When I was asked by Lisa Naylor if I would like to come and teach at her Modern Quilt Club Retreat for three days at a lovely hotel in Leeds, I jumped at the chance. Great facilities, amazing food, drink, swaps, sewing and of course the chance to hang out with quilters for three days and teach….it was a no brainer!
So here’s a little run down of the weekend to give you an idea of what it was all about.
Friday 12pm – Arrival
Goodies and surprises were in store for everyone from the moment arrived with Modern Quilt Club Retreat pouches (made by me) handed out at registration. There’s nothing like making people feel welcome and relaxed than by giving them free fabric and thread and these goodie bags were a real treat.
Sewing was soon in full swing and there was much excited chatter over the hum of sewing machines as quilters were reunited and some met for the first time, having formed friendships through social media. I was thrilled to finally meet Amy Ball (@coffeeringsstudio), Paula Steel (@paulasteel.quilts) and Jen Walshaw (@muminthemadhouse) who I have long been chatting with on Instagram. It was also so lovely to reconnect with quilters, some of whom I’d met at previous events and shows.
I was also thrilled to meet Anne (@madewithmadness) who came along for the day to help enure everything ran smoothly, and hang out with us all. She’s so bubbly and fun, and it was great that she was able to be there on the Friday.
Now it was my turn to take the stage, and I led what proved to be a very laidback and relaxed walking foot quilting workshop. I was so impressed with how everyone embraced different walking foot quilting designs, often incorporating them in their own quilted projects, as well as just practising on samples. It was great to have the luxury of time and guide everyone who wanted to try the different designs at their own pace.
After all that sewing and concentrating it was time for a game of bingo. Not just regular bingo but quilting bingo, and even better, there were sewing related prizes involved! There were lots of prizes to go round and luck was on my side as I won some Aurifil thread 🙂
One of the highlights of the retreat was the swaps. Friday night was pincushion swap night, and my goodness they didn’t disappoint, these really were the Rolls Royce of pincushions!
The food, especially dinner was another highlight of stay, and we certainly weren’t short of it! From pizzas and pasta and salads, to Nutella filled gnocchi, cheesecake and gin jelly, there was something for everyone and it was truly delicious.
8pm – Midnight…and beyond
What do quilters want to do in the evening when they’ve been quilting all day…carry on quilting of course! The sewing sessions continued late into the night every night, much to the bemusement of the hotel staff…
Saturday saw the arrival of Katy Jones (@Imagingermonkey) and she demoed the Gemini Die-Cutting machine. Lots of us had a go at die-cutting fabric and some quilters even made large quilted pillows using the pattern that Katy kindly provided for us.
More sewing ensued, fulled by coffee, afternoon scones, jam and cream and the knowledge that a three-course meal was on its way again shortly too. (I told you we didn’t go hungry!)
Saturday night was reserved for the pouch swap, and once again there were some incredible makes. I loved the way that there was no pressure to join any swaps at all, but if you did then you could take one in return. It was such a great way of organising things. We were all literally in awe of the amazing pouches, there really was so much talent in the room.
The lovely Anna from Eternal Maker was available all weekend with a fabulous pop-up shop and irresistible selection of offerings to tempt us all. It was the perfect opportunity to indulge in some beautiful fabrics and stock up on those essential threads and notions.
And so the time came for people to start saying goodbye. But not before some photos of our beautiful quilts, WIPs and small projects…just take a look at how productive we were!
A special mention has to go to Lisa, who organised such a wonderful retreat. It was meticulously organised, everyone had a fantastic time, there were prizes galore and she made sure everyone was happy and having fun. Organising a quilting event is no mean feat, and there’s so much work behind the scenes, but it really was everything you could ask for from a retreat and more. We are so lucky to have this as a regular event. Here’s to the next one – on 18thOctober 2019 to be precise!
To find out more about the Modern Quilt Club and how to join the next retreat, click HERE.