Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Alaskan Quilting Cruise

There's nothing better than combining a love of quilting with a love of cruising with the love of your life!  OK, I know that sounds a little bit sappy, but Woodworker Hubby and I just returned from a trip of a lifetime to Alaska, and what a time we had! 

If you recall, we live in Nova Scotia, Canada, so after a day of flying across the country, we were ready to start our adventure.  On August 19, we sailed out of Seattle on the Norwegian Pearl for a 7-day tour. We were bound for Glacier Bay and the ports of Juneau, Skagway, Ketchican, and Victoria, BC.  




But this wasn't just any Alaskan cruise...this was a quilting cruise hosted by Lynne Hagmeier of Kansas Trouble Quilts  and Pam Buda, of Heartspun Quilts and coordinated with great skill and thanks to Bunny of Quilting Corners.  

Woodworker Hubby has always had an Alaskan cruise on his wishlist, so when the Great Girlfriends Getaway was announced in the fall, we put our heads together and figured this would be the perfect holiday for the two of us.

Three quilting projects were chosen for the quilting cruise by Pam and Lynne.  The projects were presented during the days at sea, with lots of classroom time available throughout the week. (Don't worry...Woodworker Hubby had lots to do on the ship while I was in class!)

Everyday that we arrived in the sewing classroom was like Christmas....there was always a gift or two waiting for us.  Even our name tags were the cutest!



Project one was a quilt called "Sweetwater Creek" designed by Pam using her new line of fabrics, Heart of the Prairie. The pattern and fabrics are adorable and I couldn't wait to get started!  



For this quilt, many of us had cut our fabrics before we arrived, so by the end of the cruise, I had lots of "parts" finished and now just have to sew them together! 

The second quilt project was "Spare Change" designed and presented by Lynne, using raw edge applique. We each received her unique Spare Change Ruler that had us quickly cutting and piecing our blocks. Lynne chose Holiday Medley for the kit...all precut for us and packed in this little collector tin using a wonderful Christmas collection that makes my heart soar! 




As you can see, I have all of the inside blocks done...just a little piecing and a few borders and it will be a Ta-da finish!



Project Three was a combined design effort by Pam and Lynne and it is gorgeous...my kind of project, as were all of them, actually!  

The two ladies shared the day with us, allowing us to choose to applique using Lynne's raw-edge technique with cotton, or Pam's wool applique.  The lovely ladies had pre-cut the background pieces, Lynne had even hand-dyed the large rickrack, and a few hours later, my wall hanging was ready for the appliqued flowers, basket, and the addition of those little hexies! 



I chose to purchase the wool kit so hope to start cutting the shapes later this week. Isn't the wool gorgeous! I've used a little wool in the past but learned a few new techniques to use with this project.



Pam and Lynne were absolutely wonderful teachers and I would highly recommend that you check out their next quilting adventure and join in.  They both presented trunk shows that just made me want to sew and quilt for the rest of my life! And the 33 other participants were a wonderful combination of folks from all over the USA...I think I was the only Canadian!  Two lovely ladies shared my sewing table with me and I can tell you, we had a lot of laughs and they gave me lots of support when I struggled to be precise!

Was there any quilt shopping on the ship, you ask?  You bethcha!  Here are just a few quilt kits, patterns, and treasures designed by Pam and Lynne that made it home with me...some were complimentary, and some were purchased...all I will say is that the the ladies were extremely generous.





On the last day, one lucky quilter among us even won a brand new Janome sewing machine! All of us were provided with the top of the line Janome sewing machines to use while at sea with an option to purchase at the end of the cruise.  

Did I mention that Alaska is filled with quilt shops?  I went to four quilt shops in the ports of Juneau, Skagway, and Ketchican.  Some of the shops were huge...





and some were smaller...



Suffice to say, I found lots of treasures. I don't usually gravitate towards panel prints, but how could I resist this?  



Especially when it has such a cute picture of the map showing our  ports...




Each of the shops we visited in the ports had a special gift for folks from the quilting cruise, so I added a few complimentary patterns and flannel fabric to my stash.  I even received a glass thimble printed with the forget-me-not, the state flower.  And I just had to purchase the redwork pattern, "Kuspuk Christmas", designed by Raven Stitches. I love the red and white blocks bordering the embroidery! 




Of course, no trip would be complete without a few more mementos...like a couple of charms!



And we were all thrilled when Pam and Lynne presented us with pendants made especially for us. Here is the front...



and here is the back.



You can see a picture of me and some of the other quilters by visiting Pam's blog here. I'm near the front of the classroom in the third picture looking very intently down at my seam line! Lynn also posted some great pics on her blog here. There are some more quilting adventures being planned by the two of them, so make sure you check it out and maybe you'll be on the next Great Girlfriend Getaway! 

It was a wonderful week of cruising and quilting, and we followed that trip of a lifetime with another fantastic week "out west"... a memorable week of visiting with our daughter and her fiance that included trips to the zoo, movies, super suppers and nights out, walks, tours of new house under construction, and even a day of  wedding dress shopping ( yes, very successful with plans for next summer's event already well underway)!

Thanks so much for visiting me today. You can see that I had a lot to share!  It's nice to be in touch again and to let you know that it's always a great day for quilting!

36 comments:

  1. Oh, Lesley, you devil you!! What fun! To say that I am envious would be an understatement, but I'm so glad for the two of you to be able to combine a great get-away that suited you both. Wonderful post!! ~karen

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  2. Wow! I loved reading about your adventure. So glad you had an awesome quilty time. Sounds action packed. The projects you worked on look like such fun. I am just reading your post as Cindy Day is describing Hurricane Leslie on the 6 o'clock news. lol

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  3. I'm sooooo jealous...but you knew that already, right?

    Thanks for the fabulous play-by-play description of your cruise. I felt like I was right there with you. (I can dream, can't I?) Love all your goodies and I can't wait to see the finishes. Makes me want to start to save my pennies for their next trip.

    Welcome home!

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  4. Lucky Duck - what an adventure. Alaska was always a 'dream trip' of my Dad, don't know if I could take the cold.

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  5. Incredible Lesley , I thought I had spied you in a post on Pam's blog but for some reason i don't think I realized you were on a quilting cruise , lucky you , it really looks like a fabulous time !!Good to have you home :-)

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  6. Oh Lesley, wow what a trip...and quilting to boot..you were missed...Alaska I have been there a couple times...Nursed there a few months... still cold..

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  7. What a dream trip!! Thanks for sharing with us =D

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  8. That sounds like a fantastic trip and all those beautiful quilts and goodies! Alaska is on my list of places to visit someday. Glad you had a wonderful time!

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  9. What a wonderful trip, I have been in two of the shops, they look familiar. glad you are back safe.
    Ann

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  10. Oh my gosh Lesley! What a fun trip!! I missed your posts, but I am so happy to see you were out having fun! Maybe someday I can talk hubby into a cruise like that. :-) Welcome home!!

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  11. Wow Lesley, I knew I meant to sign up for something! looks like you had a great time!

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  12. Wow...that sounds like a dream trip for sure! So glad you got to go.

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  13. WOW!!! You sound like you had so much fun!! Alaska is on our bucket list too!! One day!! I mailed you my blocks..but they are coming to you a different way..be sure to look at the postmark :):) Hugs!!

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  14. You definitely were on a pleasure cruise, what fun =)

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  15. Oh that sounds fantastic. Glad you had a great time. I did a quilting bus trip to Tennessee with a friend, But a cruise, well, I'll have to add that to my wish list. Thanks for sharing your adventure.

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  16. Thanks for sharing your fabulous trip with us. Have always wondered how those 'quilting cruises' worked.

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  17. Thanks for sharing your wonderful cruise with us ... :) Pat

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  18. That is just a perfect cruise. How wonderful that it worked so well for the both of you. Looks like you had a wonderful time!

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  19. My wood working husband has a deep desire to visit Alaska someday,too. We have contemplated a cruise...maybe I should start talking up a quilt cruise :) Great idea, looks like a lot of fun for both of you.

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  20. Wow what a fabulous adventure! the projects you have made are stunning and also all the goodies you have bought home with you should keep you busy for a few more weeks *cough* years!

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  21. what s fantastic time you must have had. Now wonder you are so full of enthusiasm. Thanks for sharing

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  22. hubby and i were on the pearl in early june celebrating 41st anniversary...and i started my "dear jane" sitting in those big windows in the lounge over the bridge..bet there is still some threads on that big orange couch!! oh, and the food...and, oh yeah, the scenery!!! thanks, you brought back lots of memories..glad you had a great trip!

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  23. Sounds like you have an over-the-top fabulous time! I have been dreaming of a quilting cruise for a couple of years now...and your cruise sounds like it was just perfect! I'm looking forward to the finished pics of your cruise creations!

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  24. What a wonderful experience! Love the projects they picked out for you and even the little gifts seem perfect.

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  25. Looks like a fantastic trip all the way around. I have a stack of Holiday Medley and have been looking for a pattern to use them with. You have helped end my search with your picture of the Spare Change quilt you have pieced. It is beautiful and looks like it would not be too challenging so I am off to buy the pattern and look at the ruler. Hope you don't mind me copying you - just think of it as spreading inspirational suggestions. All of the projects look great and I'm sure it added to your quilting bucket list.

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  26. Thanks for sharing the details of your trip. It looks like a fabulous adventure. What a lovely bonus to be able to spend time with your daughter.

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  27. Leslie,

    It was fun reliving the cruise as I read your blog. It was wonderful wasn't it. I finished "Spare Change" today. I am still sewing the wool on "Friendship Garden". "Stillwater" will have to wait awhile.
    I'm so glad we connected.
    Kathy B.

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  28. I'd forgotten you were going on that cruise. I am sooooo envious. It looks like you had a great time.

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  29. I have been to Kodiak to visit my daughter and I thought it was truly beautiful! Love Victoria B.C. also! Your cruise looks like it was perfect!! So glad you had so much fun!!

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  30. Sounds like you had a great time and enjoyed it all. The little gifts and tags are so cute! Glad you're back!

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  31. What a great trip! I've only been on one cruise and it was also with Norwegian Cruise Lines. It was a wonderful experience and a great cruise line. I would like to see Alaska some day.

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  32. Quilting and Alaska--Perfect!! You might really enjoy the Alaska Railroad also.....

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  33. Wow, oh wow. That looks like it was a great time. I've been to Alaska and can't wait to go back. Once the kidlets are older for sure.

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  34. Absolutely fantastic Lesley. How special that you were able to both go and enjoy yourselves so much. Your projects are gorgeous and I'm sure they will have a special place in your heart. The scenery looks fantastic too!

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  35. Lesley it sounds like you really had a wonderful fun filled time on your cruise!! Looking at your photos and reading about it is ALMOST as good as going. What an incredible trip, glad to have you back!!

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Thank you so much for visiting me. I enjoy writing about my quilting projects and am so glad that you enjoy reading about them. I will certainly reply if you leave a comment. Thanks again!