On Saturday I had the pleasure of teaching and attending at the Second Sewing Directory Meet Up in Exeter. The sun shone again and it was a wonderful relaxing day of sewing and talking. Every time at these events I hear great stories and put a face to another online identity
Claire, Deena, Janet and Andrea busy at work and at the sunniest spot in the room.
The Exeter/Newton Abbot cohort, Emily, Mary, Jo and Susy. Jean on the right who was very generous with her strawberries.
Ruth (Fi's Sister), Pippa (Fi's mum) who both did a lovely job with Fiona of greeting everyone, ensuring everyone was sorted for tea and biscuits. And Emily on the right, a blur of activity as she organises her design.
Sue and Mary busy with raw edge appliqué. Jenna concentrating on precision with her blanket stitch- she who came from the near by Exeter Sewing Machine shop.
Sue brought extra applique supplies for people to use and told me stories of Laura Ashley dresses and evenings from her glamourous past. Rhiannon provided our in house shop, The Sewing Boutique, and gave us a generous online discount too.
Fi actually having a moment to sit down and sew, alongside Hannah who travelled from Cornwall and is also known as Quirklyhannah on Instagram. You can see more photos in Fi's blog post.
Will, from Abakhan travelled down from Chester to learn a little hand sewing and applique skills from me and Fi along with sewing machine basics from Jenna Sewhappygeek (hiding to the right in the pic below) who had him completing a small drawstring bag before the afternoon was out. Will was a non sewer when he started but a quick learner. He left with a long list of new equipment/stock ideas for Abakhans and new stitching skills. He found out about how quilters contribute to Siblings Together from Mary & friends and he is taking his experiences back to put to good use in the Abakhan business. Look out for his ideas and activities on Twitter and I have a feeling we might see him again, maybe Fat Quarterly retreat 2014?
And this is what the day produced. Beautiful bags for Making for Charity.
I had designed a set of letter templates, a bird shape, leaves and circles and everyone came up with their own design. I loved the variety in everyone's creations.
There is a mix of the skills that I taught and a whole lot more from the makers. Needle turn, raw edge appliqué, foil circles and then all the extra additions of embroidery, fabric textures, buttons.
Fiona has a busy year getting her book done, but even she is finding it hard to resist the allure of organising another meet up in Exeter. Spring 2014 looks possible, maybe a sewing clinic for all your creative troubles? And the usual stitchy chat and socialising. People travelled from near (10 mins walk) and far- Deena came from Manchester. Others from Plymouth, Cornwall and Dorset. And for all those lovely people who wanted to see mine and Lynne's book 500 Quilt Blocks and even buy a copy, I should have some very exciting news at the end of this week, watch this space...