September 2007 CGOA Regional Conference

I’m still recovering from the Oakland Knit and Crochet Show. Because school started, I had to fly there Friday, teach my classes, then return Sunday on the “red eye.” The luxury of staying a few extra days was not an option this time. Back “in the day” this wouldn’t have been a problem. Yes, it was worth it.

The view from Nashville to Dallas to Oakland was spectacular. Looking down at the green / brown / red / cultivated / dry / flat, then broken earth with meandering rivers and occasional puffy clouds was quite an aesthetic experience.

I love the window seat – especially on a clear day! Farmers are wonderful earth artists, don’t you think?

I prefer to share a room at conferences – not only to split the cost, but it’s a wonderful opportunity to meet and get to know a person one on one. I lucked out at the last minute when a mutual friend helped me find Deanna! It’s always a little scary to share a room with someone you don’t know. Fortunately, I’ve been blessed with a perfect match every time! Deanna’s specialty is bead knitting, so we had a lot in common. She was a vendor at the Market and did quite well, almost selling out all her bead knitting kits. No wonder – her scarves, bags, and shawls are to die for!

Deanna Van Assche
Deanna Van Assche of Deanna’s Vintage Style shows off a bead knit shawl in her booth.

My classes were smaller than usual, in fact, one of them was cancelled. Many of the teachers I spoke to had the same experience. I could be wrong, but it seemed like there were more crocheters than knitters in attendance. Smaller classes meant more individualized attention for participants, though.

I used a bead spinner to string size 8 beads from Fire Mountain Gems onto Aunt Lydia’s Fashion Crochet size 3 crochet cotton before the Bead Tapestry Crochet Bag class began, but this time, I did not use clear beads on white thread (as promised).

Bead tapestry crochet bag class
The Bead Tapestry Crochet Bag class was lots of fun, and we all learned something new, too!

One of the highlights of every conference is meeting online friends. Deborah Martin and I began tapestry crochet correspondence last year. She took both of my classes and contributed LOTS of great tips. Thanks, Deborah!

Bead tapestry crochet bag
Deborah Martin and Margaret Tullis bead tapestry crocheting their bags.

This is how Deborah Martin keeps her threads from tangling when she switches colors.

The Bead Tapestry Crochet Tube Bracelet class went well, too, using larger size 6 beads from Fire Mountain Gems with the same Aunt Lydia’s Fashion Crochet size 3 crochet cotton.

Crocheting a tapestry crochet bead bracelet.
Cynthia Wheeler and Deborah Martin bead tapestry crochet a bracelet.

Detail of bead tapestry crochet bracelet
Elizabeth Bates’ bead tapestry crochet bracelet. Yes, this WILL be a bracelet – after around 5 more inches of rounds of bead tapestry crochet!

Another highlight of the conference was the Member’s Dinner Fashion Show – a great place to renew acquaintances and make new friends. I volunteered to help model, which made it even more exciting!

Carol Ventura, Kathleen Sams, and Vicki Blizzard
As promised in a previous blog, I wore my signature earrings and Korsnas outfit during the Member’s Dinner. Next to me are Kathleen Sams and Vicki Blizzard of Coats and Clark.

Carol Modeling in the Fashion Show
I modeled my own bead felted Button Flap Bag and several pieces by other designers, including Deanna’s comfortable bead knit shawl.

Fashion Show
I’m third from the left in the Fashion Show finale.

What a wild weekend! Yes, I’m still recovering, but now you know why it was SO WORTH IT!

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