Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Sewing Summit 2012 Recap

I was thrilled to attend the second Sewing Summit conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. I'd never even been to Utah before, and it was a big trip getting there from Texas. I was excited to travel with two Austin Modern Quilt Guild members, and I was pumped my Mom, Karen, made it to Utah from Louisiana to attend Sewing Summit as well.

I was exhausted on the way up, because I stayed up too late two nights in a row working on my Everything Bag from Amy Butler's Little Stitches for Little Ones book. Oops. It turned out cute, and it came in handy, but being tired was no fun. I wish I had made it sooner. Look forward to a long post about this bag on Friday!

In addition to my Mom, I was lucky to have a great roomie in Cori from Let's Eat Grandpa. In what crazy awesome world do you reach out for a roommate on a Google group forum and find someone as fun, smart, and talented as amazing Cori? That's just the magic of the quilting community, it seems. Man, we had some goods laughs amidst our sleep-deprived delirium.

Shop hopping with Mom on the bus was a blast. It was kind of like the Magical Mystery Tour with Megan from Canoe Ridge Creations instead of Ringo and fabric instead of spaghetti. We learned how to make fabric flowers at Yellow Bird Fabrics, I won a charm pack at Pine Needles for having a thimble in my purse, and I scored yards of beautiful fabric at Material Girls.

Salt Lake City was charmingly walkable, and the free Trax train came in handy. We did a significant amount of walking between the sprawling lodge room hallways in the Little America hotel and wandering around downtown. There were emergency shoe and bandaid purchases to cope with blisters and lots of barefoot action hoping toes would heal quickly!

It was so. much. fun. meeting people in person! I bumped into Karen Linton, and Bianca from Sweet Diesel Designs spotted me the morning of the shop hop when I was still soooooo tired. I ran into Amy Smart from Diary of a Quilter in the hall, and I gushed that I had been following her blog for-EV-err. Ya know, Sandlot style. Ok, forever in quilt blog world for me is summer 2011, but still. I was pumped to meet Michelle from magical Michelle Patterns. Jeni Baker sweetly complemented me on my Everything Bag during the Craftsy happy hour. She's so nice :-) Doesn't that make the late nights of sewing worth it? Super awesome Katie Blakesley from Swim Bike Quilt and her sister sat down next to me to work in one of the sewing rooms on Saturday night, another time when I was completely exhausted. I also met Laura Lochore from Quokka Quilts that night, and we shared our love of Kate Spain's Terrain fabric. You see where I'm going with this. Non-stop greatness seeing the super talented folks whose work you admire and whose words you love to read.

Socializing on zero sleep isn't all you do at Sewing Summit. I also went to awesome classes and lectures in my foggy state. I took a class on the Baby Lock Imagine Sergers and was blown away. I didn't drop $1,500 on one, but I sure wanted to. I battled the Baby Lock Grace machine in Alexia Abegg's super fun Ship Shape Tote class, but the Elizabeth machines were more manageable in Curves Class with Christina from The Sometimes Crafter. The lectures were rocking. I learned so much about how to get better blog photos from Vanessa Hewell, and Melissa Esplin gave me some great pointers on my blog in the website design class, after which I met Emily Herrick from Crazy Old Ladies

I enjoyed hearing Joel Dewberry speaking and chatting with Erin Singleton and other gals in the bar at the Little America. Kudos to her for having any energy at all. 

I definitely confirmed I need to practice my traveling skills. I packed more than I needed, broke out in a rash, woke up with a puffy eye one morning, got a headache from altitude sickness, forgot to cut some fabric before class and ran back to my room to slice and iron. That actually worked out ok since there were only a couple of irons in the sewing room ;-) In any case, please hit me with your sewing trip traveling tips! I need to improve.

If you have any specific questions about Sewing Summit, feel free to ask me! It was such a blur of awesomeness. I will definitely try to go again. Like I tweeted, it was fun turning the Little America Hotel into a giant, crafty dorm. I wish I'd felt better so I could have done some more late night sewing, but I was lacking the endurance at altitude ;-) Anybody want to organize a Sewing Summit closer to sea level? I'll be there!


  1. That does sound exhausting but sooo much fun. Utah is a pretty place, love the mountains.