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    Retreat favor ideas

    Hi Fellow Quilters!

    I run a retreat in Northern MI twice a year for my bee and a few additional friends. This November will be our 21st retreat. Since I do this as a volunteer (in other words, not for profit) I try to make inexpensive things for the gals as favors. Through the years I've done several pin cushions, snap bags, pocket kleenex holders and probably more that I can't think of right now. Sometimes I give away products such as "purple things", quilters pins and fat quarters. One year I found some nice toothbrush holders for 50 cents and gave them away with quilters pencils. Some of the gals still use them for pencils and such! I'm willing to try any idea because frankly, I'm out of ideas!

    I had thought the deal of the day might work great - get some inexpensive charm packs but since you can only get one, well, that shot that idea down!

    Does anyone have any ideas for something I can give the gals? My budget comes out of my own pocket so I'm thinking $2.50 to $3.00 a person would be good. I'm willing to put in the time making something if I can figure out what to make. I know quilters love pin cushions but gee, how many can we use? :-)

    Does anyone have any ideas? Something they've seen or perhaps received at a quilting related event?

    Thanks in advance!! I'm new to this site, taking a few minutes every night to read. I've already found an idea for a Christmas gift for my sister in law.

    Julie

    #2
    Re: Retreat favor ideas

    Hi Julie

    What Fun!!!!! I recently bought a pair of scissors and it came with a LANYARD. I found a web site that sells them and they are pretty inexpensive. It's kind of nice and although mine is made for my scissors and has a rubber cover that is attached to the lanyard, I think you could find something that can attach to the small scissors and the lanyard that allows you to stretch the scissors out to where you need to trim some thread etc...

    Here is the website: http://www.namifiers.com/products/Lanyards.aspx?

    Hope you find something fun and unusual for your retreat!

    Karen

    Comment


      #3
      Re: Retreat favor ideas

      How about a coaster? You could make simple block designs from scraps about 6 inch square or even hexagons or octogons and use a relatively heavy batting. Or use an ironing board cover for the backing fabric. Make them all different, or all the same as the spirit and fabric moves you.

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        #4
        Re: Retreat favor ideas

        I like the lanyard idea. I saw some girls at a quilt show that had their scissors on lanyards made out of fabric that looked like tape measures. It looked really fun. I don't know where they got the fabric from but it was lovely.
        Quilting through the dull times
        northstarquilting.blogspot.com

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          #5
          Re: Retreat favor ideas

          Jenny shares the lanyard idea on one of the msqc tutorials!

          I personnaly would hang myself if i had my snippet scissors around my neck all the time!! LOL

          hugs, Suzi
          Two of my favorite things, to encourage and to be encouraged
          hugs, Suzi
          http://suzi.mypremierdesigns.com/
          it's what i do when i'm not here sewing with you

          GOD Bless America

          Comment


            #6
            Re: Retreat favor ideas

            Pot holders maybe? They go quick and maybe put 2 to a pack.

            Bookmarks. I've seen those patterns for free out there too. Instead of making them pieced, maybe you could just get some material with a sewing theme on them and make them as a whole piece. Just use something as a stabilizer so they aren't so flimsy and turn them right side out. Hmmm, maybe I'll make some of those myself.

            Hugs,
            http://www.flickr.com/photos/quiltsbytrish
            http://quiltdreaming.blogspot.com
            http://pinterest.com/TrishLapp


            What if you woke up today and the only things you had were the things you thanked God for yesterday? :icon_hug:quilting trish

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              #7
              Re: Retreat favor ideas

              Good morning ladies, thanks for all the responses!

              I love the lanyard idea and especially the ones using a tape measure fabric. I did some research and found one that uses fabric - cut two strips, seam the sides, turn and finish the ends. I'm wondering if I should use stabilizer on the fabric because it might stretch. I also checked out the premade ones and they're made with more of a canvas type (heavier duty) of material so I'm wondering if I should use grosgrain ribbon. I was unable to find the tutorial someone mentioned from MSQC on making a lanyard. I think a field trip to Joanns might be in order!

              Speaking of lanyards, I was at a flea market a few years ago and bought one that was specifically made for water bottles. I bought it, wore it that day but haven't worn it since.

              I used to make nametags for this group but making new ones every time got old. So a couple retreats ago I found someone with a cricut and she cut out the names, I laminated them and attached them with a clip to some mardi gras beads. Now I only have to make new nametags for new people. Why did it take me 9 years to figure that one out?

              Your posts made me think about what I have done. I have done bookmarks. I've done rectangle ones using a stacked coin pattern (miniature!), I've done the ones that are triangular and fit on the corner of your page and I've done book "thongs". The gals loved the thongs . . . they're just a piece of cattail with beads on either end. The cattail goes through the spine of the book and the beads stick out the ends. I've also printed and laminated bookmarks where I put the date and theme of the next retreat on it gave it to them as they left.

              I've done coasters too. For our western theme I made them out of old denim using ragged edges and stenciling a cowboy hat on them with a bleach pen. Worked great. Recently we had a puzzle theme and I made everyone a batik coaster with a nine patch resembling a sudoku.

              I've also done potholders but just the ones that are sort of a heart shaped mit. I haven't done any square ones. That's a great idea to use an ironing pad for the silver part. I bought the quilted silver stuff and it was pretty expensive. I may save that idea for our March retreat.

              Now you can see why I'm running out of ideas! Thank you so much for taking time to reply. I'm going to take the lanyard idea and run with it! The gals can use them for their snippers or for their keys.

              I hope you all have a wonderful day. It's off to work I go!

              Julie

              Comment


                #8
                Re: Retreat favor ideas

                sounds great! i thought of a ocuple other ideas but ask again in the spring and i will see if can remember then LOL
                tell us more about your retreat - is it in Michigan? I was born and raised in Kalamazoo!! Now in DeLand - near Daytona Beach Florida.

                post pictures when you get the lanyards done - we want to see

                hugs, Suzi
                Two of my favorite things, to encourage and to be encouraged
                hugs, Suzi
                http://suzi.mypremierdesigns.com/
                it's what i do when i'm not here sewing with you

                GOD Bless America

                Comment


                  #9
                  Re: Retreat favor ideas

                  Blimey, your girls are very lucky. You obviously put a lot of time and thought into your gifts.
                  Quilting through the dull times
                  northstarquilting.blogspot.com

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Re: Retreat favor ideas



                    This is the fabric I was thinking of, I think it's by American Jane.
                    Quilting through the dull times
                    northstarquilting.blogspot.com

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Re: Retreat favor ideas

                      I'm pretty sure I've seen that fabric in my local store. I know they carry a lot of American Jane Fabrics. I'm going to check this weekend. Thanks for the heads up on it.

                      Yes, I do a lot for the ladies but then again they've done a lot for me too. I've been with this same quilting bee for 28 years now - every month. They were the support group that got me through a lot of tough times in my life.

                      As you all know, quilters are very special people!

                      BTW, I meant rattail above, not cattail . . . sheesh, I shouldn't type early in the morning!

                      Julie

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Re: Retreat favor ideas

                        How about buying some packages of inexpensive white notes/envelopes and print quilt motifs/designs on the front of each note. If you bought say a box of 20, you could package them up for each person with 5 in each pack, tied with a ribbon. Or recipe cards, buy plain and print.
                        I've even seen cute postcards that have fabric sewn on.
                        Just a thought if you are skilled at that type of thing.
                        patti
                        Patti
                        "Like" me on Facebook @ Sweet Cherry Quilting to help spread the love of all things crafty and quilted!

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Re: Retreat favor ideas

                          That's another great idea Patti . . . it's a good excuse to replace my printer cartridges too. There used to be some store in town where you could get plain notecards and envelope, I'm going to have to check to see if they're still there.

                          I've seen the postcards too. Some of the gals in my bee have made them. They're really cute but wow, it's a lot of work for something the Post Office is just going to mess up. They do seem to hold up well though.

                          A girlfriend of mine took some pictures of some barn quilts while she was traveling through the midwest this summer. She mounted the photographs on notecards and they look great. She also framed 3 of them and gave it as a thank you gift to the person who fed her cats while she was away . . . that would be yours truely! It looks great in my sewing room. Barn quilts and barn quilt tours are getting very popular.

                          Suzi, forgot to answer you earlier. I'm from the Grand Rapids area and my retreat is in Cadillac. You're one of those people I think about in February when it's cold and dreary . . . thinking why the heck didn't I move to Florida!

                          Julie

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                            #14
                            Re: Retreat favor ideas

                            Photograph is a good idea! I manage a stationery store where we do in-store printing and know that you can produce a nice personalized note on your home computer yourself. I would probably try to use something small on the front so that you don't have to use up so much expensive ink!
                            Good luck and let us know what you end up doing!
                            patti
                            ps - I am originally from Ludington, Michigan, but lived in Charlevoix and have spent alot of time traveling the state. My ex played fastpitch softball so we were all over the place every weekend years ago! Spent alot of time in Cadillac.
                            Patti
                            "Like" me on Facebook @ Sweet Cherry Quilting to help spread the love of all things crafty and quilted!

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Re: Retreat favor ideas

                              I found some pencil boxes that have a snap on the outside and slide inside a sleeve. They are about the right size for a pair of snipping scissors, marking pencils, and other stuff. They are semi-rigid so they will protect your gear, but not be too clunky. I think they ran about a $1 each at the office supply stores. I have also seen some nice little scissors that run about $2 to $3.
                              You might also keep an eye out for "clearance" items that can be picked up for super cheap. You can make little drawstring bags from fabric scraps and then the "retreaters" can pick their own prize. They can swap with each other to get something they want/need. That way you don't have to find 30 of some particular thing.
                              If you budget is really tight, you could do a fat quarter swap. Everybody brings a fat quarter and they can all go in a basket. The participants each get a number and they get to pick a FQ from the bin. Everybody leaves with something new, and it didn't cost you a fortune!
                              Good luck with your retreat! It sounds like you make it a fun time for everyone who attends.
                              Be who you are and say what you feel
                              because those who mind don't matter,
                              and those who matter don't mind. - Dr. Seuss

                              http://www.toggpine.wordpress.com

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