Saturday, I was up and out the door before 6:30 am to meet Jan and Marilyn at the Park 'n' Ride. I drove Jan's car to Lebanon, NH, where we met a group of other quilters bound for Massachusetts. The trip was arranged by the Northern Lights Quilt Guild, and it left slightly early. Guess we quilters are an eager bunch.
Our first stop was the Quilted Crow in Bolton, MA, where we were greeted with coffee, lemonade, goodies, and a free fat quarter. The rather large store offers a variety of styles, from Kaffe Fasset to Jo Morton, including a great selection of hand-dyed wool. We were all like kids in a candy store, and the line to cash out was long but offered a nice opportunity to chat with some of the people we were traveling with. I got some fat eighths and a scrap bag of wool before heading out onto the lawn to eat a sandwich.
New England Quilt Museum. The town was the site of many textile mills and still retains some cobbled streets and abandoned brick factory buildings in its downtown. The museum used to be a bank and has enlarged its exhibit space since I was there about 20 years ago. Its two shows were fabulous.
First was an exhibit of the best quilts from various guilds throughout New England. Viewers were asked to vote on their favorite, and next year the winning guild will be invited to show there. Most of the quilts were fairly traditional, so I loved them! This New York Beauty features a lovely border design. My favorite quilt was a sampler, mostly paper-pieced, of Cape Cod, but it was difficult to stand back far enough for a photo to do its justice.
The other exhibit was called Threads of Resistance and depicted some very creative, yet often angry scenes related to our country's current political situation. One consisted of many colored squares with a hot pink pussy cat hat front and center. Another showed an American flag with a quote from Theodore Roosevelt, noting that patriotism means supporting the country but not necessarily the president.
After the museum (which has a great gift shop!), we wandered down to a couple of art galleries which had special quilt-related exhibits, including one with quilts on the theme of "the little black dress."
The National Park Service Visitors Center offered an overview of the sites, which are all fairly walkable, including the artist Whistler's home, now a museum. Jack Kerouac, who also grew up in Lowell, was featured on a panel, and I was pleased to see several familiar books about nearby Lawrence's Bread and Roses strike. I would have enjoyed a full day in Lowell, but we had to board the bus at 3:30 to get us home before 7 pm. All in all, it was a very fulfilling day, a true quilters' holiday.