My goodness 1st April already – spring has sprung (so the garden seems to say) and the clocks here in the UK have gone forward so more sewing time! Did you miss us? We weren’t able to get the usual update out to you last month – the newsletter hosting company decided to revamp their site and , yes, you guessed it, there were technical issues that took time to resolve!!

So, a reminder of the films that went up towards the end of last month; Maggie Davies continued with her excellent Hawaiian Applique workshop showing you how to get the motiv fabric accurately onto the background and the last part of this will be uploaded on Friday 8th April, when Maggie shares with you how to do the perfect invisible appliqué stitch as well as perfect points (which are her signature). So one not to be missed and this will go straight into the video clips section.

If you’ve not checked it out yet you really should watch Dawn Cameron-Dick’s lecture on needles and threads – I really can’t recommend it highly enough (Dawn shares so much information and you will soon be able to put her in your pocket with the new Pocket Tutor that will be on sale later in the year); Jennie took us through Corner in the Cabin giving a new 3D twist to the traditional pattern (have you tried her sewing on air yet to make free motion flowers?); and if you just want to sit back and be inspired Angie Hughes gives us a taster of her DVD ‘Inspired Velvet’ and Janet Twinn guides us round the brilliant exhibition ‘A Slice of Quilt Art ‘ featuring quilts from this mixed media textile group who are celebrating 25 years of stitching together.

Now looking ahead to April I have had great fun playing with two new patchwork toys that I treated myself to and wanted to share with them with you – a rotary cutting board that turns and a brand new set of rulers that sharpen your blade every time you cut. These should be available at your local quilt shop if you too feel tempted.

Workshops for you include the Faded Flag cushion by Anne Baxter – you can be very patriotic with your colours or very modern – either way the cushion looks great; make bunting for your party and again you can be very patriotic and use flag ribbon;


Jennie takes you through how to create a textured landscape and as she tends to use dyed fabrics we have included the technique of dying in the microwave (so you really can do it in the kitchen!); Judi Mendelssohn shares with us her lovely quilts and their accompanying stories and at the end of the month we have a lovely workshop using Oakshott fabrics which we have made up into a tablemat but for which you can also have the instructions for the full size quilt.

Don’t forget that to enjoy the full workshops you do need to be a subscribed member but that also entitles you to enter our prize giveaways (the Daisy Fabric draw finished today and the winners will be posted on the News page). As well as the Block of the Month and a free pattern- which this month is an interesting little pincushion designed by Mandy Shaw inspiration for which came from an old sewing box she found.


I found it really hard to decided on this month’s Book of the Month ( too much choice!)but settled on Scandinavian Stitches – which describes itself as 21 playful projects with seasonal flair.



(and I decided to put the other two books are on the shopping pages anyway!)


We have a new and exciting giveaway kindly offered by Oakshott fabrics details of which will be available on 8th April. On that day and for one day only you will be able to find me at the Oakshott open day (Friday 8th April) – I’ll be demonstrating some of the quick and simple piecing techniques together with their lovely fabrics. Some come along and say hi! (Gloucester Business Park GL3 4BH)

Its going to be a busy weekend as on the Monday (11th April) I shall be giving free sewing workshops (with the help and sponsorship of Creative Quilting and Janome)to raise awareness and funds for Momentum, a local Kingston-upon-Thames charity that helps and supports children and families who are undergoing cancer and other lifelimiting conditions. From the workshops we hope that people will be inspired to make quilts; the address is KT7 0LP and we will be there from 10am-4pm.

The Small Ads section of the site is hotting up; do check out the Shops section to see what’s new and on offer and we have several new items in the Quilt Retreats section – Kate at Come2Qult in Somerset is a new venue for you to consider and Helen of Whitecroft tours has a few spaces on her 6night holiday, which includes workshops with Ineke Berlyn and the Quilts UK show at Malvern 17-23rd May. More details of all these (and more) can be found at

If you want to escape for a weekend of sewing you could take a look at the workshops listed at the Farncombe Estate (which include some given by Jennie) as well as our own weekend retreat 24-26th June at Dunford House in Midhurst. You can come along and join one of the classes or just come along and sew to finish your own projects knowing that help is on hand –as well as food and beverage!

We hope that the slight tweek we made to the site will make your lives easier – if you forget your password (or your username) you can just click on the forgotten link and the system will get back to you – saves waiting for Jennie or I !! All the information about upgrading your membership to enjoy the full workshops and videos is on the Membership page – it is a pay-as-you-go system managed through Paypal so really easy, but there is also the option of paying by cheque. And for new members there is also the FAQ page – frequently asked questions – which might help with any queries.

So do make a habit of joining us perhaps with your coffee or later in the evening with your glass of wine and allow the patchwork and quilting world to come to you. The videos are all bite size, so perfect for that short break.

I have to go now and load up my car with supplies – a weekend of sewing with the girls.
Happy sewing