Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Arm Candy and the Expo

I went to my first sewing Expo last week.  I realized at the last minute that I could attend the Original Sewing & Quilt Expo in Fredericksburg last Thursday.  When you know you're going to meet up with sewing enthusiasts, deciding what to wear becomes very thought out.  I decided that I wanted to make a new purse for the event.  It would need a shoulder strap, look nice, and be large enough to hold a bottle of water.  The time had come to make Vogue 8661:
Vogue 8661
I made View D and used a brown vinyl with black flowers for the front and back and black denim for the sides and straps.  Ta Da!
This bag was very quick to put together and the instructions were good.  One strange thing: the drawings show 1 zippered pocket on one (black) side.  The cutting layouts and notions list agree with that.  However, the drawings accompanying the instructions show 2 pockets one on each side.  Not a big deal, it seems more like a proofreading error.  I only put 1 side pocket in, and it's not likely that I will ever use it. I made the strap longer so I could wear it as a cross-body bag.  I modified the interior pockets to suit my needs:  2 open pockets on one side and a zippered pocket and pen holder pocket on the other. 
Instead of using cardboard to stiffen the base, I used the plastic cover from a good quality spiral notebook:
I am thrilled with my new bag, and it's inaugural use was at the Expo! There was only one class I was interested in attending that day:  Essential Tips for Fitting Yourself by Sarah Veblen.  I didn't realize when I signed up that she was the author of this fantastic fitting book that I use regularly:
The class was really interesting and it really drove home the importance of horizontal balance lines being horizontal to the ground, and drag lines pointing to fitting issues.  After the class, I jumped at the opportunity to ask Sarah about something that has been bothering me for ages: armpit wrinkles in tee shirts.  I was wearing my Vogue 8390 (now OOP) which wasn't the best example of armpit wrinkles, but she gave me some advice anyway:

Sarah noticed right away that the shoulders were too wide (which I knew,) but she also said that the armhole was too high and should be lowered.  Wrinkles in the armpit area, she said, meant that I needed a dart.  "A dart in a tee shirt?"  "Yes".  "Really?"  "Yes."  Woah!

After my quick consult with Sarah, I headed over to meet someone in the class who I recognized:  Audrey from Sew Tawdry.  If you don't already read her blog, you may recognize her from FabricMart Fabricista's Challenge 2013.  The first 2 things I noticed about Audrey were that her skin is gorgeous: glowing and flawless, and she is really tall!  I felt even shorter than normal!  It's always nice to meet sewing bloggers IRL.  They really are so nice and welcoming.  :)

Most of my time at the Expo was spent trying out new sewing machines.  I have been thinking about upgrading mine I was happy to have the opportunity to try out several different brands.  I had a feeling that the Expo would be primarily geared toward quilters and I was right.  All of the machines I tried had quilting capabilities which honestly, I do not need.  I tried out the Viking 960Q, Bernina B 560, and the Janome Horizon Memory Craft 8900QCP.  Of the 3, I liked the Janome the best.  Janome also had the best and most knowledgeable saleslady.  She was honestly a riot and I had a great time test driving the machine and chatting with her.  In the end, I decided not to buy any of them.  I'm going to focus on finding a machine without any quilting features, since they will only drive up the price, and I have no desire to pay for features I will never use. Next up:  Bras!  


  1. I'm super excited you are going to star working on bras! Your purse is so cute!!!!! (Do you remember the name of your janome sales lady?)

  2. Your bag turned out great. No wonder you are pleased with it.


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