Quilter's Retreat

Inside, looking out to the Northumberland Strait.

The 14th Mayflower Quilter's Guild Bi-annual Quilter's Retreat at Pictou Lodge was another big success. Quilters keep coming back, 2 have come to all 14, I have been to 13. Many have been to 10 or more. This year we had 58 quilters, of those only 13 were there for the forst time. We had rain and wind for 2 days, sun for 2 days, a little bit of everything. Just right for a fire in the beachstone fireplace.

It was great to have Cheryl Arkison and Penny Berens with us as teachers and 24 quilters were "hermits" in the independent study. Pictou Lodge is such an ideal place to have our Retreat, peaceful and calm and we are well cared for.

Where the "hermits" worked independently.

Where I worked on my hand pieced "Jazz Hands". One day it will be finished! The 15th Quilter's Retreat will be late September 2015. Plans are underway!

Getting Settled

Slowly making progress and finding room for my fabric and books.

Well, it has been a hectic few weeks. I had forgotten, after 17 years just how exhausting moving can be plus we are 17 years older! However we did it and are now happily enjoying unpacking, sorting (again), throwing out (and recycling) and putting away. Plans have been made with an electrician (never enough plugs to support our electronic world in a 145 year old house!), a plumber (we need a set tub in the basement for the winery - we do have our priorities!) carpenter (to fix a bit of sill rot, install a floor in the attic, new back door etc) and the oil tank needs replacing (we have been through one oil spill, never want to do that again!). They are drilling, draining and installing a fibreglass tank today. We are getting there, Insulation next and hopefully a lovely little propane fireplace.

Finding room for my treasures - Margi Hennen's dolls are back in residence.

My sewing room is a work in progress. Peter has made and installed my new sewing table and a new cutting table. I have yet to christen them, they are still covered in stuff to be put away. The room is bigger then my old one, I will miss the ocean view but I have always wanted a designated cittung table, at the right height and free of clutter (we'll see how long that lasts!).

Ben thinks he is helping!

My books were spread out before, over several rooms and bookcases. Now I am able to have all my "how to" books and my quilt history books in one place. My children's quilt story books (I have about 150 in my collection) will have to go to the "library. Fortunately the small bedroom came with floor to ceiling book shelves.

Another treasure from my childhood, it is interesting what we hang onto. Pluto still works!

The bi-annual Mayflower Quilter's Retreat at Pictou Lodge starts in a week. This will be our 14th! Hard to believe that an idea I had almost 30 years ago is still going strong. We are so grateful to everyone who attends (almost 60 quilters each year), to the teachers who come and share their knowledge and skills and to Pictou Lodge who bend over backwards every year to feed us delicious food, make our beds and put up with the fun we have!

 Ben found the perfect place to curl up, in with my quilts, my (maternal) Granny's quilts and a quilt my great aunts made for my paternal Grandparents. I only found out recently that there were quilters on my father's side of my family. Guess I was destined to be a quilter.

2011 Quilters Retreat

The 13th Quilters Retreat at Pictou Lodge, Nova Scotia is now just a very happy memory. It is hard to believe that we started this event in 1984 after my Guild, the Mayflower Quilters Guild, hosted Quilt Canada in Halifax and we decided we had such fun that we should do something else on a smaller scale. We never dreamt we would still be going strong 27 years later. We just wanted to bring the best teachers we could to teach and what a better place to do it - Pictou Lodge.

On the first night everyone (64 of us) gathers in the bar and on the verandah, time to see old friends and make some new ones.

Our teachers this year were Jane Sassaman, Daphne Greig and Elaine Quehl. Froom all accounts they were all wonderful teachers. I took Elaine's Machine Quilting Boot Camp...me, a die-hard 38 year hand quilting veteran! I learned so much, I can't wait to practice doodling and get going with my machine quilting. It will never take the place of my hand quilting but I can see there are small quilts where this will come in handy. Thanks Elaine for your patience with me!

Elaine demos, she makes it look so easy!

Elaine's poppies Kissing Joy, a stunning quilt with incredible quilting.

We had some great weather this year, no hurricanes! Even though the fog rolled in one day it was beautiful and warm. Lots of bright spots around with the colourful Adirondack chairs.

The view from our cabin, looking across the salt water pond to the Northumberland Strait.

We have a wonderful show and tell every year, we call it a "Progressive Show and Tell" and we go around to all the cabins to see everyone's quilts on their beds and wallhangings and lots more. We do this in the evening, kind of a quilter's Hallowe'en!

To commemorate our 13 Retreats at Pictou Lodge we gave them a quilt to hang in the main diningroom. It was pieced by Faye Palmeter, the applique and machine quilting was done by Debbie Vermeulen and the binding by Ann Carmichael. If you look closely, just to the right of the headland you can see that Debbie quilted in the PEI Cariboo Ferry, as we see it from Pictou Lodge! Thanks to Steve Goodwin at the Pictou Advocate for the photo.

Polly and Anne, Meredith, Betsey and Jamie

I have the best cabinmates! Polly taught me to quilt 38 years ago, her daughter Betsey came from Vermont, Anne from Cape Breton and Jamie and Meredith from Halifax. Have you ever seen the YouTube video of the dog talking about bacon? That is what they are watching! We all had such a great time, can't wait for September 25-29, 2013!