Schoolhouse, Eternalmaker, Chichester

What can I say? I had such a great day on Saturday teaching at this fun event that The Eternalmaker in Chichester organised!

My classroom was along this avenue of fabric:

avenue of fabric

The rest of the shop was transported to the school as well, so lots of opportunities to buy stuff on the way to and from coffee and biscuits, yummy lunch and the tea and cake. And you got to do FIVE workshops! Apart from sewing the bag and pincushion with me there was bead making, box making and sewing a felt teddy to name a few!


Here is one of my classes: busy, busy, busy!

And have you ever seen such ric rac?


Needless to say some of this came home with me!

If you want to find out more, or book for the School House being held in June, look on their website, or visit Anna’s blog. Definitely a source of all craftiness!

Busy Week

I had a busy weekend! On Saturday I was teaching at a lovely shop in Kew, London called Tikki Fabrics. If you are in the area you must drop by! We had a productive day sewing ‘quilts that quilted themselves’ whilst we stitched them on the sewing machines! Here are some of the results:

quilt that quilts itself

Wednesday will be courses at The Quilt Room, Dorking, so lots of busy stitching there and then:


 next Saturday I will be at The Eternalmaker School House day in Chichester to show you how to sew a bag and a pincushion in an hour! Yes really! Here’s a sneak peak at what we will be creating quickly.

And even though I don’t do that much sewing myself on the days that I teach, I do a lot before to prepare!


Sewing, Sewing, Sewing!

I am in the midst of machine quilting a lap quilt sewn in 1930’s style fabrics. As a little light relief I have been trawling through Ebay looking at the antique quilts. I like these:

and this:

There is such a great source of inspiration over on that site. I must admit that I have bid on a quilt over there before. It is so hard to resist!

On another note in my quest for  a pattern for the ‘Wheel of Fortune’ block, I have found one on John Flynn’s website, and it should be winging its way to me right now. I am still sewing the block from the Ruby Mckim pattern and will let you know how that turns out!

Information Overload


I taught my last classes of the year this week, so we had a bit of a show, the girls had sewn some great quilts. I am always so excited to see the complete tops!

Schools break up today, so I will have less sewing time until the first week in January 2009! So I have been busy using my last free morning to look at inspirational antique quilts here : and after Kathie over here suggested a source for the Wheel of Fortune pattern (Thankyou!) and Barbara Brackmans prompt, I have finally taken the plunge and purchased the BlockBase programme! Phew! I got it from Lawrence at He is sooo helpful and patient especially as I am fairly hopeless with the computer! But I think Blockbase will suit me, and I also treated myself to the Dear Jane programme and the Mariners Compass 1&2. I will have a lot to play with, and not much time to do so!

I also have to order some of the great shot cottons from Oakshott, as they are discontinuing them next year, so after deliberating for ages, I don’t want to miss the boat!


I really want to sew one of these blocks. I have seen the block called some different names, from ‘Wheel of Fortune’ to ‘Rising Sun’, so it comes under many guises. This quilt is from a class by Sue Ross, in Australia at the Material Obsession shop, so I won’t be able to just sign up! I have also seen a version here which is lovely.

It is quite an old fashioned pattern, and intricate, so I have not been able to easily find a pattern, although I see antique quilts in some of the quilt documentation books. I was thinkig about drafting it, and then came across a pattern in one of the first quilt books I ever owned, ‘Ruby McKim, 101 Patchwork Patterns’. From what I recall these patterns were not that accurate! And it was for only a 12″ block! So I have blown it up on the photocopier and am going to give it a go! Now it is about 14″ which seems a bit less fiddly.

This will be my hand sewn block project of the season!

Saving Thread

In keeping  with the ‘economic climate’ I offer this tip, incase you weren’t already aware.

If you keep a small piece of fabric  about 2 1/2″  wide by 2 ” long ( I use the left over pieces from when I bind a quilt), fold it in half, so you have about 1 ” width and feed this into your machine beofre you start sewing. Whilst sewing CHAIN PIECE as much as possible, and when you are finished, snip your thread saver from the start of the work, and put it at the end. This way there are no tails of thread going to waste, only about 1″ on your thread saver. Someone worked out that you can save one reel of thread per single quilt top, so that’s more money we can spend on fabric!

I also helped the economy along this weekend when I was teaching at Just Between Friends. They had some lovely DMC linen thread that I want to try out for tying a quilt! Oh! and I got fabrics for borders for a quilt that needs finishing and some lovely Licien linen……! We were sewing Stasbusters quilts there this weekend ( and I forgot to take pictures, sorry) but I did take some when I was there earlier this year. Then we stitched blocks from ‘strings and strips’ aka ‘free fabric’! These were the pieces of fabric you usually discard, so another idea to help us through the econmic down turn!

There are lots more of these ideas in the class, so it was a busy one!

Workshop, Thread Bear

It rained a lot on Saturday too. I say that because it is raining and dark and grey and cold, just like last Saturday.

Last Saturday was put to good use as we had part two of the “Quilting-on-the-Go” workshop at Thread Bear.

The ladies were great, they had done their home work and we stitched all day, with some great quilts emerging from the grey day!


Quilt shops


I have been on a short break to New York. I just love it there. Each time I visit I wonder if I will still love it, and I do. It does not disappoint. I went (predictibly) to the quilt shop, The City Quilter. And of course I brought some fabric!

The fabrics are by Andover. They look quite dull here, and I suppose they are actually! But they are lovely and muted, and remind me of a jacket I had in the 70’s from an Indian clothing shop near where I lived in Colchester. I would have brought them in the UK if they had been available, but they weren’t, so it was atreat to find them in one of only two quilting shops in NY.