Monday, September 27, 2010


Happy Monday!

This weekend I was away with 4 friends on a short retreat in New York State on the Hudson River.  We were at a B&B in an old Victorian House built in 1870.  

I'm not sure how much actual sewing was accomplished, but we had a lot of laughs and good food and wine.  It's always fun to get a way from it all and spend time with quilting friends.

Here is our group; Susan, Elizabeth, Norma and myself in front the house.

The bedroom that Susan and I shared on the 3rd floor - it was quite a workout going up and down.  This was the perfect setting for late night chatting.

This is a sun porch on the 2nd floor attached to Elizabeth's and Norma's room.  Norma elected to sleep on this porch and said the sunrise over the Hudson was quite a view.

We settled in for snacks, wine and chatting.

Here are some views of the workroom in the lower level.  It was set up with tables, lamps and ironing supplies.  The design walls were equipped with flannel backed vinyl table clothes - they work really well and can be picked up at dollar stores and party stores - great for retreats!

This was one of 7 working fireplaces throughout out the house.

Susan worked on an a new paper piecing hexagon project and machine quilted this baby quilt - so cute - Susan and the quilt.

One of the projects that Norma finished was this 2 sided seasonal table runner.

Elizabeth worked on a paper piecing project and hand sewing and was packed up when I took photos - sorry Elizabeth!

I made several blocks for the border of my selvage quilt project.

I also cut out and designed this top of an apple core Halloween quilt.  I intended to piece this on the machine and it was not pretty!  As I said when I sat down at the machine, "this is where the dream goes to die....."  curved piecing is difficult and with the convex and concave curves it wasn't good.  I am working on an idea of how to do this another way that does not include hand piecing or traditional English paper pieceing - stay tuned.

A view without that annoying figure in the way ;)

If anyone has made an apple core quilt, or has any suggestions on ways to piece together this top I would love to hear from you!!

If you get a chance to get away with friends and sew I highly encourage it.  It's good for the creative soul.


  1. Looks like you all had such a great time! The B&B looks wonderful. Don't forget to share the apple core technique with us as this is another one I'd like to do but not sure I have the time to handpiece it.

  2. That looks like a fantastic place to get away and sew! The apple core quilt will be terific if you can figure out an easier piecing method:)

  3. I wish that gal in the black would get out of the way!!! LOL!! Barb, as usual, your projects are inspiring!! The selvage quilt is sooo cool...I wish I had all the selvages I've tossed over the years. It'd be like those old cigar ribbon quilts (and just as indicative of bad habits! LOL). When you figure out the apple core piecing dilemna, let me know! I have a Thimbleberries one all stacked up, ready to sew, with about 3 rows done. They aren't horrific, but it's because they are 6" and the curves are a little gentler in the bigger size. LOVE the halloween fabrics!
    Sounds like the retreat was a great getaway (and why not, in that beautiful place!)
    Mary Lou

  4. It looks like a beautiful place for a retreat. I really like the apple core pattern, but haven't taken the time yet. You could probably applique, like you would a clamshell. I bought a curvemaster foot, but wasn't able to do it as easily as the lady at the show.

  5. I made a little apple core table topper recently and it WAS hard to piece. I even tried piecing it by hand...that didn't work for me either although I think if I practiced it would. My solution was to "live with" the mismatched seams. They come pretty close to matching...but not quite. I think this is one block that takes practice. Looks like you have enough cut there to really get some good practice in!!! Did you mark the center of each curve? love all the fussy cutting on there too!! This will be a fun quilt...when it's done!!!

  6. What a romantic setting to retreat to. And it looks like sewing *was* done, despite the eating, wine and chatting. :) A perfect get away!

  7. We have similar senses of humor and I LOVE reading your blog..."this is where the dream goes to die..." - TOO FUNNY!!

    That B & B get-away sounds like Heaven!! Your friends and projects are just lovely, and the local looks so wonderful!

    I am coveting your apple core Halloween project...I collect those fabrics, as that Holiday is dead even (no pun intended) with Christmas in this house! I want to copy your great idea (imitation IS the highest form of flattery!) when you iron out the bugs of machine-piecing it, LOL!

    I wish I had a dime for every selvage I've discarded...then I could buy more fabric (and therefore have more selvages, more dimes, more fabric, more selvages...). Your selvage project is stunning!

    In stitches,
    Teresa :o)

  8. Great location for a retreat, and, as always I love your creative works. How clever to think of the Apple Core pattern for a Halloween quilt! I tried to make a doll quilt from the pattern and found it to be a real bear. I did find, however, that they were more easily pieced on the machine than by hand, but I must admit I didn't get far into the project! Maybe English paper piecing would make the task easier? Of course, there's all that prep work. Looking forward to your solution to this one.

  9. How awesome is that house! And look at all the fun!

  10. What a lovely B&B!! Your room looked so cozy and what a sunroom. Sounds like you had a wonderful weekend. That's quite an ambitious selvage project - I like it.
    I'm sorry to have no help for your apple core project - it's really fun though.

  11. That looks like a lot of fun and the house is gorgeous. Right now, I would choose the wine and chatting above all else.

  12. Wow -- what a great place for a retreat! I LOVE that applecore quilt -- love, love LOVE it! I've done a jumbo applecore, so I don't think it really qualifies for tips and hints. Wait -- maybe that's my tip -- make a jumbo one LOL!

  13. What a lovely old home. A great place for a retreat!
    You're all doing such a nice variety of projects. I'll have to say the selvage one you're doing and the Applecore appeal to me the most personally. ;)
    The Halloween prints are really fun! I think I'd consider fusing them down or doing a raw edge type applique if I didn't want to do the handwork? :)

  14. What a great get away and the weather must have been awesome on the Hudson. With the PA show last week, another show next weekend, isn't this a blast?!?!

    LOVE, LOVE , LOVE the Halloween apple core. What fun fabrics! I can't wait to see the backing you pick, as you always pick something funky, even when it's not Halloween...hee, hee.

    Can't wait to see the assembly method you come up with!


  15. what a lovely place to spend a weekend sewing with your friends. thanks so much for the lovely photos of the rooms and all your projects. i would have to handpiece the apple cores for accuracy, but then i do most things by hand! well done to if you can do it by machine, have fun!

  16. Looks like you had a great weekend with great friends in a great setting. Despite what you say, it seems a lot of sewing was done and I love your Halloween quilt.

  17. How fun to have a B&B that can accommodate you for sewing. A wonderful idea!
    The Halloween quilt is a good one. Lots of curves and fun fabrics.

  18. ooh, the retreat looks/sounds amazing and what a wonderful setting. no help at all for the apple core piecing, but lots of encouragement because it is FUN!

  19. What a wonderful environment to sew in!! Sorry I can't give any advise on the apple solutions always include hand piecing LOL.


  20. Hope you figure out the apple core quilt - your choice of fabrics and their placement is excellent - what a fun quilt! Where in NY? My daughter lives in Rhinebeck, NY - close by your B&B? Thanks.

  21. What a gorgeous setting for a retreat!
    Sorry I can't help you with the apple cores.

  22. what a character full place to retreat to~!
    i love older homes and their easy charm.

    i may have been tempted to hang out on that sun porch with some hand stitching the whole time . . .

    glad you had fun.


  23. what a wonderful setting to retreat to! Mind sharing where in the Hudson Valley to this "I live there!" girl??
    loved the halloween apple core, it is not an easy project to piece. Glad you all had such a wonderful time together.

  24. The apple core quilt is fabulous! I love the fussy cut pictures!

  25. Barb,I saw someone at Paducah this year demonstrating a special foot that goes on your machine to enable you to curve piece. I meant to go back and buy it but lost my bearings completely - well that doesn't take a lot anyway.
    May be you could google it to find out.
    Looks like you girls no how to have fun.


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