Friday, August 7, 2015

Quilting by the Lake Review - Off the Wall Friday

Chopped Hopper

Well nearly a week later, and I'm still recovering from this year's Quilting by the Lake.  Who knew that a creative vacation could be so exhausting!!!  But I can honestly say that it was the best QBL ever.  Not only was it successful creatively, but on a personal level it was super fun.  I got to meet new friends (my suite mates - Betty and Diane) - explore new campus buildings (they're gorgeous!) AND finally complete my class  project (only took 14 years!)

As much as Quilting by the Lake was the same, there were also some marked differences this year.  The AQS Quilt show was in Syracuse the same week as my class session so that was part of the reason.  This meant that the QBL quilt show was smaller and also there were less vendors.  For me, it wasn't a big deal since the vendors that were present still had anything I needed.

Donna Lamb, Executive Director 
There were also less participants this year.  I, personally, liked that better.  Meals were more intimate and you really got to know the 100 ladies that were there.  My class had 17 people so there was still a nice creative energy around the room.   Also, we used a smaller auditorium for lectures and Show & Tell  which was definitely more cozy.  With the inclusion of a mixmedia class and a modern quilting class, there were also some younger ladies there too!

Other additions included a nightly ahand sewing circle in the dorm lounge in case you just wanted to stitch and chat, a morning coffee/doughnut meet, and milk and cookies social.  I thought these ideas were brilliant because it gave you more opportunities to get to know your fellow students.

Of course,  I didn't do any of those though (grin).  Now its not that I'm anti-social. . . .its just that I was busy working in the classroom.  I loved my class.  I loved the challenge of taking what I thought was a nice strong composition and translating it to fabric.    Judi Blayden has got to be one of the hardest working teachers I know.  She was constantly teaching.  When she wasn't talking to us as a class - she was circulating around the classroom checking on us as individuals - constantly - all week!  She made me tired just thinking about it!!

One thing that I was amazed at - or rather not amazed at  - is the wide range of  opinions  on the QBL experience.  Now this isn't surprising really since the ladies come from all walks of life.  Some loved the dorms - some hated them - some loved the food  - some found nothing to eat all week.  Some loved the pretty large campus - others felt it too big and the week too physically draining.

For me - I thought the food was great this year.  The dining hall's staff was friendly and accommodating.  I loved that we had reserved tables just for QBL and that we were served on regular glass dishware.  I also thought campus accommodations fine too.  My classroom had enough room so that I didn't feel cramped and the lighting was fine.  I felt safe on the campus since there were plenty of people around when I was walking back to the dorms.  I even got to take a couple of early morning death marches walks with my physically fit suite mate, Diane on the pretty  campus walking trail.

So yes, I realize that most people wouldn't consider this ideal vacation - but for me it was nearly perfect!

So What are you up to Creatively?


Jenny K. Lyon said...

I loved your description of the week and what it felt like to be there. I wish it was on my coast, grin. I can't wait to see Chopped Hopper completed. I hear that attendance is down all over at retreats and I see the advantages of it being smaller-thanks for the intimate view.

Kaja said...

Sounds great to me, forced marches and all.

Unknown said...

I was one of the lucky ones with you at QBL. It really was great, and your quilt is super. Let's do it again!

Turtlemoonimpressions said...

You made me wish I'd gone!

quiltedfabricart said...

Looks like perfect vacation to me :-) enjoyed your reports

sonja said...

wonderful hopper chopper art retreat report!
a treat to read and wish we were attending!!

Diane Wespiser said...

Your description of the week rang true to me. As a newbie, the time to sew, uninterrupted by life (kids, meals, hubby) was a true joy. Getting to know other creative souls was a blessing. Glad I got to know you and your quilting art work, I'm already planning on attending next year. Hopefully you are still out there walking and enjoying this spectacular summer. Be well. Diane

Anonymous said...

Nina Marie,
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