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Saskatchewan Stitches Conference

In the Beginning

It all started when Beverly Johnson came to the Haus of Stitches in 2002 and taught a bra making class.  (Well, seriously it started before that but that is a long story for another time).  The Bra class was such a hit and the students wanted more.  Bra making has been a part of the Conference for 20 years with Beverly Johnson (aka the fairy bra mother) leading the way.  Her along with her trusty side kick Jeanette Spornitz who later joined us,  have taught hundreds of women to fit and sew their own bras over the years. If you are large or small getting a bra that fits you perfectly is often a challenge!  Some years we had to add up to 3 extra classes to meet the demand.  Many participants returned year after year to be resized, make a different style, learn something new, or just to have that uninterrupted time to get a new bra sewn. And oh the fun and the laughs we have had! We learnt very quickly that when someone has a bra that fits them the first thing they will do when asked how it  fits, is lift up their shirt and show it off to any unsuspecting stranger!  The monks learned quickly to stay away from the lower Severin hall where the bra classes were held. Now this will be Beverly's last year at the Conference as she is retiring after se teaches for us one more time!


It wasn't just Bra making that first year.  We had some quilting, sewing, bear making, Battenberg lace and fibre art as well.   In the early years all the classes were held in the large room in lower Severin Hall at the Abbey except the bra class which we put n the meeting room off Severin Hall.  At first the participants had doubts about this but it proved to expose everyone to all kinds of different ideas and classes they could take.  This is why today we have an open door policy at the Conference, where everyone is welcome to walk through and check out any of the classes happening, you just never know when you will see something you never thought would interest you!

Along with scheduled classes we hosted informal demos on products and techniques at noon and in the evenings and the instructor shared ideas for next year's classes.   Everyone was so happy that first year that we went ahead and planned a second. First year instructors, Beverly Johnson, Candace Enns, Dianna Best, Heather Brigadear, Jackie van Fossen, Bonny Voice, Ruth Barlow, Glenda Hudson, and Roberta Wynnk, returned for a second year.



In 2005, Ron Collins and Chi Chi Raduik joined the team of talented instructors adding more sewing and quilting classes.  

In 2006, Dianne Jansson and June Jacobs joined us and Dianne came with a bus load of quilters from B.C.  It was hard to get a photo of them all smiling as they were quite terrified by all the mosquitos that day!!

In 2007 Ron taught the first of his famous Jeans classes and Chi Chi taught the first of her popular free motion quilting classes.  Jodi Barrows from Keller, Texas of Square in a Square fame joined is this year to share her amazing system with our participants. 

So after 5 years there was no stopping us, too many people where having too much fun and depended on us to carry on!


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