What to pack for a local class or retreat

Classes and clubs are back! Woo-hoo! Today, I attended my first table runner club. One of the online groups I follow is hosting a monthly table topper QAL featuring Trendy Table 3 from Anka’s Treasures. When I learned that a local quilt shop offered a similar program each month using the same book, I signed up! I have really, really missed dedicated sew days with friends. Spending six hours today sewing with friends was good for my soul. Guess I’m a little out of practice at packing for a quilt class because I left my pins & pin cushion, 6-1/2 x 6-1/2″ square ruler, machine screwdriver & lint brush at home. That’s what I get for trying to pack at midnight after a long week at work. I couldn’t find my handwritten checklist either. So, I’ll be rewriting it in the coming weeks.

Anyhow, what should you bring to a quilt class or retreat? Like “essential” sewing supplies, it’s highly personal. I typically take a small machine in a wheeled tote plus everything else in an oversized canvas tote bag. Today, I transported supplies in a wheeled sewing machine trolley, Sew Steady bag and a small canvas tote.

Here’s what I took to today’s class:

Elna STAR sewing machine (which stays packed in its travel case with all machine accessories).
Small Sew Steady table in bag
Pattern book, precut fabrics (should have bagged & labeled them by step# instead of color)
Piecing thread, needles, wonder clips, seam ripper, yellow seam guide, thread snips
Pencil, small ruler, 5×15 ruler, turquoise scissors, rotary cutter, 9×12 mat, mini stash n store.

Need help developing/fine-tuning your own packing list? Here are a few quilt class/retreat checklists that you might find useful in putting together your personal quilt class/retreat checklist.

Quilt Retreats – CreativeBeeStudios

Retreat Packing List – A Little Crispy

What to Pack for a Quilt Retreat – American Patchwork & Quilting

Happy Sewing!

Essential sewing supplies

Have you ever received a supply list for a class that included the item “essential” sewing supplies? What exactly does this mean? “Essential” is somewhat subjective, so I recorded the notions and supplies (no fabric) that I actually used over the course of 7 days. I worked on a pieced/applique quilt top. I also mended a couple of items.

Here’s what I had on my list:

Sewing machine, piecing thread, invisible thread, bobbin thread, appropriate needles for thread, regular, 1/4″ and open toe sewing feet, walking foot & guides, bobbins, lint brush, screwdriver and yellow seam guide for scant 1/4″.

Pins, magnetic pin cushion, wonder clips, seam ripper, purple thang, point turner, seam roller, perfect scissors in orange and turquoise, 8″ gingher shears, 45mm and 60mm rotary cutters with blade changes, hand sewing needles, thread conditioner, silver thimble, needle threader, embroidery scissors, DMC floss, glue bottle with tiny tip, baby wipes, black smooth soleplate no-steam iron, iron spray starch, press cloth, ironing board, mechanical pencil, black sharpie marker and notebook..

Small cutting mat, large cutting mat, assorted rulers 8-1/2″ square, 10-1/2″ square, 6-1/2″ x 12-1/2″, 5″x15″ and 2-1/2″x8″ MSQC rulers plus a couple of specialty rulers I use for HSTs and flying geese.

What’s on your list?

What are your 3 pillars?

What are the 3 most important areas of your life through which you filter all your actions and decisions? I listened to a podcast over the weekend where the interviewee discussed his 3 pillars:

  1. Family
  2. Business/Career
  3. Community

He went on to say that some people have more pillars, but for him, this keeps things simple. For him, faith was not a separate pillar, but was woven through the others.

I’m all for simple. I can’t say that I agree with him in that the 3 pillars always remain in this particular order. Now for him, perhaps they do, but they don’t for me. The pillars are more fluid.

Take family. There are certain family members and friends for whom I would drop everything at a moment’s notice to be there for them. Others – not so much. Certain parts of my extended family are so estranged, I’m not sure the chasm will ever be bridged. This definitely factors into decisions with regard to estate planning and beneficiaries. We don’t have kids. Why would I want to list certain family members as secondary beneficiaries on pension and life insurance benefits if they can’t give me the time of day now?

Career/job was drilled into my head as the most important thing from childhood – well into adulthood. Go to college. Get a job. Work hard. You need the paycheck/benefits. Work comes before anything else. Start a side hustle. Busyness is viewed as a status symbol. So much of our personal identity is tied to our jobs. As the end date gets closer, I’m having a much harder time with this one than I thought. I’ve never gone more than 2-3 months without working. I’m definitely ready for an extended break to enjoy time with hubby, but I also need to have a purpose. If that can’t be filled via future “community” endeavors, possible part-time employment has been discussed. Hubs is good with whatever I decide.

Volunteering and giving back to my community has always been in my top 3 priorities. No arguments from me there.

I think there also needs to be a category for SELF. If I don’t make filling my own bucket a priority, then there’s not much left for family, career or community.

As I get closer to retirement, the people part of the pillars has become the priority. I no longer think twice about taking off from work if home/family requires it. At work, it’s more about student connections and and helping coworkers than completing my lengthy to-do list. As we resume in-person therapy dog visits, I’m trying to participate in more group activities and get to know other members. Not surprising, it’s work that offers the most social connections. Filling that void is going to be a challenge once I stop working, but a good chunk of it can be replaced through various volunteer activities. And working my side hustle. 🙂

%d bloggers like this: