Monday, September 19, 2016

The Better Late Than Never Philly Report

A few months ago, my older sister invited me to visit her in New Jersey sometime this summer. Well, a few weeks ago I decided to take her up on that offer. Over the 20+ years that she's lived there visits mostly revolved around my nieces and nephew so traveling into oh-so-close Philadelphia just didn't happen. The last time I went into Philly with her was over 20 years ago when she first moved up there. I took a week-long jewelry class at the Moore College of Art and stayed with her in a townhouse on South Street. Sweet, right? Well, on this trip, I vowed to get back into the city...and I did.

I took Amtrak and of course finally read last year's big book (and this year's awaited movie) The Girl On The Train by Paula Hawkins. I had wanted to read this on my last train trip to Florida but the paperback version wasn't available yet and it didn't feel right to have it on my Nook. When I arrived, I had about 1/4 of the book left to finish on the return trip home.

Hard Rock Cafe on Market Street
1st Day:

The only plans that I made was to meet up with Kyle from Vacuuming the Lawn on the first day of my four-day trip. Kyle was one of the first blogs I read and in 2010 (!) she even sent me this fabric when I expressed that I loved it on her blog. That fabric became two of my favorite well-worn garments even though I think it's really for swimsuits or active wear. She suggested meeting at Reading Terminal Market (12th and Arch Street) for lunch.

As soon as we walked in I saw the most delicious little cakes by the Termini Brothers. They stayed in the back of mind for the rest of the day. I bought one of their limoncello ones on the way out of the city that day and again two days later when I came back in. Sooooo goooood! Melts in your mouth and so creamy. So good, in fact, that I checked to see if they were one of the preferred vendors for my nieces wedding venue...and they are! Hmmm...wonder if the wedding couple likes lemon?

Kyle and THAT amazing bag!

After a great grilled cheese sandwich lunch at Meltkraft (I got the Brielle: cranberry chutney, Brie, carmelized onions, and pine nuts!), the Fabric Workshop and Museum (1214 Arch Street) was to be our first stop; however, they didn't have an exhibit going on at the time. Kyle suggested that we instead catch the Vlisco exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art instead and I said yes, please!

Philadelphia Museum of Art


Hero collection, season 1, 2014

Gala Dress from Congo, 2016

Frozen Dreams Collection, 2009

The Vlisco: African Fashion on a Global Stage exhibition was at the Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building of the Philadelphia Museum of Art (2525 Pennsylvania Avenue) This exhibit was amazing. the clothes were amazing and I wish my camera had been better to capture all the little details. I loved how these seemingly elaborate textiles used the simplest of subjects or images and manipulated them by placement or repetition into intricate patterns and then how the use of the color combinations and layering of hues elevated them even more.


I had a great time with Kyle, she is exactly as she seems on her blog, funny, kind, laid-back, extremely talented, and above all generous. Don't get jealous but look what she gave me at lunch! Yes, it matches that amazing leather bag that she had just finished. A bag that if I didn't read her blog I would have assumed she bought, and yes it does feel like "but-tah". I am chuffed and honored to receive this gift and it should motivate me to make myself a bag that deserves this tassel. Thank you, Kyle! Hopefully, I will see you again at PR Weekend 2017!

On my way out of the city that day, after picking up my 1st limoncello cake, I stopped by their beautiful old school Macy's and then took a few pictures of the Philadelphia City Hall (1401 John F. Kennedy Blvd.) and it's lovely architecture.

2nd Day:

My sister and my BIL told me that the new Philadelphia Pennsylvania LDS (Mormon) Temple (1739 Vine Street) was recently constructed and because it had not yet been dedicated and blessed it was available for non-members to tour until September 9. They had toured the one in Salt Lake City and wanted to see what could be seen in a temple pre-dedication. So two days later, I went back into the city for our two-hour tour.

There was a short video presentation we were shown before the tour but surprisingly besides that, there was  no religious pressure as could be expected. The building was gorgeous and loving interior details as I do, there was always something to notice from the huge and varied floral arrangements in the halls to the fact that the cornices, millwork, and even the door hardware and handles became more elaborate while the finishes seemed more expensive as we ascended floor by floor. No interior pictures were allowed during the visit but pictures can be seen online, in particular for the baptistry and celestial room.

Because of the newness of everything, we were required to place white protective casings over our shoes to protect the new carpet from dirt. I really wanted to get a picture of us with these on, but there just wasn't time. So, just imagine a group of twenty adults people shuffling along the staircases of this structure with basically chef hats on our feet.

The temple as seen from the adjacent roof garden.
After our tour as we walked from the Temple downtown we passed this unique sculpture honoring Benjamin Franklin on the highway overpass at 17th Street and Vine.

Big Ben at Franklin Town
We also passed through Comcast Center in order to view the Comcast Experience video wall.

Comcast Experience video wall, at the Comcast Center.
After a delicious lunch at at Parc Brasserie in the Rittenhouse Square neighborhood, we took a long walk back through the city and stopped by Reading Terminal Market so I could pick up my second Termini Bros. limoncello cake before we took the Broad Street Line back to AT&T Center and then home to New Jersey.
As it turned out, that was the extent of my visits to the city because I decided to hang in Jersey for the rest of the visit. I had a friendly puppy to play with, good food, and excellent Wi-Fi. To be honest even though the weather was fabulous the entire time, the constant walking really took a beating on me and my out of shape legs!

Yes, there were other sewing-related places I had planned on visiting; however, after talking to Kyle about our current and future projects I couldn't stop thinking about all the fabric and patterns I had left at home and how I shouldn't buy anything new, so these stops will wait for another trip: Jomar* (22 Jackson St and 2590 Grant Ave); Butcher's Sew Shop (800 S 8th Street); Fabric Row on South Street; or MADE Studio (305 Cherry Street).

*So which Jomar is the best one to go to?


Audrey said...

It looks like you had a very nice visit to Phili and saw some really interesting things and places. Kyle is a sweetie. I met her at a Pattern Review weekend long ago. The fabric district is worth a visit if you get the opportunity. I have only been to one Jomar so can't advise you on that question.

Kyle said...

What a great summary of your trip, Lisa! I am happy to have met you. And you're welcome for the tassel--don't be pressured into making a bag though! Just enjoy it. :)

I had forgotten all about that fabric til you mentioned it at lunch--that feels like ages ago!

Wall Tapestry said...

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