First and foremost, Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a lovely holiday season, and since it seems I have not written a blog post since last summer, this “holiday season” includes Labor Day, Arbor Day, Fall Equinox, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, and all the other holidays in between. Sorry, but life just sometimes gets in the way.
I was instructed to “sit down, write a blog post, and just be Julie.” not exactly sure what this means, but ok…
Things here at Sewing Arts have been busy, fun, and crazy, all in a good way. The very loved and sought-after Barbara Rain recently retired from teaching at SMC and we were lucky enough to snag her to teach for us part-time. On a whim, four of us (Susanne, Kathleen, Rachel, and myself) decided to crash Barbara’s Sewing with Stretch Level 1 class and we completely understand why people are dying to get into her classes. Barbara is the Bob Ross of sewing; she is calm, positive, and helpful as she suggests we “talk to the fabric” to encourage it to sew straight through inward and outward curves [“there are no mistakes, only happy accidents”]. I am now the proud owner of a super soft, super comfy sweatshirt and flowing pants made with complete confidence and no fear… ok, a tiny bit of fear, but I got over it.
Then there is Tiffany Wonderly, who joined us a year ago to teach all three levels of Beginning Sewing for Fashion. She is kind, patient, talented, and has a great sense of humor. Each of her fashion students end up signing up for the next level before they have completed the one they are currently taking. We love Tiffany so much, we were able to get her to join us full time at SA and we couldn’t be happier to have her be part of our “gang.”
Speaking of “gang” we were treated to a visit by the talented and hysterical Kimberly Enimo who wrote the sweetest blog post about her visit to the shop.
Then there was January 2nd, when we came back to the shop to find water dripping from the ceiling above Ted’s service desk…. oh my…. Turns out there was a teeny tiny leak in the pipe above that was spraying out water like a spray bottle. We were lucky that the only thing which was damaged was the old computer on the desk and a label maker. We did have to remove all the slat walls, drywall, ceiling, etc. to have it all dried out which has been a nuisance to say the least. On a positive note, we were required to have an inspection of the area and we are pleased to report that there is not one speck of mold or mildew! Once the pipes get replaced, we can put the slat walls back up (in addition to 1,700+ buttons).
The website is running smoothly and we have been shipping all over the world! The first time we had an order that was shipping internationally (shout out to a rural town in Switzerland!), we stared at our phones, slack-jawed, for about two minutes. The support from all over the country and the world is mind boggling and we couldn’t be more thankful or grateful. Rachel printed a map to show where we have shipped in the US during our first calendar year by coloring in each state. If you happen to be reading this and are located in one of the uncolored states, buy something!!
On the personal (sewing) front, I have set some goals for myself this year:
- Be more patient and mindful with my sewing; rather than trying to “get it done” as quickly as possible, take a breath and trim it up to be exact.
- Learn new skills.
Go back to the basics and refine my skills-- so far, I have joined three different quilt along groups, including this year’s Moda Blockheads 3, where I am making my blocks out of solids, so there are no hiding mistakes in a pattern. To be honest, I have not taken out so many seams in my life and I am only on block four…but my skills are getting better by the week!
Push myself and don’t freak out… it’s just fabric (Side note: Speaking of fabric, sometimes the easiest part of starting a new project is picking out the pattern and the hardest part is picking the fabric. Do you have the same problem or is this just a “Julie thing?” I thought the 10,000 works in progress was something only I struggled with until I bought the store and met all of you.)
Don’t be afraid of what I don’t know-- one of my “do not be afraid goals” is signing up for a class at QuiltCon that I have no idea if I should be in, but it sounded like fun. Nope, not telling you what class it is, you will just have to follow me on IG to see. And yes, that does mean that Susanne, Rachel and I are heading to Austin next week to attend QuiltCon 2020 and we could not be more excited!
Finally, last but not least, it’s February which means the “Most Loved Contest” in Santa Monica has started again. We’ve won the Most Loved on Pico for the past seven years. Please go to their site and vote for us in these three categories: #17 Santa Monica Independent Business, #20 Legacy Business and #33 Most Loved on Pico! Help us keep the streak alive!
Thanks for taking the time to read this! I (hopefully) won’t wait six months to write again.