Monday, August 10, 2009

Whidbey Island for quilters

I’m Kathie Kerler, contributing editor to American Quilter magazine. I recently spent time on Whidbey Island located in Washington’s Puget Sound, home to amazing places and opportunities of interest to quilters.

I attended a great four-day design workshop at Gail Harker Creative Studies Center in Oak Harbor. Gail offers numerous classes and courses such as Experimental Machine Stitch and Studies in Art and Color ( Just ten miles south is the Pacific Northwest Art School in Coupeville. The school features a wide variety of fiber arts workshops with renowned quilters (

Whidbey Island offers a variety of lodging options, but a special one is Whidbey Island Creative Escape. This four-bedroom, three-bathroom home is nestled in the woods and set up with quilters, crafters, and artists of all types in mind. There are eight tables and lamps in the workspace, allowing plenty of room for each person. Along with a large kitchen, the retreat has a gas fireplace and Jacuzzi tub for relaxing after a day of creating.

If you’ve forgotten some supplies or want to buy fabric, quilt shops abound. At the north end of the island you will find Sundown Quilt Shop in Coupeville at 101 NW Coveland St., Suite B, and a bead shop just a block or two away. In Oak Harbor, there is Quilters Workshop, located next to a yarn store at 715 S.E. Fidalgo Avenue, #105. The Quilt Shop is in Anacortes at 820 Commercial Avenue. At the island’s south end in Freeland is Island Fabrics at 1609 Main Street. Nearby is the town of Langley where you’ll find Quilting by the Sea tucked into a courtyard at 221 2nd Street, Suite 6.

Currently, there is a quilt exhibit by the Contemporary QuiltArt Association of Washington at Penn Cove Pottery, 26184 State Route 20, Coupeville, (360) 678-6464. The photo shows a view from Penn Cove. As you drive the island, you will see a Naval Air Station, farms, sailboats in bays, and at the north end, the stunning Deception Pass and State Park. Whidbey Island is also home to 40 pairs of eagles.

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