Silver Bella starts on Thursday in Omaha. All summer it seemed like it would never get here, but the time has flown by the last month or two. I had no idea when I signed up just what would be involved, other than taking classes with fabulous artists including Lisa Kaus, Sally Jean Alexander, Kaari Meng and Kerry Lynn Yeary. And of course the amazing Teresa McFayden who developed Silver Bella five years ago, and a closing luncheon with the inspiring Jenny Doh. SB has actually turned out to be much more involved than signing up and showing up.
I now know that you have to gather lots of your best vintage bling and supplies to bring. You also get to meet new friends and have a great time just preparing for the trip. You get to participate in on-line chats that will make you laugh until you almost wet your pants. I know that SB will involve not much sleep, the opportunity to shop in Omaha's Old Market district, and consumption of cupcakes and frosting shots (another new thing for me but I can't wait!), and much, much more.
I also now know that attending SB involves something called swaps, which I had no clue about before. SB participants had the opportunity to sign up to swap various hand crafted items including crowns, charm bracelets made from vintage bling, journal pages, banners and more. Swap size was limited so participants were determined by drawing, and I was fortunate enough to get into two vintage trim swaps and a journal paper swap.
The first trim swap, hostessed by Sheila Rumney, involved gathering 21 pieces of vintage trim and sending it off to Sheila who is putting it all together in some amazing way for the 21 participants. I wrapped each piece I sent with a paper band and tied it with seam binding and a tiny bunch of flowers. I have a fairly large collection of vintage trim, but had to find lots more in order to fulfill my two swaps.
I also learned that it's customary to send a little something extra to the swap hostess, so I put together this little tin tray with vintage ribbon, lace, a hanky, etc. for Sheila.Heather Buhaj and requires that participants collect three one-yard pieces of vintage trim and two vintage embellishments for each of ten participants, package these creatively, and bring them to Silver Bella. For this one I made drawstring bags from striped silk with
matching "flower" pins, and decorated a tag to hold two of the trims. The third trim is vintage camisole lace I found several years ago on its original card. I had about 18 yards, so it was perfect for this swap. I tied each piece with seam binding and added an earring or pin. I also included a vintage napkin or hanky tied with an old button and some white seam binding. I found an ad for crocheted edging in a 1946 McCall's Needlework magazine that made the perfect tag.
My third swap is the Scraps from the Past Junque Journal Swap, also hostessed by Sheila Rumney. This one requires ten sheets of vintage or vintage-inspired paper, ten vintage embellishments, and one large embellishment for each of ten participants. We'll each receive an abundance of materials to create our own journal. Sheila is making a journal cover for each participant from an old album page. Some of my favorite finds for this swap were a 1915 Tulsa yearbook, magazines from the early 30s and large embroidered butterflys. My contributions fit into standard file folders so I made embellished fabric envelopes to hold the folders. The tag for these was inspired by a photo from one of the 1930s magazines.
Now I'm off to finish up some final details and pack!