Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Official Sewing Summit Recap!

It's been a week since I returned home from the Summit. It's time for the real recap!

I'm going to try to stay chronological ... we'll see how well that works!


I was flying standby (thanks Nick!!!) which means I may end up on the first flight I try for, or it may take several flights without getting a seat. Hence I started on Thursday! I checked in, was amazed that I didn't have to pay any fees for my flight (!!!), and I landed the very last seat on the first flight I tried for!!! 

Once in Salt Lake City, I met up with my friend Amy at the airport - Amy's a non-sewing summit friend, who took the trip out to hang out with me and be my roomie during the Summit. Pretty awesome! :) We hitched a bus ride to her friend David's work, dropped our luggage and went to see the city! We visited the temple area and all the cool Mormon stuff. My favorite was the roof of the convention center. It really was cool. How about those mountains??!! Did I mention it snowed Thursday? It did. I'm glad I brought my coat!

Amy and I had dinner with David - at fabulous Faustina's! Yum, I'm still dreaming of that butternut squash soup! We stayed at David's apartment Thursday night to cut down on cost - and because he's a great guy - with a really comfy couch!!

Friday we checked in to the Little America Hotel. Our room was beautiful, although it didn't have quite the view as many of the other rooms did! Amy and I took the Trax down to Pine Needles for some fabric shopping, lunch, then shopping around the village there. I definitely took two trips through the checkout line at Pine Needles, and ended up with a lot of loot! 

Friday  night was the welcome reception, which was really cool to meet so many online friends all at once! I also heard several "oh I read your blog" comments from people that I didn't even know! What a great feeling! I also met up with most of my {Sew}Beautiful Bee ladies. We went out to dinner at Settobello's and it was amazing! David and Amy came along too. 

After dinner Amy and I joined the crazy party in Kaelin's room where everyone was turning in their FQ's for the FQ swap on Saturday. We sat around talking about fabric and sorting everyone's FQ's by color. It was so surreal to me to sit in a room with that many people who knew all these fabric designers etc. Very cool.


Saturday was packed! Starting with my Couch 2 5K run in the morning (week 7 finished!!) then breakfast and classes all day! I took Bag Making 101 with Bari J, then Quilting at Home with Allison. I've been a reader of Allison's pretty much since I started reading blogs, so that was very surreal. I guess I already know how to free motion quilt on my home machine... so I just practiced a bunch. I was working specifically on my fmq'd words. 

After lunch I took Creative Fabric Selection with Jeni. Pretty awesome, and at the end of the class - a great big surprise! Kona color cards for all! Amazing! lol.

After Jeni's class I took Marvelous Mini's with Amanda. Let me tell you, this was the class I was looking forward to the most. I'm not exactly sure why. Was it because I love making mini quilts? Or because I've adored Amanda's work forever....? Both? But the reason that the class spoke to me the most I think was the excitement and encouragement in the way that Amanda spoke. I can't put it into words but it made me want to sit down and make a million doll quilts and feel awesome about it. Also, she showed a picture of her journal cover, that inspired mine, and the girl next to me noticed! :) Fabulous class all together, and we got to see lots of her mini's and share our own too. 

After the class I had to go give Amanda a hug! I'm not sure she knows how inspiring her work is! She's a pretty awesome person to chat with too. 

For dinner Friday night a group of 12 participants were chosen for a discussion group/dinner with Martingale publishing. The food was mediocre, but the conversation/questions were pretty cool. They wanted to know a lot about what we're looking for in books, how much we use technology (blogs/flickr/etc) for inspiration, etc. I really enjoyed the discussion, even though I never follow patterns and rarely use patterns from books either. I love looking through books though in the same way I love flickr and pinterest. I think Martingale heard a lot of new things from us! As a thank  you and as part of the discussion they provided us each with three new sewing books. None that I would have bought myself, but pretty to look at. 

Saturday night was the FQ swap - I can't believe nobody got trampled. lol. And I went home with a fabulous stack of fabrics!! 

That evening Amy came down to the sewing room with me and sewed up some charm squares -- her very first stitches by machine!!! She did pretty awesome, and pieced together a little doll quilt top. She headed to bed since her plane left early Sunday morning, so I finished it up for her to take home!!
I took Photographing your Creations with Vanessa. She taught us a cool thing or two about taking pictures. Then was Improv Piecing with Jessica. We were in the Baby-lock sewing machine classroom and received scraps to work with. Here's my block... which was promptly made into this mini quilt when I got home!

And then just as quickly as it started, the Summit was over. :( 

Since I wasn't leaving until Monday morning, I stayed with Cara Sunday night, and hung out with Michelle, and Cherie too. 

So ending thoughts on the weekend? I had an excellent time. I only spent about half of my fabric budget (a fact remedied on that first day home! Thank you online fabric stores!). I loved meeting everyone - both those who I knew online and those that I didn't. It really was surreal. On the downside though, I didn't feel very challenged by any of the classes. I guess maybe that's a good thing, I'm ahead of some of the crowd right? I was however, really really inspired by the classes. The whole weekend was very inspiring. It felt very good to be a person for a while, rather than just a mom. It was cool to eat without distractions, and shower when I wanted to. lol. I would consider going again next year if I'm financially able... it was pretty expensive in all though, so we'll see. I have a couple posts to share about things I've made since the Summit, that were inspired by the classes I took there. Also on the downside, my skin and lungs hated Salt Lake; it was too dry or something, and I've been wheezing and itchy ever since. God help me with all these stupid allergies. lol. 

PS it was still 70 degrees out here in Chicago when I returned! 


  1. And this past weekend it was 76. So yeah. You were here during a fluke or something...

  2. Your hair looks awesome! :D

    P.S. I need you to yell at me because I haven't run in like 2 weeks.

  3. Amen to being a person for a few days. We all need a mommy break once in a while! Great meeting you!!

  4. Sounds like you had a blast! Great to hear about you being on week 7 of the C25K thing -- I downloaded an app to help me with that a few months back, but I think I'll be putting that off until next year. lol

  5. It sounds like you had a great time at the summit. I think it would be interesting to attend some of the classes.

    Kudos, too, to getting in your run, even when you were out of town. It takes a lot of effort to keep up your exercise when you're not in your normal area and routine!

  6. It was such a great conference looks like you had a blast ;D