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At the end of September I travelled to Sydney for the Australian Sewing Guild annual convention. I joined the Guild around 12 months ago with the specific intention of going to the convention, and I’m very glad I did. I had a really good time, and I can thoroughly recommend the event to anybody else considering going.

Held at the Shore Grammar School in North Sydney, the event was a full week of sewing, with no cooking, no cleaning, and no washing up! Absolute bliss! I did workshops with Lorraine Parker, Larraine Jenkins, and Leanne Abbott (there were some tuturs whose names didn’t begin with L, I just didn’t pick them!) Textile manipulation and embellishment, some seriously useful tips for things like turning collars, and lots to do with buttons, including bound buttonholes. Unfortunately I did come home with another UFO, which I had promised myself I wouldn’t, but I have since finished it, just need to take some photos and then I can blog about it.

Apart from the sewing, I really enjoyed being a tourist in Sydney. I had not been before, apart from about half a day some 20 years ago, which I spent looking at the Opera House, and Darling Harbour. This time I still only got to see a small part of Sydney, the area around the school in North Sydney, and a walk across the bridge to The Rocks, but I was fascinated. I walked around almost with my mouth open looking at all the old buildings! Alright, I know that in the overall scheme of things Sydney isn’t old, but coming from Perth it looks positively pre-historic.

I grew up in England, living in houses which were one or two hundred years old, in one case probably even three hundred years old. And I’ve hardly seen buildings that old since. Perth was settled in 1829, and most of the original buildings have gone now. In the Rocks there were little cottages which might have come straight from any number of cities in England, logical I suppose since the people who built them had only just come from England, or the UK at least. Even the old buildings which are left in Perth have an Australian flavour to them, showing the evolution of building styles to suit the climate in the new country I suppose.

A couple of photos:

City street in Sydney, Australia, with Orient Hotel

Sydney Street with pub

Row of terraced houses in The Rocks, Sydney, Australia

Houses in a Sydney Street

Next year’s convention will be held in Brisbane, and if you are interested in sewing I can recommend it.