Monday, October 15, 2018

QBIR III: Quilter Bloggers' Retreat 2018

QBIR 2018: Quilter Bloggers' Retreat

Left to right: Meta, Irene, Sarah, Tish, Beth

This past week I hosted the third annual Quilter Bloggers' (International) Retreat here in my studio. I hesitate to find the right words now. I don't want to tarnish the memory by defining it. It was like being wrapped up in my most favorite quilt! May I only say I felt warm, accepted, and inspired by this dynamic group of talented women. We rolled together in sync, and that's a rare thing. Each of us brought a unique skill set to the gathering, and shared openly. It was perfect!

How It Works

My own prep work starts months in advance with planning. What dates work with those interested in attending? Do the local hotels have vacancies? Restaurants, special activities, etc. In many ways it's nice as it turns me into a local tourist each July-September.

For those of you who don't know, I work in a space over a large garage full of vehicles and equipment. We move a few things out before each retreat to open space for seating, and set up a make-shift kitchen down below. The lighted room behind the table is both a full bathroom and dye studio. The print studio is to the left of the bathroom, and the sewing studio in the loft above. It's not a glitzy venue, but very functional with room to spread out.

The stairway to heaven perhaps.

The studio ready for the retreat.

Everyone arrived on Wednesday, and Irene joined us for activities on Thursday. I don't think any of us took many pictures as usual. We were too busy! There was never a quiet moment, and a great deal of horsing around by a few.

Not pointing any fingers.

We infused the local economy of fabric stores, and I'm curious what our total yardage buy was for the 4 days. Never neglectful of the antique stores, we left with several serious treasures. Someone in the group even scored an amazing pre-1900 sewing machine in working condition at a killer price! I hope she shows it to you.

The weather turned cooler on Friday as we hit Charm Days, and visited Amish Country in Tuscarawas and Holmes Counties here in Ohio. Those are wool socks that kept Sarah's busy feet warm through golf cart shuttles, lunch and pie at Boyd & Wurthman in Berlin, fabric stores, and numerous sightings of Ground Beef. (Yes, my mind is changed forever when I see cows lying on the ground.)

Back Home at the Studio

Meta and I experimented with Deconstructed Screen Printing downstairs while the sewing machines hummed upstairs.

I had a chance to play with Color Magnet, a liquid that can be stenciled on fabric before dyeing. 

I used up some leftover dye from above to turn this onesie into a customized Cute-Tee!

Saturday blew in with rain and a 40 degree temperature drop! We braved it for a just a bit for some small town celebrations. Apple Butter Days in Gnadenhutten, and a little sesquicentennial in Port Washington. We darn near froze over our lunch before saying our good-byes!

Check out these blogs for more pictures, and stories about this small scale, annual retreat in Ohio. Who knows? You may be inclined to host one yourself. Also, if you are a quilter blogger, and interested in joining us in the future send me an email at

Come on, Doxie girls.
Let's go sew.

Linking up with~


piecefulwendy said...

How great is it that you can open up your space and share it with friends! It looks like you all had a wonderful time, despite the cool temps. I'm still laughing at "ground beef". Hahaha. What a great read for a Monday morning!

Shelina (formerly known as Shasta) said...

Looks like a fun retreat. How wonderful you have the space and the generosity to host an event like this!

Home Sewn By Us said...

Hi Julie! What a fun setup to have friends over for a retreat. It looks like a fun time was had by all. ~smile~ Roseanne

Sharon - IN said...

What a fun weekend you had with friends, & what a fantastic studio set up! My weekend was spent with my 3 yr old grand daughter while her parents displayed their Lego Zoo at Brick World. We all had a great weekend!

audrey said...

It looks like you did it again! Lots of smiles and fun times.:)

KaHolly said...

It looks as though everyone had a marvelous time! Your studio is to die for.

Anja @ Anja Quilts said...

It sounds like you all had a wonderful time.

Carol- Beads and Birds said...

You have a really nice set up for a retreat. My grandson is out in Oregon around a town called Medford. So far he has only been there in the summer. I'm wondering how he'll like the winter, since they had winter coats on yesterday when they went to the coast.
xx, Carol

Kate @ Smiles From Kate said...

What a wonderful space! You all look and sound like you had a whale of a time. All that fun and shopping too, wonderful.

Angie in SoCal said...

Looked like fun - again.

Tu-Na Quilts said...

Looks like I missed a really great and fun retreat. Those fabric and quilt shops in your area are so special and I'm sure they missed me, too. It was hard to stay home and WORK with apples while you all were having lots of sewing and touring fun. All our trees are harvested and about half the apples are taken care of (sold, given away, cidered, baked, and eaten). We still have 2 more weekends of cider making left. And probably a dehydrator loaded every day. I caught 2 grandsons (ages 4 and 8) snacking on bags of them (they finished off 2 quart bags before I caught them) over the weekend. They were eating them faster than I could get them dried.

Sandy Panagos said...

That looks like so much fun! Worth the effort. Quilty friends are the best. (ground beef - lol)