Last weekend I packed my bags, kissed the hubby, and left the kids in his care and ran off to visit my wonderful quilty friend, Robin.
Isn't she adorable? Robin and I 'met' online at MQResource. A quilter and an experienced homeschooler who graduated her youngest already, we had a lot in common. I drove down and met her in real life this past January. Yes, I did what we tell kids not to do!
This time we had a very laid back weekend and went shopping. First we hit Mary Jo's Fabrics. This place is huge! It's mostly older fabric lines and clearance type fabrics, but they had a great selection of quilting fabrics. Below is the only pic I took as the place was very busy and I didn't want a bunch of strangers in my pictures.
That picture represents about one-sixth of the store! I did buy about 4 yards of fabric here. But didn't break the bank.
Then we were off to "Sew Much Fun"! What a great name for a shop. This is probably the prettiest, biggest, well lit shop I have ever been in. The colors and prints were just beautiful and the place is huge for quilt shop standards. Not as big as Mary Jo's but quite fabulous (and cleaner).
Above is to the left of the entrance and below is to the right, where they had Berninas galore and all kinds of embroidery supplies. I bought just one spool of thread, a lovely blue and silver metallic combination to use on the fabric I bought at Mary Jo's. I was the very image of restraint!
Then after a meal of huge burritos at a place called Q'doba's (is that spelled right?) we drove back to her house and set up my machine. I gave a free motion demo to a friend of hers and then I convinced her to load some fabric onto her longarm for practice. She has been needing to stretch herself by doing more free motion work, and I wanted to try the long arm. I really don't want to get a long arm, but since I've been doing quilts for others, I have been giving it some thought.
Some of my stitching. Not too bad. It feels like I have no control whatsoever compared to moving my quilt under a sewing machine.
Then I left Robin with a stitch sampler to use as "homework" as she and a friend are wanting to improve their free motion quilting skills. Robin even wants to get better at quilting with her sewing machine even though she has a long arm. It was good to make an assignment for her as I am working on teaching a few more classes soon and I like to have the best plans possible for my students.
I had such a good time. I didn't have to quilt anything, but just did what I wanted to. And we sure got to talk and laugh and enjoy ourselves. Her hubby was such an accomodating host too! I felt refreshed when I got home.....until I saw the dishes. :-) Actually, the house was in pretty good shape and the hubs and kiddos enjoyed themselves too.
Have you met an online quilty friend (or otherwise) and then met in person? Is there a place you can get away to for some refreshment that includes quilting. Have you done a quilt retreat?
I will be linking this post with Leah Day's Free Motion Friday and Nina Marie's Off the Wall Friday. Come share in the fun and visit some great bloggers.