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Bloggers are people, too

October 11, 2011

And they’re pretty damned friendly, genuine and one hundred percent approachable. The sewing sort, at least, because that’s the only sort I know.

The Sewing Summit was a whirlwind of a weekend, and I was very fortunate to have met lots of great new friends. I got in around 1.30, and my jaw dropped just walking from the gate to baggage claim. The mountains are right there. Right. There.

Looking southeast from my room.

I could barely carry on a conversation with my carpool crew, and immediately wished I'd brought the SLR.

Met up with some other ladies I’d arranged a carpool with, checked in to the gorge hotel, unpacked to some tunes, then wandered out à pied to see the lay of the land. My god, those mountains. It had just snowed on them a day or three earlier. I ended up at this one shop that had everything organized by color… vintage housewares galore! Walked out with a fun silk(?) yardage for a steal (bombshell?), and some super-cute buttons for R. I’ll have to post photos later, because the days are short here and the fabric is simply not looking up to par under incandescent light.

Time check? Fashionably late to the opening reception already, so hustled back to the hotel via a protein shake/Nutella to go snack. A few glasses of wine on an empty stomach, and I would make quite the first impression. How have I never seen Nutella to go before this?! Hopping around from group to group is not my forté, but I jumped in. Suriah and I then headed to the Red Iguana, a local fav, for Mexican with Emily from Craftsy, Sunni, Carol & Susan from BurdaStyle, Gertie and Karisa & Kirsten from Fave Crafts. Aren’t we something! The place was packed, so we divided and conquered. Mole sampler, anyone? Nom!nom! And with incredible company! (I ended up forgetting my little corduroy jacket in someone’s rental, but it was old Goodwill and not all that warm. Or cool.) Stuffed. Happy. Nosebleed (it’s high & dry there). Bedtime.

Sunni was assisting in the BurdaStyle classroom, which is where I spent all day Saturday. She is simply gorgeous, inside and out. Girl, if you’re reading, I can’t thank you enough for spending so much time gabbing with me, because I know you were there to work, too. Seriously, you’re the bomb. Also parked in the BS room for the day was Stephanie! Another SLC local garment sewer, and so incredibly down to earth.

Suriah, Steph and I ducked out for some vintage shopping on Saturday after lunch. I don’t want to let out some huge shopping secret, but the two vintage shops I was able to get to during my short stay were fantastic. And I’ve heard the thrifting is fab, too. I just didn’t have time to do it all.

Oodles of cufflinks

I have a silk scarf collection, though you wouldn't know it because I don't wear them nearly often enough. Had to resist the urge to dig in... could have spent an hour being the girl in the scarf bubble.

Suriah & Steph!

Suriah found a lovely hat, gloves and a couple bags, and Steph bought that rad dress for the fabric. I can not wait to see what she turns it into.

Fix up, look sharp

I replaced my lost jacket with this ultimate score, which had just been put out. I love jackets, but honestly only have one winter coat and a couple lightweight suit jackets/blazers. Nothing really for those moderate days in autumn and spring… until now.

There were two more sessions post-shopping. The classes were well done, organized and informative. I probably could have skipped the hand stitches session, but it’s always good to practice. Plus, I’d never done a blanket stitch. Rather, it’s the same stitch I use for sewing on findings, but I never realized that. So I’m still glad I kept that on my schedule :)  My faves of the day were the garment fabric class and the intro to tailoring. While I’ve been slowly educating myself on fabric, this was a fantastic way to learn about drape, body, texture and use of a variety of cottons, silks and woolens. We were able to take swatches and match them up with our notes for future reference, something that will be incredibly useful when ordering online.

Gertie, seen demonstrating how to shape a pad stitched collar around your ham.

Up close and personal with a pad stitched lapel. The cut out is for the bound buttonhole. Hot.

The tailoring session was great in that it took the mystery out of this craft that I’ve been more and more curious to learn. Instead of some enigmatic skill that only the old men of Italy comprehend, Gertie made tailoring out to be approachable and very doable. Did I mention she taught all the BS sessions? She was funny, informative, great at disseminating information and easy-going in her approach to couture sewing. I like that. It’s making me even more excited to start the Bombshell course, but I’ve got a few other necessary items I’d like to finish first.


In my haste, I forgot to turn the flash on. Go figure. Gertie knows how to pose. And I know how to look like a nerdy fan girl. Ha! Check out our matching lanyards. There was a variety to choose from at registration, and no I didn’t pull a Jennifer Jason Leigh.


Decompress, quick change, out to find grub & brew. Found. Long night.

Sunday morning, my first session was the authors’ panel, and it was a packed class for a reason. Also very informative, and I am so glad that I took notes because coffee wasn’t doing the trick at that point. Steph came back to meet for a much-needed lunch at this great spot she’s a fan of. Shishito peppers!

I had literally only heard of these buggers two days prior, and now I’m obsessed. We had such a splendid time talking sewing, life, you name it. I still can’t get over her bringing me to the airport… what a doll!!! My heart was racing as we were driving from downtown to the airport, surrounded on all sides by these breathtaking mountains that appeared at once so close, and yet as a mural on the side of a Ponderosa steakhouse. R and I need to go back and spend some time in the wilds of Utah.

And that was it. A crazy flash of a trip where I learned a lot, met many and had a blast. I neglected to get a shot of the room that was set up with all the sewing machines. I didn’t have any classes in there (I think they were mostly quilting classes?), and didn’t bring anything for the open sewing that was going on at night. And twice I forgot to get a photo with Steph! Aargh! I’m pretty proud that I kept my shopping to a minimum. Even though I’m not a huge shopper, I tend to do more of it while in another city, just because everything is so new & exciting. In this case, the items purchased were old. So it totally doesn’t break the whole Buy Nothing New pledge I made. And besides, I really did need an autumn jacket, and it was chilly in SLC until my final day.


Thanks to the organizers, Amy & Erin, the sponsors for all the swag (which I barely fit in my tiny duffel!), my roomie for being the shit, BurdaStyle for representing the garment sewers, and everyone I met for being so freaking awesome. I can’t forget to mention Tracey, who was sporting her Bombshell dress on Sunday, and looking amazing. Didn’t get a photo, but trust me. Susan was a total sweetheart, and her cards were given in a handmade leather case. Snazzy. Have you heard of the blog aggregator called Seamingly? I met Michelle, and think this is such a fabulous idea! What a great way to have one place to organize my fav sewing blogs. Right now it’s a combo of email subscriptions, Google reader, WP subscriptions, and just clicking through my blog roll. There’s a photo from the BS room, and the person to my right is from Boston (that’s me in the middle)… I swear I had your card, and now can’t find it. If you read this, or if you know her, give me a shout!


6 Comments leave one →
  1. October 12, 2011 7:47 am

    Looks like it was an AMAZING trip!!! I so want to go to a sewing convention! I think I would die of happiness :)

    • October 12, 2011 3:34 pm

      I have to admit, it was pretty amazing… but your SF Great Gatsby trip? Shopping the Garment District in NYC? You’ve got it going on!

  2. October 12, 2011 2:23 pm

    Sewing Summit was SOOOO fun & SO worth it! I loved your dress, seriously beautiful construction & materials.

    Also, I’m so glad you were able to make it to Decades. That place is a gold mine. I found a rad versache-like purse with a gold lion head on it for $5 there. Also had to resist the scarves like the plague.

    • October 12, 2011 3:32 pm

      I loved YOUR outfit!!! I couldn’t keep my eyes off it, it looked so stylish and comfortable. Could have spent hours in Decades…oh, my! I hope you’ll be back next year :)

  3. October 13, 2011 5:55 pm

    It was so nice meeting you and I’m so glad we were able to hang out! You seriously scored with that jacket. It’s darling on you. And can I just say again that I am AMAZED by your spatial skills? People – I watched this girl cram TWO huge swag bags into an already full duffel. Obviously I’m still in awe.

    I’ll most definitely come visit one of these days. I think we have the same idea of a good time – beer and cheese! Ha! let me know if you ever have any movie recommendations. I seriously love them and watch guilt-free as I’m usually knitting… so I’m not completely wasting my time, right?

    LAVENDER! Don’t do it! You must use stretch fabric! Ha ha… I’ve spend the entire day ripping out my yellow shorts because my muslin, which I thought fit, wasn’t out of stretch fabric. Ugh. You’ll probably be just fine. ;) Thanks for being supportive about the mustard corduroy. I really appreciate it.

  4. October 15, 2011 1:55 pm

    How fun! I do not know a single person that sews clothing in my everyday life; it was probably such a blast to have the opportunity to hang out with other sewists. Looks like you guys had an amazing time!

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