travelling

Sewing Vacation

Last week, I had one of the best times I have had in a long time.  I got to attend a Martha Pullen Licensing.  That is basically a class with a ton of projects around a theme (heirloom sewing, quilting, serging, etc.), and now I am a licensed teacher for the class I did.  I own copyright for all the projects and instructions should I choose to teach them.  I have no present plans to start a sewing school, but who knows what will happen in the future.  If the opportunity to teach came up, I would probably pursue it.  The class I was in was Beginning Sewing, so it was designed for teachers that would teach beginning sewing.  None of the projects were too difficult, but there was a huge variety.  We were given kits for close to thirty projects, which was way more than we could finish in five days (it included a jacket and a quilt).  There were twenty-seven women in the class, and six or seven teachers depending on the day, so if you needed help, there was always someone available.

The greatest part of the week was the people.  Everyone was very friendly.  At meals, I tried to sit with different people, and I always had a good time.  Women were from all across the US (Washington to California to Florida to Connecticut and everywhere in between).  My roommate was from Saskatchewan and we were the two Canadians.  The woman I shared a table with was an eighty-one year old named Norma who drove herself fourteen hours to get there.  This is the fifth class she has gone to.  I don’t have many friends that sew, so it was great just to talk to so many people who are passionate about it.  Many of these women have sewing business, so I now have lots of ideas swimming in my head.  The oldest was in her eighties and the youngest was in her twenties, so there were people from all stages of life.

One of the highlights was meeting Martha Pullen.  For those who have never heard of her, she is a huge sewing celebrity.  She has a large company, has travelled around the world teaching, and had her own TV show for many years.  She is sixty-nine, but still going strong.  I knew she would be there and we would get our picture taken with her, but I wondered what she would be like.  I thought she might come in and give a little speech and maybe shake hands, but I was not prepared for how friendly she was.  Everyone had turns to have a meal with her in a small group, and she made an effort to get to know everyone personally.  She was genuinely interested in people and cared about them.  On the last day, as we were leaving, she was making comments like “I’ll be praying for your mom”, “Good luck on your exam”, “Have you considered this option for your business?”  She even had the entire class over to her house for dinner.  I knew she was a great seamstress, teacher and business woman, but she is also a wonderful person.

I had a great time and hope I can go back sometime.  There is a class next year about using a serger, so I have my fingers crossed.  I’ll do another post about all the projects I made – here are some pictures from my week.

This is the teacher’s view from the front of the classroom.

At the side of the room, there was a bank of sergers for students to use.

left – my roommate from Saskatchewan, right – Martha Pullen

me and Norma – we sat beside each other

me and Martha Pullen

a group leaving on the last day – We came as strangers but left as good friends.

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