Did you make that?: An Evening in the City

May 9th

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.

27 thoughts on “Did you make that?: An Evening in the City

  1. It was great meeting you last night. Your lonsdale and minorou are even cuter in person than in your photos. I love your blog, it’s one of my favorites and after meeting you in person it will stay on the top of the list.

  2. I’m so envious of all these meet-ups. What a great group of people. It sounds like it was a lovely evening!

  3. What a superbly lovely write up! I love the stream of consciousness take. Wasn’t it a great evening? I really hope you do all meet up again – it would be like watching the adventures of old friends. I have memories that I’ll treasure forever.

  4. I love your recap! I totally had the same feeling all day! It was so great meeting you and the other wonderful ladies. I’ll try to post my pics in the next couple of days. And omg my horrible back tan-line!! I need to work on that this weekend. lol

  5. It was SOOOO great to meet you, Amy! And Karen, and Sarah, and Veronique, and Elizabeth, and Christine, and Sylvia, and… shoot, I can’t remember everyone’s names!!

    I hope you don’t mind if I “borrow” your pictures and point to your blog. 😀

  6. I felt the same way – so much excitement to meet everyone and the evening far surpassed anything I expected. I love seeing all the fantastic creativity and meeting such a great group. YES – we will schedule a visit to the Gaultier exhibit. Let’s get that on the calendar.
    By the way – your Lonsdale dress was beautiful, looks great on you.

  7. Ahh, I love San Francisco. I felt like I was right with you on the train. Boys singing and all 😉 Sounds like a wonderful evening!

  8. What a wonderful post and such a lovely meet-up. There’s something very special that happens when sewing friends get together. Thanks for sharing your good time.

  9. Great post 🙂 I had an amazing time, and loved meeting all you lovely ladies.

    And if you don’t meet up in the meanwhile, I’ll try to organize something next time I’m in town 🙂

  10. It has nothing to do with this post, but you’ve mentioned before that your sewing space is small. Any tips for organizing a small space and keeping the clutter to a minimum with a sewing machine, a serger, and on going projects? Thanks!

  11. I’m so glad I went to the meet-up and met all you wonderful ladies! It was also the kick in the pants I needed to get back to my sewing projects. Definitely, we should all get together again soon. 🙂

  12. Oh, I am so jealous! I have meet Karen and Laura, and it is so great to be able to match a person to their writing. It is very strange when you first meet up as you feel you know people, but actually you don’t… very odd, but great fun!

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