Thursday, January 19, 2017

Retreat Repeat

Last week, I told you about my three-day retreat with friends. I packed what I figured would be just enough projects to work on during our dedicated sewing time.

Well, it’s time to fess up and see how I did.

Class Models. First, the fabrics for my step-by-step models for the upcoming quilt cruise needed to be assembled in to step-by-step models for Scrappy Trails.

I keep my steps in a handy fabric book I created for my teaching events. Each page has a pocket for spare parts and a miniature batting 'design wall' so all the class participants can see the steps unfold into blocks.

Class Sample Project: COMPLETE!

Spare Parts. In the process of completing the class models, I brought along the original models from the very first time I taught this project. Well, there were tons of spare parts that weren’t doing anyone any good in there. I suppose you could call them orphan blocks, but the fabrics all went together. I decided to create two small projects from all the spare parts. Without any advance planning, I was only able to assemble the quilt centers, so I’ll have to go stash-diving to find some coordinates to finish these guys up before they are doomed to the shelf of UFOs (UnFinished Objects)!

Class Sample Spare Parts Projects: WORKS IN PROGRESS

Place mats. While packing for the retreat, I ‘found’ this bag of partially completed scrappy place mats. Another workshop demonstration project long forgotten and collecting dust on the shelf in my work room.

I’m happy to say that of the eight place mats in various stages of completion in the messy bag, five place mats were assembled and sewn with backing and batting envelope style. And three still need batting and backing materials from a future stash-diving excursion for completion.

Sometime early in the weekend I discovered that I had forgotten to bring my walking foot. Otherwise the five nearly-complete place mats would be done. This is not the first time my walking foot remained at home when the rest of my sewing supplies (and me) were on the road. I really do need to buy another walking foot and put it with my travel BERNINA machine!


Mystery Leftovers. Last but not least, this little box of leftovers that fit into a sandwich sized storage box was the target. Other than fiddling with an idea or two the morning before I packed up the car for the retreat, I really didn’t know much about where these scraps were headed.

The stack of white squares (who knows how many there were) was a cutting error from some unknown, long forgotten project. And the strips were leftovers from a project made with charm packs - the leftovers were about 1-1/2” wide and either 3-1/2” or 5” long. All Kaffe Fassett prints from Free Spirit Fabrics.

Lots of trimming, cutting, sewing, more trimming, and more sewing, and all thirty six 4” blocks were assembled into a nice-sized table runner. I’m not giving you much more than a sneaky peek because this little project could very well be one that I share with you in depth at a later time. (Frustrating, I know, sorry, but it’ll be worth the wait, I promise! All I can say is that it's VERY fun, and VERY pretty!) Only a short stack of the white squares and strips remain.

I left the retreat with the table runner center assembled. Then at home on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, I added borders, a backing, quilting, and a binding. For all intents and purposes this project is complete.

Leftover Scrap Stack: COMPLETE

To sum things up. As far as the projects were concerned, I feel pretty good bringing each item that I brought with me to its next step. Over the next few weeks, as time allows, I hope to finish them up. But we’ll see. You know how it can be in a busy sewing room, right?

As far as the rest of the retreat. . . great food, great friends, and lots of fun. A total good time.

Thanks for joining in my journey. On to the next adventure!

Happy Stitching!

Joan Ford

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