myBearpaw Blog by Jo Avery
The Stitch Gathering Edinburgh 2017

Stitch Gathering 2017 Report!

The fifth annual Stitch Gathering retreat happened on Sunday! And it was a wonderful day from start to finish. In fact I think it was the best ever!!

Proceedings actually kicked off the day before with a Private Prosecco Party at my shop/studio! This was a great way for ‘out of towners’ to visit the shop and for folks to mingle and get to know each other a bit before the big day.

We followed this with a meal for 30 of us at Jamie’s Italian in the Assembly Rooms (they make the best burgers in the world!).

One of my favourite parts of the day is greeting everyone first thing, giving out a goody bag and receiving their amazing ticket offerings! This year we had asked for quilted postcards and, wow, what works of art were created! More on these below.

My ‘right-hand woman’ Jane is busy ticking everyone off the register here. I couldn’t even begin to host this event without my amazing helpers Jane, Barbara and Ali!

And this year I had another helper Sarah of Sarah Ashford Studio who came to teach and also stayed with me. She was an absolute stalwart all weekend and I just hope I didn’t wear her out too much! A huge thanks to all my helpers and teachers.

Did you see that little bell in the shot above? I always struggle to get everyone’s attention (over the chatting!) for announcements so this year Ali lent me her Prosecco bell – what a difference it made! Here I am doing my welcome speech.

My dear hubby, Jonathan always comes along (as the token man!) and takes all the official photos of the event. This year he was feeling really unwell and actually went home after lunch. Therefore I don’t have a record of some of the lunchtime and afternoon stuff.

However he did take some shots of Julie’s gorgeous yarn stall…

…and Sarah’s decal shop! This is a new venture for Sarah – sewing room stickers and decals – and she had a great start here as they were VERY popular. Sarah will be getting them all listed on Etsy any day now so you can all buy some!

Here’s Barbara and Jane getting our pop-up shop ready for the onslaught!!

I love this photo from Mandy’s class, look how happy everyone looks!

Here’s Mandy too, she was teaching Abstract Free Form Cutting and the results looked amazing!

Here’s Lucy’s class, she was teaching Curved Hand Piecing.

Time for tea and pastries in the large room, where Fiona and Julie were teaching.

I was teaching Improv Flowers, thank to Sarah for taking all these photos from my class.

This was a fun ‘play’ class and we packed a lot into the three hour time slot.

Here are some of my students with their work, they all did so well and I am looking forward to seeing some beautiful finished panels soon.

Lunchtime was full of excitement, with show and tell, lucky dip (no photos due to photographers incapacity I’m afraid) and a chance to view and then swap the postcard tickets.

Here’s one of the two stunning quilts that Trudi brought along.

Here’s Cat’s incredible version of Sarah Fielke’s ‘Happy Days’ BOM- wow!

Sandra brought along her WIP Bee quilt – this is going to be amazing when finished!

The lovely Margaret and Margaret with the two quilts they and their group made for Siblings Together. They were inspired after hearing about the charity at last year’s event and by the house blocks we made for our tickets. Well done Margarets!

Izzy’s fabulous Lone Star Rising quilt that she started in one of my workshops.

Sheena’s first ever FOQ entry. Fantastic colour palette and quilting!

Fiona brought along this very personal Brit Bee quilt that contains fabric and lace from her mother and grandmother,  as well as many gorgeous block – so beautiful!

Poppy was the hero of the event after being taken seriously ill and hospitalised last week but somehow managing to make it for the afternoon (heavily medicated, though you’d never know it!) and bringing along two fabulous quilts to share!

Luckily Sarah managed to get some photos of the amazing postcards (as Jonathan was flagging at this point).


They are all little works of art!!

I got to see most of them at registration but then was too busy to view them before they were swapped 🙁

So much beauty and so many amazing ideas! What a talented bunch.

Sarah and Trudi taught in the afternoon (beside myself Mandy and Julie), but the class photos run out a little here.
However here is a great shot of the finished Love Improv Needle Cases from Sarah’s class!

It’s a wrap! Here I am doing my goodbye speech after a wonderful day spent catching up with old friends and making new ones, which is my favourite thing about the whole event.

I can’t believe it’s all over for another year!

Fancy joining in next year? Sign up to our newsletter via the website here (fill in your name and email on the right hand side and click ‘sign up’) and look out for ‘save the date’ in January and ‘ticket launch’ in April!

But wait a minute…

…there is still the goody bag to giveaway!!!

Oh my goodness, this year’s was incredible!! 
I’m going to be giving it a post all by itself so I can properly thank the sponsors and 
As in previous years I have two extra bags to giveaway – one here and one on Instagram.
And that post is coming up tomorrow!!

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