Monday, October 17, 2011

Enfield Shaker Museum: A Look Inside

Yesterday, I shared photos with you of Enfield, NH and the Enfield Shaker Village's photos give you a look inside. The stitching retreats were held at the Great Stone Dwelling House, which is also home to the Enfield Shaker Museum....built in 1841, the history of this amazing building was not lost on me....what a treat to stay in this unique environment, free of televisions, radios, phones, etc. (it was so quiet, at night you could hear the loons on the lake). Some might miss those modern day amenities, but I'll take the charm of this historic setting any day...and who misses modern technology when you have the company of talented fellow needleworkers, fabulous views, delicious food, and a full schedule of great events.

Again, you can click on any of the photos for a larger look...and these are from my personal collection - they are not to be copied, printed, used, or posted on the Internet without my written permission. Thank you!

First, a look at the accommodations - the top photo is of the room I have stayed in for both my visits...followed by a couple other rooms. My room still had the inside shutters for window coverings, while others have more modern shades. Pegs still adorn the walls for hanging clothing and various items...and the wooden floors add to the charm of these historic rooms.

At the end of each hallway is a quaint sitting area - where during the events, it was not uncommon to see needleworkers stitching, knitting, or crocheting...

The classroom on the second floor was filled with natural lighting during the day and was quite spacious. The top photo shows the classroom area before places were set...and the bottom photo shows the class binders and kits in place before attendees reserved their places.

All meals were served in the dining room on the first floor - this was the same dining room used by the Shakers, with men dining on one side of the room and women dining on the other. The food was catered by a wonderful local restaurant called Mickey's...and believe me, we did not go hungry - the food was excellent!

After dinner and the evening activities, attendees could visit the stitcher's lounge. This area was located on the other side of the classroom and was filled with comfortable stitching chairs. Although lighting was an issue at night, most everyone brought their own lamps...and you could find stitchers working on a large assortment of projects until the wee hours...lots of laughter and chit chat filled the lounge, where we relaxed in our pajamas!

The West Brethren's Shop houses museum exhibits/displays and is open to the public...during a lunch break, I took a look inside...many Shaker tools were on exhibit, along with displays featuring predominate Shaker skills (such as: herb and flower drying, broom making, woodworking, wool spinning).

The Enfield Shaker Museum also has a WONDERFUL gift shop, located in two rooms on the first floor of the Great Shaker Dwelling House. It features all sorts of goodies - many made by local artisans. There are beautiful Shaker boxes, gorgeous sewing boxes, pincushions, trays, jewelry boxes, and baskets - you can find all sorts of books on the Shakers, quilts, Shaker toys, pegs, cards/postcards, and name it. Before you ask....yes, I did purchase a few things...but I had to ship them home, so you will have to wait for a photo....

Finally - something to make you smile. Late into the evening, while many were still stitching, we decided it would be fun to hang the chair from the class project (an 8" miniature Shaker chair) on one of the pegs next to a couple full-size we took Teresa's completed chair and placed it on the wall...I just had to have a photo!

So there you have it - a look inside the Enfield Shaker Museum...a very unique, historical setting for a needlework retreat...


  1. I like that the classroom and the dining room aren't in the same area. It looks like the classroom area is a lot roomier. Your photos make me smile remembering last year.

  2. What a wonderful place and the simplicity of the rooms.
    I definitely have to visit there, sometime.


  3. Another fabulous round of pictures! Thanks for sharing memories of your visit!


  4. Such wonderful memories and great pictures. Sounds like a great experience indeed. I have studied some on the Shakers and watched Ken Burns' PBS special from years gone by.
    The chair picture is great, so glad you did it. Also love the pictures of the bedroom area. Why do they have the blankets displayed in that fashion? Is there something significant about it? I am kind of assuming so.

  5. I grew up in New Hampshire, but never visited the Shaker Village. I think I would have enjoyed it. Alas, I live in New York now and am not in a position to travel, so I am thoroughly enjoying your photos. Thanks for sharing.

  6. very sweet pictures..thank you so much for sharing them with us xxx

  7. I love all your pictures! Thank you so much for sharing them with us. I would not have been able to resist a little something from the gift shop either. Can't wait to see what comes home to live at your house. :o)

  8. The museum is a beautiful setting inside as well! Everything looks so bright and spacious.
    Love the picture of the chairs!!

  9. Glad to hear you got home safely. I had a wonderful time meeting you. I would so enjoy taking another class with you.
    Teresa's Heartfelt Stitches