Purls of Wisdom

Summer Camp Road Tour Update | A Fork in the Road

Posted by Megan Collier on Wed, Jul 18, 2012 @ 09:27 AM

Summer Road Tour 2012How is your summer rolling along?  Are you staying cool in all of this heat? Miss Julia and Miss Alisha have stitched quite the summer camp road tour together so far.  But now, they have reached a fork in the road and must take different paths as The Handwork Studio Road Tour continues in the heat of the summer. But, do not fret!  There is much work still to be done in this brief separation and Miss Julia will be back tomorrow with a longer post and update on how the Road Tour is coming along!

We want to hear from you!  Please share a story about your summer in the comments below by next Tuesday, for a chance to win a Handwork Studio grab bag!  It's that simple.  Just share a story below and you are entered to win!

While you wait for tomorrow's update, check out this video from the road.

Tags: Road Tour 2012, Road Tour

Greetings From the Road | Summer Camp in Avalon

Posted by Megan Collier on Wed, Jul 11, 2012 @ 06:00 AM

Have you gone on vacation this summer?  Our good friend Sheepy isn't exactly on vacation but he is having the summer of his life this year while

Sheepy on the Beachtouring the country with Ms. Julia and Ms. Alisha.  This week he found himself closer to home and near the sand. He's helping out with summer camp in Avalon.  Between camp and lounging, he made (with the help of Ms. Alisha) this awesome video to share with you!

Make sure to show Sheepy some love in the comments below this post!  He loves to hear from you! 

Tags: Road Tour 2012, Road Tour

Sewing & Fabric | Everything is Bigger in Texas

Posted by Laura Kelly on Mon, Jun 25, 2012 @ 08:57 AM

Believe it or not, Miss Julia and I are wrapping up our 3rd and final week of Summer Camp in Dallas.  It has gone by so fast! Just 5 more days of patterns, pins and pajama pants for me here in Texas, and then it’s northward ho! I must say though that Texas has been great to us, and we will miss it.  Not only are the people kind, the campers enthusiastic and the food scrumptious, but this state certainly does have its fair share of fabric stores too! 

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This past week my fellow Machine Sewing instructor Miss Sophia treated me to a trip to her favorite fabric warehouse – that’s right, WAREHOUSE that is chock full fabrics and textile delights.  It is called Super Textiles and has millions of yards of fabric and just as many buttons!  I was ecstatic, and managed to control myself when I was there…I only bought 12 ½ yards of fabric! Sheepy wandered off while we were there, and I eventually found him purchasing buttons (they were really tiny ones).  I hope that on our travels back up north we find more great fabric stores.  Although with everything that Sheepy purchased, I am not sure if we’ll have any room in our van…

--Miss Alisha

Tags: Road Tour 2012, Road Tour

Camp, Crochet, Bikes, Dancing & Fun | Road Tour 2012 Video Update

Posted by Megan Collier on Mon, Jun 18, 2012 @ 09:30 AM

Summer Road Tour 2012  Last Week Ms. Julia and Ms. Alisha hosted camp in Dallas Texas and they continue with week two starting today. However, it was a long road to Texas and there is still a ton of exploring to be done when they aren't 
teaching our wonderful campers all about Handwork and Machine Sewing.

  Their video from the road this week features dancing, a tandem bicycle, and a whole bunch of crocheting.  Make sure you watch all the way to the end for a wonderful vocal solo from Ms. Julia herself!

  You can click here to learn more about Parish Episcopal School and our camp program there!  Looking for another location?  Check out our location page to find a camp location near you!

Tags: Road Tour 2012, Road Tour

Stitching Up Some Summer Camp Fun...Texas Style!

Posted by Laura Kelly on Tue, Jun 12, 2012 @ 11:35 PM

                                              Hello from Dallas! 

Texas! Miss Julia and I have arrived in Dallas and have begun the first of three weeks of creating with our old (and new!) friends at the Parish Episcopal School.  It's great to see some of our friends that we made last summer have returned for another fun filled week, and along with them some new names and faces to get to know!

We aren't the only camp at Parish, but we are certainly one of the craftiest...after all, who else comes with one thousand yards of yarn and 14 sewing machines in blue denim van ready and raring to go?  Thats right, nobody but us!  Look forward to more from me and Miss Julia from the road!!

--Miss Alisha

p.s. We know you are wondering if we actually "camp out" on the road. So we made this video for you!  Enjoy!

Tags: Road Tour 2012, Road Tour

The Handwork Studio Road Tour...Take Two!

Posted by Alisha Tillman on Sat, Jun 02, 2012 @ 12:01 PM

In what has become a perennial event, The Handwork Studio is once again taking the show on the road!

Last summer, Miss Julia and I embarked on a journey that would become one of the most adventurous craft excursions to date; and in a matter of days the craftsome twosome will do it once more!

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Over the past several weeks we have been cutting, stitching, rolling balls of yarn, felting, putting in zippers, tracing patterns and packing boxes in preparation for the tour, and in year two it’s a lot easier!

Here’s what we have gleaned from our first year on the road

  • We now know how to expertly pack The Handwork Studio Mobile in record time. 

  • We know now that putting the ironing board on top of everything in the van means it will fly forward when we step on the brakes. 

  • Always check to make sure you have your cell phone & GPS


  • You never wear all of the clothes that you pack.

  • Yarn is a universal language

In the year that has passed since Miss Julia and I left for our first Road Tour we have spent many, many days reminiscing about the fun that was had in our new camps and the friends we made along the way.  What’s even better is that since we will be returning to places that we visited last summer we get to see those that have now become our old friends!

I have to admit; there is a different type of excitement that I feel now.  One of familiarity and comfort knowing the adventure that being on the road will bring, and being able to follow the footsteps that we left for ourselves last summer.  Here’s to another great trip!


--Miss Alisha

Tags: Summer Camp, Fun, Road Tour, The Handwork Studio, Summer

On The Road Again: Summer Camp Goes Mobile!

Posted by Eva Laverty-Wilson on Mon, Jan 23, 2012 @ 01:56 PM

There are a few things that make American summers unique. 4th of July barbecues, fireworks and of course...the great American Road trip.

Last summer Miss Julia and I embarked on an unprecedented Handwork Studio event by taking our one of a kind summer camp on the road; well not just on the road, but on the highways, byways, bridges and tolls of the U.S. making stops in Texas, Colorado, New Jersey and Maryland. 

What made the experience so great is hard to pinpoint, if not impossible.  You just can’t put into words the awesomeness of a denim covered van filled with fabric pulling into a national park for a night of camping, or the way a new group of families and kids look at you the first time that they see you in your Handwork Studio apron.  And quite frankly, I wouldn’t want to have to pick just one great thing…I WANT THEM ALL!


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People often ask Julia and I if being on the road was difficult.  What it was like being in the van driving for 14 hours a day.  How often we stopped at gas stations or rest stops.  Our answers are always the same, “Oh, it was so much fun!”  However, at some point though Miss Julia does mention the fact that I shouted “COWS!” at every bit of cattle we drove by in open country pastures.  No, really, every cow I saw I shouted it.  I really like cows. 

So, if I had to pick my favorite things or activities about our trip it would be these:

  1. Stopping at farm stands in Texas and buying pickled okra and fudge

  2. Taking Sheepy to the beach for the first time (most sheep never see sand)

  3. Learning how to pitch a tent

  4. Seeing the top of Pike’s Peak

  5. Making it from Colorado to Pennsylvania in 36 hours

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At any rate, the excitement is building as Miss Julia and I prepare for yet another summer filled with the pleasant unknown of roads yet untraveled and small hands yet to stitch.   It is a promising void that lay before us and we welcome it with open arms (and with a GPS and a full tank of gas).

-Miss Alisha

Tags: Miss Julia, Maryland, road trip, Miss Alisha, travel, Texas, Summer Camp, Road Tour, Summer, New Jersey

Making Summer Camp: A Day In The Life At The Handwork Studio

Posted by Eva Laverty-Wilson on Sat, Jan 14, 2012 @ 08:37 PM

Summer CampYou may wonder what it is we really do all year round, besides teach your kids about the wonderful world of needle arts, of course. When you glance into the studio window, what is it that we’re doing when we’re typing furiously or talking on the phone? And what do we do when we’re not in the studio?

Summer camp. All day every day, and especially September to March. While most people associate summer camp with summer (go figure), it’s an all-year round event for us at The Handwork Studio. Before the end of camp this past summer, Miss Julia and Miss Laura had already starting scoping out new places around the country to bring our camps. And right now, we’re in the process of launching Summer 2012: new locations, website pages, and glossy brochures, registration, the works. And it sure takes a team to make camp happen: Miss Alisha and Miss Julia mapping their next Road Trip in The Handwork Studio Mobile and launching a new registration site, Miss Melissa planning new projects and sourcing materials, and Miss Megan designing over 20 new camp pages to make it easier for parents like you to find our different camps, locations, and info on how to register.

During this particular camp launching season, I have the pleasure of tryingHandwork Studio Mobile
out a bit of everything: helping Miss Megan with our website, researching our new locations to bring you up-to-date information, accompanying Miss Julia to numerous camp fairs, assisting Miss Laura with public relations and marketing, and on assignment from Miss Melissa: researching and picking my own crafty brain about summer projects. While planning all this might seem a daunting task, it couldn’t be more exciting! In the company of a fantastic team, I know Summer 2012 will be our best camp season yet!

We’re officially launching registration January 21st...make sure you get a head start on your summer plans! We’d love to have you and your campers back for another awesome summer of Handwork, Machine Sewing, Fiber Crafts, Fashion Boot Camp programs, and of course sew much fun!

Miss Eva

Tags: Summer Camp, Kids Camp, Road Tour, fun kids activities, activities, camp