Monday, April 23, 2012

The San Antonio Modern Quilt Guild retreat (recap)

Cake, or not, this was the theme of the weekend for the group of SAMQG members who traveled to the Deep Woods retreat center in Smithville TX for the second annual retreat.  With quilt makers and scrapbookers in mind, the Deep Woods facility was ideal for our retreat:  a large building with great lighting, plenty of design wall and table space, a dining room with commercial kitchen directly off the work-area, and 6 bedrooms, each with a full bath, in separate hallways off the opposite side of the work area from the dining room.  Each room had 4 twin beds, which were very comfortable (I'm embarrassed to admit I was concerned about this:  I'm such a baby!).
The retreat center owners provided a lovely lunch and dinner.  There was a bit of confusion about breakfast, but no worries:  we had enough "stuff" of our own to deal with it.  I believe we will bring some breakfast items the next time we come.
One of the first things we did was make our beds.  We were encouraged to bring a quilt for our bed:  it could be one we made, or one that had some special meaning to us.  Most had quilts that had a wonderful story attached to it.  I loved the quilts people brought that their mother made when they left for college, old quilts that had been acquired by another family member (provenance unknown, but still beloved), and quilts that had been made for another loved one.  We voted on our favorite which was not an easy task.  By overwhelming majority, Erica Mitchell won for the beautiful quilt she made, but had not yet given, her grandmother.  Equally gorgeous on both sides, the quilt is something special!
The group gathers in one of the bedrooms to hear the story of each quilt.

Erica Mitchell's beautiful quilt, made for her grandmother.

My design wall with 2 projects residing side-by-side.

I can't overstate how happy I am with my new SewEzi table.
I placed it at a right-angle to the work table, giving me extra room for my supplies.
My position to the table was perfect, from an ergonomic standpoint.
This has become critical to me since I am struggling with chronic tendonitis and ulnar neuropathy,
all a result of repetitive motion.  Stretch, people!!
I'm adding another little tidbit:  I always carry a Dyna Disc when I go to places with long sitting/sewing
sessions.  What is it?  I discovered this little gem many years ago from a fiber-artist friend.
I bought one to carry along to the many (and I mean MANY) softball games I attended with my daughters.  Bleachers are hard, full of splinters, and this little thing really made a difference.
The other added bonus:  it raises my height a couple inches which helps with the positioning at the sewing table.  Check it out:
Here is the link.

Another shot of a portion of the large work room.


  1. Looks like you had a lovely weekend! I've been looking at sewing tables and the Sewezi is a top consideration. I was wondering how you felt about its stability and vibration from machine shake? Also, do you feel that you are seated in the middle of the table with the needle in front of you? Thanks for any input!

  2. All good questions, Paula. I experienced a very faint amount of vibration when I was running the machine full-tilt, but this could easily be solved by hanging something heavy on the underside of the table. It was a concern of mine, as well, but it really didn't bother me as it was so slight.
    As to position: I felt I was appropriately oriented to the machine, just like I am when working at home at my Horn table. My main delight was how ergonomically sound my position was in relation to the height of the table: perfect!! Hope this helps!

    1. Thank you, Leslie, for taking the time to respond. It's good to know that the vibration is just faint. It's the "wobble factor" that would have been discouraging. I'm glad to hear that the height was perfect also. I suffer from lower disc degeneration, so posture is a priority. It's certainly difficult to sit for lengthy classes with my machine atop a banquet table. I hope you have continued satisfaction with your SewEzi! I think I've made my decision. Thank you!

  3. Paula, I added an image that might be helpful: a Dyna disc is an exercise balance disc cushion, probably used in a variety of ways, but I have found it to be a useful component of sitting well in an uncomfortable chair when sewing. I have an old back injury so this is important to me.
    An aside: by the time my youngest daughter graduated from high school I had quite a number of softball-parent "converts" who carried their own cushions to games!!

    1. I just might have to give that one a try! Thanks!


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