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Posts Tagged ‘Road to California Quilt Show’

Everything You Wanted To Know About Singer Featherweight Machines

Thursday, July 26th, 2018

Singer Featherweight

How did he become such an authority on Singer Featherweight machines? By accident of course. Twenty-five years ago, Lloyd’s wife just wanted a Singer treadle machine for “decoration” for their home. As they hunted for the machine, Lloyd became “hooked” on the history and background of the industrial revolution and the early Singer machines. His interest than evolved in to a business which he started while still working in the corporate world. He has since retired from his corporate job but continues to maintain his Aspire business that includes a Featherweight Museum in his home in Anaheim, California. He has on display over 100 machines dating back to the 1850’s (pre-Civil War) as well as antique cabinets and other early Singer products.  

Singer Featherweight Singer Featherweight Singer Featherweight

Lloyd enjoys sharing the history of early sewing machines. He related how in the early 1850’s, there were four sewing machine manufacturers: Wheeler and Wilson, Grover and Baker, Howe, and Singer. They were all fighting over patent rights for their machines and ultimately joined forces to form a “patent pool,” creating a monopoly on sewing machine manufacturing. Ultimately, Singer rose to the top and after 1860, they had blown the competition out of the water by not only offering superior machines (they developed an assembly line process before Ford) but also new business concepts like trade-ins and payment plans. Lloyd said, “Their marketing was “incredible.”  

 Singer Featherweight

The first Singer Featherweight machine was offered on October 3, 1933 during the Great Depression. It weighed 11 pounds and cost $125. Singer Featherweights were produced from 1933 until the late 1960’s. Lloyd often plans his vacations around getting Singer Featherweight “stuff.” He has traveled internationally to Paris, England, and Germany. In the States, he has the best luck in the New England States. Lloyd does not advertise his business nor does he have a website. Customers find out about him by word of mouth or when he has vendor booths at quilt shows like at Road to California. Because Lloyd doesn’t want “to leave my customers without service,” he currently has 2 apprentices that he is training including his grandson-in-law and his neighbor, Mario Ceballos aka “Mr. Featherweight.”

He also works with a painter who helps Lloyd customize Singer Featherweights to customers’ specifications like this beauty:

Singer Featherweight

Americana

 

Singer Featherweight

Tiny stitches on the flag

 

Singer Featherweight

Even the Declaration of Independence!!


For collectors or anyone else interested in learning more about Singer Featherweight machines, Lloyd refers people to the International Sewing Machine Collectors Society, of which he is a member. He also likes to refer Featherweightshop.com in Idaho, a family owned business that is very knowledgeable.
Two publications that Lloyd has found that have invaluable information are A Capitalist Romance: Singer and the Sewing Machine

Featherweight Machine
And, Featherweight 221- The Perfect Portable and Its Stitches Across History

Featherweight Machine
Of course, Lloyd also welcomes customers to contact him personally at laskew9243@gmail.com

Lloyd says he “enjoys immensely” his fascination and business with Singer Featherweights, helping customers find and maintain this incredible machine that has the “perfect straight stitch” ever made. If you’re interested in Singer Featherweight machines, be sure to visit Lloyd in his Aspire booth at Road 2019.
 

What Happened on Registration Day?!?

Monday, July 23rd, 2018

new online registration system for Road to California quilt show Of all the comments we have received regarding our new online registration system, there was one reoccurring remark that I wanted to directly address. It was one that generally followed along these lines: “If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it.” Because we saw it many times, it told us that there were several users who did not understand why we would replace an online registration system that on its face has served us well for many years. Why did we feel the need to change out the old online registration system?

  • Security– We take the security of your data very seriously. When I purchased Road, I hired a team of highly qualified IT/Programming and Security professionals to implement some security patches on the software. They told me, at that point in time, that the old system was secure, but that they recommended designing a new system to meet our long-term goals and flexibility regarding ongoing and ever-changing security patches.
  •  User Interface (Experience) – We had received multiple complaints in the past from our attendees saying that the old system did not work on touch devices. Given that the web traffic on our standard website (road2ca.com) is over 40% mobile devices, we needed to create a system that would be touch-interface friendly.new online registration system for Road to California quilt show
The old online registration system was an industry leader for many years and served us well. We were the first Quilt Show in the United States to have automated class registration, quilt jurying online and a dedicated application for return quilt shipping. For all its greatness – the old online registration system required some necessary updates that would have had to be addressed sooner rather than later. So, now you know the “why” we switched. Here’s the “what happened” to our new online registrataion system on Saturday morning, July 14th, and why it wasn’t really all that uncommon of an experience considering today’s technological world: Road’s software is hosted in a world class server farm. Our hosting package is one that  grows with our demand. On Saturday morning, the server was not even close to capacity, yet as many of you experienced, it acted like it was. What we discovered was that  there is one tiny setting in the web server that limits the number of active sessions that the server will allow. The web server was receiving over 500 requests per second – way more than the default setting on the server. We had over 2,000 eager quilters at the SAME TIME trying to register for their favorite class, causing the congestion that some of you and us in the office to experience.new online registration system for Road to California quilt show In other words, think of trying to merge onto a crowded freeway that is at a standstill. You can’t go anywhere and you’re extremely frustrated but once the flow of traffic improves, you are able to navigate to your final destination. What happened that Saturday morning was similar to a crowded freeway, except the server was taking who clicked first at that particular point in time, not who was first in line like on a busy freeway. To put our situation in perspective, Amazon also experienced this kind of problem on their Prime Day. It’snot an excuse, but if a multi-billion dollar company like Amazon can have these issues – anyone (like Road) can too.new online registration system for Road to California quilt show We learned a lot through this experience. Ever since, our developer has been inserting additional code into the new online registraton system to speed it up and make the process smoother. We also have appreciated the additional suggestions we’ve been receiving from our users and are attempting to include many of them in future releases of the software. The bottom line is, our new online registration system is better than ever before to serve you. More positive changes are planned in other areas to continue to enhance your Road experience. We are grateful for all our valued customers and their enthusiasm for Road 2019. It’s going to be an amazing show.new online registration system for Road to California quilt show Matt Reese Owner Road to California]]>

Going To Road’s Quilt Show Is Always A Holiday

Saturday, May 26th, 2018

Road to California is always scheduled the week of the Martin Luther King Holiday.

Anytime you plan to meet friends at Road’s Quilt Show, it’s like creating your own special holiday:quilt show friends Robert Tucker and Patricia Young are quilt guild friends. They belong to the Coachella Valley Quilt Guild which meets in Palm Desert, California. Robert lives in Palm Springs year-round while Patricia is a “snowbird” who resides in Wisconsin. Road to California was the first quilt show Patricia ever attended and she’s been hooked ever since her first show in 2014. Patricia likes how convenient Road to California is to get to. She enjoys seeing the varied work on display and all the places to shop while at the show. Robert has joined Patricia at the quilt show the last 3 years. He likes seeing fellow guild members’ work on display. At Road 2018, three members of the guild had quilts entered in the quilt show. Robert is an artist but when he moved to the desert he wanted to try something new and meet new people. While attending the Big Bear Quilt Show, they put him in touch with the Coachella Valley Guild and Monica’s Quilt and Bead Creations (one of Road to California’s popular vendors). He likes how quilting has become another way to express his artistic talent.quilt show friends Simone and Dianne are both originally from the Bay Area although Simone has since moved to Pomona, California. They met and became friends through Simone’s mom who is Dianne’s best friend. Dianne has been quilting for four years. Her grandmother was a quilter and it was something Dianne always wanted to try. She finds quilting to be very relaxing. Road 2018 was the first time Dianne had come to the show and she wanted to bring Simone with her. They couldn’t believe how “gigantic” the quilt show was. Simone said she could tell a lot of work went in to each piece on display.quilt show friends Elaine and Pat say that Road to California is a great place to have “great friend time.” “We wouldn’t want to go to Road without each other,” remarked Elaine. They take classes and share with each other what they have learned during their time at the quilt show. They also enjoy attending Preview Night to see all the quilts on display without the daily crowds. Elaine has been coming to Road for ten years and Pat for eight. “Road has everything we want in one place,” said Elaine.quilt show friends Val and Mary Beth have traveled together from St. Paul, Minnesota to attend the quilt show the past five years. They met while teaching for the same school district; Mary Beth taught Special Education and Val taught Home Economics. Both are long time quilters who like seeing all the different quilts and accessories that they don’t usually find in Minnesota. Have you made your friendship “holiday plans” to visit Road to California 2019?    ]]>