The Week That Was

Late again this week but so much to show you.

The Hexie club is well underway and you saw the first two projects last week. This week we were able to see the first project from the sister program – the Appliqué Club – thanks to Sharyn’s efficiency.

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Sharyn also had time to make another little project with the leftovers and we were all impressed by her interesting label

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While we’re on the Sharyn Show let me tell you that she won the clever award of the week by taking a slap ruler from Smiggle and turning it into a bespoke wrist pincushion with a couple of strategically placed loops.

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Speaking of new fabric (well you were thinking about what fabric to make your pincushion weren’t you?) we have just received the very beautiful Glitz range from Michael Miller Fabrics. Here’s what you can do with it:

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Also had delivered a batch of nursery quilt and bunting kits at a very special price – here are just two of the four designs –

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You’ll have to call if you want one of these because they’re not on the website. In fact the website is almost finished – there is a new one just waiting for the green light (and a couple of things for me to do – like add all the fabric – manually!)

While we’re on the subject of nurseries – we had a very special visitor on Wednesday night when Sarah brought her lovely baby Sophie in to meet us all. Ever tried to make a 3-month old baby smile for the camera when all she really wants to do is anything else???

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Eventually you give up and just accept it.

Another visitor to the workroom was ‘the beast’ – Lesa’s current work in progress. This talented lady has already won several awards for her work and we all think this one will continue the run.

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Isn’t it wonderful? It’s a clever use of Kaffe Fassett fabrics and also savvy fussy cutting. Those beautiful hexagon flowers didn’t make themselves – they evolved from imaginative and astute scissor work.

There are some more projects in the gallery from last week (mainly Sharyn’s because she clearly doesn’t sleep) and I finished a project myself – but it’s a gift for someone so you’ll have to wait until next time for the big reveal.

I also heard from Cathy – who used to be a Tuesday girl and sometimes a Wednesday girl – but who has now run off with her husband to the wilds of Tasmania. You can catch up with her at her blog here. Suffice to say that she is doing it tough – here’s what she has to cope with:

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Isn’t it dreadful – your heart goes out to her doesn’t it!

Until next time happy quilting

Kaye

Top Quilting Tips No. 1- The Fabric of Life

In the Countdown to Classes series here’s number

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What would we do without FABRIC? People who don’t quilt just can’t COTTON on to why we love it so much and why we want to cut it up into small pieces and then sew them back together again.

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I don’t want to MUSLIN on your time but I think we could all use some more. OK I’ll stop now because I don’t have any more MATERIAL.

Seriously fabric is so wonderful – you can make beautiful colourful creations or, if you’re just a collector, you can just look at it in admiration and re-arrange it. Maybe I could  re-arrange the fabric room and swap all the colours around – oh no I already did that last week.

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Your task today is to check your fabric supplies and see if you need any supplies for that UFO list you did last week. Or maybe you just need to feed your fabric fetish.

Maybe fabric is your artist’s medium, maybe it’s the practical tool to help you warm your family. What is this fabric?

Quilter’s cotton is soft and lightweight. It is made to be cut, pressed and sewn easily. Quilting cotton comes in a range of weights because of different manufacturing processes. You know how sheets have different thread counts and the more expensive sheets have higher thread count? Well it’s the same with quilting fabric. The denser the weave the better the fabric because it will have more body and be more stable – and when it’s part of a 2,400 piece quilt that’s important.

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At Apatchy we stock only top quality fabric rather than the el cheapo options available. Why? Because you put a lot of effort into your project. You put a lot of time into it. The success of the finished project will depend almost totally on the fabric. Ok well maybe on your sewing too. But really the quilt is all about the fabric so why begin with an inferior product? Often the cheaper fabrics have an inferior grade cotton or lower quality inks used in the dyeing process.

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Sizing is also used in the manufacture of cotton – it is what makes some fabrics feel stiff. Cheaper fabrics often have a lot of sizing and then, when you wash them, they turn into dish rags or, as Mum says, “something you could shell peas through”. Think about that for a little while – that’s THIN!

Good-quality fabric feels different. It handles better, holds it’s creases and lines and generally makes a better quilt. Don’t be mean when it comes to this aspect of your quilting. Ok here endeth the lesson.

So you need good quality fabric but at a cheaper price – now – to make it easy for you – let’s make this week from Tuesday until next Monday the

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This time we are going to make things work a little differently. Here’s how:

  • Buy less than 1 metre get 10% discount
  • Buy more than one metre get 20% discount
  • Finish the bolt (regardless of the amount left) and get 25% discount
  • For things that aren’t fabric (that would be books, ribbons, haberdashery and all things not fabric except classes) – get 20% discount

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As always Geronimo members get an additional  10% off. That means you get up to 35% off! You do the maths. Not a Geronimo member? You should be – have a look at the link here to join. Not a Brisbane class-goer? No problem just order online and mention SUMMER in your order.

I hope you’ve enjoyed the Countdown series and are ready for classes. As you would probably have realised by now – they don’t start tomorrow, they start on Tuesday (and so does the sale). ‘So why are we down to Number 1 on the Countdown’ I hear you ask. It’s because I’m being kind to you and giving you a free day to get everything organised that you were supposed to do in the last ten days but maybe haven’t quite got there yet.

See you on Tuesday

Happy quilting

Kaye

If you’ve missed the ‘Countdown to classes’ series you can catch up here – just click on the numbers to take you to that tip:

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Opulent Overlays

Here’s a sneak peek of the Opulent Overlays workshop happening here as we speak. The incomparable Lisa Walton is here today showing us how to incorporate the shapes and curves of intricate ironwork into our textile artwork. This is our progress so far:

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Winter Blues

It’s been very chilly in this part of the world lately – perfect quilting weather in fact! Here are some winter blues that won’t give you the sniffles.

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Blue is one of my favourite colours and I love the variation from aqua to the deepest navy. Do you feel inspired?

Speaking of inspiration I was fortunate to attend the opening of the Textile Art Academy’s tutors exhibition last night. What a wonderful bohemian group was there – and really inspirational pieces. It certainly inspired me to think about the next project. Here are a couple of photos of the people I saw there. Aren’t they colourful! These girls know how to live life that’s for sure.

Janet de Boer

Janet de Boer

Jan and Phillippa enjoy the evening

Jan and Philippa enjoy the night

One of the artists Sandra Pearce

One of the artists Sandra Pearce

I was reminded in another way this weekend of the importance of living life and taking time out to pursue your inspirations. I had a call from a lady whose sister is suffering from dementia and is now living in an intensive care facility. This lady wanted to give me her sister’s stash because she doesn’t sew and doesn’t know anyone who quilts. As I am in the phone book under A I was the first one called. I thought it was so sad and vowed to distribute the fabric to those who make charity quilts. Although this will be a positive end to the situation I still think it’s very sad. So…really…. make sure you have a plan for your stash because you don’t want your family to give it all away to strangers now do you?

Since we last spoke we had a birthday in class. I always feel honoured when someone comes to class on their birthday – what an important day to attend. Here’s June having a special wish on hers.

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Almost finished the stocktaking – don’t forget to enter the competition to guess the number of fabric bolts in the shop – you have until New Year’s Eve – that’s accountant’s new year of course – or this Saturday night if your not sure.

New project, new fabric, new baby

Isn’t it strange that the things we like to do seem to be difficult to start? When I am sewing I am quite happy but there are always other things to do and sometimes I seem to fiddle around until it’s almost too late to start. The past two days have been a classic example of this. I have been hoping for a free weekend for a month now and when I finally have one I managed to find all manner of tasks to do rather than sitting down for a weekend of quilting – and I have two projects ‘on the go’ so there is no excuse. But no Poz E Dogg had a bath, shopping was done, a new book was read from cover to cover. Only a meagre amount of sewing was achieved and now the weekend is over and it went so quickly. Reminds me of ‘The Church’ song ‘Life Speeds Up’. That’s for sure! Do you ever have trouble getting started on something you actually enjoy?

Anyway this one of the current projects – the fabric version of a vintage travel poster that I found in an old diary. I did manage to sew it to the background but still lots of embellishing to do, not to mention the quilting………

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The other new thing this week was the fabric range ‘Salt Water’ by Tula Pink. I am really taken by this range – especially the aqua colour theme.

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As usual the suppliers do not have the full range to send me but the fabrics above are in stock. They are sufficient to make one of the great cushions in the free pattern. This pattern features combi van cushions (Remember the 60’s?) Definitely have to have one of those. Have a look here for the pattern.

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Finally some other ‘new’ news – the lovely Nicole who has been with us on Wednesday evenings (and has the pink and grey sampler quilt in the gallery) has a new baby girl called Isla Rose and weighing in at only 6lb so quite a small bundle. It’s wonderful to have such good news and we all wish Nicola and her family the best. No photo yet but stay tuned.

Monday Musings

As many of you know I am very keen on art quilts and have indulged in a few creations myself. Currently there is a controversy raging in the quilt world – started when a quilt was displayed at the recent Modern Quilters Convention. This quilt comprised of many blocks – all featuring the ‘F’ word. Blogland has been very busy with those for and against the display/making of this quilt – and the commentary has become quite heated. Naturally this has raised further debate on censorship but I was rather dismayed to read the following on one blog: “the quilting community censors itself in myriad ways on often ludicrous bases: foremost the gangland war between ‘traditional’ and ‘art’ quilters with recent skirmishes from the ‘modern’ sector.” I was surprised to know that I was part of a “gangland war”. I thought we were all just indulging ourselves making beautiful quilts that we could all enjoy. I do hear people say nasty comments at quilt shows and think that it is unnecessary and may be hurtful as the quilter may be standing behind them! I am also impressed that the people who enter the shows are brave enough to enter their quilts and have this criticism. Braver than me that’s for sure. What do you think?

Oh and apparently there is a group called the BadAss Quilters Society who were formed because they thought the quilting world required them to be “quiet, grey haired and a bit frumpy”. I think these girls need a session with us! If you want to read more about this quilt see here http://www.thomasknauersews.com/on-surface-and-substance/

On another note, if you thought the social media was powerful then listen to this – due to the results of a Facebook competition the iron has been deleted from the Monopoly board – it is to be replaced by a cat. Now this gets me really steamed up – why do they mess with things that have been going well for years? I hope there was a pressing reason for the change and they iron out any further problems!

But wait there’s mopre – more beautiful fabric that is – have a look at this range – Lux Metallics by Timeless Treasures –  you really have to see it up close as the gold is just so rich. I think the large fabric reminds me of the ‘Metropolis’ movie that Fritz Lang made in 1927 and Giorgio Moroder released again with a soundtrack by rock artists like Freddie Mercury.   Here’s the link to the trailer here

Lux Metallics

Now what can you make with that????

Happy Days

OK enough of the sadness of the last week – we need a much-needed injection of happiness at this point. What makes you happy (apart from your stash of course)?

Hearing from you all this last week has made me happy and oh Valentine’s Day morning what do you think Luvvy had done? He left early for work and when I went to the kitchen this is what I found:

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The card is a musical one which plays The Turtles song “So Happy Together”. I have been playing it ever since and am amazed that the battery hasn’t run out. The little bag had a necklace which is engraved ‘Live, Laugh, Love’ – how appropriate. So of course he is back in my good books after having been annoyed with him for a week for not having noticed any changes to the house after I’d spent a whole month re-arranging things and de-cluttering.

Of course fabric makes me happy too are so many boxes to unpack I don’t know where to start. How about here at the range the workshop girls saw last week. This one is the autumn neutral version of Plume that was so successful last year. We already have a quilt under construction with this. Watch this space!

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If you would like a free pattern then go to the Timeless Treasures website here.

But wait there’s more! I have a link to my Pinterest boards. There are currently 8 boards with beautiful images from art quilts to organisation ideas. If you would like to have a look just click on the link on the right (at the bottom of the column).

And just to finish – if you aren’t the neutral type and like a little more colour then I should show you the ‘Perfectly Perched’ range that arrived – there are some great projects on the net with this fabric but first have a sneak peek of the colours.

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So it is a lovely Sunday (a little cloudy but quite warm), Luvvy is in the good books, the Teenager is practising his bass guitar in readiness to become a rock god and I am unpacking fabric. All is right with the world. There’ll be more fabulous fabric next post – enjoy your Sunday!