Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Teaching in sunny Sarasota

I just got back from teaching at the Friendship Knot Quilters Guild of Sarasota. We did “Peacock Feather” on Feb. 18, and I presented my “Point, Click, Quilt!” lecture that evening.  Yesterday, we did “November Leaves.” Here I am before my presentation with Facebook friend and blog buddy Sharon Bourque, who was visiting from Canada:

It is so much fun to meet up with people I have only met previously online. 

I didn’t know it until I traveled to the Sarasota area last month (to teach at the Venice Guild) and this month, but there is a very large Mennonite and Amish community there. For dinner, my host took me to dinner at Der Dutchman, a local restaurant that features Amish food. It was wonderful!

Bicycles are a common way for them to get around town:

We made a stop at Alma Sue’s Quilts, a fabulous quilt shop.

Several quilt frames were set up inside the shop, and Mennonite ladies were hand quilting. Gorgeous!

Within the past few years, I have discovered that my Brubaker ancestors (Bruppacher) were Swiss Mennonites who came to America about 1710, and settled in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Maybe I got some of my love of quilting from them!

My hosts’ cat is a Bengal (a hybrid breed of domestic cat that result from crossing a domestic feline with an Asian Leopard Cat)! She is lovely, very orange and tiger-y looking:

Somehow, I didn’t get any photos of my Peacock Feather class students; argh! Here are photos from Tuesday’s November Leaves” class where we painted and stitched Tyvek, then melted it and quilted. 

Here’s another wonderful online friend, Angie Knowles, whom I met in person for the first time:

We also melted some of the leftover Tyvek bits:
When class was over, it was time for some R&R. We went out to dinner at a river-side restaurant, where I had a delicious fish sandwich:

This is a tree outside the restaurant, where some beautiful black birds (crows?) had gathered: 


And then my hosts drove me to Siesta Key beach in time for sunset. The sand there is very fine and very white. I didn't even realize when I was taking this shot that I had captured two Mennonite women and their little boy:

Here is the sun going …

… going …
… gone!

Brightly painted lifeguard stations:

Me with my host, Pam:

Photo by Gerry Zeck
The beach is incredibly wide compared to our North Carolina barrier islands:

Seagull tracks:

Sunset silhouette:

Me taking photographs of the sunset:

Photo by Gerry Zeck
Thanks, Friendship Knot Quilters; It was wonderful!


  1. It looks like a wonderful class and a great time to be in a warm sunny place.


  2. Maybe I'll get to follow you to Sarasota, too! Off to Venice on Sunday to teach! Hope you have a bit of time at home for R&R! Cheers, Sarah

  3. Thank you for taking me there loved the class, photos etc etc -best thing about following blogs - all the wonderful places you get to visit from your own lounge!

    1. Happy to take you along, Chris! I'm going to Australia and New Zealand to teach later this year, and will try to post from there as well!

  4. Did you know there is a Brubaker's Sewing Center in PA? Might be some distant relatives...

    Barbara in MD

    1. I just looked it up, Barbara, and I'm sure they are related to me... I think almost all the Brubakers in that part of PA are from the same one or two Brubakers.

  5. Looking forward to meeting you when you come to PA in September. Your classes look wonderful.

  6. Susan, thank you for the most wonderful learning experience! I love my pieces--even in their unfinished state. Can't wait to finish them and try the techniques again. I'll be posting them on my blog later this evening.

    Hope to see you again soon.

    1. You are very welcome, Angie! It was great to meet you!

  7. Sarasota, really. You could have hugged one of my kids for me girl. I'm absolutely certain the class was wonderful and I look forward to the day I can do some of my work outside.

    It's still very cold here in OH!



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