Saturday, January 4, 2014

1st Annual Family Sewing Retreat

I seem to be reverting back to my recent past...and posting really late about happenings in 2013. After this post I promise to move forward into 2014.

I happily regress back to late October, 2013 where we, meaning my 3 sisters and Mother, gathered for our 1st Annual Family Sewing Retreat. This was no small accomplishment since I'm in Georgia, our Mother and one sister is in Louisiana, a sister in Arkansas and one in central Texas. It took quite a bit of planning, emailing, and texting to get our dates set...but we did it and set the date for our Sewing Retreat the last two weeks in October.

Our Mother is conveniently located in Louisiana which was an easy drive from Georgia and a nice stopping point on my way to Texas. After a day's rest in Louisiana my mother, her sewing supplies, me and my sewing supplies drove the 12 hours to my sister's home in central Texas. The first week was spent in Texas and the second week we all drove, in a three car convoy, to Arkansas.  My Arkansas sister who has a blog wrote a fantastic account of our sewing adventure. You can read about our fun-filled family retreat and see pictures of Part 1 - Texas and Part 2 - Arkansas on her blog, Sew Much and More. Meet the family and see how we almost bought a live goat, visited quilt shops and what all we bought and made during our two weeks together.

Here are some of the items I made:

Two pillow cases and a "tater baker" sack.
(The goat in the background was pregnant and delivered, I think twins, two weeks after we left)

A Christmas table topper which I've yet to quilt. It's a Schnibbles pattern by Miss Rosie's Quilt Company called Sunday Best. It was made using 64 Charms and 3/4 yard background fabric. I love the pieced border.

And two little purses. I won these purse kits years ago from A Thread of Red, the blog for my LQS. It's from Lazy Girl Designs and called Runaround Bag.

My sister's horses and donkey enjoyed our photo ops and were always alert to what we might be carrying in our hands and hoping it was a snack for them.
We all had a great time laughing, sewing and just being together.
Now I move forward to December 2013. Here are the Christmas gifts I made for family members. Couldn't post at the time of completion for fear of ruining the surprise.
I machine embroidered dishtowels and potholders for my SILs and MIL. These are 3 of the 6 designs I stitched out.  They're from the Anita Goodesign collection "Baltimore Quilt" and stitched out really well as those designs generally do.
Here are some of the potholders...well these are actually mine. My mistakes in the learning process of adding a backing without removing the project from the hoop in order to keep the design centered. I figured it out and got some potholders for myself too.

The stippling stitched by the embroidery machine shows on the front and back. The center design only shows on the front.
And I made these pillows for my grand nieces. I included a zipper in the bottom pocket/pillow seam for easy removal of the pillow form so the covering can be washed. 


The sleeping Cat is from Designs by JuJu.
And lastly for my Mother, sisters and SIL I made these pillows. My father passed away in 2012 and these pillows were made from some of his cotton shirts. I hugged each pillow as I finished them. The pinwheel design went to each sister and my Mother received the other design.
....and the pillow back made from 108" quilt backing fabric.
The below frames I stitched out for 2 of my sisters who are converting rooms in their homes into their sewing studios. Yay for them!  You know how we quilters want our own space.

The Sunbonnet Sue design was downloaded from Embroidery Library. I'm done with 2013 and can happily move forward into 2014.  I wonder what it holds?
Thanks for visiting me and I love to read all your comments. Have a great weekend!
Happy Living! Happy Quilting!



  1. Great summary of our retreat! I hope we can do it again this year! I love my pillow & Sunbonnet Sue sign!

  2. Everything looks so beautiful. I love the onlookers, too!

  3. Hi Deanna. You stopped by my blog and left some nice comments so I thought I'd check out your blog too. I enjoyed reading about your quilt retreat with your family and looking at your finishes. What a fun thing to do and your projects turned out so well and you got so much done! Your timing in journaling is just fine since the end of the year is such a busy time. The gifts and especially your machine embroidery are fabulous! I'm going to check out your sister's report also!

  4. Hi DeAnna, Thanks for stopping off at my blog. I thought I'd return the favor and I just had to tell you (just in case in you didn't know) you are very blessed to have sisters and Mother to quilt with. I'm the lone quilter in my family though I have taught my grandson who enjoys it, and two of my nieces just received sewing machines for Christmas. My interest or no talent, not sure which. Bless your lovely family!

  5. Sew Nice projects and gifts! I really love my pillow. I like that you hugged each of them. And the "Sue sign" will bring "sun shine" to my sewing area. It will also give me added motivation to hurry up and finish making a sewing area. I love the sewing supplies you included with my Christmas gift. A sewer knows what a sewer needs!!! The retreat was sew fun and I hope we can do it again this year. The horses, Thursday and April, and Douglas our donkey, as well as the goats, Sweetheart in particular loved all the attention. Hope you have a blessed year.