to be done so I could tell you about my time at the retreat!

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Checking out one of the quilter’s featherweight machine

So if you remember from the post, Guest Blogger: tierneycreates 5th Anniversary Celebration Giveaway, I had to travel to the retreat in a baggie, or as Helen @crawcraftsbeasties.com calls it – my “Space Suit”:

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Me in my “Space Suit”

First a little background if you are new to this blog:

Yes, I am a Monster, but the good kind of Monster. You can read my story and see some of my adventures so far in the series of posts – Beastie Adventures. I was born in Dublin, Ireland and moved (well was shipped) to Central Oregon to join Tierney of tierneycreates in June 2018.

Since today is Halloween in the U.S., how appropriate for a “monster” to be a guest blogger, right?


A Beastie At A Quilt Retreat

This October Quilt Retreat is at the same place in Vancouver, Washington, as the annual May Retreat that Tierney attends. If you’d like to see her posts about previous retreats, check out her blog post category – Quilt Retreats.

As soon as I arrived at the quilt retreat, Tierney’s quilting friends encouraged me to get into some mischief – they handed me a rotary cutter:

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Is this really the best idea?

I was already ready to cut something, but Tierney ran over to see what was going on and told me to wait right there and not to proceed with helping one of the quilters cut their fabric:

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I can cut your fabric for you!

Then she convinced the nice quilter who gave me the rotary cutter not to let me cut anything, sigh. She did let me hang out with another rotary cutter for a while (she quilter took back her rotary cutter to use) and watch the other quilters work on cutting their fabric.

She said it was better for me to just observe for now (I think Tierney has some type of trust and control issues…)

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Only a wallflower cutter, never invited to the rotary cutter dance, sigh

I got bored and started wandering around to see what the other quilters had been working on (NOTE: The quilt retreat started on Wednesday but since Tierney had to work we did not arrive to the retreat until Thursday).


Wandering Around the Retreat

Here are some of the cool projects the quilters were working on.

Elizabeth Hartman’s Penguin Party

Several quilters were working on their own version of the Elizabeth Hartman pattern – Penguin Party. They were all using flannels to make their quilts so the quilts were not only going to be cute but also cozy!

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To be continued…

Oh – I just realized it is Halloween evening, and I have to go get ready to hand out candy to the tricker treaters! I hope I do not scare them, being a monster and everything (should I really scare the kids by meeting them at the door with my rotary cutter?!?!).

I will continue this post later this week as I have much more to share, and Tierney wants to do a post of her own about the retreat at some point (we are really going to milk it – maybe we’ll stretch it out to like 10 – 20 posts about the retreat..just teasing!).

Tomorrow’s post announces the winners of the 5 days of giveaways for the tierneycreates blog 5th anniversary!


Postscript

Thanks to everyone who has entered the drawings by commenting on the 5 posts:

If you have not entered – reminder you have until 11:59 tonight (10/31/18) Pacific Standard Time to enter per the instructions on each post.

Here is the post that started it all before the 5 days of giveaways were announced (and it was by me the awesome Guest Blogger!):

Guest Blogger: tierneycreates 5th Anniversary Celebration Giveaway

Quilt Retreats, Tula Time!, What's on the Design Wall

Tula Pink “All Stars” Retreat (Part II)

Are you ready for more Tula? Here is the continuation of yesterday’s post Tula Pink “All Stars” Retreat (Part I).

So where did we leave off? Ah, yes – a couple crazy quilting friends decided to create their own quilt retreat in a rented vacation townhome to focus on making Tula Pink All Star collection sampler quilts together.

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One of my quilting sisters fondling her Tula Pink All Stars collection

But before we get to the endless images of quilt blocks we made (warning: it might get mind-numbing for non-quilters reading this post), let me share some of the non-sewing adventures we had during the retreat.


Non-Sewing Adventures

We did not just lock ourselves in a rented townhome for four days of non-stop quilting, we did do non-sewing activities…though some of these activities did involve fabric.

I took Judy and Dana on a mini Central Oregon Quilt Shop Hop over two days. This was exceptionally fun because Dana had never been to Central Oregon before, much less our quilt shops. I took them to the following quilt shops:

At Sew Many Quilts we discovered a very cool antique sewing machine on display:

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At QuiltWorks we had a wonderful time visiting with the owner Marilyn Forestell who I’ve known for a long time. We also congratulated her on her shop being featured in the Spring – Summer 2018 issue of Quilt Sampler:

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If you’d like to watch a video interview with the owner and more about one of my favorite Central Oregon quilt shops, here is the link on allpeoplequilt.com – www.allpeoplequilt.com/magazines-more/quilt-sampler/quiltworks. This behind the scenes video has a nice walk through of the shop.

We had a blast at BJ’s Quilt Basket, the third quilt shop we visited. They have a delightful and very friendly staff. While at BJ’s, OH NO – we discovered a new Tula Pink fabric line was just released: Zuma.

Judy and Dana could not leave BJ’s without the fat quarter collection (I was good as I currently have more Tula than I can handle right now!):

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As if some of us did not already have enough Tula…

The next day we headed to Sisters, Oregon to go to the Stitchin’ Post. 

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I never tire of wandering around the Stitchin’ Post

While at the Stitchin’ Post, my quilting sister Dana and I did a “Hand-piecing Intervention“.

I overhead a woman tell her friend that she had recently retired and wanted to take up quilting but did not want to do machine quilting. Instead she was interested in hand quilting, but did not know how to get started on learning how to piece quilts by hand.

Her conversation was none of my business but I could not help myself, I had to be helpful. I introduced myself and told her all about English Paper Piecing (see my series of  posts – Adventures in Paper Piecing). I grabbed Dana who was nearby wandering about and had her join me in sharing the joy of English Paper Piecing (EPP) as an option to create a quilt by hand.

We even brought over the store sample of a EPP hexagon pieced pillow to show her an example of the cool stuff she could make:

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Luring innocent victims into EPP

After our intervention, the woman gleefully left the shop with a package of EPP hexie templates in hand. She plans to begin by practicing with fabric scraps (and hopefully she was going to follow our suggestion to check out YouTube videos on EPP).

Dana and I felt pretty darn proud of ourselves (either we helped someone on their road to a fun retirement hobby, or we got her to totally waste her money, ha!)

In addition to our miniature Central Oregon quilt shop hop, we also dined at some wonderful restaurant in Sunriver, Oregon.

After shop hopping and dining adventures, it was time to buckle down and piece our samplers!


Blocks, Blocks, Blocks

We pieced a lot of blocks during our four day retreat from our Tula Pink All Stars fat quarter packs!

I’ve never fussy cut (selecting a specific section/motif in printed fabric) for a quilt block in my life, but inspired by Dana, I fussy cut the feature fabric for all my blocks.

BLOCKS BY DANA

Dana, who already pieced 10+ blocks so far since our annual Quilting Sister May Quilt Retreat (see posts Please Vote On The Color! and The Votes Are In!). She focused on piecing star blocks in honor of the name of the name of the fabric collection – All Stars (the title of the collection is based on the prints in the line are updated reproductions of some of Tula Pink’s most popular retired fabrics). Here are some samples of her blocks:

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BLOCKS BY JUDY

My quilting sister Judy was very adventurous and did not follow any set type of block pattern. She had fun using an old quilt block sampler book and randomly selecting blocks to piece with her fabric. Below are some examples of her blocks:

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BLOCKS BY ME

Now I did not want to do a quilt with a white background. Instead I wanted to only use the fabrics in the Tula Pink All Star collection. I decided to create a sampler called “Tula in a Box” and use two different block patterns that feature boxes or boxes inside of boxes.

Here are the first 12 blocks I completed using a “Box inside a box” block pattern:

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Tentatively I am planning to set the blocks using the Tula Pink All Stars stripes fat quarters.

By the end of the retreat I completed 14 blocks including these two blocks in a different block pattern called Little Boxes:

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The upper right and left hand corners have the “Little Boxes” blocks

I will feature more on my “Tula in a Box” quilt blocks in a future post after I complete additional blocks.

Again, here is the “design sofa” I mentioned in the first post, with all our blocks:

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FUN WITH COMBINATIONS

A very fun part of making our blocks was deciding the color/fabric combinations:

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Here is another one of Judy’s cool blocks that came out of fun with putting together fabrics:

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We spent of a lot of time consulting with each other on combinations.

Okay, so dear readers, are you sick of looking at blocks and Tula Pink All Star collection fabric now? No worries, we are nearly at the end of this post series.


Special Guest

On the third day of the retreat we had a special guest stop by – my friend Marie Bostwick – New York Times bestselling author.

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Marie Bostwick next to a Pile-o-Tula

Marie’s book The Second Sister is an upcoming Hallmark Hall of Fame Christmas Movie:  Christmas Everlasting that airs on the Hallmark Channel on November 24th and stars Patti LaBelle.

Here is more information on Marie’s blog Fierce Beyond 50: The Best News Ever.

If you get the Hallmark Channel be sure to watch the movie based on the awesome book!

After the quilt retreat my friend Laurie (who owns the vacation rental) stated that Marie Bostwick was the first famous person to ever visit her vacation townhome rental. I teased that I should have had Marie autograph one of the walls – ha!


Postscript

As if we were not already having an immersive Tula Pink experience, one afternoon we watched on YouTube Episode 1 of the series Tula’s House:

This episode provided some insight into the brilliant and creative mind of Tula Pink and you get a tour inside her awesome studio and sections of her home.

 

Quilt Retreats, Tula Time!, What's on the Design Wall

Tula Pink “All Stars” Retreat (Part I)

If you are a maker, you’ve likely heard of a “Design Wall”, but have you ever heard of a “Design Sofa“?

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This is what happens when a couple quilters get together for a quilt retreat weekend at a rented vacation townhome that was not designed for quilt retreats: you improvise

But let me back up and explain what the title of this post means and how a Tula Pink All Stars Quilt Retreat happened.


It’s All Dana’s Fault

I’ve seen Tula Pink fabrics in the past and I’ve appreciated the designer’s creativity, use of color and quirky sense of humor. However, except for a couple fabric scraps given to me by other quilters, I’ve never had an interest in purchasing any of her fabric.

Until our May 2018 annual Quilting Sisters retreat and one of my quilting sisters, Dana, brought collections of Tula Pink All Stars fat quarters (coordinated collections of 18″ x 22″ cuts of fabric) to the retreat and began piecing a sampler quilt:

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I had a couple posts about the fabric and her blocks during the retreat, including one in which Dana and I asked my readers to vote on which color combination to use when we were stuck:

Please Vote On The Color!

The Votes Are In!

When I returned home from retreat I could not get out of my mind the utterly delicious Tula Pink All Star fat quarter collections of main prints, dots, stripes and solids.

The next thing I knew (and I think it was a fabric-induced-out-of-my-mind-experience) I was ordering 4 sets of fat quarters from the DawnNeedhamQuilts Etsy shop that Dana recommended:

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Honestly, I am not sure what happened, it was if I could not control myself. I’ve never bought 4 fat quarter sets of fabric at once, and I’ve never purchased Tula Pink fabric before!

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Still cannot believe I bought all this at once!

I was not alone, Dana had infected another quilt sister with the Tula Pink All Stars bug, Judy (my original “Quilt Sister” who got me into quilting!) and before she knew it, she had also purchased all 4 sets of fat quarters in the Tula Pink All Stars collection!


So What Do We Do With All This Tula?

Dana has never visited Central Oregon and Judy came up with the idea of a road trip to Central Oregon to visit me. A group of quilters….coming together for a weekend…

Hmm…sounds like an excuse for a quilt retreat!

I have a small house which would not comfortably accommodate a quilt retreat, so I came up with the idea of renting my friend Laurie’s vacation townhouse in Sunriver, Oregon.

Dana, Judy or I (do not remember who) came up with the idea that since now we all had these Tula Pink All Star fat quarter sets why don’t we all work on piecing Tula Pink All Star sampler quilts?

Armed with my Stack-o-Tula I headed to the retreat!

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Vacation Rental Townhome into Quilt Retreat

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) helped bring all the stuff over to the rental townhome to transform it to a quilt retreat including a folding table, iron board, etc.

With a little temporary furniture rearrangement, we had our quilt retreat center:

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We even turned part of the kitchen into an ergonomic cutting table area and ironing station:

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Luckily we still had some left over kitchen counter for preparing meals!

In the next post, I will show you details of what we made (more on the blocks on the “design sofa”), non-sewing adventures we had during the retreat, and the special guest that stopped by our retreat.

Quilt Retreats

Late Night Quilting and Other Delights

It is time to finish my series of posts about the annual May quilting retreat I attended with my Quilting Sisters in Vancouver, WA May 17 – 20 at Sew N Go Retreat Center. To read my previous posts about quilting retreats I’ve attended, see my post category – Retreats.

If you’d like to read my previous posts on my May 2018 retreat (it is hard to believe that was over a month ago now) here they are:

Late Night Quilting

Have you ever attended a quilting retreat? If you are not a quilter but another type of crafter, have you ever attended a crafting retreat?

Sure, I could take a couple days off work and stay at home and sew all day for free. But it would not be as fun as hanging out with a group of other quilters, having all meals prepared for you, having no responsibilities (except any pressure you give yourself to complete projects you bring), and the opportunity for Late Night Quilting!

Here is our Quilting Retreat Center during the day:

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And here it is at night when there is Late Night Quilting going on inside:

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I am not sure why I took the above photo at an odd angle, except it was late at night and perhaps I had been quilting too long and needed to go to bed.

Inside the Quilting Sweat Shop (aka The Quilt Retreat Room)

Whether during the day or late night at night, the sewing machines were humming and churning out projects:

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And on the design walls were quilts in progress such as this one by the Quilting Sister Judy:

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Sewing was not limited to making quilts, there were other projects such an adorable tote bag by my Quilting Sister Lisa:

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A Cozy Place to Sleep

After a long day of quilting, and perhaps a late night marathon of quilting, you need a cozy place to sleep. Here is the bedroom I stayed in which had quilts on every wall and several on the bed I slept in:

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Although the room had several beds in it, as we were a small group of 5, I had the room to myself.

Here is a detail of a lovely medallion quilt that was on the opposite wall from my bed:

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Getting Exercise

I knew it was a poor choice health wise to just sit around all day and sew, so I found time each day to walk around the rural farmland area of the quilt retreat center, sometimes with another Quilting Sister and sometimes alone. We had beautiful weather!

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And like last year’s May retreat, we visited with friendly horses we met on our walks:

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Good Thing I Went On Daily Walks…

As usual we had delicious meals at the Sew N Go Retreat. Each meal was a delightful surprise. Here are a couple images – a yummy main course of the most addicting chicken wings I’ve ever had; and a delicious piece of apple cake:

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And yes that is vanilla ice and caramel on top as there would not have been enough calories with just the cake!

And of Course There is Abbie

One of my favorite treats at the Sew N Go Retreat is spending time with Abbie the Quilt Retreat Kitty:

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Abbie is getting older and is not as active as she was when I first started attending the retreat many years ago. I was actually trying to read a magazine and Abbie ended up laying on top of the magazine so I could pay attention to her instead.

Here is a “vintage” photo of Abbie and I cuddling during the May 2016 Quilting Retreat:

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A Wonderful Reminder

The room I stayed in during the retreat had a wonderful needlepoint sampler that I woke up to each morning and served as a beautiful reminder of how I want to face each day.

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I am trying to keep these words in my heart now that I am back home.

Quilt Retreats, Studio

The Tale of Tango Stripe

Continuing my series of posts about the annual May quilting retreat I attended with my Quilting Sisters in Vancouver, WA May 17 – 20. To read my previous posts about quilting retreats I’ve attended, see my post category – Retreats.


In the post The Pillow Project I mentioned that for this May’s annual quilting retreat I pulled out some old unfinished objects/projects (UFOs); or as my blogging buddy Shirley @ handmadehabit calls them – “stranded” projects.

Well another “stranded” project that I brought to the quilt retreat was the Tango Stripe (pattern by Jean Wells of the StitchinPost) project.

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This quilt is made with Kaffe Fassett stripes fabric and coordinating solids. I’ve wanted to make this quilt for years after falling in love with the store sample when visiting the Stitchin’ Post.

I’ve nearly started it a couple times as evidenced by these posts:

Diving into a quilt (and other stuff) (January 2017) and Quilt Seating! (December 2016)

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A couple of months ago at the monthly art quilter group I attend, our group leader brought in her completed Tango Stripe quilt, set in olive green fabric instead of denim colored fabric, and it was fantastic. This reminded me how much I want to make my own.

So I brought my collection of Kaffe Fassett striped fabrics and solids to the retreat and finally started cutting the blocks with the templates from the pattern:

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I got this far in my progress on the quilt top during the quilting retreat:

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I know it does not seem like a lot but there is a lot of template work to create the effect of the quilt. You do not cut the whole quilt out at once per instructions but you design as you go.

I did not finish it as you can see but I made a lot more progress than I had in the 5+ years since buying the pattern!

For now it is put away as I need my large design wall to finish it up and currently my large design wall has a quilt in progress for a future WCQN exhibit that I cannot yet share. But once I finish that piece, Tango Stripe is going up on the design wall and is going to be finished!

It is a tale whose story needs to end (with a completed quilt!)


Postscript

During the retreat, one of my quilting sisters gave me a sweet Moda fabrics Frivols quilt kit for my birthday:

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This section of the insert inside the tin made me smile as I think it describes many of us well:

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Hope you have a great week of “making” if you are a “Maker“!


More stories from the May quilt retreat are coming. 

Fabric Scraps Obsession, Quilt Retreats, Studio

Pillow Power!

I’ve completed the Pillow Project – 5 pillows are made: 4 for my living room and one for my studio. Several of the pillows I began at the recent quilting retreat I attended (see post The Pillow Project).

If you are just joining us, this post is a follow up to these five posts (as well as various other older posts as I procrastinated through some of my projects):

Yikes Tierney, it sure takes you a lot of posts to stop talking about a project? Yes, true…and? (smile).

So here are the completed pillows.

Studio/Office Pillow

Made from recycled 2.5 inch x 2.5 inch fabric scrap squares that were turned into half-square triangles (it took 196 half-square triangles to complete!), this pillow measures approximately 22 inches x 22 inches:

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Living Room Pillows

These pillows measure appropriately 23 inches x 23 inches and were made from batik fabric scraps pieced into improvisational (“log jamming”) log cabin style blocks:

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Photo shoot on the porch swing

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One of my favorite of the four pillows

Here is what the back of the pillows looks like – made with recycled quilting fabric trimmed from a quilt after long-arm quilting:

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We have two sofas in the living room that face each other – I usually hang out on one and Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) hangs out on the other.

My sofa with two of the cushions:

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TTQH’s sofa with the other two cushions:

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Yes, we have a crazy amount of color in our house (our house is not for the bold color faint-hearted!)

To close this post, here is a random gratuitous photo of a lovely purple iris from my walk yesterday:

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I still have more stories to share from he annual May quilting retreat I attended with my Quilting Sisters in Vancouver, WA May 17 – 20, 2018. I just wanted to share the follow up on the whole pillow making saga 🙂

Quilt Retreats, Quilt Shop Tours

The Road to Retreat (Via Cannon Beach)

Continuing my series of posts about the annual May quilting retreat I attended with my Quilting Sisters in Vancouver, WA May 17 – 20. To read my previous posts about quilting retreats I’ve attended, see my post category – Retreats.

A Different Way to Quilt Retreat

Each year when posting about the annual May quilting retreat I attend, I include a “road to retreat” post on my journey to the retreat at Sew N Go in Vancouver, WA.

Examples of such posts include The Road to the Retreat  on my solo car road trip and The Road to Retreat (Via Bus!) about my first time taking the Central Oregon Breeze bus to the retreat.

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A couple weeks before the retreat I was trying to decide whether to drive to the May quilt retreat or to take the bus again. Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) offered to drive me this time to the retreat with Mike the Miniature Schnauzer joining us for the road trip.

Instead of having him drive 4 hours to the retreat and then back, we came up with the idea of driving to Cannon Beach, Oregon the day before the retreat. We would spend a day in Cannon Beach, stay overnight and the TTQH would drive me to the retreat and head back home.

I Love Cannon Beach

We’ve been visiting Cannon Beach for many years – I think we visited the first time in the early 2000s. In my post A Case for Buying Tings You Have No Plans For At The Time, I share my love for Cannon Beach and a special Cannon Beach themed wallhanging I made for my friend at work Nancy.

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Wandering Around Cannon Beach

Let’s begin with images of the beach, the sea, and the iconic Haystack rock at Cannon Beach. We enjoyed talking the coastline with Mike and here are images from Day which was fairly sunny.

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The next day, before heading to retreat, it was overcast but the beach was still wonderful:

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I love Central Oregon but it is far away from the sea. Every so often it is nice to be at the sea, smell the sea, and listen to the sea.

Cannon Beach has a wonderful quilt shop, Center Diamond Fabrics. If you check out my post A Case for Buying Tings You Have No Plans For At The Time, you will see a link to a YouTube video by the Quilt Roadies with a tour of Center Diamond Fabrics.

We’ve had a doggy backpacks for years that we carry our miniature schnauzers around in when traveling (most shops unless they are restaurants will allow a dog in a backpack in the shop) so we do not have to leave them in the car when sightseeing.

TTQH had Mike in his backpack as we wandered around Center Diamond Fabrics and Mike appears to be advising TTQH on fabric selections:

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Mike: “TTQH look at the fabrics over there!”

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Mike: “I am not too sure about those fabrics”

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Mike: “Hold on, slow down, I want to check this rack”

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Mike: “Okay let’s get all of these…”

After the quilt shop, it was off to the yarn shop at Cannon Beach, Coastal Yarns, where Mike also advised from his backpack:

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I was naughty at this shop and bought a skein of this ridiculously expensive variegated silk yarn that I fell hopelessly in love with it:

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We stayed at the inviting and dog-friendly McBee Cottages where they had a welcome basket for Mike and a wonderful collection of handmade bird houses.

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