Monday, September 28, 2015

American Sewing Expo 2015 recap

In the Haberman booth at the expo. I'm wearing a yet-to-be-blogged dress....

This was my sixth year attending the American Sewing Expo in Novi, MI so I feel like a conference veteran.  I could write a whole novel about this weekend, but I will try to spare you (and me) and just give the highlights.

The high level summary is that the very best part of the weekend was when Anne and I visited Lynn at You Sew Girl Headquarters and descended on her closet like locusts, the second best part was taking Jennifer Stern's professional jeans construction class so that I could re-learn how to make the fly front zipper, and the third best part is something I will share with you in a week or so; I won't reveal it just now....

  • Flew to Detroit from the Trenton-Mercer Airport, a small regional airport I had never flown from before.  Yelp reviews revealed that this is a place you either love or hate and I am firmly on the side of deep love.  
  • Drove to Haberman Fabrics in Royal Oak.   
  • Met up with Anne of Sewing to Soothe My Soul and had dinner

  • Had breakfast and lunch with Kristine of Just Keep Sewing and Anne
  • chatted with Kathy from McCalls, Deborah from Simplicity, and Rhonda from Schmetz needles.
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  • Simplicity Fashion Show--that's the Mimi G coat--in denim!  
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  • Jennifer Stern's Jean Construction class, where you make a sample with front pockets and a fly front zipper--Jennifer is a fabulous instructor:  enthusiastic, upbeat, entertaining, wants everyone to leave happy and to not feel stressed during the class.  Yes, I took her class in 2012 but I have not put a fly front zipper in since 2013 and wanted a refresher.  She also streamlined her fly-front zipper instructions.    Thank you Jennifer for a great class!!
  • Dinner with Lynn and Anne

  • shopping at the Soutache (ribbon and buttons--love her button display!!) and Haberman's booths
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  • Simplicity Fashion Show again--this model looks great in everything!  This is a denim shirt dress.
  • Picked up my free pattern for wearing a garment made from a Simplicity or New Look pattern--thanks Simplicity!!!
  • Completed the scavenger hunt and got a pack of 3 Schmetz needles and a Grabbit magnet--thank you Schmetz!  I was going to buy another Grabbit and now I don't have to!!
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  • The big visit to You Sew Girl HQ
  • Anne and I raided her closet like a swarm of locusts and we tried on almost everything! Lynn has the neatest closet I've ever seen (in both senses of the word: interesting and tidy). Lynn also remembers pattern numbers quite easily so she rattled them off for us. Now I have several more patterns I'm interested in!  (I'm trying on one of her denim jackets above)
  • Her linoleum floor was excited to see us!  It's the floor from her pix!
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  • Lynn explaining the cataloging system for her amazing fabric stash; I don't know why she's embarrassed!  You can see some of the Rubbermaid bins in this photo which hold her fabric stash. 
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    A card for each piece of fabric, with a swatch, then bound by a ring by type
    The mirror where she takes her selfies!
    Her sewing machine
    Selfies in her sewing room
  • Impromptu teaching 
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  • I showed Lynn and Anne how  to box out a bag, how to install zipper pockets in bags (I use this tutorial with one tweak), and also how to install piping  (I use this tutorial) and have it overlap on a side seam. 
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    Posing with this cute bag Anne gave both of us.  It looks like a sewing machine from all sides!  Thanks Anne!
  • Passion for Fashion show

  • Anne and Lynn did the scavenger hunt
  • shopping at Vogue Fabrics and Soutache (again)

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    Tried on this coat at the McCalls booth
    It has a very high twirl factor.
  • How to Read the Wrinkles (Jennifer's jean fitting class)
  • Then the third best thing of the weekend happened (to be blogged later)
  • Flew home

As a conference veteran I now know:
  • Foregoing the 3" heels and wearing cushy flats not only makes my feet happy (the expo floor is concrete) but also frees up space in my luggage!
  • Taking the day off from work after returning home is a great thing I can do for myself.
So thank you Lynn for letting us visit your house and thank you Anne for driving me all over yonder.  It was a great trip!

Be well!


  1. What a great time you all had! It was great fun to read all about it.

  2. After such a great weekend, it was difficult to go back to work! Thanks for the fun.

  3. Wow looks like you had a wonderful time. Thanks for the tour of Lynn's sewing room.

  4. Fabric and friends are the best combination! I am "expo-envious"!

  5. Is it just me? Or an optical illusion on the zipper construction. It appears to have zipper tape on only one side! That's seamless sewing!

    1. The pocket fabric doesn't really lie flat, so on the top of the zipper I understitched, and at Lynn's request, left the bottom zipper not understitched, to see the difference. By not understitching, the lining kind of creates a border around the zipper.

  6. I hate I missed the expo but allergies and a "touch of pneumonia" caused me to stay home. September doesn't seem to be a good time for me as I remember missed expos because of illness. Maybe next year?

    1. Awww, so sorry to hear that!! There's always next year!

  7. LOL I'm embarrassed because the stash is out of control! I agree with Pencil Girl: fabric and friends is a great combination! I'm happy to have had both you and Anne over for a visit. You're welcome anytime. =)

    1. Your stash may be plentiful, but I'd say you have very good control of it with your storage and catalog system!


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