Shortly after meeting Mary at QuiltCon, she texted me to say we ought to get together for a weekend at the beach, and suggested a date: September.
That seemed so far away, but finally the weekend arrived and Lisa (L), Leisa (R) and I drove over to Carpinteria, where her beach house is located. We were more than happy to spend time with her as we think she is the Cat’s Meow, besides being a great quilter.
First up: exchange little gifts with each other. I always like what Simone de Beauvoir said: something to the effect that if the universe were run by women, they would bestow little gifts upon each other all day long. She certainly knew about quilters! I had a package which contained socks, a candy bar brought from Denmark with funny words on them, and a few other trinkets. We set up our machines and began sewing.
View from the balcony towards Arco Island. While the official name is Rincon Island, the locals call it after the oil company. They also never call the city by its full name of Carpinteria, but rather, call it “Carp.”
After sewing all afternoon, and after dinner, it was time to go and watch the sunset. We adopted the rhythm established by Mary and her family, and were always happy to have a break out in nature before we tackled the evening’s sewing.
Saturday morning, Mary told us all it was National Sewing Machine Day, so I documented us all at our machines.
For lunch one day we were out at The Spot, where the ladies were photo-bombed:
After finding two pumpkin-shaped Le Creuset pots in an antique store, Mary taught us all how to make her famous bread. Link to the story and the recipe is *here.* We also visited the famous Roxanne’s Quilt Shop; write-up with photos in the next post. I’m still recovering.
We visited one of the local orchid farms, Westerlay Farms, where there were a gorgeous array of colorful orchids.
So did we do more than eat and have field trips? Yep, yep. I brought my unfinished Traveling Threads Bee quilt, as it had languished too long. After we taped up the design wall (see below), I slapped all my blocks up there and began moving them around. And around. And around.
I went downstairs early the first night to be the first in her jammies, and got quilt-bombed with Lisa’s batch of 50 nine-patches. This was Lisa laughing with me in the morning, as it took me a minute to figure out why my quilt looked so great, but then she made me give them back. Pity. They were sunny and bright in my quilt of fall colors. She did this set of 50, and then another set of 50 three-inch nine-patches for a guilt swap she is participating in.
After noodling on this for a very long day (asking everyone what they thought of it about every time I moved something an inch — they were very patient), I finally got it sewed together. Now to quilt it. I took mine down and Lisa put hers up:
This is the photo at the end of the weekend, after she sewed and sewed and sewed. It’s a Lizzy House pattern.
Mary had the actual First Finish, when she held up this appliquéd chicken, quilted and bound. She used a special technique to appliqué the pieces down.
She also finished up a quilt-a-long with Bonnie Hunter, with stars and strips.
Lastly, Mary made two red Xs for the 70273project by Jeanne Hewell-Chambers, found *here,* with Introductory Post *here.* Mary’s set is on top, mine’s on the bottom. We had one more set by the time the weekend was finished.
Good-bye until next year!