The Sew South 2014 Report

The Sew South 2014 Report

I’m home! I’m home! I had a most excellent time at Sew South this weekend, but I can’t lie to you all – I’m so glad to be home. February and March have been packed to the walls with events, work, snow days, and stress with Sew South being the very last event on the list before a much needed break! While I’ve enjoyed every single thing I’ve had my hands in, I’m tired and quite glad to be back in a more relaxed state of being. I better enjoy April, because things are going off the rails again in late May!

OK – focus now – Sew South…

I so enjoyed the Sew South retreat! Jennifer does an amazing job of getting everything together and making sure we’re all welcome and comfortable. Even “crazy social anxiety riddled” I managed to feel comfortable almost from the first minute. I ate well, slept well, sewed a lot, came home with mounds of swag, found myself inspired to the max, and enjoyed great company. One thing I didn’t do – look at screens! I barely looked at my phone. No, really, my phone battery was 90% charged at the end of being downstairs for 16 hours. No screens turned out to be one of my favorite parts. I realize I spend way too much time looking at a phone, kindle, PC, etc and I’m looking forward to cutting back on that at home too. After this weekend – I’ve proved to myself that I totally can ignore them for a few days and it is OK. The downside, I only managed to take a very few pictures of the actual event. No worries – if you’re interested, head over to Instagram where all the other lovely attendees pictured like crazy. Here’s a excellent group shot from Jennifer. I’m the one that looks like there’s a light fixture growing out of my head.

SewSouth2014My Secret Sisters

You guys – I know it isn’t a competition, but I’m pretty sure I won the secret sister game. (Secret sister is like a secret Santa, you leave little gifts for your assigned sister through the weekend and receive gifts from another attendee). Annette really had my number – look at the amazing gifts I received through the weekend:

First an excellent zipper pouch in the best fabrics ever! (Want the Pattern? Buy it here!)


Then a most excellent travel sewing kit. Y’all – I usually travel with a plastic sandwich bag. No more! Only in style from now on! (Want the pattern? Buy it here!)

SecretSisterGift2It gets awesome-er! Check out this bag and all the swag: (Want the pattern? Buy it here!)

SecretSisterGift3She also brought a sketch book, pencils, and tons of chocolates. She even tossed in a quilter’s pin. My first! Can’t wait to put it on my name tag. Won’t be long and I’ll have as many pins as some of the other guild mates!

I simply can’t say thank Annette enough. I was over the moon with the first gift and then they just kept coming. I’m not sure I’ve had a Christmas this awesome since I was about 12. Thanks again Annette, you’re awesome and your work is impeccable!

My gifts went to Claudia. Claudia is local, which is awesome. I’m looking forward to catching up with her again in the future. She’s got an amazing style with an eye for Asian fabrics and design which is right in my wheelhouse. Claudia owns a virtual shop, SnugglyMonkey. You should check her out, she carries excellent threads and other notions/craft supplies.

I had so much fun shopping for little things I thought she may enjoy and I hope that I hit the right notes. I wanted her to have something handmade to go with the fun stuff, so I made this mug rug with my very first hand drawn paper piecing pattern. LogCabinMugRugYes, I know, it is a pretty simple log cabin, but I was impressed with myself none the less. Maybe I can do this paper piecing patterning thing after all!

Stuff I made

During free sew I worked on this table cover for traveling to trunk shows and such. I spent most of time working through the design of it and dealing with the directional fabrics. It’s all cut and ready to put all the way together– should be do-able in an afternoon. Now, if I can just find an afternoon….zombietablecover

We learned how to make boxy pouches from Kelly Bowser. I used a fat quarter I’ve had floating around dying to be used forever. I think it works! Want one? She has an excellent tutorial on her blog! BoxyPouch

Alison Glass brought an embroidery project with perle cottons. I was totally checked in for this and had trouble putting it down. I wish I had more time at home to just sit and hand sew/embroider. Clearly, I enjoy it! The little fish are free form adds – I’m almost impressed with myself! FishHandEmbroidery

We also enjoyed great lectures on Blogging and social media from Christen Barber, Improv quilting with Kati Spencer, and more inspiration with a lecture from Alison Glass. The disaster bucket shall remain a disaster. I never got over myself to make the bucket work; however, the rest of the room – nailed it! Check out Heather Valentine’s bucket patterns. The finished projects (from people that didn’t emotionally check out like me) are super cute! See, look:

Image from Courtney Lyons

Image from Courtney Lyons

 So, the big question: Will I return?

I usually judge the true success of an event if I plan on returning. I can say that YES I will do this again; however, probably not next year. While I think everything was priced 100% completely fair (maybe even underpriced) that doesn’t mean it isn’t a large expense. Also, the days are long and the event is intense for an introvert like me. I think I love it as much as Dragon*Con and like Dragon*Con, every other year is about right. If you have the opportunity – then you must – GO!!!

So, what have you been up to while I was away? Any blog posts/projects I must see??

Linking up with Freemotion by the River         Sew Fresh Quilts       Needle and Thread Thursday



  1. Is that bag you received made from the exact same fabrics as the table cover you are making?!? That’s awesome. Somebody did her research!

    • lol, yes! yes it is! Turns out – I’m not hard to figure out at all. Here I thought I was an enigma!

  2. So amazing!!! as predicted… Wish I had went, probably won’t go next year because I am going to QuiltCon, but maybe the following we will both be there:) Love your recap. Made me feel like I got to see everything. It did look fun packed so the price probably is fair and lots of swag is nice:)

    • QuitCon is so AWESOME! Can’t wait to hear about that. 🙂

  3. I am SO jealous! It is a big expense, which is part of the reason I opted not to go this time. One day…

    Thanks so much for showing this off at Needle and Thread Thursday!

    🙂 Kelly @ My Quilt Infatuation

    • I can understand that for sure! It is a great event, but the cost could buy a lot of fabric! Thanks for coming by! 🙂

    • I did Connie! It was a lovely retreat and certainly was a nice break from reality. Thanks for stopping by and saying hello!

  4. Looks and sounds like you had a fun time. Some day I’ll make it to a quilting retreat.

    • I did! I really enjoyed it and look forward to meeting up with more quilty friends in the future!

  5. This sounds like a really super weekend. Thank you for giving such an entertaining report on it. You got a lot done too in such a relatively short time. They must have been really long days.

    • Hey Marly! They were long days in the best way possible. 🙂 I haven’t sewed a lick since I’ve been home because we’ve been so busy with other things. Can’t wait to get back in the studio – hopefully this weekend!

  6. ***blushing*** so glad you love the gifts. I had fun putting it all together.

    • I’m so glad you did too! Was just showing off the Zbag tonight! 🙂


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