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Janet Clare

About Janet

After completing her Textiles and Fashion degree Janet worked as a freelance designer for many years, then trained to be an infant school teacher and had a very rewarding and enjoyable few years teaching reception classes. Much of her work is inspired by children and their purity of thought, their innocence and the joy they find in the mundane.

Janet enjoys quilting, dressmaking, knitting, painting, drawing, gardening, baking and reading. She likes to be creative every day and loves being in her studio with her thrifted and hand-me down treasures.

With over 25 years as a textile designer and teacher, Janet regularly hosts talks and workshops, focusing on the design process and creative techniques she uses.

So far, she has written five books (with no plans to stop!) and created a range of quilt & stitchery patterns, and she has designed eleven fabric collections in collaboration with Moda.

You will often find Janet posting on Instagram and Pinterest.  These platforms help keep her in touch with the wonderful world-wide community of quilters and designers.

Click here to see Janet catch up with Valerie about her Artisan Apron.


Signature Technique

Drawing with your sewing machine, and free motion machine appliqué.

Top Tips

  • Breathe life and energy into your appliqué with free motion machine quilting.
  • When free motion quilting, make sure to use a new sharp needle (it skips stitches otherwise) and use thread in a contrasting colour to your appliqué.
  • Remember that the machine is going fast, but you do not have to as well! If you move the fabric quickly your stitches will be large and if you move the fabric slowly your stitches will be small.
  • If you stitch in the same place at the beginning and end, you shouldn’t need to secure the thread ends, just take them to the back and cut them.
  • Machine drawing can be unpicked- but is absolutely no fun, so if it all goes wrong (and it does sometimes), throw it away, pretend it never happened and start again.
  • When cutting, move your fabric not your scissors.


The Wordsmith by Janet Clare

Follow-up hospital appointments mean lots of waiting around so this time I took something 'nice' along to read;  well how understated is that - this book is fabulous; Janet combines delightful little stories about her life and the inspiration for her memory quilt,  with her line-drawings which makes this book very readable and memorable; THEN you get projects too! I've already mentioned the Memory quilt, but there is also the Alphabet quilt and then taking those letters there is the poetry quilt: hers  reads Warm Sighing; quiet settled but she gives you tips on how to translate your phrase into a quilt too - just brilliant!


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