Well hello, this was a weekend of intimidation as I took a 3+ day sewing retreat with Louise Cutting of Cutting Line Designs.
You can read her impressive bio here. It was a wonderful retreat and a bit intimidating as I have not sewn clothes for 20 years! There is a back story to this participation in the retreat. About 10 days before the retreat, I received an email that mentioned there was a space left. Randy and an old friend were going to go to the OU-KU basketball game in Norman, so I thought “what the heck”. Well let me tell you that I did not realize that Louise is a famous teacher and women wait years to be able to take her classes. We had people in the class from towns 2 or more hours away AND they knew how to sew. I signed up because I live 1 mile away and had a free weekend! I went to the Thursday evening Trunk Show. By the time the evening was finished, I was ready to run away or mysteriously fall ill. The Trunk Show was lovely. The ladies that own The Cloth Merchants know how to throw a party. We had fabulous fashion married to very great food and drink.
Photo from “The Cloth Merchants”
With trepidation, I went back the next morning. Now, I have never, ever used a computerized sewing machine or a serger! I had to have help filling the bobbin and threading the “idiot proof” machine. I can thread a standard machine and industrial machines in my sleep, but these new fangled ones about did me in. Though once I got the hang of it, I loved them. Don’t tell Randy though, as I may need to buy new machines to go with my 4 other machines!
I started out with a pattern for a cowl neck tunic and gorgeous fabric. This is the one done for the show:
I do not know why the pictures are blurry. Sure need to work on my photography skills. Here is my unfinished version:
This took me 1.75 days to get to this point. Then it was time to change gears. Louise has a new pant pattern and generously brought copies for everyone. THEN, she custom fitted the pattern to each of us, one at a time. It was an amazing thing to participate in as I have never had a custom fitted anything! So, I left Saturday evening with fabric for my custom pants and brought it all home to cut them out. Sunday was spent fitting the pants and finishing them. It was a successful day. Here are my pants!
The women at the retreat and the women from The Cloth Merchants were all so nice and helpful. I could not have completed anything without all the help. Judy, Barbara, Nancy and Diane hosted a lovely retreat. The food was absolutely wonderful. They served us 3 delicious lunches, lots of snacks and plenty of coffee. All the details they added to the retreat were beyond my expectations and I was very appreciative of their efforts.
Here are a few more pictures of the retreat:
If you find ready made pants just don’t fit you, please go to a retreat with Louise. I was simply amazed at her methods and abilities. Design work fascinates me and Louise is well versed in all aspects of pattern making, pattern alteration, fabric and so much more. Her sense of humor was very helpful also. She never, ever made me feel stupid or unworthy and that is saying a lot considering. So, all in all, my spur of the moment retreat was beyond anything I could have imagined. I will never be a talented seamstress, but feel I could whip up a pair of pants if I need to.
The coming change of retirement is allowing me to step out of my comfort zone and I seem to enjoy it. Louise is having another retreat this spring in Eureka Springs. I might have to attend. After all, I now have the most expensive pants I will ever own and might need to branch out to blouses! How was your weekend? Talk soon.