Monday, October 1, 2012

Beaver Island Quilt Retreat 2012 Gwen's Quilts

I spent most of the last week at White Birch Lodge in Elk Rapids, Michigan at my second Beaver Island Quilt Retreat with Gwen Marston.  Quilting friends, Carol, Caitie and Christine and I travelled together, stopping at a couple of quilt stores along the way, of course!

When we finally arrived at our destination, we claimed our sewing spots and got settled in for some warm up sewing after supper. I worked on some 9 patches for a swap.

The next morning, Gwen did a lecture/trunk show on this year's theme, "Liberated Medallions". It was two hours of liberated bliss, listening to Gwen discuss the history of medallion quilts and then show us some of the medallion quilts that she has made over the years.

She had a binder filled with pictures of old medallion quilts which have inspired the quilts that she has made.

Gwen had much quilting wisdom to share and many quilts to show! All I could do was just drink it all in.
This one was not quilted yet--broken dishes in two sizes around a center panel. The fabrics are from Holland. This was one of my favourites!

I loved the colours and the wrap-around flying geese on this quilt.

Gwen made this quilt to celebrate the good things in her life at the time it was made--her children, horses, flowers, etc. Sorry I did not get a better picture.

More broken dishes and flying geese.

This quilt had an extra row of on point 16 patches to make in rectangular rather than square like most of the medallion quilts that she showed us.

This liberated sampler is made from several orphan blocks that she had leftover from other projects. I loved this one too!

More amazing applique.

Pierson was Gwen's beloved dog. He was big and fluffy and well loved!

It was neat to see quilts that have been featured in Gwen's books.

A string medallion.

Liberated stars...

and a liberated flying goose!

The pile at the end of the show---enough inspiration to last for years in my quilting life!

Later this week, I will show you my liberated medallion quilt top and how it evolved.

To end this post, here is a picture of the dock at White Birch Lodge reaching out into Elk Lake.

There will probably be more pictures of this dock appearing in later posts. I did a series of pictures at different times of the day and from different perspectives.


  1. How wonderful for you and all who attended. Kim has been sharing her experience, and the new people she has met, too. How cool, we'll be seeing new liberated quilts showing up!

  2. Thanks for the show and tell. Sounds like a wonderful and inspiring week. Look forward to hearing/seeing more!
    Debbie R.

  3. I visited earlier but didn't leave a comment. I think the quilts are all fabulous and inspiring but I am really attracted to the string quilt. Thank you for sharing!

  4. wow, so amazing to see all these gorgeous quilts. woohoo!