CGOA Conference Afterglow

Five days after returning home, I’m still basking in the afterglow of last week’s CGOA Conference (aka: the Knit and Crochet Show) in Indianapolis, Indiana! It was 5 days of fun, fun and more fun! I taught 6 classes there: Mosaic Crochet, Crochet Pattern Writing, Beginning Bruges Lace, Intermediate Bruges Lace, Wiggly Crochet and Reading/Understanding Crochet Patterns. The times of my classes were: Wednesday night from 6-9PM, Thursday from 9AM-5PM with a 2 hour lunch, Friday from 9AM-noon, Friday from 2-5PM, Saturday from 2-5PM and Sunday from 9AM-noon. It was a busy schedule, but I endured and actually had enough energy to teach each class. I had between 5 and 16 students in each class, which is ideal for me (and for them). Every student was a joy to have. They were all eager to learn what I had to teach them during the class. And I believe that they all enjoyed the class(es) they took, which is always a plus! I took 2 photos in the Beginning Bruges Lace class (I tend to forget to take photos when I’m busy teaching). Here are the ladies on the left-hand side of the room and the ladies on the right-hand side of the room:

Ladies on left-hand side of room in Beginning Bruges Lace class

Ladies on left-hand side of room in Beginning Bruges Lace class

Ladies on right-hand side of room in Beginning Bruges Lace class

Ladies on right-hand side of room in Beginning Bruges Lace class

 

 

 

 

 

 

Don’t they look focused on their work?

Also at the conference, I did my first book signing (in the Annie’s booth) on Thursday night, during the Shopping Floor Preview. I should have a photo of that soon (hopefully). It was a lot of fun and I will probably do it again at the CGOA Conference in Charlotte, NC in October of this year. I signed my new “Jewelry to Crochet” book, published by Annie’s, that I blogged about on June 30th. The folks from Annie’s were giving copies of my new book away during the book signing. I met many nice ladies (and a few men, too) at the book signing.

We had our CGOA Members Meeting on Thursday night before the Shopping Floor Preview. Since I’m a CGOA Board member (I’m the Secretary), I was seated at the front tables with the other Board members. Here’s a photo of Jane Rimmer (the CGOA Treasurer) and me there:

Jane Rimmer and me at the CGOA Member Meeting

Jane Rimmer and me at the CGOA Member Meeting

Jane and I are also the 2 Co-Chairs of the CGOA Masters Committee. We make the policies for the Masters program, make corrections to the program, as needed, and answer questions from the Masters portfolio reviewers (I’m a portfolio reviewer, too). Six out of the ten portfolio reviewers were in attendance at the conference. We all met and had lunch together on Thursday. Here we all are:

CGOA Masters reviewers at conference in Indi

CGOA Masters reviewers at conference in Indi

From left to right are Phyllis Nabakowski, Beth Hall, Jane Rimmer, Kathryn White, me (Susan Lowman), Linda Dean and Patti Giorgi. We have 2 levels of portfolio reviewers (junior and senior) and each portfolio is reviewed by 2 reviewers (one from each level). To find out more about the CGOA Masters program, check out the CGOA website here: www.crochet.org.

On Wednesday, Jane Rimmer and I went to the TKGA (The Knitting Guild of America) Masters Day, which was an all-day event. We took this day to find out how TKGA runs their Masters Day so we can put on a CGOA Masters Day at the CGOA Conference next year. It was time well-spent! We learned a lot and will be starting to prepare for our very first CGOA Masters Day soon.

On Friday night, we had our Fashion Show and Dinner. The food was excellent and the fashion show was great, as usual. I laid low and didn’t have to model this time, so I enjoyed the show. Here are a few photos from the fashion show:

Shari modeling her Ebb & Flow shawl

Shari modeling her Ebb & Flow shawl design

Kathy modeling her jacket design

Kathy modeling her jacket design

Andee modeling her scarf design

Andee modeling her scarf design

Dragon shawl in fashion show

Dragon shawl in fashion show

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also at the Fashion Show Dinner, I met Donna Stinson and Terri Geck from Coats & Clark. Here’s a photo of the 3 Coats ladies at the dinner:

The dynamic trio from Coats & Clark

The dynamic trio from Coats & Clark

From left to right are: Donna Stinson, Terri Geck and Bobbie Matela (who I met years ago and enjoy seeing each year at the conference).

I spent some time with several friends at the conference, too. Here are some of my friends and me with big grins on our faces:

Shari and me

Shari and me

This is Shari White, who is my first mentee in CGOA and my roommate at most conferences.

Kathy and me

Kathy and me

This is Kathy (Kathryn) White, who I met at the CGOA Conference in 2011 in Greensboro, NC. Kathy lives 2-3 hours away from me, in Arizona, but it took going to the conference in NC to meet her!!!

Marcella and me

Marcella and me

This is Marcella Clayton, who I met in the Crochet Pattern Writing class I taught on Thursday. Marcella showed me her design in class and I encouraged her to show it to an editor at the Meet & Greet on Saturday morning. Needless to say, Marcella sold her first crochet design that morning! Go Marcella!!!

At the CGOA Conference last year in Manchester, I encouraged another new designer, Patricia Ritchie, to show her designs to the editors at the Meet & Greet, too. This is the first published design by Patricia Ritchie:

Petite Spring Hat from Crochet World magazine, April 2013, designed by Patricia Ritchie

Petite Spring Hat from Crochet World magazine, April 2013, designed by Patricia Ritchie

Candle cover - a "thank you" gift from Patricia Ritchie

Candle cover – a “thank you” gift from Patricia Ritchie

 

Isn’t it gorgeous? Patricia is so sweet and her design is fabulous!!! She gave me a little “thank you” gift in one of my classes this year. That was very nice and totally unexpected! Here is the candle cover that Pat made and gave me last week:

 

On Saturday morning, we had the Board meeting at 7AM (I’m sure glad I’m a morning person!). It went well and we got a lot accomplished. I can’t tell you what we discussed because it’s still a “secret”! But all will be revealed in time.

On Saturday night, we had the first ever “CGOA Fun Night”! It was great!!! Amy Shelton, of Crochetville, was the emcee. We had “Show and Tell” throughout the room. We also played “Let’s Make You Squeal”, where Amy called out an item’s name and the first person who had that item in their crochet bag (or purse) squealed with delight to win a prize. There were lots of prizes given out that night, as well as prizes at the Member Meeting and the Fashion Show Dinner (we love prizes in CGOA!).

We also love all the goodie bags filled with fiber goodness that are donated by many sponsors of the CGOA Conference. A big “thank you” to Lion Brand, Red Heart and Annie’s for the fabulous goodie bags! We really appreciate your support of the CGOA Conference!

On Sunday afternoon, the conference was over (boo hoo!). But I made lots of fabulous new memories of fun times with lots of wonderful people. I always feel so energized after a CGOA Conference!

If you’ve ever thought about attending a CGOA Conference, you really should. It’s almost a week of fiber-loving events spent with like-minded people. We speak the “language” of crochet all week! Everyone is so friendly and encouraging of each other. If you can’t make it to a CGOA Conference, I hope you at least have friends who you get together with regularly to crochet together and encourage each other with your crochet projects.

Happy crocheting,

Susan

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