Saturday, March 26, 2011

Surrounded by Sewing Goodness

Where do I begin?  How do I describe today?  This morning began gently, sitting in a circle with a small group of accomplished dressmakers eager to begin six days with  Susan Khalje.  We introduced ourselves and we shared the special fabrics, patterns and ideas we'd brought to the workshop.

We also drooled over projects made in previous classes (look at this bias cut gown below!!)
 We examined Susan's work - if you thought it looked good in Bridal Couture or Threads, it was scrumptious in real life.  Sublime!
There were fittings, lots of fittings.  Check out the gown this FIT-trained hobbyist draped herself!   These women have taken their passion for garment construction to the highest levels.
 Toto, we are NOT in Kansas anymore!
 And everyone is so nice!  Somehow sewing seems to beautify people.  I think we should make the leaders of all countries spend six days a year with Susan.  I am sure we could all work things out without all this bombing and misbehavior.  Ooops, didn't mean to get political on you.
 I just love this dress - and I am sorry you can't see more of it here, but it's a simple, flattering shirt-waist that she'll sew in superfine herringbone wool.
 I had never seen pins like this - there are 2 parallel pins connected on the end.  They hold fussy fabrics securely.  No one in this class is afraid to tackle a fussy fabric!
 Fitting, fitting, fitting. Susan explains and describes the adjustments and the reasoning for them.
We also shopped. It was grand to see Michael & staff at A Fabric Place, which was packed when we arrived.  And I accompanied a classmate to G Street Fabrics.  I was her real-life GPS and let me tell you, if you need someone to drive you to the emergency room, find a motivated fabric shopper.  I am not sure I've ever made it between Baltimore and Rockville quite that fast.  Not that her driving was scary or anything.  (that's not at how I meant that, okay, just a little bit).
OK, just kidding.

A wonderful day, with much progress already!  More to come!


  1. How fun, Robin! Thanks for sharing! I look forward to seeing your project, which will, no doubt, be stunning.

  2. It looks like so much fun! Thanks for giving us all a little peek.

  3. I know what you mean about Susan. A few years ago, she came to Halifax to do a Chanel jacket class and Judy Barlup did a tailoring class. With ten women in each class and these two instructors, we spent five days with them, which extended into evenings. They were a delight to be with, and the world slowed to a calmer pace during that week.

  4. How fantastic. I can't wait to feel ready for such an advanced experience. Right now, I do not feel comfortable tackling those fussy fabrics! :-)

  5. What a great treat to do this. Looks like a lot of fun AND a wonderful learning experience.

  6. I cannot gush anymore than I have about Susan and Gigi of course. I'm so happy that you are enjoying it!

  7. I can just imagine how delightful these classes must be :)

  8. OOOohh I am so envious. Have a great week and tell us lots of details.

  9. Thanks for the report. I am officially green with envy. Can't wait for more updates.

  10. Meant to tell you, Robin. Get Diane to share her lace mother-of-the bride dress that she made last year. Truly, one of the most gorgeous dresses I've ever seen in my life!

  11. What a fabulous experience!!!! You've got me drooling. Enjoy your time learning with Susan and the Ladies. And thanks in advance for all of the helpful info you share:)

  12. Great pictures!! Susan is wonderful. And Gigi and Gertie look great!!!

  13. I'll never forget what a thrill it was to see in person all those garments from Susan's books and articles!


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