I am so pleased to announce my Guest Blogger today - Isobel Meekins. As you read Isobel's story below, you will see that she has had a very unique and an exciting career. I am also proud to say that I work with Isobel as she is on the edit staff of The Quilt Pattern Magazine. Please welcome Isobel.
Thank you so much for inviting me, Nan! Although I am very new to blogging, I have been enjoying everything the quilting world has to offer for over 20 years.
As a young special education teacher in 1993, I signed up for a quilting class offered by our local Parks & Rec. Department to explore a new craft and meet other “crafty” people. I loved my job as a middle school teacher, but it sure was nice to learn a new skill (fabric was so much more fun to work with than textbooks) and socialize with a class full of adults! I thoroughly enjoyed the class and I knew quilting had found a permanent place in my life.
As the years passed and my quilting skills and confidence grew, I found more opportunities to enjoy my favorite craft. I became active in our local quilt guild, the Peninsula Piecemakers, took lots of interesting classes, traveled to all kinds of out-of-the-way places in search of quilt shops, and feverishly tried out any number of patterns and techniques. Along the way I was thrilled to get opportunities to work for many different quilt stores and companies, teach quilting classes, organize countless quilt-related events and getaways, and design my own patterns.
Currently, I teach a large array of quilting classes for the Newport News Department of Parks & Recreation and other local guilds, work as a technical editor for The Quilt Pattern Magazine (www.quiltpatternmagazine.com), design patterns for my own classes and for Block Party Studios (www.Blockpartystudios.com), work at a few quilt shows each year for various vendors, organize a monthly lock-in for about 40 quilters, and enjoy quilting with others as much as I can. Quilting has become my passion and I am always anxious for the next quilting adventure to begin.
Five years ago, while on vacation with my family at Capon Springs and Farms, I was offered the opportunity to organize a quilting retreat. When asked, I said, “Sure, why not!” I could never turn down an opportunity to spend a few days in the beautiful mountains of West Virginia quilting with some of the nicest people I know – quilters! The first Capon Quilt Retreat took place in October of 2010, and it’s been an annual event ever since.
Capon Springs and Farms is an ideal place for a fall quilt retreat, even if you’d rather spend more time retreating than quilting. The mountain views are breath-taking, the dramatic colors of the autumn foliage are magnificent, the murmur of the brook is mesmerizing, and the sunsets over the golf course are absolutely stunning. Add to that the lovely amenities (my favorites are the hammocks and cozy library, but I must say we keep the staff at the spa pretty busy too), toasty fires roaring in the big stone fireplaces, staff and owners who make you feel like family, and a seemingly endless supply of delicious, homemade comfort food. It is truly the place to go to recharge your spirit, enjoy the beautiful surroundings, and unwind.
This year The Quilt Pattern Magazine will be sponsoring the retreat and it will be bigger and better than ever! The retreat will be held in October and the dates are Sun., Oct. 5 to Thurs., Oct. 9, 2014. In addition to our actual retreat, we’ve added a virtual retreat so that quilters can join in all the fun from home and make our retreat quilt pattern. The fabulous team of editors at TQPM (of which I am so proud to be a part of) is working diligently to fill this year’s retreat with lots of special perks and goodies. I can’t wait to get to Capon and share the experience with all the quilters – real and virtual! For more information about the retreat, please contact The Quilt Pattern Magazine.
Isobel, thank you so much for sharing your story and for sharing the information about The Quilt Pattern Magazine's First Annual Retreat. If you need more information please contact The Quilt Pattern Magazine or you may contact me.
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Until next time...