Tuesday, March 3, 2015

One Of The Best Things

Isn't it funny how excited we can be to get away and then how equally excited we can be to get back home again? I think this is good. On Sunday night, I stayed near the border in Bellingham and was up and through and over the pass and back home by 10:30, unpacked and out walking with Miss Chloe an hour later. This is the second time I've arrived home from a trip mid morning and I like having the day to just move slow and get reacquainted with home. It's enough and the next day - today - it's back to work in the studio where....

... I have just a few more pieces of fabric to wash and stash. I focused on buying natural fibers especially after Marcy mentioned that it would be quite humid in Europe when we're there on our cruise. Clothes that can breathe seemed important and so I stocked up on linen, cotton, and silk fibers.

When the border guard asked me what I'd been doing at Sew Expo, I'm not sure he meant physically. VBG - I think he may have meant where was your head lady, do you have any idea how much fabric you bought ? ? ? Details later.


I spent the first two days with my friend Caroline who I met thirty-six years ago when she lived in town. Now she lives in the Northwest Territories about 2,100 miles north of me and to the east of Alaska. There are 20,000 people in her city. When she comes south, the traffic, the crowds, and so much to look at are all somewhat overwhelming. And also wonderful since the only game in town is Wal-Mart and that's basically no game at all. She went home with a suitcase full of possibilities. It was great to see her.

One of the best things about Sew Expo - IMHO - is connecting with people who do what I do. For the longest time, Caroline was my only sewing friend and when she moved away, it was devastating. Since then, I've learned how to be alone with my sewing and I've made some wonderful friends through blogging and workshops, many of whom I met around the show. THANK YOU so much to everyone who came up and introduced themselves. I loved meeting you.

Caroline stayed until Saturday morning and I stayed another day to visit with friends she didn't know. I had a chat in the lobby of our hotel with Ute just before she went off to a workshop and I went for brunch with Elaine. No pictures. I forgot my camera. Ute, Judy, and Anna were all there from Ashland and we'd intended to get together for dinner only their plans changed as plans can do. It was disappointing but I decided to approach it from the perspective that all things happen for a reason and the day turned out fabulous.

At brunch, Elaine showed me some ABSOLUTELY GORGEOUS bracelets that she'd made in a recent workshop. I thought that was interesting synchronicity since I'd just been talking about wanting to make accessories. She totally hooked me. We went to a nearby store called Charming Charlies - apparently there's only two in Washington and one was right up the street. The store is divided by color so there's blue jewelry here and pink there and pearl here and black there and so on. It's all inexpensive to begin with and a lot was on sale.

I bought the necklace with the turquoise stones as starting points. I want to pop the stones out of the setting and use them to start some bracelet and necklace pieces. There are seven stones in total. I like having the opportunity to make more than one piece from the same beginning.

The silver necklace reminded me of the necklace a woman in line for one of the lectures was wearing. Hers was made with beads and bobby pins reminiscent of the work of Anni Albers who - according to Wickipedia - primarily worked in textiles and occasionally experimented with jewelry design. I love the idea that when deprived of metal during the war, Anni created using common items like bobby pins and washers.

I had a late lunch with Alana. We took three photos and in the other two we both look quite exhausted. By day three, this is a theme. All the listening, shopping, and talking starts to show. Alana and I met three years ago at the first Design Outside The Lines retreat that I attended. We have so much in common and yet live miles and miles apart. As I was driving to Sew Expo, I was grateful not only for the Internet that allows all of us to connect and stay in touch but also for transportation that allows us to get together. Years ago, it never would have been possible and we wouldn't have known that there were other people who loved to do what we love to do in the way that we love to do it. How amazing is that?

I was talking to Alana when suddenly I hear hello girlfriend, you didn't tell me you were going to be here and I look up to see Carolyn of Diary of a Sewing Fanatic. A total surprise. I had no idea she was going to be there either since I'm behind on my blog reading. It took me about two seconds to connect the voice to the face to the personality. How fabulous is that?

Shams - Communing With Fabric - and I had bumped into each other a few times in-between other activities and had a few minutes to get this picture in front of Marcy's booth and then later...

... Shams, Carolyn, and I had coffee together along with Sarah and Sue, two very talented friends of Shams that I enjoyed meeting. I had not met these women in person before. We've communicated by comments and emails and when we sat down to chat, it was like we'd been friends forever. What a gift.

Last year at Sew Expo, Gwen and I set up a challenge using the same fabric. It was great to see her again and to carefully examine the garments that she and the other women at Marcy's booth were wearing... or as carefully as you can examine garments on a moving figure. Six women. Four Days. Twenty-four outfits. I could have spent the entire time in the booth with their clothes and come home vibrating. They are all such inspiring sewists.

It was lovely to see Diane every day. I have so much to share with her in our next coaching session about what I learned wandering around Sew Expo and from her two lectures. Deciding to work with Diane as a coach was one of the best decisions. I've grown tremendously and it's been the perfect thing for me right now. Lots of life is not pretty but working with Diane is. This is good.

This picture of Diane and Laura is from last year. Laura was Diane's business manager. This was their last event together now that life is taking Laura and her husband in new directions. We met in the booth last year and then again last June. With her upcoming changes, I'm not sure when we'll next meet up again so I was thrilled to get together for dinner on Saturday night.

Claire is a blog reader that I first met in person in Ashland last September when we were conveniently both there at the same time. I stayed at her house for a few days last December on my "surprise" trip to Ute's party in Ashland. Claire just got back from a trip to France and Spain... which was good... because her internal clock was a little messed up... which meant that when I surprisingly arrived at her home at 8:00 on Sunday morning because I was up earlier than expected and it was closer than I thought, I knew I could safely call and drop by then. We had show & tell with all my things from Sew Expo and all her things from Europe. AND... she brought me fabric from Paris. How nice is that? It's a silk piece for my cruise wardrobe. I'll show it later.

Sew Expo was exciting and now I'm glad to be home and back in the studio. I'm bubbling with enthusiasm and it's going to be hard to decide what to do next but luckily before I left I cut out a blouse so I could get right back to work first thing this morning. For my hour. Another very good choice.

Talk soon - Myrna

Grateful - connecting

Don't wait for the perfect moment, take the moment and make it perfect. 
- Zoey Sayward


  1. It was so good to meet you IRL! I was only at the show for one day and was totally overwhelmed can't imagine three days of that! Can't wait to see what you got from Marcy's booth. I went there twice! Thanks again for spending some time with me, it was just wonderful!

    1. It was an amazing treat for me to meet you. I agree that three days is perhaps too much... especially for my budget since I came home with a LOT of fabric. I'm looking forward to when we can get together in New York. YES YES - sometime. It's on my want to do list.

  2. I'm so sorry that I didn't get a chance to meet you in person, because I really, really wanted to say "thank you". Your recent explorations into the concept of dressing more mindfully and reflective of one's personality (and WHY that can make sense and be a valid goal) have very helpfully pushed me into thinking more about my own evolving wardrobe. I've been looking at the some of the websites you linked to, especially the Australian woman who talks about signature and personal style elements, and I can feel some elements starting to coalesce. As you say, YES!

    Some fabric followed me home, too - I feel that two pieces of me-fabric for every one piece for DH and DS (shirts) is fair! :)

    1. You are very welcome. I write the blog to share and to support and encourage my readers to the best and I am very grateful when I find I've been able to do that. Enjoy the journey.

  3. Glad you had such a fabulous adventure! Sorry to have missed it this year but there's always next time.


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