Original Sewing and Quilt Expo Lakeland

I was WOW! blessed to be able to go with a group on a tour bus hired by A1 Sewing. It was a great value for $45 which included admission to the Expo ($10), a cool pin, one free class at the event, and a rather large shopping bag. The bus ride down and back had us viewing several instructional dvd’s on the drop down TV screens, featuring Sue Hausman, Joyce Drexler, and other wonderful artists. I think gas for just the drive down and back would have been at least $35 and I did not have to do the driving, yay.  I met a couple of interesting, fun people, and just had a fabulous day.

At the "station" - A1 Sewing-- early in the morning, the Gator bus

FYI, the Expo is still going on at Lakeland Friday and Saturday. Go to http://www.sewingexpo.com for the all the info.

I started out snapping photos right and left, because the sights to see were truly amazing. Then one of the exhibitors told me I was being rude, taking pics without permission, and I was pointed to one of about a thousand signs proclaiming that photography of the quilts was PROHIBITED unless you buy the pattern/kit. And, duh, I had to agree that these quilts and projects are original works of art, and how easy is it to copy someone’s design and take credit for it? We have the upper echelon of designers, then producers, then distributors, then end users, then the bottom feeders like me who try to get the best for way less using coupons and remnants. But I do give credit where credit is due  with sources, patterns, instructions.

Sewing and Quilt Expo a-go-go

My faves:

1) Batiks from  Color by Hand in Ky

African (left) and Indonesian (rt) batiks

2) The African fabrics from Beba’s

African fabrics from Beba

3) The Japanese fabric from SomeArtFabric.com–I love that their business cards say, “Colleen Maria Casey, Enabler” ha, ha! “We sell fabric, wanna make something out of it?”

Kokka Japanese fabric from Some Art Fabric

4) The wool patchwork and everything else from Primitive Gatherings. This booth was my all-time favorite, because of the sumptuous colors, textures, and organization of their wares

Kit for woollen table mat with Valdani thread, Primitive Gatherings

5) The fabulous jackets made from sweatshirts, even though the mic was malfunctioning during that show.

6) Marathon Thread Guy’s stabilizers (Badge Master) and notions, glow in the dark and solar activated threads.

7) Vogue fabric booth –far from being the pinnacle of fashion, it was a huge collection of fabric remnants, notions, old how to books and junk in bins, a la yard sale (I snagged a bag of 50 non-invisible  zippers for $7).

8) The Fasturn booth had a Make/Take project of a celtic knot wrist band, but I didn’t participate. I was fascinated by their fabric tube turner tools, but not enough to pay the $64 for them. One lady said she’d pay ANYTHING for them.

There were about 8 or 10 Make and Take projects going on at all hours, at great prices.

9) Silk scarves embellished with woollen fiber roving. Another make/take that I didn’t sit in on, but found to be gorgeous. From Sew Artfully Yours, Inc. at http://www.sewingart.com.

Silk scarf and roving

Things I noted:

1) The audience was overwhelmingly the 50+ curly perm cohort in shades of gray from white with carrot red streaks to steely, with a sprinkling of those unlikely hair colors that Revlon provides, and all manner of roots prominent. The few younger women in the group really stood out in contrast. I saw 2 kids there the whole day, a ten year old boy who was darting through the crowd with a wild look in his eyes, and a little girl who looked bored.

2) All representations of fat were on display, from spare tire to Jabba the Hut on a Hover-round.  We need to all jump up from our sewing machines en masse and take a power walk, quick, before the French fries settle on our hips more.

3) While I was standing in line to pay for something, behind an elderly couple, the old man turned around to me, licked his index finger, pressed it on my arm and said “Tssss.” As I stood there gaping at him, he said, “Well, you deserved it!” Suggested interpretation:  in that crowd, I’m a super hottie? That both intrigues and horrifies me.

4) On the way home, I texted my husband to tell him we had just passed Cafe Risque, so he’d know about how long it would take for me to get home, and the iPhone automatically added the accent aigu to the e in risque. 🙂

4) I told him that my view of the sewing universe is decidedly less glamorous after that trip. I still haven’t really found my niche.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ethel Grogan
    Mar 18, 2011 @ 10:06:02

    Wow Hon! Are the pictures of materials stuff you purchased? Purdy neat stuff. Hummmmm . . . I would have been tempted with the celtic knot wristband except – $64 bucks! – don’t like to wear wrist bands. Sounds like you had a great time! The guys here left me with two tired kids yesterday and they bickerd allllll day until I was pulling my hair out. They loaded into leaves and dirt into my screened in porch (didn’t note what they were doing because they were sooooo quiet) then when I made them clean it up the bickering started again so I had to make them take turns cleaning by themselves. Yaw, I had a wonderful day too. sigh

    Reply

  2. jenyjenny
    Mar 18, 2011 @ 13:45:04

    Oh the wristband was only $5, it was the set of turning tools that cost $64. 🙂 sounds like the kids had fun at your house– I did see Claire at church & she looks like a cutie. Yeah I bought that stuff, fabric junkie that I am.

    Reply

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