Lots to tell you about this month, but before we get onto the films here’s the other news:

The Big screen has arrived on our new films – as Jenny says wrinkles and all now! The how-to is on our Blog page but briefly look for the arrow below the small screen which points up, click to enlarge and then click down to go back (or you can press esc on your keyboard to go back). Depending upon your computer, the quality of this enlargement varies but we would welcome feedback as to whether you feel it worth adding this facility to our archived films.

This month we wander round more of the Festival of Quilts and see some prize winning quilts including that of young Ethan Smith in the under 8’s category ‘Pearls for the Orient’ run by the Quilters Guild; it was so encouraging to meet the Smith family, sister Amy and Mum Beth are also quilters (Dad it would seem has yet to get the bug). There is also a look at some of the 3D textile art that caught my eye – fabric boxes to die for as well as clothing that wouldn’t look out of place in the theatre – so many talented people; as well as a look at several quiltart pieces by a group called Hanging Together, which is an exhibition within the show.

There is more film behind the scenes at the Royal School of Needlework at their home at Hampton Court Palace. This time we are priviledged to look in on the Studios where both traditional and modern needlework takes place on a commission basis – work on Dover Castle pieces to recreate the age of Henry II, as well as restoring and completing a piece of needlework depicting an estate, and you never have to fear that you have too many embroidery threads – just take a look at the stock they hold!!

A longer look at the Sunbury Millenium Embroidery, which was, and continues to be , a truely great piece of village co-operation in stitching. The gallery also takes the opportunity to host other small exhibitions, for textile and other artists, so if you are local its always worth keeping an eye on their schedule; next month we will be showing work by a group called Haptic Art, which we filmed while we were there.

On the workshop front we have Angela Madden showing us how to use her unique and useful patchwork design tool called the Multiplat; this is a great idea for making braid designs, as well as celtic designs, easily, with no maths, that can then be converted into either embroidery, or quilt designs.

We also have an interview with Barbara Weeks, quilter and quilt teacher, talking to Jennie about her work, her Barcelona Quilt, as well as the City & Guilds patchwork course that she is part of at Missenden Abbey. Mandy Shaw gives us yet more ideas for decorating our homes during the festive season with lots of simple home-dec sewing ideas.

On the tips and techniques section Jennifer Trollope talks about her embellishing journey and we have a taster of Dawn Cameron-Dick with her amazing Invisible Machine Applique idea for the Drunkards Path patchwork block – I love the idea that I can save time.! Another fast patchwork tip that I share with you is how to make Flying Geese patchwork blocks, four at a time, with absolutely no waste – so very economical on fabric, and again fast, and easy.

As always, a reminder that in order to get the full value from our site, you do need to be a fully subscribed member – details are on the Members page.

The workshops move from the Home Page into the Video Clips section so are on the site for a total of 3 months; the Block of the Month needs to be printed off each month (or you’ll miss it!).

Amazing to think that we are already 4 months old; those of you who were early subscribers – and thankyou so much for your support – will find their membership is due for renewal; we have kept the offer of 4 months for the price of 3 so it’s still just £15 for the next 4 months – still great value. If you try to log on to the site after your expiry date, you will be directed to renew your subscription through Paypal; if you want to send us a cheque you can, of course, do that – just get in touch with us through the Contact Us button.

If you need encouragement just look at the lineup we have for December – Jennifer Trollope, Dawn Cameron-Dick, Gail Lawther, Maggie Davie, Kelly Aldridge on the workshop side and a wonderful piece of film showing Delia Salter’s ‘Shipping Forecast’ – a journey around our island waters represented in fabric; AND 50 lucky people will receive a bundle of fabric donated by Anbo Textiles inconjunction with Creative Quilting of the new colours from the Robert Kaufmann range of Fusions.

You can also take the opportunity of sharing this with your friends by purchasing a gift voucher – great idea for Christmas; this can be exchanged for any shopping on the site and/or membership. You will find the purchase buttons in the shopping section as well as on most of the video pages. Remember too that lots of the items on the shopping pages are not readily available in the highstreet (or indeed in your local quilt shop) so will make unusual presents.

I’m actually at a quilting retreat this weekend (four days of pampering in a 5star hotel with like minded people, GREAT) but I do need to do some sewing and reduce my pile of UFO’s.
Happy Sewing and stitching
Valerie & Jennie