Samantha Lindgren from A Gathering of Stitches told us about their summer quilting retreats in Maine. She’s back with all of their upcoming garment sewing retreats too. Registration is open for all of the events.

Are you looking for a modern sewing event or retreat? Take a look at our ongoing Go + Sew series!


The Event: A Gathering of Stitches Garment Sewing Retreats in Maine
A Gathering of Stitches is proud to offer quality learning opportunities for sewists that focus on time, space and individual attention for those who want to move their craft forward. For 2016 we have six retreats for garment sewists that showcase the talents of eight respected names in the world of modern garment sewing.

  • Lauren Taylor, of the popular blog LLADYBIRD, returns for a long weekend of garment refinement. This retreat offers garment sewists a chance to get expert and individual consultation, assistance and encouragement from Lauren on a project (or projects) of their choosing.
  • Norma Loehr of Orange Lingerie, and the extremely popular Marlborough pattern, will lead a small group through the entire process of fitting and constructing a bra that truly fits!
  • Katrina Rodabaugh, a strong voice for Slow Fashion and upcycling/recycling, has recently transplanted to the East Coast, and will bring her individual style of mending for a workshop.
  • Jen Beeman, the designer behind Grainline Studio sewing patterns, will lead a long weekend of shirt making, working through her popular Archer pattern.
  • Cal Patch is bringing her expansive workshop, Draft (and Make!) Your Own Patterns, to the studio for a five-day sewing extravaganza.
  • The dynamic duo of Jaime Jennings and Amber Corcoran from Fancy Tiger Crafts will lead a retreat introducing the curious to the joy of garment sewing, using their best selling patterns, the Sailor top and the Fen dress/top.
  • Christine Haynes (designer of the popular Emery dress) and Alexia Abegg (Green Bee patterns and designer for Cotton + Steel) are teaming up to teach Alexia’s versatile Pearl Shift dress in a long weekend of sewing and sharing.

Katrina Rodabaugh

Where + When?
All of our garment sewing retreats take place at our Portland studio which is fully equipped for the job with three 4′ x 8′ cutting tables, multiple ironing stations (including a gravity feed iron), sergers, sewing machines, cutting tables, notions, measuring implements of all stripes and much, MUCH more.

  • Lauren Taylor – April 13-17
  • Norma Loehr – April 23 + 24
  • Katrina Rodabaugh – May 28
  • Jen Beeman – June 8-12
  • Cal Patch – July 11-15
  • Jaime Jennings + Amber Corcoran of Fancy Tiger Crafts – September 21-25
  • Christine Haynes + Alexia Abegg – November 10-13

Lauren Taylor in a workshop.

How much does it cost, and what’s included?

  • Lauren Taylor: $525 – Includes all instruction, a welcome reception with pizza and libations, lunches each day, a celebratory meal at a local restaurant and a goodie bag.
  • Norma Loehr: $325 – Includes all instruction and a goodie bag.
  • Katrina Rodabaugh: $150 – Includes all instruction and a goodie bag.
  • Jen Beeman: $525 – Includes all instruction, a welcome reception with pizza and libations, lunches each day, a celebratory meal at a local restaurant and a goodie bag.
  • Cal Patch: $850 – Includes all instruction, a welcome reception with pizza and libations, lunches each day, a celebratory meal at a local restaurant and a goodie bag.
  • Fancy Tiger Ladies: $900 – Includes all instruction, a welcome reception with pizza and libations, lunches each day, a field trip to Saco River Dye House with a talk by Pam Allen of Quince & Co., a special KAL for the group, a celebratory meal at a local restaurant and a goodie bag.
  • Christine Haynes & Alexia Abegg: $875 – Includes all instruction, a Q & A and trunk show with Christine and Alexia, lunches each day, a celebratory meal at a local restaurant and a goodie bag.

Lodging Options:
All of these workshops take place in Portland, Maine, where there is a wide array of lodging options. Our website has a list with links on the Nitty Gritty page.

How many years has the event been presented, and how many people typically attend?
This is the second year these events have taken place and, while we are very new, we have been extremely gratified by the number of returning attendees. All our workshops are small to ensure that you get as much attention and guidance as you need and want. The largest garment sewing class size we have is ten. We offer an alternative to convention center learning, and a respite from the hustle and bustle of daily life.

What does a typical day (class?) look like?
Workshops vary depending on the teacher and subject matter but we usually start around 9:00 in the morning, work to a noon lunch, have some tasty food, take a little breather and then start up again at 1:30 p.m. Days wrap up around 5 or 6 in the evening, but can extend depending on the group’s needs. Along the way there are many opportunities for discovery, whether that be sharing ideas and experiences, laughter or deep concentration. The emphasis is on the teachers and the group, and their needs and pace. While this is instruction, it feels much more like a relaxed party with stitching friends. We take care of the daily details so you can focus on making. A visit to the blog, Stitches, on our website will offer up all sorts of pictures and words from past participants.

Are there other things to do in the area?
Maine in the summer months is pretty much heaven. Warm days rarely get over 75 and the evenings are cool enough for a light sweater. Maine is full of opportunities for hiking, biking, swimming, sailing, walking, eating and generally blissing out on beautiful landscape. If you’ve never visited Maine, these retreats are a great starting point to dive in to the Pine Tree state. Portland has a world-class (no joke) food scene, so if you like good food it’s a great place to visit! In the past participants have extended their visits beyond the retreat and done some touring of the state. We can point you in the right direction!