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TOPIC: What should I take on a two and 1/2 day retreat?

What to take to retreat 31 Mar 2008 17:02 #16447

  • BethMI
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Check out the latesst edition of "Quilter's Home" magazine. It has an article with a checklist of what to take to a retreat.

Last Edit: by BethMI.
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31 Mar 2008 14:11 #16429

  • EditorAnne
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I'm just back yesterday from a four-day retreat with my guild. Such fun!

Several years ago a group of us made a list of things to bring to a retreat, in addition to a sewing machine and whatever you need for your projects. Here it is:

Scraps to share
Design wall (with thumb tacks)
Coffee maker and supplies
Kettle and tea bags
Towel and face cloth
Ott light
Breakfast food (if it's not being provided)
Bottled water
Sewing machine tools and manual
Money for visits to the LQS
Pillow and quilt for your bed
Tool kit (WD40, hammer, little screwdrivers)
Camera, film (if required), and spare battery
Extra-long three-pronged extension cord
Spoons (for yogurt, measuring coffee, etc.)
Snacks to share
Bowl for shared snacks
Extra rotary cutter blades (and the rotay cutter, of course)
Ruler rack
Extension table for sewing machine
Tracing paper
Pressing mat or ironing board
Cutting mats--at least one that's 18 by 24 inches
White noise generator if you're a light sleeper, in case the person in the next room snores

Anne in Vancouver, Canada

in Vancouver, Canada
Last Edit: by EditorAnne.
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25 Oct 2007 17:55 #9953

  • Lorchen
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Bottled water (or a plastic bottle that I can refill). I'm always surprised how thirsty a dry atmosphere can make me, and you never know beforehand what the place will be like. I also take my favourite pillow if I stay anywhere over night. It folds out and becomes a lap-size quilt (if needed). My other essential item is a nailfile. Nothing worse than a broken nail that catches on the fabric.

From the edge of Sherwood Forest, home of Robin Hood
Last Edit: by Lorchen.
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24 Oct 2007 16:40 #9915

I love going on retreat with my guild. I would just caution you to take everything you need for your machine . . .such as threads, bobbins, needles, POWER CORD, footfeed. I know I have a small Janome (11 lbs) that I carry for classes and retreat, so I don't use it that often, so forgetting some little attachment can be a bummer. Oh, yes, does it have a 1/4" foot? We go to a bed & bkfst in Kansas called "The Barn" and the food is awesome there. Take your thread catcher, and check to see if there will be enough irons and ironing boards (big boards preferably). I also bought a small table to set up next to me that I can use for cutting and pressing small things. I have already paid for our next (Mar 08) retreat and am looking forward to it. Be there early enough to choose a good spot (I prefer to be near a window for the natural light). . . Most of all. . . .Have fun!!!
Last Edit: by skgemstone.
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off to a retreat 23 Aug 2007 23:02 #7733

I've been reading all your great messages on how to prepare for a retreat. I will also leave for one on Friday at noon. It will go until Sun at noon. W are free to work on our choice of projects so I'll be bringing projects I've started by not quite finished. I hope to do some bindings, work on a pink quilt for charity, and piece scraps together to cover a sweatshirt. I am going to also bring along an old quilt that will be good for an extra blanket and I like to add to the handquilting when ever I am on a car trip. All of our food will be prepared for us on Saturday, but we need to do the food for Fri and Sun.
Last Edit: by QuilterInaGarden.
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19 Aug 2007 15:43 #7606

Thank you for the advice on the fan. :D I am always needing a fan blowing directly on me at work and sometimes at home. :lol: I will add it to my list. 8)
Last Edit: by lenoirdenantes.
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retreat advice 19 Aug 2007 15:25 #7605

  • PDQuilt
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I always bring a small battery operated fan to blow right on me - "furnace girl" always feels warm in ANY classroom! Also, shoes that are easy to kick off. But DO NOT bring ANY perfumed products (worse than smelling feet!). Enjoy your experience. Make a list of what you forgot this time, so next time you'll have it all.
Last Edit: by PDQuilt.
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18 Aug 2007 19:17 #7592

Wow! I'm bookmarking this thread. You folks have come up with some awesome tips.

Along the lines of Maureen's suggestion to take emergency info, do y'all all know about "ICE"? Add an entry in your cell phone called "ICE" (In Case of Emergency). EMTs and other emergency aid workers are trained to check for an ICE number, since of course they can't know which of your entries is your spouse, best friend, or closest relative. On my phone I have "ICE #1 husband" and "ICE #2 brother" in case they can't reach the first one.

We should all remember to program and ICE and remember to look for an ICE number in someone's phone if they are in an emergency.
Last Edit: by tarabenet.
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18 Aug 2007 12:04 #7588

Wow.. You are giving me so many tips and suggestions. I cannot thank you enough. :) I will incorporate all of them in one of my endless lists with a check off square for each and every one. :oops:
Between all of you I am sure to have a wonderful retreat! :D
Karen Wright in S.W. Ohio
Last Edit: by lenoirdenantes.
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18 Aug 2007 07:34 #7582

Take a lawn chair...yep...a lawn chair that is comfortable. One that can been folded in the carry bag. I found this invaluable. I can move it and sit where I want. And the cup holder, can be used to keep your scissors and thread handy.

I also take a good book...because I find I need a break sometimes.

Speaking of cell phones, I know we are moms and wives along with other responsibilities in our busy lives. But one retreat I attended, one gal's cell phone never stopped ringing. So as a kindness to others, please silence your ringer or put it on vibrate.

Have fun and enjoy being around other quilters. :D

Last Edit: by FabricWhisperer.
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17 Aug 2007 23:22 #7577

Ann-Those of us in hot hot hot Mississippi are very jealous of your cool weather!
Sherry in S. MS, enjoying our new AC! Life is good!
Last Edit: by ipquilter.
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what to take on a retreat 17 Aug 2007 21:28 #7574

I am short and don't like to sit with my chin on the table so I always take one or two cushions of varied heights so I can boost myself up if necessary Sorry restaurant booster chairs just don't fit me. I would take my chocolate, some of my absolute favorite chips and a couple of bottles of wine. With that I can survive almost anything.

but most of all I would remember that what ever happened "THIS TOO WILL PASS AND IN ONLY TWO AND A HALF DAYS" so no matter how hot or cold the retreat room or how bad the food or how awful the roommate two and a half days is a drop in the bucket of life so put on your smile and best attitude and enjoy. There is always a silver lining and you only need to have an open mind to find it.

And Dana sorry about the heat and no electricity I will send you some of our cool air it will be flannel shirts and sweat pants tomorrow morning

Last Edit: by snowplow3840.
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17 Aug 2007 20:20 #7570

I have gone to retreat with about 70 people from our guild for the past ten years...it is 2 1/2 days also. Make sure you take your favorite quilt and pillow. I always take my little coffee pot and my special coffee....that makes for a nice morning. In the first few years I went, I never took enough to work on.....now I take too much. I leave some of the projects in the car and change them out if I want to.'

I don't know what your setting will be like, but for our retreat, it is about two miles off the road and you feel like you're so far away from the city. The lodges are very tall with lots of screened porches with huge open stone fireplaces and rocking chairs. The retreat is in November, so the weather is just crisp and cold. The leaves have mostly fallen by then, but it is soooo beautiful. Sorry to get off on that, but it just reminded me that it's almost time for it again. :D :D :D I can't wait!

Your will have a great time...just dress very comfortable and remember all your little special things that make you feel at home.

Dana in Olive Branch, MS where the electricity just came back on after being out for three hours..............it is 84 degrees in the house. :oops: that picture is my flushed face from being hot, but it will be cool soon.
Last Edit: by dlquilter.
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17 Aug 2007 19:02 #7568

After my suggestion re the ear plugs now for some more!

I have organised 3 retreats for our group and been on many more so here's my suggestions (as well as the earplugs)

Always take more than one project - if you get blocked with one move to the other
As a hand sewer I always take some hand quilting hand pieceing and maybe hand applique
If you are taking a sewing machine - double check that you have the lead and the right feet etc and its a good idea to take an extension cord

Take a couple of quilting books or magazines (with your name inside) to put on the table for everyone to look at. Thats a good conversation opener as well

Label all of your equipment with your name - have you noticed how all rotary cutters look the same? No one means to take your equipment but it happens.

I always take a portable Ott light as unless you have done a site visit you have no idea what the light is like
A spare pair of glasses if you wear them in case you loose or break your usual pair
Comfortable layered clothes. The heat/coolness of the room will never suit everyone

Be prepared to wander around and look at what other people are doing - good conversation starters are What is that range of fabric, thats interesting how did you get the idea for that etc etc

Always take your sense of humour
Always leave at home your family problems
Threaten your family with bad things if they call you for anything less than a catastrophe - and a catastrophe is not that the cat has been sick on a bed!

And on a very very serious note write your contact details and emergency numbers on two pieces of card. Put one by the side of your bed and one in your sewing kit. At our last retreat we had one lady taken very seriously ill and had to have her rushed to hospital. Fortunately her sister was on the retreat and knew the numbers otherwise.................

And make sure your family know that on the evening you return home from the retreat you will NOT be cooking dinner. They have to do it one more time because if your retreat is as good as any I have been on you will have over eaten and the last thing you will want is dinner!

I can't wait for November when 6 of us are off on our next retreat.

Last Edit: by maureent.
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