Every year, after the PatternReview weekends I would lurk among the PR boards reading about all the fun.
I'm not ashamed to admit that I was green with envy.
After all I was reading about late nights filled with wine and laughter, shared dinners and inside jokes, fashion shows and fabric shopping, and of course the bonding between sewing friends. As much as I've wanted to attend one of these events, finances just haven't allowed it.
Which is why I jumped at a chance to take part in the PR Day 2011 being held worldwide Saturday, Nov. 19.
Ten of us began the celebration early and met for dinner at the Mall of America the night before. Dotes wore her lovely animal print coat making it easy for us to spot her outside the restaurant. We let out squeals of delight when we reconized one another and finally had the chance to meet face-to-face.
The bond was immediate and 10 almost-strangers began friendships that night.
The conversation over dinner could have lasted all night. Now I really understand why all those late nights during the PR weekends.
On Saturday - THE BIG DAY - we met at our favorite fabric warehouse, SR Harris.
Everyone was greeted with a lovely little welcome packet.
We then got down to business. After all we had less than three hours to get through the entire building.
By the time we were ready to head to our next destination - the uber-cool Crafty Planet - the first snowstorm of the season had begun. With some discussion as to whether or not we should reschedule the group, in true hardy Minnesota fashion, plowed ahead. (No pun intended...but it would have been nice if the plows had been out as the roads were getting icy. )
The short commute from SR Harris to Crafty Planet took a bit longer than usual but everyone made it safely.
And only one person almost had an accident. Me! On the cloverleaf to enter one freeway a car spun out in front of me and came to a stop sideways on the road. While I was trying to stop my car on icy road I was also trying to decide which ditch would be less likely to cause my car to rollover. Fortunately my car came to a stop partially off the road, the car behind me managed to stop and the car that had slid slowly manuevered their way back onto the freeway. And that was my welcome to Minnesota winter driving.
Okay, back to fun stuff.
We were able to participate in the Fabric-by-Fabric One Yard Wonders book release party being held at Crafty Planet. This second book is just as great as the first one! I'll have a review and a giveaway of the book in the near future as part of the book blog tour.
I recognized my project immediately as Alee Marsh, Storey Publishing publicist, had it on. Isn't she adorable?
After signing books and posing with the authors, Rebecca Yaker and Trish Hoskins (Crafty Planet owner), I rejoined the rest of the group who was busy oohing and aahing over all the great cotton fabrics, designer patterns, yarns and trims that fill the store.
We regrouped at Fat Lorenzo's for drinks and show and tell...
And celebratory chocolate cake...
Which we ate BEFORE dinner :-)
I've long known that the online sewing community is (for the most part) warm, friendly, giving and talented. And this group is no exception. The projects that were shared would amaze you - there is a lot of talent in this small group.
Due to the weather we had a smaller group than what was originally planned and ended the evening sooner than we might have otherwise. But we've already begun talking about a gathering after the holidays. Although we're not too sure we can wait that long.
Now, not only do we have our own inside jokes but we have the beginnings of life-long friendships due to PR Day 2011.