Quilt Story Saturday – Why I Love Quilting With Friends

A collection of The Quilt Rambler's Quilts
The Quilt Rambler on the road
All packed for the next quilting with friends adventure

I love quilt retreats, guild sew-ins, or just setting aside time for quilting with friends, don’t you? It’s almost indescribable! Getting away from the responsibilities and taking time to focus just on the pleasure of quilting.

Today’s Quilt Story Saturday is a walk down memory lane of these special times with friends.

Quilting With Friends

I’m so blessed to be a part of a wonderful quilt guild and to have so many quilting friends both within the guild and within the quilt community at large. It’s sew much fun to get together to sew!

As I was flipping through photos trying to come up with a story for today I thought I’d just let the story be in photos. I’ve shared before how wonderful it is to be able to sew with friends – today I’d like to share with you another one of my reasons why – it’s called feeling accomplished!

The Quilt Rambler
A throwback to 2015, I finished this quilt at a guild sew-in – pattern from Missouri Star Quilt Company – yes lime green is a neutral!

In the past, I was very active in attending quilt retreats (actually coordinated one for over 10 years) and attended as many as I was invited to (grin). I was always the overachiever packing my car to the brim with projects! I remember one retreat where I had so many UFO’s that needed borders and I hadn’t decided what fabric to use so I just packed a bunch of bolts to bring with me to audition…I love a good quilt shop sale and will generally buy what’s left on the bolt if I think it will make a good border or future backing.  My saying was “I’m working from my stash and only purchasing new fabric for background, borders, backing or by the bolt!” Anyway, I can remember one of my girlfriends asking if she could go shopping in the trunk of my car! Friends are good for sharing too!


The Quilt Rambler on The Road
Retreat allowed me the time to focus on finishing the borders on this quilt, pattern from Missouri Star Quilt Company

I truly enjoy being able to just sit and sew without interruptions or obligations. Of course, there’s lots of chattering going on, but I work best when I’m talking! Imagine that!

The Quilt Rambler
Finally pieced, now if I could just get around to quilting it! Simple strip piecing, no pattern

Most of the quilts that I make personally are what I call “throw down quilts” more commonly known as utility quilts. I enjoy just making a quilt that is bright, fun, and quick to give me the satisfaction of completion. These quilts generally have no purpose and may be “quilts in waiting” as in waiting to be quilted for many years because they were just made for the pure joy of feeling the fabric, hearing the hum of the machine, and most importantly  sharing the laughter with friends.  Oh, and it’s all about that ta-da moment too!

This was a UFO waiting for years to be pieced, now it’s a quilt in waiting – this is a Jodi Barrows pattern


The Quilt Rambler
Another fast fun quilt waiting to be quilted made from a charm pack using a pattern from Missouri Star Quilt Company


The Quilt Rambler
This one was pieced at one retreat and borders added later at another retreat. Challenge to make from a 10″ square precut. Jaybird pattern


The Quilt Rambler
Made from 2.5″ strips. Can’t remember the pattern source (sigh)


Occasionally I will use the opportunity to learn a new technique while working with my quilting friends – it helps to have someone to bounce ideas off of and to share the joys and sometimes the frustrations!

I learned that I did not like this method of machine piecing a cathedral window quilt (pattern from Missouri Star Quilts)

Or I will challenge myself to pull out a ruler that I haven’t used in a long time or work with a set of fabrics that I’ve collected.

The Quilt Rambler
Lazy Angle ruler by Lazy Girl was a fun method for this strip pieced quilt, except when I cut a few of the stars the wrong way..saving those to piece to the back! Oh well, once it’s quilted it will make a great lap quilt or picnic quilt for the car


Yep, sewing with friends is great group therapy! Sometimes though I do have to bring my “work” with me to the retreats or sew-ins but it’s still fun!

The Quilt Rambler
Making another class sample for my Double Occupancy workshop, made with Deb Tucker’s Hunter Star Ruler


Illuminated Journey By Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler
Another class sample in a different colorway for Illuminated Journey, original pattern by The Quilt Rambler


Sometimes I know my friends shake their heads at me or roll their eyes (or are doing so on the inside because they are too polite!) because I can get a little crazy with colors. I know the quilt police keep trying to tell me it’s all about value, but I’m kinda wierd in that if I like the colors of the individual fabrics then I don’t see why they won’t play nicely together – they get along in the storage boxes after all!

Scrappy Bargello, pattern from Bonnie Hunter’s website. It may not look like much to someone else, but each of these fabrics is a walk down memory lane

Every now and then I do get a winner. This is one of my current favorites because (1) it’s beachy and (2) it’s made with Deb Tucker’s Leymone Star ruler…have I mentioned how much I love stars?


The Quilt Rambler
Fussy cutting or “tuckerizing” my beach fabric to make a kaleidoscope effect. Here I am sharing this with my CI class August 2017


More Quilting with Friends

It’s been way too long since I’ve been able to sew with friends (darn you Harvey) but I have hopes that will soon change! Actually, more than hopes – I have a plan! Fair warning dear readers – I may be a little AWOL the next week or so….part of it is Harvey reconstruction related, part of it is trying to finish up business taxes, part of it is writing the next pattern, but the biggest part of it is……I’m heading back to Tuckerland! Or close to it!

As a certified instructor with Deb Tucker’s Studio 180 Design, the CI’s have a retreat, or reunion, to keep current with the newest happenings with the Studio 180 Design family. It’s going to be a fabulous time to be introduced to what is coming up as soon to be released products, either techniques, tools or patterns. I can hardly wait!! As exciting as that is, I am most eager to just have some time to walk away from all the things down here and head to the mountains, or at least through the mountains, as we journey to North Carolina next week! Plus I get to sew!! Have sewing machine, will travel!

The best part, truly, is I’m so eager for all the hugs! This girl misses her S180D family! So stay tuned to Facebook or Instagram as I no longer have a laptop (darn you Harvey) so will have to work from my phone and save the blogs for when I return.

This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler, asking “do you quilt with friends?”  Share your stories in the comments below!






4 thoughts on “Quilt Story Saturday – Why I Love Quilting With Friends

    • TheQuiltRambler says:

      When you take time to make sure the fabric is cut a certain way to showcase the design vs just cutting to save fabric. Think of it this way – if you had a print with a really cute puppy and you wanted to see the puppy’s face in your cut vs random cutting that might result in his leg or tail and not his face. It can sometimes leave “holes” in your fabric and not the best choice if you need to conserve fabric ☺️ hope that makes sense Linda

  1. Debbie says:

    I hope you will put the guild sew-ins on your calendar and make it to some of them. I like to sew with you!

    • TheQuiltRambler says:

      They have been on my calendar but Harvey keeps interrupting my plans! If it’s not one thing it is another ☺️ I miss sewing with you too and all the Island gals. Hopefully things will settle down soon!

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