Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The Stash Bash (Part I )

Weekend before last I went to StashBash.  The husband bought the ticket for me for our anniversary last October.  I've only ever done one quilting retreat before - Sewing Summit in 2011 - and I have to admit that I was a bit hesitant about going.  I'm not really a communal living kind of gal, and given that Arielle was going to arrive before I got home, I almost sold my ticket.

I'm so glad I didn't.

On Thursday morning I lugged all my stuff out into the driveway so I would be ready when Kim came to pick me up.  You would think I had everything I needed given the amount of stuff in that pile, wouldn't you?  Well, that just wasn't the case. It seems that I needed little bits of several things to finish anything I took with me, but I really did manage to get a lot done.

We stuffed the back of Kim's car full and headed out, only a few minutes later than we planned.

After exploring nearly every back road in Northwest Florida (isn't GPS wonderful?), we finally arrived at our first stop...

where we met the rest of the members of our guild who were going to Stash Bash.  Naturally, we shopped for awhile....

The Front Porch Quilt Shop is a fun little store.  It's located in Ozark, AL.

I took pictures of lots of quilts...

and other projects.  I was so inspired!

Ozark is a fun old-timey town.  We had lunch in Ozark at the Dairy KING.  Everyone said the chicken was awesome, but since we were planning on eating in the car(s), I think we all ordered burgers.

Once we arrived, we dragged in all our sewing stuff and set up our sewing space.  Kim's friend Charity snagged spaces for all of us.  (That's Kim on the right and Charity on the left.  As it turns out, Charity was my "Secret Agent".  There'll be more about that below.)

We had barely gotten the sewing machines humming when they called my name.  I was so surprised - I am NEVER first!  I won the first door prize - a FQ bundle from Art Gallery fabrics.  This bundle is from the Sweet as Honey collection by Bonnie Christine - in the "autumn harvest" palette.  I love the way Art Gallery fabrics feel.  I may not actually make anything from this bundle (although I can see some lovely pouches made with this collection.)  It might be enough just to sit and pet it.

Kira had put together a tote bag swap just among our ECMQG members, and this is the amazing tote bag Marcy made me.  This awesome bag deserves its own post, so I'm going to save the rest of the pictures for another time. 

Friday night I opted for something super easy and sewed together this bee block quilt top.  (Yup, that's a hole in the last row - it seems I dropped a couple of blocks on the way to lay this one out.  It's fixed now.)  Anyway, there was one quick finish.  I kinda wished I had taken batting and backing with me.  If I had, this one might have been done.  But since I didn't, I hope to finish this one in May.

It was so fun being with the other ECMQG members (Kira is on the left, Kim on the right.) We really had a blast.  (Kim found this awesome Munki Munki nightgown at a local discount store - most of it is now a tote bag.)

Friday morning we all went to A Scarlet Thread in McDonough, Georgia, which was about 20 minutes away from the retreat site.  (What's a quilting retreat without a visit to a quilt store, anyway?)

A Scarlet Thread is a super cute quilt shop, just filled with color and inspiration.  It's everywhere.

One of the first things I saw when we walked in the door was this beautiful hexi quilt.  Naturally I had to buy the supplies to make the quilt.  (No, I didn't get the quilt made....  Yet.)

This shop was just overflowing with quilty inspiration.  Here's another quilt I want to make.

Here's an idea for a super fun baby quilt, don't you think?

I loved these little signs.  The one I really liked said "Stitch Your Stress Away."  That's perfect for me.  Sadly, my picture didn't turn out.  But they wouldn't be too hard to make, I think.

Friday night, we received our first gift from our "Secret Agent".  This was so thoughtful and cute.  Milano cookies (a personal favorite), Lemonheads, chocolate almonds, a little notebook, and lots of other fun goodies in here.  Made me smile!

I intended to work on my Single Girl on Friday, and I did - a little bit.  I actually finished one set of rings. But after I picked out the stitching for the third or fourth time, I decided I needed an easy project.  I just wasn't focusing, and Single Girl is a project that requires more concentration than I apparently possessed at that moment.  But I had grabbed this Vintage Modern layer cake and stashed it in my stuff on the way out the door on Thursday, so I sliced it up and made this Piece of Cake 3 quilt by Camille of Thimbleblossoms.  It was a fun and easy project and required little more than running strips through the sewing machine.  I think it made a bright and fun quilt.  This one is done, except for the outer border.  I hope to get to that this week.

Saturday I felt much more alert and managed to get the other three sets of rings made.  Unfortunately, I didn't take any tracing paper and I didn't want to cut up my original pattern, so I have the blocks yet to make.  Still, the hard part is done.  I hope to get at least the blocks made this month.

Saturday evening was our second gift from our Secret Agent, and I did a much better job of photographing this one.  Look at all the fun goodies in this one.  And the cute drawstring bag!  So fun.

Sunday morning we packed up and came home, and these two were waiting for me when I arrived, having traveled more than 30 hours to come visit.

Naturally, I dumped my stuff in the sewing room and spent the week with them.

And since this post is long enough, I'm going to wrap it up for now.  Tune in again tomorrow for tote bags, swag, and other goodies.


  1. So glad I got to meet you in person! Your guild's corner of the room was definitely a fun zone!


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