At the end of February I had the glorious opportunity to attend a weekend quilting retreat with my quilt guild (Dallas Modern Quilt Guild). Most of the time retreats are out of my reach financially, but this one was going to be an in town retreat at a newly opened retreat space, Best Little Retreat Center in Texas. I had been so looking forward to this retreat because I pretty much have done no sewing or quilting since the in town retreats the Dallas Quilt Guild put on ended. And sadly, I haven’t even posted about the last couple I went to, but at the first one I finished my Tula’s Squirrels quilt top. But, I think the last retreat we had was like in June of 2016, so yeah, it’s been THAT LONG since I sewed. So, you understand when I tell you how excited I was to be able to sew all weekend long!
I started out the weekend by working on my Pixel Heart mini that I started with my Tula Pink Elizabeth fabric that a friend gifted me.
I had been inspired by Diana, itiskismet_stitches, to start this mini. She had been encouraging me to sew a little bit, even if I could only do ten or fifteen minutes at a time, it would add up. So in November of 2017, I started sewing my squares together. And then I managed to get a few rows sewn. But, in true to me fashion I ended up sewing a row upside down and then it sat there from November until the end of February with no movement.
So the first thing I did when I got my table set up was rip out that row and resew it the right way round. I managed to get the whole thing sewn up relatively quickly.
I was a bit undecided on how to quilt it but I did a bit of searching around on IG for some inspo and also consulted the expert (Diana). In the end, we decided that cross-hatching on the diagonal was the way to go. And I’m pretty thrilled with it. I also got the opportunity to try a hera marker for the first time. And when I used it my lines were so much straighter and more even! I got the binding sewn on and now it just needs to be hand sewn to the back. Not a bad start to a sewing weekend!
Next project on my list was to get started on my Nightshade quilt. I had started cutting this out at one of the other in town retreats, so I was able to keep going and get all the smaller pieces cut, including my background fabric which is the black & white moons and stars.
Then I started on the hard part. Cutting out the cameos from the Coven fabric. It is no joke cutting into precious fabric that you have no way of replacing if you screw up!
But I managed to get it done. It is a pain the ass fussy cutting those though (as I learned with my Parisville quilt).
And one of the best things about the retreat center is that you also get your own design wall! This is how mine was shaping up on day 1.
It’s always fun seeing what everyone else is working on too. My friend Karen was busy making these fabric baskets for friends. This is the one she made for me. Isn’t it perfect?!
A little peek around the room…
And let’s just take a closer look at that Tula quilt in progress.
I so enjoyed being able to watch this one come together. It is so so pretty and vibrant in person!
On day 2, Sunday, I continued on with my Nightshade quilt. Now that I had all those lovely ladies cut out I could start making my blocks. I added the corners to each of the blocks to start making “snowballs”.
And you may notice a slight issue with the block second from the bottom on the right side. Yeah, I don’t have any of the blue storm cloud fabric. Like none, except for that small scrap my friend Lee was willing to spare. Not sure what I’m going to do, but I’m guessing I’m going to beg the Tula Troops to take pity on me and trade some storm clouds for cameos. But, I soldiered on with my other blocks. I added the borders around each block.
And then I started adding the background fabric on the corners of each. Yeah, that one block is looking pretty darn sad now. But OMG I am so freaking in love with this already. It’s going to be SO GOOD when it’s done. I can’t wait.
And here’s what the whole thing will look like more or less…
So, my next step will be to finish adding the background corners to the rest of the blocks and then start on the sashing strips and cornerstones. Can’t wait!
So, all in all it was an awesome weekend. I got to visit with friends, I got to sew and reinvigorate my creativity, I got to see inspiration from others, and I even got to witness a finished quilt top. How amazing is that?!
I am grateful for finally finally getting to sew again!