Well, I think I may finally have the energy to reflect back on Sewing Summit, which was not this last weekend but the one before. Around the home front, life was busy to say the least this past week and I could hardly catch my breath. But the early part of this week is shaping up to look a bit more normal, so I’m sneaking this in as I have a few moments to myself (ie. my daughter is currently watching Disney Jr)
And I know everyone does this, but it really did happen…the ONLY thing I forgot to bring was my real camera. So you are stuck with phone pictures (and the occasional gifted photo from people more pulled together than I). lol And of course hotel lighting is tough regardless of who is taking the photo and with what camera. So big props to the bloggers out there who got great photos.
This was my second year attending Sewing Summit (it’s been running for three years). The first year I was a regular attendant, but this year I had the privilege of attending as a teacher. I taught a class on curved piecing and if you have been following along on the blog, then you have seen the project I was teaching. Awesomeness. Attending as a teacher put an extra bundle of nerves in my stomach as I contemplated meeting 200-300 talented women as interesting in fabric and sewing. I flew my little self all the way from South Bend, IN to Salt Lake City, UT…no small flight. But I was by no means the farthest traveler!
I arrived on Wednesday night taking full advantage of gaining two hours with travel time. I was settled in with Elena, my roommate, for a drink at about 10 pm or so. Or 11pm. Who can keep track? We were excited to see each other and catch up in person. But we had to head to bed to be up early for the Shop Hop. I had skipped the official shop hop the first year (introvert on bus full of chatting people = exhausted Angela) but I wanted to give it a whirl this time around. Yes, it was overwhelming, but it was fun! I’m not going to lie though…the lines were long. lol I think I should have won a prize for buying the least. I spent $5 at the first store and about $3 at the second. I did find some Melody Miller typewriter fabric at the third store though and broke everyone’s heart when I bought it all (there wasn’t much over a yard left).
That evening was the official kick off of the Sewing Summit with the mixer/cocktail hour/opening event. I chatted with a few people here. I realized that I didn’t know very many people there this year (and as we found out at the final dinner that partially due to about 90% of the attendees being first year attendees!). It’s always tough for anyone to attend an event where you go up and introduce yourself to people and we all have a bit of a star struck look in our eyes when we catch sight of someone whose work we’ve admired for a long time. But the room was full of chatter and hugs and lots of photo ops.
The next day was the first full day of classes. We all had different personal schedules of classes we had selected to attend. I chose a mainly hands on learning type of schedule…which I loved, but it also wore me out because you had to WORK in those classes rather than just absorb. Thankfully my two absorb classes were right off the bat so I didn’t wear myself out too much before I taught my own class. I took Pat Bravo’s design class and Lindsey’s sewing with Leather lecture. Then there was a light lunch and I took off running like a maniac to finish preparations for my own class.
I taught curved piecing to the new and very experienced sewers alike. The sewing class rooms held about 30 machines I think. And while that may sound small, it really is quite big when you want to talk about something as small as 1/4″ seams! lol We used Sizzix die cutters to help quickly cut our curved shapes and I gave some tips and tricks for sewing these pieces together. I tried to make my way around the room at least 4 times to each individual helping where someone needed it. But I actually thought the class went smoothly. Not too many tears, though a few seam rippers did make their way out. It’s been a blast to see my students completed projects start showing up on IG as they finish them on their own.
Then I ended my day with a fun class on carving stamps. We used $1 erasers, simple graphite transfers and some carving tools. I made a really cool feather stamp that I proceeded to use to stamp a tshirt I had brought along with me. I ended up wearing the shirt the whole next day to show off that cool stamping!
Oh I’m looking distinctly more tired that next day… Saturday was VERY full for me. I knew that I would be pretty wiped out by this point, so I planned on sleeping in that day. I signed up for a big lecture class that I wasn’t interested in (Bernina and bloggers – I don’t have a bernina and I’m happy with the two other machines I do! lol) just so that I would be able to guilt free miss a class. My next two classes were taxing my tired brain because they turned out to both involve pattern drafting…a new skill for me. 😉 I swear I’m a smart person, but by this point in the game, I was WORN OUT. I worked on drafting a pencil skirt and then on drafting and sewing knit leggings. The last class was Lindsey’s class where we were supposed to construct our leather bag. But there were some missing needles and things, so I opted to take that class to calmly finish prepping the bag for sewing and adding an extra interior pocket to the lining. And then hung out with these two, my roommate Elena and Sylvain (one of the Bernina guys). I was completely fine with trying for a slower paced class rather than trying to rush through another project that day.
The day ended with our final dinner and a keynote speech by Heather Bailey. To say she was inspiring would be putting it mildly. To me, her words were epic. I continue to think about them. She has a great deal of insight into the sewing/quilting industry and just the business world in general. She had delightful stories to tell about her journey to where she currently is. I was tearing up at moments, both because I was exhausted and because I could FEEL what she was saying. She was delightful and if you ever get a chance to hear her speak or hang out with her or anything, I’d be the first to tell you to do so. She was hanging around all weekend taking some classes and listening to lectures and patiently having her photo taken with probably every single person there! lol
There were fun things left like the Salt Lake City Modern Quilt Guild Mixer and open sew time. But then it was time to pack up for my EARLY flight that left at 7 am. I cannot describe how brutal a flight time that was for me. But my travels home went peacefully though I was beyond exhausted at this point. The highlight of my weekend might well have been seeing my three year old throw open her arms, huge smile on her face, and dash to me when I got off the last plane.