So yesterday i got to spend a glorious day away from the homestead at the American Sewing Guild‘s annual conference, held this year in lovely Downtown Los Angeles. And not in the smelly, urine soaked portion either, but at the
uppity posh Westin Bonaventure Hotel. You know, the kind of hotel that does NOT have vending machines–or at least, not where one might see them from the lobby…
(yes, i was hungry. I wanted a funyun. but alas…)
I’ve been a member of the guild for two years now, not that anyone other than the person that prints out the membership cards would know. I never go to meetings, general or neighborhood. Hey, i read the magazine, i troll the website, i willingly use my 10% discount card for JoAnns.
I’m a misanthrope. This has been established. Going to these meetings would require me to actually TALK to people. Fuuuuuhuuuuck THAT.
This was the big annual conference. Like, people of big names in the sewing world would be there like Susan Khalje. (some sewers just went 000000h. The rest of you, I get it. I could name some random person on the street and itwouldn’t matter. No worries) There was a chance to TAKE CLASSES–something this self-taught nut has wanted to do for a while: yes let SOMEONE ELSE explain it to me for a change.
And of course–there would be the capitalist free market splendor that is the vendor floor. Need some obscure sewing tool? i bet you’d find it there.
So, as it was a local event, our local chapter (ASGLA) had an information booth, as well a table to pick up this year’s charity sewing task (yet one more thing i didn’t do for ASG–and that was pretty douchy of me. Guess i’d better get on that. Sorry terminally ill kids.) And for the small task of manning these tables for 2 or more hours, we could take a free class!
Yes, i know. Volunteering would again require my speaking to other people. And not just gutteral single syllabic responses, but full smile, charming “hey join us! We’re awesome!” conversations.
But, as the cost to actually register and attend classes was a little steep, i decided to bite the bullet and do it. And as tempting as it was, i decided to NOT abandon my husband for an entire weekend, and built it all into one day. Classses in the morning and volunteering in the afternoon.
Classes were interesting. My first class was taught by Judy Kessinger from Fit Nice System, about fitting pants. And she has such a Southern charm and easy manner, not to mention the best way to make pants and fit them, and i actually LEARNED something and (gasp) ENJOYED MYSELF in that class. Except for the negative nancy sitting in front of me that would poo-poo everything the teacher would say because she would never DREAM of wearing (insert non-expensive fabric here) or using (insert practical and non-expensive tool here). I suppose she only used the skins of baby seals and the finest hand crafted golden needles, collected by sacrificial virgins in dying out amazonian rain forests. jerk.
Anyway, i walked out of that class, brimming with ideas to my next class that was the biggest waste of my day. And i say this after a day of sitting at a table where NO ONE did anything.
The second class was really just a pattern review of a pattern being sold down on the vendor floor (which wasn’t open yet) and was not for sale in the classroom. So i spent 1.5 hours listening to some woman drone on about how to make and fit these pants (and to hear how AWESOME she is for stealing this design from another muckity muck designer). I spent most of that time trolling the internet on my smart phone.
The rest of the day was spent at the ASG table, where we were taking the Turtle Pillows that i had not participated in and feeling more and more like a heel as the day progressed. I met some…interesting people. I heard a LOT of stories about shit i really didn’t need to know (really–lady from Minnesota, i didn’t need to know the ENTIRE PICK-UP PROCESS for shipping your charity items that weren’t even the ones we were collecting). And as suspected, i met some…well…conservative folks who after only a few minutes of conversation would somehow divulge their dislike for Homsosexuals (always paraphrased with the delightful statement “i’m not a homophobe, BUT…” ALthough, this was prolly my fault for mentioning Project Runway, or FASHION IN GENERAL. Seriously–that’s as nice as i can say it. Being a member of online forums, i am AWARE of how much the sewing/crafting world is DOMINATED by those who live on the right side of EVERYTHING–and i’m not doggin’ em. Anyone can sew–and some of those ladies, while they may NEVER want to sit and have a meal with me are still VERY TALENTED seamstresses/fabric artists. But this is one of the main reasons i don’t attend the meetings.
I mean, how do you hate Tim Gunn? REALLY? OR gay men in the fashion industry IN GENERAL. I mean, i get that their view of fashion has damaged the female psyche–and i would understand anger forced in that direction. But the people i met yesterday just don’t like the “flamboyant” kind. Even though they make beautiful clothes? And have no desire to EVER have sex with you? really? HATE? ::sigh::
These are also the same ladies who tend to dog me for using skull fabrics and the like. “Oh, you’re one of THOSE sewers” Yes. I actually heard this phrase yesterday.
Yay. For. ME.
However, i did do some time with a nice lady at the table yesterday who i got to laugh with and share eye rolls. So, they’re not ALL bad. There are a few of us in the guild who are actually SANE and
do drugs drink tolerate people outside of our circle.
Next year, the conference is in Houston Texas. In August. Riiiiiiight.