I hit the American Sewing Guild meeting yesterday. Well, I hit the local meeting - there is a local meeting, a county meeting, and a national meeting. And you can go to any or all of them, and they break down further than that and... yeah, it gets tots crazypants if you want to go there.
There were all levels of seamstresses there, and seamstresses of all different stripes. Quite a lot of the ladies specialize in quilts and/or home dec/crafts but there were a few that concentrate on garments, and even one or two who concentrate on other sorts of needlework (crocheting, embroidery, etc). All different levels of sewing expertise too - the lady who runs my chapter taught Home Ec for 36 years at the high school in the town just down from mine and there was a younger lady who'd just started sewing.
I was surprised to find that, as a proper non-profit group, they log their community service hours/donations. Lots of philanthropy going on! The lady across the table from me was making a walker bag to donate to one of the local rest homes, and the display bags that they make in the booth at the county fair are given to the battered women's shelters.
Very friendly ladies, they were encouraging and everyone was madly trading tips - and odd bits of fabric.
I had a splendid time. I was a bit nervous about the whole thing, but it was SO fun. I'm looking forward to being a part of this community.
So - if you sew - I recommend joining the American Sewing Guild today!