Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Sewing Salons

Just over a year ago my friend Kris and I hosted the very first Sewing Salon.  The idea was (and is) a simple one:  host a public sewing group once a month as a means of fostering friendship, community, and offering support to others as they learn to sew or practice new techniques--with snacks!  It would be a place where newbies could come and have someone help them out when they were uncertain and experienced folks could come tackle a big project without the distractions of home.
A little backstory:  My mom organizes Quilting Retreats a couple times a year with her friends and sisters and mom, etc.   A space is rented and it is like a weekend-long slumber party/sewing marathon.   It is a jolly good time and we all get a lot done in an environment that is so dedicated to creativity.  I've blogged about my mom's retreats here, here, and here.

Kris and I wanted something like that in our lives on a regular basis.  So, we reserved a space at Kris's church and sent out an email and a Facebook event to a smattering of friends.  I was a bit hesitant about the whole thing initially.  A monthly sewing group seemed right up my alley for ATTENDING.  But, for organizing?!  Oh, I was much less certain about that.  I mean, it's not like I am a sewing expert or anything.   Who am I  to host a sewing group?    What sort of responsibilities would I be taking on?  Besides, who would even come?
But, despite my tendency to overthink things, I could tell it was a good idea.  An idea that would fill a little gap in our creative community.  Plus, Kris has the energy and spirit to convince me to give just about anything a try.  Looking back on the past year of salons I feel that it has proven to be a success, too.  The average attendance is about six, I'd say, but it varies from session to session.  Other people seem to enjoy it, to look forward to it even.  I certainly do.  It is such a kind, supportive group of people, many of whom I didn't know before we started these Salons.

I've learned about making rag rugs, t-shirt yarn, felting wool, embroidery, darts (!), and so much more.  I've eaten too much and laughed just the right amount.
Community starts like this, I think.  A good idea, a couple people to baby it along, and a following that comes together to make it all worthwhile.  I'm so pleased with our little sewing community.  I'm delighted to watch it grow.

4 comments:

Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts and ideas. I value the advice and friendship that you share with me!