Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Scenes from the Sewing and Stitchery Expo


It was a whirlwind trip! I'm still recovering from the red-eye flight I took home, but I wanted to share some of my favorite pictures from the Sewing and Stitchery Expo. I will be back with a more detailed post on my experience and thoughts; this is just a teaser!

One of the first things you see is the giant bull head, pictured above. (That's a bull, right? I'm not up to date on my farmyard animals.)

Inside, the vendors, runway, and classrooms! Here's the Palmer/Pletsch book display.

Nancy's Sewing Basket was a great booth. They had Vintage Vogue 1019 made up in some cocoa-brown sparkly suiting.

I had to come home with some of the embroidered velvet you see on the left here; it was a necessity.


I attended several fashion shows. I met these gentlemen after the Simplicity show. They come together every year and always make coordinating outfits from flamingo-print fabric. They're pretty popular, as you might imagine.

I was hosted by Coats and Clark, who are celebrating their 200th anniversary! Here's Lynn Browne and Michele DeFay displaying commemorative tins they gave out. The tins are adorable and have vintage thread ad artwork on them.

Coats sponsored a charity event called the ProAm Fashion Show. 16 mentors (the "pros") were matched up with 16 local girls (the amateurs) and sewed a project to be worn in a fashion show, and ticket sales raised money for the Mary Bridge children's hospital. I was beside myself when I got to step in at the last moment to introduce one of the girls. Her name is Maya, and we were like two peas in a pod. Here she is wearing the cute floral sundress she made for the show.
It was totally the highlight of the event for me, meeting these girls who are so into sewing! They were all so sweet and enthusiastic; I loved it.

Another highlight: the scone truck. These scones are made with pure magic; that's the only explanation.

I tried out a Juki straight stitch machine. It does 1500 stitches a minute!

A vintage dress form on display. It's made from cardstock pieces, and could be mail ordered and assembled.

The book shopping was excellent. The Unicorn Books booth was carrying items from Lacis, which I found has a huge inventory of historical fashion and sewing books, like Vintage Lingerie by Jill Salen.

 Look inside! A 1950s Dior brassiere.
There are also patterns from each garment (in the sample size only) that can be blown up to be used. Fantastic for research purposes.


We passed a carwash with a rotating pink elephant sign. Of course I had to take a picture!
 More to come!

35 comments:

  1. oh my this looks like an amazing event!

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  2. What a wonderful show! This post made me beam from ear to ear, especially reading about your meeting with Maya..... and the scones of course! x

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  3. Hey! I saw a cardstock dress form while thrifting a couple weeks ago! Wish I could have afforded to take it home.

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  4. Sounds wonderful ! Fabric, patterns and pastries ...

    And ... hey, my dressform is just like the cardboard one (pointy chest and all), but orange-brown-ish. It was my mom's back in the days but I didn't know that it was meant to be assembled by the user.

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  5. Looks like you had a fantastic time. Love the "Bull"...

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  6. I stayed in a hotel right by that car wash in 2005. Glad to see it's still around!

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  7. This looked like it was a great time!
    Did you look at the waist of that dress form! My goodness!
    Love the pink elephant sign, my family would have had a lot of fun with that!

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  8. It sounds like you had lots of fun! ^^ I can't wait to read more about it. And about those interesting books you saw!

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  9. What a great event. I even love the flamingo-styled cowboy, what a brave guy.

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  10. Always wanted to go - looks fabulous! Wish they would have something like this on the east coast too!

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  11. Great to meet you Gretchen - glad you experienced Sew Expo madness! The Pro Am show is definitely a highlight. And scones, of course. ;-)

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  12. I so wish I could attend an event of this kind. You took great pictures and made me feel as if I were there. Thanks!

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  13. Love the photo of you and Maya!

    And your live tweets were great - it was fun to share in the excitement!

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  14. Was that the Juki TL2010Q? I've been eying that machine but there is no local dealer and I'm a little hesitant to buy a sewing machine online. It's really tempting though.

    --C.B.

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  15. The Pink Elephant Car Wash has been around forever. I think it may be protected! I was at the show on Saturday and had a scone from that same truck to fortify me at the end of the day. Those scones are a trademark of the fair that is held each September. At the fair the lines are terrible. I was so glad to get a scone after waiting only a few minutes.
    Glad you got to make it.

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  16. Thanks for the Expo report. I want to go next year. Where did you stay?

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  17. Looks like you had so much fun. I hear about the expo, but have never seen so many images or had so many different things described. Thank you for sharing.
    Karen Couture

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  18. Hard to tell if the sign in question is a bull or a steer -- the necessary portion of anatomy to make that determination is missing from the model. One supposes that it could also be a cow ... it's been a long time since I lived in close proximity to horny livestock.

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  19. loved the tweets and report from the expo! looks as though it was a blast. seems like it is a great and ispiring event.

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  20. Looks like you had fun! My goal is to one day go to the expo.

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  21. ugh, this looks dreamy. I want that brasire pattern

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  22. Wow, sounds like you were pretty busy. The fabric is beautiful, I completely understand that some of it needed to stay with you.

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  23. Puyallup Fairgrounds Scones....they are really the best scones EVER! And the pink Elephant car wash sign - A Seattle Landmark! Glad you obviously made it into the city for a little bit.
    Looks like it was a fabulous show and a great whirlwind time!

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  24. Looks like you had a great time! And I was a little bummed that I didn't run into you on Saturday, but that's ok. ;)

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  25. I have to go to a sewing fair sometime. I am so envious of the one you went to.

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  26. Looks like so much fun! I wish I could have gone. I LOVE Nancy's Sewing Basket. Lucky for me I don't live very far. Happy you had a good time in the PNW! Fair scones are the best :)

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  27. I must have one of the C&C tins!!!!

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  28. Gretchen,
    Glad you had a chance to enjoy a bit of the beautiful Pacific Northwest! The rumor is true, some of us attend the Puyallup Fair every year just to eat scones! If you are ever in downtown Seattle, there is another Pink Elephant car wash a few blocks from the Space Needle.
    Thanks for coming-especially with everything else you had going. Congratulations on your new home!!

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  29. Nice blog and great post!I enjoy my time reading your blog!Thanks for sharing!

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  30. That embroidered velvet is stunning. I have fabric envy..

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  31. I collect vintage looking tins and would love love love one of those from Coats & Clark!! Does any one know how I can get one?

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  32. Jealous! I live a quarter mile from the fairgrounds and I was too busy to go to the expo! I'll have to book it next time it comes around. And yes, aren't the scones awesome? They sell them for three solid weeks in street carts during the fall fair...yummy. :) Those dudes in the flamingo western shirts...I'm not sure what to say other than wow.

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  33. I was there too! The girls at the cardstock mannequin were fabulous, and I bought a book about hatmaking. Sure hope I can get to it before next year :P

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  34. How to get your Child into Modeling, Acting & Commercials?

    Once in a Lifetime Opportunity!!! Is your child the next BIG TV star? Meet Top Industry Talent and Modeling Agents and Scouts at the Just 4 U Kids Expo on June 22nd in NJ. Agents and Scouts are auditioning many talented kids on the SPOT for paid assignments including Commercials, TV Sitcoms and NYC Kids Fashion Weekend. Be there!! Don’t miss a great opportunity to showcase your celebrity child. For more information visit http://www.just4uexpo.com/

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  35. REALLY AWESOME! I've seen used cardstock dress forms on E-bay. I was hesitant to buy it because it was 40 year old cardstock, but they are so versatile and easily adjustable. Do you know by any chance the name of the company which exposed it at the fair? Or even better know their website?

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Thanks for your comments; I read each and every one! xo Gertie

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