Again, I apologize for my extended silence. It’s been a particularly busy month. We spent two weeks in Sydney, and then we came home to a house full of boxes and unassembled furniture. Well, the house is still full of boxes, but at least most of the furniture is put together.
The movers ended up, after pushing our job back several times from “first job” on Saturday, February 14th, to “last job” on the same day, to “first job” on the Sunday, to 7pm on Sunday, and only because we begged, pleaded and threatened to call the Better Business Bureaus in three different states.
I was too generous when I said “movers”: the company sent one man. Poor Nick had to help him get everything in. I’m still hoping that we get some sort of rebate for his labor, but I think it’s a long shot.
We left Vegas the following morning, which is why everything was such a mess when we came home. It was a real mess. The movers did a wonderful job of smashing, crushing, and losing our things. Oh, and they gave us some things belonging to someone else, but unfortunately the box has no tag on it, so I don’t know how they’re ever going to sort that one out.
I digress. Moving is always terrible, but it’s hard to not spend a lot of time complaining about this one.
I couldn’t have been happier that my friend Traci, who I went with, was wrong about the amount of time she spent talking about the new machine. I’m sure it’s the exact same speech that she’s given a thousand times, about her design inspiration and her process. It was very amusing though. Tula has a great sense of humor, and she knows it, but somehow manages to make fun of herself for doing so.
We got to see some of her quilts, which I found really interesting. I’m sure a lot of people who attend these seminars pepper their posts with pictures of the quilts they were shown. I decided not to take any, because anyone who likes Tula has already seen them all, and her pictures of Quilt Week are really much better than what I’d be able to do with my iPhone from the back of the room.
I don’t know if this makes me weird, but I actually blow up the pictures of all of Tula’s quilts so that I can look at the quilting. Seeing it in person was such a relief. It was really just reassurance that nothing made by hand is perfect, but that doesn’t mean it’s not wonderful.
Tula also showed us some pictures of the line she has coming out in September. I know that some people have shared these online, but I felt uncomfortable taking photos of them, even for myself. In any event, I’m coming to the conclusion that you really need to see a fabric line in person, or at the very least, in a photograph. The digital swatches that go up everywhere just don’t do justice to the fabric. I really didn’t love Elizabeth when I saw the digital sales pictures, because I thought the colors were a bit dull and didn’t go together particularly well. Seeing it in person really changed my mind on that one, so yes, at some point, I will absolutely be adding some of that to my stash.
I might be the only person in the world who cares about this, but I did ask Tula whether she was planning on releasing any new needlepoint kits. It turns out that she has the same issues with the kits as I do: namely that the company just prints the design from the fabric on to the canvas, and when you go to stitch them you have to make some interesting design choices because of the directionality of the threads. She’s hoping to be able to reformat her designs for needle point, which would be great, but it doesn’t look like it’s happening anytime soon, which is also alright for me, as I have one going and two in a box somewhere that I haven’t decided on colorways for yet.
After all of that, Tula almost forgot to talk about the machine. I must say, I went in there 100% sure that I didn’t need a new machine, but she did a good job of selling it as a travel/class machine, and after lugging that 580 around for a year and a half, I’m thinking it’s sounding sensible. I know that Quiltique still has a number of them available, so I’ll think on it a while… because apparently 31 days isn’t long enough.
At the conclusion of the talk, there was a book signing, and of course I purchased a book that I already had a copy of (if only the movers had made us the first job that Saturday!) just to get an autograph. I feel terribly unimaginative, because people had come in with all sorts of things to be signed, and I did think about getting a signature on my lovely new bag, and I know that marker is supposed to be permanent, but I wasn’t convinced that I wouldn’t eventually end up with a signature so faded that it just looked like a smudge.
How do you like the not-so-new-anymore bag? I got in touch with lovely Jen, who is in a few of my online sewing groups, and asked her to put this together for me. Fortunately, it arrived the morning of the talk, so I could take it with me. I knew that Tula was familiar with Jen’s work, having seen a lot of it online, but we couldn’t work out whether she’d seen any in person, I promised Jen I’d take it along with me. It’s sort of giant, which is great for travel, but I had it filled with all sorts of unnecessary things that day, so that it didn’t look completely sad. Tula loved it, of course, because I think she loves everything, and Jen was thrilled that I managed to get it in to the photo with Tula. So, I think everyone is happy now.
Please excuse the photo quality on this one. I took the photo from Jen’s Facebook page because I figured that this was how she wants her work to be displayed. Actually, can you please excuse both photos. The camera on my phone was obviously not particularly well cleaned that day.
While milling around the store, I ran in to Christa, of Christa Quilts, who gave me the best “welcome to a new town” greeting I’ve ever received that didn’t involved champagne. I’ve been reading her blog for years, and it never clicked that she lived in Vegas, but it turns out that she’s not too far away from me, and she offered all sorts of advice and introductions. For those of you not familiar with Christa, she’s the head of the Modern Quilt Guild in Las Vegas, so anti-social me is eventually going to have to get along to a guild meeting and see how I like it. Unfortunately, I missed the February meet up as I was in Sydney, but hopefully I can make this month’s.
I think that’s it for the very overdue Tula wrap up.