Glad to Be Home!

This past weekend I spent at the Holiday Inn, Mt. Kisco vending and teaching at Pinwheels and Friends. PNF is a unique setting where all the local vendors get together and do a Shop Hop conveniently under one roof. No need to drive around and travel all over the place, but all the fun and games of a traditional shop hop. It was so much fun. I can't speak for all the attendees but I can assure you that the vendors had a blast!

Friday morning in spite of all the snow we had a great turn out and enjoyed not only all the hands on mini classes, but the all day event with Barbara Bathe who joined us from Pfaff. In Barbaras class each participant made a tablet tote, using embroidery and decorative stitching. Although we were missing a few people due to the snow the small class we did have was wonderful. Every student had plenty of time to explore the sewing machines we were using, ask a ton of questions and really got personal attention from our guest educator. Everyone walked out of that class with their personalized project AND a huge smile on their face. 

Meanwhile, the mini classes were pretty full all day on Friday and each class was so unique! With a great combination of machine classes and hand sewing classes there was a little something for everyone who was in attendance. Kathy from Quilt Basket taught everyone a cool piecing technique using a foundation for piecing onto, Sue from Sue's Fabric World taught a ridiculously and well received class on how to make a microwavable bowl caddy and last but not least was my class, the 'sausage style' pillow case. Most students were able to complete their project within the time frame of the class and everyone seemed as though they had a wonderful time in the classes. I mean, hey... It was snowy and crappy out. What better way to spend the time out of the house, hanging out and keeping busy?!

Friday night was the evening activities- First of all was LCR using 2 1/2" strips instead of money, aka Strip Poker. I had never played LCR but I can assure you that plenty of my neighbors have been playing it and they had already told me how easy and fun the game was and how intense it can get with money involved. If you've never played it's an easy dice game that can be played with really any object but usually people use $1 bills or quarters. All you need to do is roll the dice and do what they tell you. If you roll an "L" you pass one item to your left. If you roll an "R" you pass one item to your right. If you roll a "C" you throw one of your items into the pot. It's simple enough and doesn't take too much thought to concentration that you can still talk and joke while you're playing but can get a bit intense. As more and more pieces are thrown into the pot and there's less and less pieces available to pass around and more people are 'out' it gets exciting. The last one holding whatever it is you're wagering, wins the pot!! Friday night we played a couple of rounds of LCR with 2 1/2" strips, which holds more value to many of us than money anyway! I mean, we started out with 3 strips each, and 9 people, that pot had 27 strips in it! Rosie won both games!! I think the dice were weighted and the Gaming Commission just isn't taking my request to investigate seriously. I mean, they're not even returning my calls!

And once we robbed Rosie of all her strips, it was time to use them for the Jelly Roll Race!! In a Jelly Roll Race, each participant sews all their strips together end to end to form one looooooooong strip as quickly as possible and then that strip is folded in half and sewn again and again to form a quick and easy quilt. Pat Yamin from Come Quilt With Me started us off and usual her charm was welcome in getting the races started. I came in second place. Of course I lost to Rosie (again, I don't understand why the Gaming Commission doesn't see something gaining on here!!) and we all had a blast making fun quilts. Everyone who participated walked away with a small gift for participating and we all proudly posed with our quickly sewn quilts. 

Saturday was a bit busier since the weather had cleared and the whole ballroom buzzed with activity. All the mini classes were packed beyond and capacity and even had to be split into small groups so everyone could sit and sew at their own pace. I think one of the most wonderful things about Maria from Pinwheels has it all set up is the relaxed atmosphere and cooperation between all the shops to make sure each customer has a wonderful experience. 

I got to meet husbands and sisters of many of my customers, I got to meet new customers, and I got to see some faces from last year. Each year PNF has been growing and changing and evolving into something that meets the needs of our customers and provides them with a great way to try things and see things without all the chaos of the larger shows. The smaller more intimate setting has really helped each shop showcase their strengths and has really forged some wonderful relationships between shop owners which helps us all serve you guys better. 

I know that we will be back at PNF next year, with new projects and classes and new products. I hope you'll join us again next year. And if you weren't there this year, please consider coming next time. It really is a cool place to hang out. If you were there, we would love to hear out of you. Please tell us what you thought in the comments below. I'm off to take some more Advil, soak my feet and take a nap!!

Happy Sewing!

Erin