Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The SAGA(News) Continues……..

The next issue of SAGANews (Volume 30 #4) is with the graphic artist, which means it is being set up ready to go to the printer. So, it should be in the mail by the middle of November. This issue, the last of the year, will contain items from the National Convention in Indianapolis that those of you who weren't there will not have seen. Maybe even some of you who were there missed some of the events too. If you were in the Design Show or an Artisan Achiever present at convention your photo is in this issue. Photos of the Pearls, Perles, Purls contest and even the new SAGA board are included too. We have a design from young Canadian designer Claire Meldrum and the Textile Conservation articles conclude this issue.

Now that the next issue of SAGANews is almost complete, I plan to get the Convention Photo CD ready for sale. These CDs have been popular with convention attendees since their introduction two years ago. They contain lots of photos from posed to very candid. If you were at this year's convention then I am sure your photo is somewhere amongst the thousands I seem to be editing! This year the CD will include the competition entries. I know many chapters have purchased the bonnet CD's and used them for chapter programmes. Maybe a convention programme would be fun too? Visit the SAGA website every now and then to check when they become available.

Besides working on the Convention Photo CD I am also starting the next issue of SAGANews (Volume 31 #1). I know many of you especially look out for this issue as it contains the Convention brochure in the centre. Terry Campbell is already working on that so we are both ready when the deadline comes around!(Maybe you want to take the class shown in the photo taken at this years Convention?) I am also excited as I have a special interview for this issue. I will not say who it is with, but I will tease you with the fact I now have official press clearance with a national TV channel!

So although the SAGANews year is coming to an end with the last issue of the year, behind the scenes the work continues to bring you the next exciting issue ………….

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Convention over: Back to Normal

Nearly a week has passed since the 2009 SAGA National Convention in Indianapolis ended. So I hope all of those who attended have found their way back home safely and have now had time to unpack; do many loads of laundry; tidy up after the family; and finish their class projects? Of course, some of you have been able to do all of those afore mentioned items, but many of you, I know, will have projects left to complete weeks, days, months and dare I say it years from now? But didn't you have the best time acquiring those new Unfinished Objects?

The end of convention is always sad as we have to say good bye to our friends, our sisters-in-sewing and to the great teachers whose skills we are trying to learn, but then the excitement starts to build again as you get to plan the trip to the next SAGA convention, September 22-26 at the Marriott Waterside, Norfolk, Virginia. If this year was your fist time at a convention (and I did hear one lady say she had been a SAGA member for over 20 years and this was her first convention!) I hope that you have the bug. Many find that once they have made it through that first time (leaving the family, traveling alone, being away from more than one night) they just have to make it an annual event. I know I enjoy seeing familiar faces as I tour the classes each day.

So Banquet was one of the highlights of the convention and this is where the Artisans receive their certificates; the Best in Show for Design Show is recognized as is the People's Choice in both the Design Show and Show and Share. The winners of the Pearls, Purls, Perles contest were also recognized. The out-going president installs the new board and the in-coming president. Then in between all of these, the calling of the raffle basket winners takes place. Cheryl Cox makes this an event to remember and with her team of helpers (one to open the box of tickets, one to mix them, one to draw the winner and take it to Cheryl and a group of ladies to take the basket to the winner) they work hard to keep everyone happy, although I know I was sitting at the wrong table this year as I did not win a basket! This year we had 79 baskets and so lots of money has gone to help fund the SAGA grants for chapters hosting a workshop with a SAGA approved teacher. Oh, and another important item at banquet was the announcement of the location of SAGA Convention 2011 which will be in….. Anaheim, California.

Sunday was a day of saying good byes and getting out of class and the hotel room in time to get the shuttle to the airport or load the car for the drive home (and some of the cars I saw truly where loaded to the maximum). I was lucky enough to have the company of a SAGA friend to sit with at the airport which made the time pass quickly waiting for my flight. This friend and I meet many years ago at an airport waiting for a shuttle and as we rightly guessed we were heading to the same hotel for the start of a SAGA convention we shared the cost of the ride. I hope that those of you who attended this convention were lucky enough to make some new sewing friends as well as catch up with some of your 'old' ones?

Well, this Blog was started to lead up to and carry through SAGA Convention 2009, but it isn't going to end because convention ended. It is too good a tool to let go, so even though I won't be Blogging every day, please do look back frequently as I plan to Blog as often as time permits with items of interest and such.

Now I need to get busy with the next issue of SAGANews which will feature lots of photos of winners, achievers and events from Convention. So look for your copy coming to a mailbox near you sometime in November!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Saturday Already?

Where does the time go? I can't believe we are only a day and half away from the end of this convention. It has been a busy few days and what with classes and events, time just flies by.

Design Show and Show and Share were well attended. Maggie Bunch put on a beautiful display for both areas and the centre piece was the Best in Show, a beautiful dress made by Eunice Hayes of Ohio, which she called 'Belle'. Eunice kindly modeled the dress on Thursday evening as she is not able to be at banquet tonight. Many other items had ribbons and congratulations to all who entered. The Show and Share was fun to see as members shared their completed projects with the attendees. There were lots of lovely items from baby gowns, to doll dresses and everything in between. Show and Share is a great way to inspire everyone and the white glove ladies did a good job showing the items to all who wanted a closer look.

Wednesday also saw the Teacher Showcase where members could see the SAGA approved classes offered by the teachers in person. It was also possible to talk to them about how to invite them to teach at a local chapter. Many members went away with business cards, class lists and the idea to host their own seminar or workshop soon (don't forget to apply for a SAGA grant!).

Friday was a half day and a more relaxed feel to the classes as members prepared themselves to attend a Round Table or Focus Group during lunch before resting a little and attending the event of the day-Market. As usual the crowd grew outside the doors to Market and once they opened everyone rushed in to be the first at their favourite booth. Lines soon formed to pay for the goodies and I know several people who made more than one trip back to their rooms with things and then went back to shop some more! It is so nice to be able to see fabric and lace in person and also get to buy those hard-to-find items, plus maybe a special treat for yourself, like a set of Dovo scissors or a silver charm. I don't think anyone left Market without at least one purchase. Thanks to Kate Westlake, Business chair for setting up another great shopping opportunity!

Hospitality has been busy selling raffle tickets as baskets have been arriving daily and even if you have placed all your tickets, there are always more baskets that you decided you need to win, so you have to buy more tickets. Raffle basket money goes to a good cause-it is used for the SAGA grants to chapters hosting workshops. Tonight at Banquet will see everyone listening for their name to be called at least once if not twice and maybe even more times. The cheers and shouts are always fun to hear.

Today we had a buffet continental breakfast as an anniversary treat. It meant getting up a little earlier, but it was well attended. Tomorrow is an early start to classes-always hard after the excitement of Banquet the night before. It will also be hard as we will have to start saying goodbye to our friends old and new. Still, it will soon be time to plan for the next great Convention in Norfolk, Virginia in 2010.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The fun continues……

Yesterday saw the official start of the 30th Annual SAGA Convention and by afternoon everyone was settled into their classes and working hard learning or perfecting techniques both hand and machine. It was so good to see some familiar faces and lots of new ones too.

The lunchtime speaker this year was Regina Walter who talked about the history of christening gowns and showed us examples on a slide show and also had several present for us to view before and after lunch. It was interesting to hear the origins of these gowns that become family heirlooms.

Yesterday's important meetings after class were the region meetings and Artisan meeting. The Region meetings give members a chance to meet their region representative in person and also fellow region members. Various items are discussed but the important thing is choosing someone to be on the Nominating Committee that will choose the nominees for the 2010-2011 SAGA board. The Artisan meeting was well attended by those already in the program and some interested in joining it. Kim Gimblette, artisan chair gave out the pins for those members who had achieved their artisan level this year. She also answered questions regarding the program. It is also great to see the ladies that have achieved a level in one of the areas as they put so much effort into working on their projects. They will receive their certificates at banquet on Saturday.

This morning everyone is in a routine of getting to class; going to lunch and then getting back to class. Tonight we have the Design Show and Show and Share to enjoy. Maggie Bunch, Design Show chair spent yesterday with the three judges as they worked their way through the submitted items. Who will have the Best in Show this year? And who will win people's Choice?

Hospitality has been busier each time I have visited it and raffle tickets are selling fast for the baskets. There are lots of interesting ones and the Wee Care basket is getting full of those special blue tickets already. The Wee Care donations are mounting too and there are so many cute items. The local hospitals will be receiving lots of special things made by SAGA members. A representative from the St. Vincent Hospital was at luncheon today to receive a token donation from Robin Hart, Wee Care chair.

There are quite a few entries in the Purls, Perles, Pearls contest and the attendees are voting for their favourite. The winner will be announced at Banquet on Saturday.

Now I have to head back to take more photos, post this Blog, see how the classes have progressed since this morning and get ready for the evenings events.