Monday, March 03, 2008


That's pronounced "pyoo-AL-up. I was immediately corrected by my Seattle friend, so I thought I'd save you the embarrassment.

Sewing Expo
Anyway, that's where I spent Thursday. This was my first time to the
Sewing & Stitchery Expo and it was quite an experience and I was late to game so didn't get to do/see everything I wanted, and that in itself makes it a learning experience.

For the uninitiated, the Expo, organized by Washington State University, consists of a very few in-depth workshops, a few more hands-on classes and lots of seminars. Plus there were free style shows and seminars, and over 200 vendors. And though I can find no reference for how long it's been going on, it clearly has been a long time. The crowd on Thursday by noon was significant. For the in-depth workshops and hands-on classes, the major sewing machine companies have set up rooms so schlepping a machine isn't necessary.

I ended up with three (instead of the planned five) seminars on Thursday around machine embroidery. I learned something from each, but didn't quite come away with the inspiration I'd hoped for.

Embroidery Basics was all about threads, needles, and stabilizers. The speaker was a Sulky national trainer, so the focus was on their products.

Embroidery From Perception to Reality was presented by the principal for an embroidery software company on how to use software (in general, her product in particular) to aid in design and implementation of the embroidery. If I ever invest in an embroidery application, I hope I remember her ideas.

Quick Gifts on the Embroidery Machine was entertaining, which was good since it was mid-afternoon - not my brightest time of the day. Bobbi Bullard showed some interesting projects that showcased her embroidery design sets, as well as some of her other products, including spray dyes and Swarovski crystals.

Showplex and Pavilion
There were two venues for shopping and with six hours of free time, I managed to cruise the aisles of both several times. Pretty much anything you could think of around sewing was there; and depending on the time of day, it was just a matter of actually getting to and into any given booth. There was lots of fabric and the independent pattern companies were well represented.

Practicing some restraint, I purchased only 3 yards of fabric, since I seem to have outgrown my substantial fabric/yarn closet and sewing room and I don't have the option of piling my fabric in the shower like Bobbi Bullard said she does. I found a pretty red linen rayon blend at Dana Marie (formerly Purrfection), but both scanning and photographing didn't get the color right. Seattle Fabrics had lots of tapestry, including a cute puppy print that I just couldn't resist.

What I really scored on were notions. Unfortunately, I don't remember the name of the store, but here's what I got there for $5 (a bagful of notions).

I found two gadgets at the smaller of the two Pine Needle Quilt Shop booths.

And there were a few yarn shops who showed up, knowing that it's not always about sewing. Because I need more yarn even less than fabric, I again practiced restraint, until I got to the Seattle Yarn, where there bags of discontinued yarn and shawl kits for $40, including the two bags of Noro I couldn't resist - Gisha and Silk Country.

I'm looking forward to next year, now that I know the ropes.

Side Trips
When possible I plan trips around meeting up with friends. And this trip was no different, though I have no pictures to show for it. Wednesday, I lunched with Dave Harms, a work friend, at a downtown Seattle Thai fast food place, and had dinner with Mark Shelton, (has it been 30 years!?) at Indochine in Tacoma. Thursday, it was all about meeting with fiberly friend Diane Egelston for the first time; we had pretty good teriyaki at Ichiban Teriyaki, very near the Red Lion Tacoma where I stayed. Finally, I had lunch with Adobe friends, Fred Hale, Marc Madenwald, and Jud Richards, in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle, at the Red Door.

There was time to kill between checking out and meeting Fred, Marc, and Jud, so I stopped at Kinokuniya Bookstore. Parking karma was with me and I found a spot at the door that I didn't have to actually parallel park into (I'm a terrible backer-upper). It's hard to compare them to the Portland store because the layout is so different. However, I do think they had fewer books with knitting than Portland. I did find two crochet books, though.
Crochet Accessories (ISBN 9784277430807)


Let's Knit Series 15 (ISBN 9784529043496)