Day 2 of the conference was a very full day so let jump to it. Check out my last post to read all about Day 1 of the conference.
I am not a morning person by any means but I am the kind of person who always has to sit in the front of the class. So Saturday morning I got up bright and early to snag a seat for the Welcome. Just like last year I was the first person down to the banquet room. Unfortunately Candice wouldn’t let me claim my seat (I love you Candice *smile*) so I headed over to Starbucks for my Venti English Breakfast tea and a bagel and cream cheese. Don’t judge me, I had to carb load because lunch wasn’t scheduled until 1pm.
By the time I returned a few other ladies had arrived and we waited until the doors opened to grab our seats (yup I was front row) and wait for Mimi’s arrival. The room quickly filled and Mimi arrived shortly thereafter. She started with a welcome and a little history about herself before moving on the the Fashion Show winners. Danesha took first place with her modification of the regal maxi into a sexy maxi dress. She won the Babylock Imagine Serger valued at $2,999.Taking first was Constance with her innovative Black & White tunic and pants set, second was Stephanie with her perfect for summer white linen pant suit and third place was Alejandra with her perfectly fitted white flutter top and ready to wear looking (handmade) jeans. Check out all of their photos on Babylock’s Instagram page. The runner ups won $300, $200 and $50 CASH, respectively!
Next up was the Let’s Take Measurement session. This session was supposed to be lead by Deb from Simplicity but unfortunately she had an accident just two days before the conference. She basically shattered her ankle while riding her bike and could not make it. I met Deb at the conference last year and she is amazing, sweet and a long time sewer who shared a wealth of information last year. She was definitely missed but Simplicity sent Joy to take her place and she did an amazing job.
Joy with help from Mimi showed us how to properly take body measurements. This was very helpful because you had a neighbor on either side who could assist you. Have you ever tried to take your measurements by yourself? It’s tricky. Joy told us where to place the tape to get the correct measurement.Simplicity provided us with a handy chart to jot down our measurements, which also included a few handy fitting tips. NOTE:Don’t forget to take your measurements regularly, Mimi recommended at least twice a year.
After we took our measurements it was time for the group to split up, Group 1 stayed with Mimi to draft their slopers while Group 2 headed to another room to learn about pattern fitting from Kelly. I was in the second group so I started with Kelly’s session on Regular and Plus Size Pattern Fitting. She stressed how important it was to know your body type. Very few people fit the exact body type that the big four pattern companies design for and it helps to know how what modifications you have to make as a rule. Most people have an area that requires modification, that could be a smaller bust, a fuller behind, long torso, narrow shoulders or a number of other things. I can’t tell you all she shared but she shared steps to ensure a proper fit. Examples were also given that included some great tips and nuggets on how to modify a commercial pattern in order address those “problem” areas. Hats off to Kelly!
Joy’s presentation followed Kelly’s and she did a great job of filling Deb’s shoes at the last minute. Especially she since she had the not so sexy topic of Finishings and Trims. We all know that our handmade garments should look as nice on the inside as they do on the outside. However, if you are like me then you don’t always take the time to do so. I don’t know about you, but sometimes I’m are rushing to finish a dress the day of an event (my hubby hates when I do that!) and I let some things slip. When I think about the time I spend making a garment it only makes sense to take a few more moments to finish off the inside so that it stands the test of time. Joy gave us a list of steps that we should follow to make sure that we produce not just fashion forward garments but quality garments. Two of these steps included prewashing fabric and pressing seams. I think I’ve finally been shamed into prewashing my fabric, we’ll see. She also explained several different options to finish off seams and hems using actual garments as handout for a real life examples of poor, good and better finishings. Overall I learned some new things and finally accepted some things I already knew.
Either we wrapped up early or the other group ran over, but my group had a little extra time for lunch which was welcomed. Yomi and I had been talking to a first time attendee, Stacy, who had traveled alone to the conference. As I stated in the day 1 recap everyone is family at this conference so we all went to lunch. We decided on Live Basil Pizza right on LA Live. I love pizza so it was great, but the company was better. The three of us all shared how much we loved this safe, supportive sisterhood of seamstresses. This stood out even more this year in light of what was going on in our country the week prior. There was no judgement, no cattiness, no attitudes, instead there was only support, compliments and helpfulness. It was bliss. It was so nice to me you Stacy!
After lunch it was time for my group to take our Draft a Sloper class with Mimi. I had hoped that we would be doing a bodice or top sloper, however we were walked through a basic skirt sloper. I understand that time was a constraint and I am assuming that drafting a skirt sloper is a more straightforward process. As a matter of fact we ended up only drafting the front of the skirt but she did give us what we needed to complete the back piece when we returned home. Mimi as usual broke each step down in her easy to understand way. She explained what a sloper is, what it is used for and went over wearing ease, design ease and seam allowances. She went on to explain how the basic sloper pattern can be used to create a plethora of styles of skirts. Also once you have a skirt sloper you can create a bodice sloper and make almost any dress. This session solidified that I need to create a basic bodice, skirt, pant sloper for myself.
Lastly the whole group merged back together to recap the day and go over the plan for Sunday. Mimi also announced that she was going to stick around to take a picture with everyone. Another addition for this year was onsite vendors and she urged us to visit with them and mingle with each other.
Babylock, Sulky, Oliso and Evite were on site all day. Oliso had a table with two irons that they were selling onsite and even though their representative (I didn’t catch her name) was informative and helpful her daughter took the cake. At 12 years old she was one heck of a saleswoman and I told her (and her mother) as much. Babylock was there with several sewing machine and serger models. A Make n Take glass case kit was provided to test the machines on site. I loved this and may have found my next machine. I stopped by the Sulky booth to ask a few questions about interfacing and stabilizer and learned that I was using a product incorrectly. That was extremely helpful. Evite was providing guidance to any of the ladies who wanted t start a business as to how evite could be used to reach out to potential customers. Evite also had a giveaway for a $300 Joann gift card.
True to her word Mimi was still hanging around after I perused all of the vendors so I grabbed a pic with her. I also had to get a pic with the entire team, Tieko, Candice and Kelly. I somehow missed Norris and April.
While taking photos I ended up cracking up at Merty and Soraya and their sisterly shenanigans. We are apparently all a sucker for a camera so we had a mini photo shoot in front of the banner. We all decided we were hungry and would meet up for cupcakes later. Yomi and I head back to our room, change and head out for cupcakes and to scout a place for dinner. We forgot to call the sisters and they forgot to call us but low and behold who was already in line at Sprinkles when we arrived? Merty and Soraya! LOL It was cool, we left there and grabbed dinner at Triple 8 (again) before heading out to look for something to get into and that was the beginning of a great night! Some things gotta stay in LA ya’ll, but trust friendships were born. We lived up the the hashtag #darlingsondeck!
So to recap Saturday was another LONG day, but it was great! I meet new people, ate good food, mingled with some amazing like minded women and learned a few new things.What more can you want?
Check out my recap of Day 3 where we talked about the business side of things and headed to the fashion district! More outtakes below…