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Original Sewing and Quilt Expo (Sewing Expo Review)
Viewed 5202 times
Review rated Very Helpful by 4 people   
Posted by: Elemenopeo
About Elemenopeo star
Member since: 5/11/04
Reviews written: 49
Sewing skills:Intermediate
Favored by: 4 people
expos reviewed: 1
Bio: more...
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Posted on: 11/19/04 2:24 PM
Rating: starstarstar
Web site/URL: photo
This was my 4th or 5th Expo in the last 8 years. I was able to go for Thurs and Sat & booked back to back classes for both days. A little tiring and I missed the free fashion shows and such, so hopefully I get more time next year.

I attended all the Cynthia Guffey classes offered those days and was not in the least bit disappointed there! I always learn something from her. The evening sewing hands on class was good too, although a bit disorganized from last minute changes. I'm a big fan of hers - cannot praise highly enough.

The other classes I attended varied. I took Lovely Lingerie with Cindy Michaels. I felt it tried to cram too much into one hour. She tried to teach basics and give inspiration. Well, she succeeded better in inspiration - if I were a true beginner, I wouldn't have been able to sew from that alone. But I felt I gained some good ideas at least.

I had loads of fun in Marlene Gaige's Altered Purse class. What a fun concept - I am definately making more. She was very prepared, had wonderful materials available and fun samples. It was exciting to see what everyone made too. I really enjoy the hands on classes and will make room for more next time.

Peggy Sagers More Factory Techniques class was so-so. I have had better seminars with Peggy and like her a lot. I liked her fly front technique but had a hard time absorbing it, even with the handout on it. Another woman in class felt the same. Peggy walked us through constructing a blouse and jacket, urging people to sew and see it takes less time than shopping. Her turning collars with points technique and sleeve head technique are not new to me but very useful & do work well. She has a lot of energy and love for sewing.

I took constructing jackets with Pam Howard too. It was the last class on Sat, so energy levels were low. She was very prepared with visuals and samples and very willing to answer questions and go in depth. I really liked her class and wish I hadn't been so tired. I look forward to her book coming out someday on jackets and think she has potential to be a great teacher with even more experience. It was a broad subject and I think it would be better broken into parts too. Definately recommend her.

As for shopping, I splurged. Bought some patterns from Shirley Adams because she is such a breath of fresh air and an icon. I did catch part of her stage show between classes. I hope she returns next year because I would like to take one of her classes too. I love how she draws inspiration from her surroundings and really has fun sewing.

I also bought pattern and videos from Cynthia Guffey. I won a door prize with a $50 gift certificate to her booth - what a great prize! (Other nice things too. That was cool!)

Cynthia also helped me shop at Wool House (next to her booth) for fabric to make a jacket and skirt. They are also a great vendor with fantastic fabrics at great prices. They said they did really well and will be coming back to Mpls! Hooray! I hope to make the outfit by next year's expo.

I also discovered a fun booth Laura Murray Originals. She has some fun fun stuff. Shiva paintsticks & accessories, stencils, foiling stuff, buttons, fabrics...she and her husband were super nice and helpful too. Look for something art to wear from me this year too.

The only thing I hate about Expo is the hotel has lousy eating. Thurs I bought a salad (so-so but good service) for lunch at a coffee shop and a group of us from Sewing World had dinner in the restaurant. The service was so slow, I had 3 minutes to eat my soup (good soup) and I was the last one to my evening class because of it. Go elsewhere to eat. I brought something for lunch Saturday to avoid that hassle.
Otherwise, be prepared for wildly varied room temps (layers) and being a bit lost as to where rooms are if new. Aside from that, it is a good location & the spaces all work well.

I came away very recharged and energized to sew more!
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5 Comments      Login to Add a Comment
Jackie M said...
I attended the Expo, too, and thought I'd add a comment rather than a separate review -- hope you don't mind, Stefanie! I concur with Stefanie on everything she said. I attended 2 Cynthia and 2 Peggy classes, along with the Lingerie class, which I felt was a waste of one of my classes. The instructor passed around about 24 slip samples, when about 5 would have been sufficient. Didn't pick up any tips at all, and I was hoping to be able to ask some questions about inserting boning into corsets and underwires, but that was a no-go. As I still consider myself an advanced beginner/early intermediate sewer, I found Peggy's classes very informative, though she did rush through some of her techniques. Cynthia was amazing, but I'm so far below her in my level of sewing, I didn't understand a lot of what she was talking about (my fault, not hers). I'm going to do some pant suits and jackets before the next Expo so that I have a better idea of how to incorporate her fine tailoring techniques. I think the main difference between Cynthia's and Peggy's sewing and fitting techniques is this: Cynthia makes sewing a science, while Peggy makes it an art. Cynthia takes the time to hand-sew and do fine tailoring base on precise measurements, while Peggy shows you the quick, easy way to get your project done by pin fitting. Both methods have their place, depending on the purpose of your project. All in all, a very satisfying experience (except for the hotel food, of course -- what a joke!)
11/30/04 8:26 AM
Motorposus said...
A belated thanks for your review, Stephanie. The Expo is rolling to Atlanta next month, and I wanted to refresh my memory. Your comments were very helpful, as well as amusing. (The food is no better here, alas!) I always enjoy taking classes from Cynthia and Peggy, who inspire in different ways. I'm lucky enough to be able to take Pam Howard's classes here in Atlanta. She's a perfectionist, but has such a level-headed attitude toward sewing, all of her students feel relaxed and up to the challenges.
2/9/05 3:55 PM
chicago said...
Good review. I have often thought about attending the Minneapolis show. I will definately plan on it for next year. Thanks Stephanie for the good info.
12/30/05 12:51 PM
SewingSherri said...
I've been looking forward to this expo and taking classes. Thanks for the great insight!
3/13/06 7:12 AM
stitched4u said...
Thank you, thank you, thank you! Insights on the hotel and the instructors absolutely helpful. I am SOOO grateful. This will definitely aid in preparation and a more enjoyable first show for me.
9/2/06 1:02 PM

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