Monday, April 2, 2012

2012 Island Retreat

I'm back home again... just!  Parts of me are still reviewing the retreat hosted by the Qualicum Beach Weavers and Spinners Guild and held in Parksville, BC. and my time away, while the rest of me is doing laundry... back to normal again.

It was a fun time and it was especially neat to spend it with Lynnette.  I'm very lucky in that she's an easy and caring room mate and I enjoyed our adventure.

The sun was shining when I left and by the time I reached Nanaimo on my journey north, I was driving through snow!  Mostly driving rain and lots of water on the road, but still snow. I can recall telling myself that March was not going out like a lamb!  I finally arrived and met up with Lynnette and we settled into our room at the Quality Inn Resort.

This was our view:

I believe that's Hornby Island and beyond that is the mainland and Coastal Mountain ranges. I love the little gazebo....

When the tide came back in later, it looked like this:

Its a very shallow flat bay and at low tide many people were out walking on the flats. I could imagine a sunny warm day and going walking in the shallow water pools!

We took our spinning wheels downstairs and set them up.... then went to the vendors room and went shopping! Unfortunately, I didn't take any pictures in there but there were four vendors: Knotty by Nature (from Victoria), Pagan Creations (from Campbell River) and Hummingbird Fibres (from Errington) and PCW Fiberworks (from Saltspring Island. I bought some spinning fibre but nothing else... despite being labeled a 'spinners and *weavers* retreat, none of them really brought anything weaving related! No yarns, no books,.... nada!   Rather unfortunate but I do have a full stash  so can't grumble.   I hope that next time they will reconsider their inventory.

After supper on Friday, there was a show and tell. Here's a sampling:

Double weave placemats by Sharon S. 

Defected double weave scarf by Jennifer V.

Paper spots by Lynnette

It took me a long time to wind down and finally go to sleep that night!  Even then, I watched the clock advance all night long. The best sleep was the hour before the alarm of course!

After a lovely breakfast, we got busy spinning and the important job of saying hi to familiar faces from retreats of the past, and meeting new friends.  Another cruise through the vendor area...... and then it was lunch time. These retreats are such hard work!  :)

After lunch we attended a presentation on the history of Tartans by John Fitzpatrick and it was quite enjoyable. We viewed many slides of various tartans, the recorded history of tartans from 4,000 BCE to more present times. It ended with a slide of the tartan of the Guild of Canadian Weavers!  Both Lynnette and I applauded as we both know the tartan designer as a friend. (The GCW have a newly redesigned web page by the way!)

There were other presentations: all about PCW Fiberworks with Bob Keates (which I have taken before), and a talk and slide show on Peruvian Textiles by Judith Crosbie which I hear was very good and I'm sorry that I missed it!

There was also a bag exchange. Make and bring one...get another to take home. There were some very creative bags!

Meanwhile, you spun that newly purchased fibre on your wheel, visited with your neighbour and caught up with old friends:

Here Lynnette is sitting on my seat and chatting with Heather. Looks like Heather's unique Scottish Haldane wheel (built in Fife, Scotland) is getting a closer inspection. That's my Majacraft wheel in front of Lynnette.

The spinning room was destined to become the banquet room for that evenings dinner so we went to our room for some quiet time and to get ready.  Every one was back at 6 pm for dinner and wearing their finery. The dinner included roast beef, pork medallions and salmon and it was all delicious. Finally it was fashion show time and there were twenty four entries. Here are a few entries and there will be a link to all photos at the end of the post.

Beautiful hand knit shawls in the audience

A stunning coat with card woven band details. 

Scarves and shawls!

The weavers hand shake was happening all over the room!

My thanks to Gloria for modelling the Little Lochmaben shawl.

Here Sharon is waiting her turn to take the shawl Aurora for a walk around the room.

It was a wonderful time and all too soon over! The next morning, we woke to this:

April Fools joke?  NOT!  I had to shovel  two inches of snow off the car before heading for home.  Some of the die hards were still in the hall spinning away...

I have created a Photoshare with 80 pictures of the weekend and you can access it here   If you were an attendee of the Retreat  or know someone who did,  please feel free share the link and also to download. Please just add that these pictures were taken by me. Thanks...  Susan Harvey


Theresa said...

How FUN! Such beautiful things in the fashion show. That coat is amazing and of course, those lovely scarves.

dorothylochmaben said...

Glad the retreat went well but bad luck with the purchases or lack of them ! The pictures of the show and tell are lovely and your two shawls looked stunning. Wonder if they both came back home with you ?
It will take you all of this week to settle down again !

Linda said...

What a fun and relaxing weekend that appears to have been. Particularly when you have a close friend weaver to attend with, that makes it just extra special. It looks like a great variety of hand-crafted garments were presented. Your shawls were, no doubt, a big hit!

Welcome back home! No matter where the fun is had, it is always nice to come back home.