Once a year the Bloggers from this very website gather in a fabulously large room and sew.   There may be the odd bottle of Gin creeping in, but essentially we sew, from when we arrive at around noon on Friday until the complex throw us out on Sunday afternoon.   In some cases, it has been known for almost 20-hour sewing sessions with only a break to take on food for energy!     There’s cakes and chocolates in abundance as we share between ourselves.

This year the Cotton Craft Company sent each one of us a pack of beautiful purple and gold FQ to play with, but we mostly tucked those away for later makes.  Ami gave each of us a stitch ripper and Jane handmade the 26 of us  a lovely lavender pendule … mine sits in my sewing room keeping the fabric beautifully scented now.  British Patchwork and Quilting Magazine and the newest University College North Lincs each gave everyone a tote bag to carry them home in.


It was a sewing marathon!     There were lots of different conversations going on .. and a great deal of help and advice too.  Linda was sewing strings and strings of tiny hst and squares.   

Gulliver came too .. he gets everywhere!  It was great to meet Judith in person as she was unable to come along last time.   And there is no truth in the rumor that the feet under his gin table are mine either.  There were old friends remade and new ones to enjoy.

Just as much fun is the pop up shop Jonathan brings along each year … how to tempt a quilter with so much beautiful fabric, threads and notions eh!

The food was fabulous  .. A cooked breakfast, buffet lunch and a three-course evening meal .. and still the pace of sewing was relentless!   What more could a quilter want – good friends, good food and sewing!

Personally it’s the one time of the year I have to sit down without interruption from family and friends.  I leave my phone in my bag, set up the workstation and off I go.   I was working at a pace ….

This top will be quilted as a present for my neighbour who generously shares the odd bottle of red wine with me and my husband during summer barbecues.  Its a mix of fabrics from Makower and Moda I hastily dragged from my Stash before setting off on the Friday morning which I am rather happy about now.

This top was a quick stack and slash pattern as I need to practice my quilting .. its a great way of achieving a top rapidly.  It will likely go to a charity sometime next year, but I like the way the mustard makes the yellows in the Makower fabrics stand out.   They were  leftovers from various layers cakes and until I saw the pictures I hadn’t realised how well they went together  – even the rogue darker one  .. a good quilter never throws anything away do they.

The third top I made was using a pack of Kaffe Fasset fabrics I had bought at the Festival of Quilts.  It had come with a pattern but I didn’t really care for the simplicity of the pattern.     Lyn Butler demonstrated her Disappearing 16 Patch technique so I gave that a go, but since I only had enough of the blue for three blocks I substituted some other KFC fabrics I had brought along.   OK, so I slipped up with one of the cuts and ruined the fourth blue block, but set on point the colours work – a design development I like.

 Eventually this one might end up in my Caravan as the colour scheme will work well .. and the Moda Grunge I happened to have with me worked perfectly in this combination..  Not sure what I will be doing for the backing just yet.   I hardly ever plan things – they just happen!  I will be quilting these three tops on my new Simply Sixteen longarm and frame .. but that’s another blog all on its own.

I had a bit of time left, and a sample pack of Makower UK Cool Cats fabric range .. so what else could I do but a new mat for my lovely cat, Tilly.  Just enough to use the Disappearing 16 Patch again to and trim it off with mustard and green.   I pieced a back and stitched in the ditch.  She loves it!  I enjoy working with Makower UK Fabrics .. they wash well too.

The retreat was over all too quickly and we were packing things back into cars for the drive home.  Somehow I think we are all looking forward to next year – if you want to join in then let me know …. but you have to join the merry band of Bloggers for the website first.  After all, it’s the Bloggerati Retreat!