‘Quilting by the Lake’ Retreat Continues to Bring Sewers Together

STURGEON LAKE, Minn.– One group of women took some time to get away and enjoy one of their favorite hobbies together. And they say they are sew ready to go.

Quilting by the lake, an annual sewing retreat at Camp Miller in Sturgeon Lake continued its more than three decades-long tradition of bringing people from around the state together over their passion for sewing.

From now until Sunday, everyone inside will enjoy some much-needed time to work on their own projects. With equipment and fabric brought from their homes, along with group projects like table runners and their service project of new curtains for one of the camp’s buildings.

“It just feels good to use your creative side and make things that are useful,” said Organizer Sandy Carlson.

The retreat is smaller than in recent years because of the pandemic. Along with mask wearing, safety measures include sanitizing tools and equipment they all share like the ironing board. But sewers say it’s all worth it to still have this weekend.

“We’re really glad to be able to do this event this year because with COVID, a lot of the retreats that have been in the early spring we didn’t get to do because of COVID,” said Carlson.

Bridget Chesley came up from Big Lake to join in. Her main project is putting together pillowcases from the Disney movie “Frozen.” It will be a Christmas gift for her niece to go along with the “Frozen” quilt she made.

And she says it’s not an easy process.

“This one has a trim and a border and a main piece. And then i just kind of follow the directions, get them sewn up, get them inside out, and then try and make a pillowcase out of them,” said Chesley, who was on her third sewing retreat.

Even though this is the most unique sewing getaway they’ve seen, sewers are enjoying the time they get together to learn from each other and to spend some time together, and with their sewing machines.

“Well, you guys have a lot of screwdrivers in your garage and we have many rulers and cutting tools. Our sewing machines are like our racecars so we like to keep those in good working order,” explained Carlson.

If you weren’t able to be a part of this year’s retreat, organizers are encouraging that you stock up on fabric and get ready for quilting by the lake 2021 next October.

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