I’m dedicating this post to answering your quilting cruise questions. I’ve been on four quilting cruises and they have all been WONDERFUL! Here we go…
1. Do I have to bring my machine?
This depends on the coordinator you are cruising with. The cruises I have been on all provided nice machines with all the goodies. In addition, there is a machine expert on hand who helps with everything, even fills your bobbin! The evening before class starts you have the opportunity for a fun “make and take” project to learn the machines before starting on the cruise project.
2. Are things rolling around? How much does the ship move?
No, luckily things don’t roll around. For the most part the seas are pretty steady. We had one trip with rough seas the first day, but everyone just kept on sewing. Once you get out to sea it is generally smooth sailing. It’s actually like you are sewing in a conference room at a retreat center.
3. What do I have to bring? Is there any prep work?
You only need to bring your general sewing supplies (rotary cutter, small mat, small scissors, pins, thread, seam ripper, etc…). There is no prep work! On my cruises your kits are partially pre-cut so we get sewing pretty quickly on the first day. When you get to the conference room the machines are set up and ready and your kit is waiting for you.
I would recommend bringing an extra project that you need to finish or would like help on. There are a lot of opportunities to sew outside of class time if you choose.
4. Can I bring my spouse or non-quilting friends?
Yes, of course! We always have non-quilters in our group (There is a discounted rate for non-quilters). They are included in group events, like the cocktail party, and have free time on the ship while we sew. In fact, my hubby and two other wise guys took the bronze medal in the progressive trivia on the last cruise!
Team Genius: Andrew, Mike and Jerad
5. What if I leave something behind or need a supply?
Most cruises include a small store in the conference room for basic supplies and extra fun stuff. All of my cruises have been sponsored by shop owners and they take care of your every need. Your kits are provided on the ship and I bring extra “oops” fabric just in case. Like any vacation, be prepared to go home with more than you came with!
6. What exactly happens on a quilting cruise?
When you board the ship you have free time to explore and settle in. The cruise coordinator will send all of the information to you ahead of time, so no need to be a nervous first-time cruiser.
There is a check-in time in the conference room where you receive your agenda for the cruise, meet the teacher and coordinator and see where you will be sewing. We sew only on the at-sea days. On port days you are free to do excursions (zip line anyone?), lay by the pool or stroll around the port cities.
The conference room is open after dinner for evening free-sew. Someone is always in the conference room and locks it up after hours, so you can leave your projects at your station between sewing times. One evening we have a trunk show and extra demo/project.
One of the most exciting things on a quilting cruise is the Wrap Up Party on the last night. We have refreshments, games and Michelle from Quilt Retreat at Sea does a slide show from the week. Also, we give out TONS of prizes!
7. What if I don’t have someone to go with me?
Check with the cruise coordinator because they can match you up with a roommate or give you the single rate for a stateroom. Once on board you will be part of a large group and will never have a dull moment.
8. Which quilting cruise should I choose?
When you are choosing a quilting cruise keep in mind your travel to the embarking city, the teacher, the project you will be working on and the ports you will be visiting.
If you’re price shopping make sure you are comparing apples to apples. Some advertised cruise prices don’t include taxes, port fees, gratuities, kit fees, etc. These things can really add cost to your trip! Know before you register what the cost will include.
9. Are you doing another quilting cruise?
Yes! I have another cruise scheduled for August 2-9, 2015 to the Eastern Caribbean. We will enjoy a spacious sewing environment aboard Royal Caribbean’s amazing Independence of the Seas.
We depart from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and will visit San Juan, Puerto Rico; Philipsburg, St. Maarten; and Basseterre, St. Kitts. We will have three quilt workshop days at sea, plus open Stitch & Sail time.
NEW AND EXCITING!! Our stop at St. Kitts will include an amazing tour of the Caribelle Batik factory and shop!
This cruise is sponsored by Kelly Ann’s Quilting. If you been on a cruise with Kelly Ann you know how much fun she is!
10. How do I get more details and sign up?
Go to Quilt Retreat at Sea and Michelle will be happy to answer all of your questions and you can register online for the cruise. There is a small deposit and monthly payment plans are available. Sign up by May 15th and receive a $50 discount!
I will be announcing more details here and on my Facebook page until the cruise. Hope you can join us!!
If you have more questions that I didn’t answer here, please PM me on Facebook or email firstname.lastname@example.org.