Val: We start off the month with a wander round the National Patchwork Championships that are held at the Sandown racecourse each year and the winner in June was Jacquie Harvey with her exquisite christening gown. Jacquie loves handwork and had her own exhibition at the show, which we also filmed and will be on the site later. There were lots of other quilts on display, including the travelling roadshow ‘Barbados Beckons’ which is full of bright quilts radiating sunshine – always good to look at on a dull autumn afternoon, and if you are fortunate enough to get to some of Grosvenor’s other shows you will see it there. There were over 500 quilts on display (so I understood) so you get but a taster of what the exhibition included and make a note of the date for next year – 17-19 June 2011


We also have a short introduction from Maggie Davies on her favourite subject – Hawaiian appliqué – on which she is quite an expert and explains how to created two cushion fronts from just on Fat 1/4m of fabric and she has written a great book “Perfect Points”;

We meet Lorna Bateman who is a well respected embroiderer and shows us how to work her ‘drizzle stitch’ into a delightful sheep pincushion and we join Judi Mendelssohn at a workshop she gave at Midsomer Quilting where she explains how she fits a postcard into her foundation piecing.

Helen Deighan shares a super little tip on how to create a straight folded edge on a piece of fabric; Wendy Gardiner explains why the walking foot is such a valuable tool for your sewing machine and we have Jennie taking the fear out of the inset seam technique, and once you’ve mastered this you will wonder what all the fuss was about!

Angela Madden is going to show us how to use her circle slice ruler to make stunning quilts (and Angela doesn’t do maths so invented this so you don’t have to either!) and Annette Emms makes Fairy Shoes that will delight you.

You can now follow us on Facebook : has its own page so if you do too, we would love for you to visit and ‘Like’ us (I am still new to all this but will update the page as often as possible with what’s happening with us all) and to make it easy for you, you will find the link at the bottom of all the pages on our website.

Details of our quilting get-away are now finalised and you will find them on the Small Ads/quilting retreats page;

dates are 24-26 June 2011, location is Dunford House in Midhurst, Surrey and we have three tutors; myself offering workshops on 9-patch (new work still in progress!) and rotary cutting, Sarah Soward (from Pauline’s Patchworks and who had her winning design in the Jellyroll Inspirations book) who will be working on a new jelly-roll quilt she has designed (as well as offering other jelly-roll quilt ideas) and Jennie working on Tumbling blocks and 3D design in fabric. We will of course have shopping available over the weekend (as well as evening entertainment I am told) and we are working on getting some exclusive new fabric lines for you.

We have a brand new mini-competition for you; we were thrilled to be given 5 Tilda Summer Ideas books by David & Charles; if you are interested in being in the draw you need to answer a simple question which is easy when you’ve watched the film: “On what page of the book does the project appear?” and then send us the answer, by email entitled ‘Tilda’ . You do need to be a subscribed member to be eligible.

Just a reminder that the membership is just £6/month (if you are in the UK we do accept cheques) and Paypal will convert to local currency (approx US$10/month) and subscription is on a monthly basis. Any difficulty with downloading the films (the films stuttering or downloading in small sections) you should find the answers on the Blog pages or you can Contact Us.

Block One of the new Block of the Month programme (free to subscribed members) starts today and you will come across a fast and accurate way of creating half-square triangles; it works for handsewing as well as machinework but be careful if you are handstitching not to cut through your handstitching when squaring up.

Three new books caught my eye this month; Tilda’s Christmas Ideas – a magical collection of seasonal projects , Fa La La La Felt – 45 handmade decorations and projects, including a few no-sew ones(!)
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and Flying Colours, how to design quilts with freeform shapes and flying geese (one I would aspire to) – which is our Book of the Month

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Only a quilter will rush to finish a gift quilt not so that it’s done in time for the birthday but so that it’s done in time for ‘Show & Tell’ ! (and if any of you have finished Jennie’s Block of the Month or anything else – we would love to see!)

Happy sewing
Valerie & Jennie