Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Beaver Island Quilt Retreat, Part 2

Our working room was overlooking Elk Lake in Elk Rapids, Michigan. We all could look up from our work and see the changing colors of the different green foliages and the lake reflecting the sky and clouds.

I started a second quilt top on Friday, using the greens that were in my box. In the back of my mind I was working with the view out the window.

I made Rail Fence blocks with one rail having triangles (mountains? evergreens?) and laid them out on the piano, which happened to be next to my work station.

When I laid them out as a square, they looked almost TOO landscapey, so I set them back as Rail Fence with the greener blocks at the bottom and the bluer blocks at the top.

Looking at more of Gwen's quilts I saw that she sometimes set the center of the quilt OFF-center and also sometimes made un-equal borders--so I played around with those ideas.

The final quilt top includes a large pine tree on the left and a representation of "My Wilderness Cabin" [log cabin block] on the lower right.
And here are a few more photos of Gwen's quilts for your inspiration:

Strips, squares and triangles.


She advised: "Use a simple block. Then make it over and over."

And finally, here is the cover of her new book, self-published:


TWO tops made while on the retreat
Special time with Reunion group at Lake Michigan
Home again, home again, jiggity-jog!


Sharon said...

Thanks for sharing your pictures of Gwen's quilt retreat. I like her new solids quilts. I gave away all my solids a few years ago, and am now collecting them again!
I like your rail fence quilt! I like the addition of the triangles, and the tree and the cabin make it great!

Lazy Gal Tonya said...

Wow, I love that red and string quilt of Gwen's amazing. I love how Gwen does those uneven borders too, always adds such energy.

Sandy said...

Beautiful setting for a retreat! Thanks for sharing with us. Your wilderness top is wonderful! I really love the tree on the side and your cabin in the corner, very cleaver! :o)

Louise SS said...

Your green Wilderness Trail is FUN!
I would love to try something like that buy am not liberated enough...yet, I'm working on it!:o)
Thanks for the inspiration!
Louise in Sweden

Nancy said...

My aunt and I are going to Gwen's retreat next week. I am so excited to see your pictures and hear about it.

Nancy in NC

Mary said...

I'm glad you kept playing with your blocks before setting them - the result is worth it!

Helen in the UK said...

LOVE both the quilts you made at the retreat. Must have been really exciting to be there in person and learn from Gwen. Thanks for giving us a small 'flavour' of what you saw and learnt :)

KnitOneQuiltTooKristin said...

Thanks for the great posts! I really love your green quilt. Sounds like great fun. I'd love to go sometime, but Gwen is coming here next year and I hope to get into her classes then.

Cher said...

what a fabulous top you came up with!
love the tree on the side and your "cabin"- your quilts are great reminders of a very special retreat time.

belinda said...

oooooo....looks like you guys were sooo productive and CREATIVE. Thanks for sharing!!

meggie said...

Thankyou so much for sharing these photos. I think your quilt is lovely.