Pulling Up at Puyallup

comments (0) March 7th, 2008     

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AmberE AmberE, member
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Last week, I headed out to the Seattle area for the 2008 Sewing and Stitchery Expo, one of the nation’s biggest sewing shows, held each winter in Puyallup, Washington, a sleepy town located in the shadow of Mount Rainier. Broken up between two pavilions and stocked with products, fashion shows, and classes, the expo is sure to warm the heart of any ardent sewer, quilter, knitter or all-around fabric lover. Here are a few of my favorite booths. Fortunately, you have options if you missed this year’s expo (just follow the links below)—but don’t miss them next year!

Cutting Line Designs Louise Cutting usually has stashes of fab fabric (visit her Web site for great notions and more), but at this expo, she focuses on selling her awesome patterns and booklets, fashions shows, and teaching. Be sure to stop by and chat: Louise is a force in the sewing world and always good for sewing inspiration.

American Sewing Guild This national sewing organization has chapters throughout the country, an annual national conference, and brings sewing to your neighborhood, as well as hosts fabric trips around the world. Drop in to connect with other sewers.

The Sewing Workshop Owner Linda Lee always has something new and exciting up her sleeve, and this year, it’s her tote bag kits, complete with fabrics and patterns. My favorite is the Daily News bag. Her patterns are another big hit, all classic looks with Far East twists that appeal to all ages. Check out Lee’s fashion shows and classes, also big hits.

The Philosopher’s Wool Company This Ontario-based sheep farm and wool company is all things good: supporters of sustainable agriculture and fair trade practices, organic products, and some of the most tantalizing knitting kits I’ve ever seen, period.

Clothing Designs by LaFred Always elegant, designer Fred Bloebaum had her patterns and sample garments on hand to inspire you to create her tasteful, original designs. If you want to look like a lady, Fred’s patterns are the way to go.

Carol Ahles Carol, a sewing educator, purveyor of fine heirloom Victorian tools, and all around lovely person, has these tiny, sharp scissors that you just won’t be able to live without once you have a pair around your neck. Sweetly tucked into a chatelaine, an ornamental case on a chain, I would suggest you keep yours tucked away. Whenever I take mine to work, it has a way of disappearing! Hey, has anyone seen my chatelaine?!

Simplicity Patterns I may be biased, but I swear that Simplicity’s patterns just keep getting better and better every year. To me, they are uber-fashion. Stop by to meet the people who make them happen. (If you’re a pattern geek like me, it’s like meeting rock stars.) Their fashion show is the bomb.

Islander Sewing Systems Janet Pray is another sewing angel; she brings us the best in industry techniques with her great patterns and DVDs, and the other biggest sewing show in the country, the American Sewing Expo. Stop by for a chat—she’s endlessly energetic and a real icon of the sewing world.

Of special note:

Tropical Textiles You won’t be able to resist the vintage tropical prints of these gorgeous quilting kits, including the little known Hawaiian quilting appliqué that is my all-time favorite. Phone: 503-406-8430.

Professional Sewing Supplies Why do the Japanese have the coolest sewing notions ever? We don’t know why; we just want them: lighter-than-air interfacing, gossamer fusing tape, the best scissors ever…. You can order this and more at this Seattle-based company. Don’t ask for a Web site: they don’t have one. It’s all mail order by phone: PO Box 14272, Seattle, WA 98114-4272; 206-324-8823.

posted in: embroidery, events

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