Posts Tagged ‘patchwork’

Patchwork inspired projects by Cath Kidston

Thursday, October 20th, 2011

Most of the time when I think of patchwork I think of new modern patterns or traditional simple patterns with contemporary fabrics.  I had almost forgotten that the roots of patchwork was not only to create an heirloom quilt, but to make the most out of fabrics in times long before mass production.  The new Cath Kidston book, Patch!, has reminded me that crafters from past times washed their fabrics before cutting them into little pieces, not to preshrink them, but to remove stains and odours, since the fabric they were about to sew together it was likely to be a shirt or an old dress.  So if you think that recycling and upcycling in a new trend, think again.

Patch! remains true to the brand and follows the same style than their previous books.  The photos are very warm and allow you to admire the beauty of vintage fabrics and the instructions seem quite straight forward, but don’t quote me on this one as I have not made anything from it yet.

There is a bit of everything in the book but there is a lot about bags and quite a few ideas for cushions and pillowcases.  You will also find things for the rest of the house, children, a dog bed, and a couple of applique project… after all applique is a close relative to patchwork.  Most of the projects are easy to make, there are no big complicated quilts, or anything that will take you ages to finish.

The beauty of this book is that it clearly shows how you can use old and new fabrics in the same project and nobodwil raise an eyebrow.  On the other hand, if you like making things exactly like the ones in the book with exactly the same fabrics, you are going to have a challenge to find the same designs.  To me, one of the great things is to make something and stamp my own style, so I wouldn’t have a problem making some of the cushions entirely with solids, or a mixture of linen in natural colour and bright cottons.

As in their previous books, it comes with a kit to get you starting in making a tote bag or a cushion cover, so there are no excuses of why not to get stitching.


Patch! Cath Kidston ® is published by Quadrille Publishing Limited. ISBN 978-184400-988-6

Working with the Pips

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

You know how these things work, you see something online, then you see it in a shop, you read about it on other blogs, your friend also has one, what next?  Well naturally you also want it.  I am not immune to that, not even when it comes to fabrics.

For quite some months now, we have seen Annela Hoey’s first collection, Sherbet Pips, all over the internet.  Quilts, blankets, bags, dresses, throws, placemats, you name it, someone has done it.  I have been cutting and packing quite a lot of these fabrics and have already sold out some of the designs (yes I have kicked myself several times because I haven’t kept even a tiny scrap of them for myself).

So before it was too late, I grabbed a few fabrics and cut some pieces to make a cushion.  I must say that I truly enjoy working with these fabrics.  I think that the tiny details are the best part, like the small mice or the snails that almost seem like they have sneaked in the design.

Inspired by a quilt pattern in the book "Simplify with Camille Roskelly"

I did however get stuck in choosing the fabric for the back of the cushion.  It was getting a bit too pink for me, but my dear friend Nicola (more about this talented girl very soon) suggested going for Kona in Rich Red or Skipping square dots in Candy Blue.  I think I am going to go for the red.

In a moment of madness I thought of adding piping, but I don’t think it needs it and I just want to finish it.  I have this feeling that it is going to become sort of a “comfort pillow” that I will drag with me everywhere I go.

How to win 4 patchwork and quilting books

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Hhhmmm… It has been so long since the last time I updated this blog that I had no idea how to start writing again, so my dear friend Fiona from The Sewing Directory gave me the perfect excuse to get on a roll again.  We are having the best giveaway ever… or so I think. The prizes are 4 amazing books that will inspire you and will glue you to the sewing machine for hours without end!

What do you think? Pretty cool eh! How do you win one of these books?  Very simple, just go and have a peek at our New Items and Coming Soon section and let us know which one is your favourite, and don’t forget to let us know which book would you like to win.  Your answer should be submitted here before Tuesday 8th March before 18:00hrs.  Terms & Conditions and more info regarding this giveaway can be found here.

Hope you like the fabrics that we have in stock, and whilst you are browsing, don’t forget to also check the items on Sale ;)

Good Luck and Thank you for taking part in this giveaway!

V&A Quilts 1700-2010 Exhibition

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

Very few things in life are as comforting as a quilt.  Quilts for me are sort of a hug and a cup of hot chocolate in a rainy day all mixed together.  So when I found myself on my own during the wet Bank Holiday in early May, I knew where was the place to go to make me feel a bit better.  I took and early train to from Oxford to London and went straight to the V&A Quilts Exhibition.  It was like an instant fix to my blue day!  The museum was quite busy, and as much that I’d love having the galleries for my self, I think it is great that many people also want to admire all the treasures in the museum.

Liberty Jack Quilt, Janey Forgan. Patchowrk and quilting, Oxford, 2008. V&A Museum.


My first stop was at the Sackler Centre to sew a 12×12 inch patchwork block, that it later was sewn together with other blocks made by others and transformed into a quilt to be donated to the Project Linus.  I have never done a quilt in my life (although it is in my list of to-do-things), so I was quite impressed with little block.  Tutors were helping people like me and I was lucky to be guided by the lovely (and patience) Mrs Jo Poulton (who also is part of Greenstede Quilters in East Grinstead).  I think events like this are great for getting people into crafts and also crafting for a good cause.  My day was getting so much better after that!  

Nine-patch squares at the V&A waiting to be created in lovely blankets for children with serious illness.


On my way to London, I had wondered how an exhibition of an every-day-thing such as a quilt can attract so many visitors.  I must say the curators had done a fantastic work; the quilts are stunning, both antique and contemporary.  You find yourself wondering  about the people who made them, or who owned them.  I am sure they never thought that their coverlet was going to be displayed in a museum hundreds of years later admired by people from all over the world.  The contemporary quilts are fascinating.  It is an eye-opening to see how people from different paths of life do and enjoy making quilts with such rich techniques, and all of them use a quilt to express themselves.

Many of my customers are quilters or use patchwork in some of their projects, and their results are incredible beautiful and certainly they all are museum material.  I am not surprise that some of the designers fabric that we stock have already been in art galleries.  But could you imagine travel in time and see an Amy Butler quilt made by you, or a tablecloth made with Leanika fabric?  And I think we all can see Denyse Schmidt’s designs in museums!

Coverlet, Patchwork and quilting. Possibly Exter, England, 1690-1720. V&A Museum