Did you make that?: An Evening in the City
It’s 5:00, and I’m sneaking out of work. I’ve been too excited to be highly productive all day anyway, so it’s just as well. I pack up my computer, jump on my bike, and pedal home as fast as I can. I’m zooming past the other bike commuters with a giant smile on my face. They probably think I’m a mad woman as is. If only they knew that I’m so giddy because I’m only an hour or so away from meeting up with a group of sewing enthusiasts in the city. Who in their right mind leaves work early to go meet a group of strangers they know from the internet to talk about sewing all night? I can’t wait!
I quickly feed the cats and the fish, throw on my Lonsdale, grab my camera and my Minoru, and run out the door. I spend my time on the train people watching. There’s a woman with a ton of stuff trying to walk between the cars. Once she successfully maneuvers through the doors to my car, she piles all of her stuff in front of one seat and then sits several seats away from it. There’s another family, two boys and a dad, each taking up their own row. The dad is lost in The Hunger Games, a library copy I see. He’s sitting next to a guitar. A few stops before mine, the dad stands up with his guitar. Two stops before mine, the two boys move to the same row. The stop before mine, the tallest boy pulls two buckets out from the row the dad used to be sitting in, while the youngest boy produces a tambourine from thin air. I realize they’re going to play music. On the train. Right now. The dad tells a wonderful story about raising the boys on his own, and then they launch right into song. I’m a sucker for these sorts of things, but we’re now at my stop, so I leave them with only a smile.
I’m speed walking to the wine bar. Four blocks. Three blocks. Two blocks! One block!! I enter, and I immediately see our group. There must have been fifteen or twenty women in beautiful handmade garments.
I smile and say hello to the lovely people I pass as I make my way to Karen from Did you make that?. I figure she’s the inspiration for the gathering, so she should be my first introduction. Now, I have high expectations for her, I have to admit; her personality must match how well she writes and sews, right? She puts my expectations to shame – far, far exceeding them.
I make my way to the end of the table where there was a chair waiting for me. Just a few people down is Shams from Communing with Fabric, and before I can stop myself I admit to lurking her blog. I make a mental note to say hello to Shams on her blog as soon as I get home!
I’m thoroughly enjoying the ladies around me. These women can talk! And not just of sewing. We share stories of Dale Chihuly, must-try restaurants, vacation plans, überboobs, the interwebs, and more. Elisabeth of e-beth knits makes her way over to my end of the table, and the conversation moves to new babies, molecular biology, and troubling darts. Truly, from there on out the evening is filled with constant chatter.
I have my eye on What’s Up Cupcake?, and by the end of the evening our paths finally cross. Out of no where her husband appears and plays a good paparazzi. We laugh about the awkwardness of taking photos of ourselves in our finished garments for our blogs, and when I see she also uses a Canon, I recommend the remote that my husband and I bought for our camera just before our trip to the Alps.
I am delighted to meet another attendee all the way from London, Laura from Auxetically. And, I am a bit starstruck chatting with Beth of SunnyGal Studio. She is as sweet as can be, but I’m so nervous I find myself pointing out the little flaws in my Lonsdale that only I can see. My inner monologue is telling myself to stop, that she is really interested in what I like about the dress, but my mouth keeps admitting my dark secrets.
I meet many who recognize my jacket, and it catches me a bit as a surprise. Me? My jacket? No, no, it’s me who recognizes that dress of yours! I don’t snap as many photos as I’d hoped, but I get enough to capture the essence of the evening.
And, then, before I know it, it’s over. The bill is being squared away, and we’re saying our goodbyes. I feel like I’m leaving old friends. With surprisingly good timing, my husband pulls up to the curb just as I walk out of the wine bar, my knight in shining armor. As we drive away, I hope to myself that this group will get together again soon. The Gaultier exhibit, perhaps?
UPDATE: Firstly, I forgot to mention my most-of-the-night neighbor Daiyami from Sisters are Making It for Themselves. She was fantastic, but I hadn’t caught her full blog address, and I felt it best to stick with naming only those people who already had a confirmed-in-my-world online presence. Secondly, there have now been some more write ups about the evening. Go read about it from the perspective of Communing with Fabric, Did You Make That?, What’s Up Cupcake?, and Auxetically.