Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Not For Wimps!

Today saw the end of another year of teaching my Patchwork and Quilting classes!

I teach 4 (sometimes 5) classes a week and the topics of conversation that take place are varied and entertaining!

To give you an idea, here are a few of my favourites:

English football (the less said the better!)
The Great British Sewing Bee (and the 'unique' dress code of one of the judges!)
How hot and wrinkled Egyptian cotton sheets can get (don't ask!)
How to treat achne!
How to get rid of garden snails!
How to disable your hockey opponent!
Birthing calves and lambs (& babies!)
50 ways to deal with an unhelpful doctor (un-printable!)

Of course there are many serious and thought-provoking conversations too!

Today one lady said 'getting old isn't for wimps', which was swiftly followed by murmurs of agreement from around the room.

I've just had another birthday, and while 'half way to 90' isn't old, neither am I young.

My daughter and nephew also celebrating birthdays this month!
In truth this statement could apply to life - 'doing life isn't for wimps'. Among the 48 ladies I have the privilege of teaching each week, some are battling cancer or illness, divorce and loss, children with special needs, caring for elderly parents, teenagers, anxiety, worry and fear and many more life challenges.

One of our recent chats in class was about how to get through life with a positive attitude, seeing good and bad times as an opportunity to grow and learn, and how to have courage to live life with intention and purpose. How inspiring!


Doing life, and doing it well, isn't for whimps!  But each week my ladies turn up to class with a smile; they laugh, chatter, encourage, cajole, drink tea, eat biscuits and even sew a little!

They are choosing to do life, and do it well. There are certainly no wimps in my classes!!


Thank you ladies for sharing your thoughts, talents, hearts and authenticity each week.

Wishing you all a creative summer break!

Jude xo

Sunday, 26 June 2016

Travel Sewing Pouch

A few years ago I made a travel sewing pouch and ran a class teaching it. It proved really popular because a) it was easy to make and b) people saw a variety of uses for it!

Travel Sewing Pouch (Pretty Patches July16)

Pretty Patches Magazine really liked it too, and have published it in their July issue!

Travel Sewing Pouch (Pretty Patches July16)

This is a great pouch for bringing all your essential sewing equipment away on holiday.

Travel Sewing Pouch (Pretty Patches July16)

The pockets can be customised to suit your equipment, and there's a handy zippered pocket in the back too! 

Of course, you could translate this pouch into a travel art supplies case, beauty supplies, or for keeping electronic devises safe. 

Travel Sewing Pouch (Pretty Patches July16)

They also make great presents for sewing buddies!


So where are you heading off to this summer?

Jude xo

Thursday, 23 June 2016

Summer Starburst Quilt!

Happy Thursday everyone!

Summer seems to have relocated around these parts, so in an attempt to bring you lots of summer colour and happiness, check out my Summer Starburst Quilt!

Summer Starburst Quilt (Popular Patchwork July16)

This started out as a 'scrap buster' project, after I got enquiries on how to use larger pieces of scraps (less than a fat quarter metre).

Summer Starburst Quilt (Popular Patchwork July16)

The design is based on the arrow-head block (half square triangles and squares), and you could easily change the colourways to suit whatever you have in your stash.

Summer Starburst Quilt (Popular Patchwork July16)

I really love the 'colour splat' effect from the rounds of colour - it makes me smile and think of a warm, hot summer (a girl can dream)!

This pattern is available in the July issue of Popular Patchwork, and it made front cover!! Woohoo!

Popular Patchwork cover.July


Isn't the styling gorgeous!  Loving the cute bike!

So what I want to know is, do you like scrappy projects? How do you use your scraps?  And what's the smallest size you keep?

Looking forward to hearing from you,

Jude xo




Sunday, 19 June 2016

Denim Sail Boat Cushion

Hello everyone!  My that's another week gone!

How has your week been?

My June is always a little crazy, but exams are over, Uni daughter comes home for a visit on Thursday, so all is right with the world!

Did I ever tell you that I love recycling denim (only once or twice right! Wink! Wink!).

Sometimes an idea just comes on me and I have to run with it.

Denim Sailboat Cushion (Pretty Patches July16)

This started out as a little denim 'play therapy'!  I had a clutch of Aurifil 12wt wool threads which I knew would marry the denim perfectly!


And so a little fun applique project turned into a cushion commission for Pretty Patches Magazine.

This was my first time using Aurifil 12wt threads in my machine.  I used them for some of the details, but not the main satin stitch applique.

Denim Sailboat Cushion (Pretty Patches July16)

I had used Coats Creative thread before in this way, and really liked the effect. But it's difficult getting a wide range of shades in Coats Creative thread.  Aurifil however have a lovely range of 12wt colours, and with a size 100 needle, it ran through my machine like a dream (I used normal cotton thread in the bobbin).


My favourite bit is the uniquely worn part of the 'sea' - can you guess which part of the jeans this came from!!

You could easily substitute the denim for quilting cotton if you don't have spare jeans lying around!!

So if you fancy dreaming of sailing away on the summer seas, then pick up a copy of Pretty Patches (July) today!


Happy Sailing!

Jude xo

Saturday, 11 June 2016

S.H.O.P. Tote Bag

It's been a crazy busy week here!

But the sun has been shining and my friendly flowers are making an appearance once again.




I haven't even had time to tell you about the rest of my magazine entries this month!

SHOP tote (Quilt Now June16)

Quilt Now sent me some lush Alison Glass fabrics (Endpaper) for a 'WORD' themed bag.

The design for the letters came together surprisingly easily - straightforward piecing (there will definitely be more pieced letters in my design future).

I love how the colours really stand out against the Essex Linen (Flax).

SHOP tote (Quilt Now June16)
Lining by Michael Miller Mini Chic Chevron
There's also a sneaky little pop of colour behind the straps.

SHOP tote (Quilt Now June16)

So for all you shopaholics out there, this one is for you!

SHOP tote (Quilt Now June16)

The June issue of Quilt Now is Out Now!

Happy Shopping!

Jude xo

Friday, 3 June 2016

Flex Frame Sunnies Case!

Apologies to my bloggy friends living in the East of England, but it has been full-on sunny here .... all week!  ALL WEEK!

And more to come!  Squeeee!

Pardon my excitement, but it only happens once a millennia here!

Timely then for my Flex Frame Sunglasses Cases to be published in Popular Patchwork this week.

Flex Frame Sunnies Pouch


The flex frames I use come in 2 sizes, 3.5" and 5".  My wraparound sunnies don't fold flat, so if you have glasses like mine you will need to make the 5" case.

Sunnies Cases (Popular Patchwork June16)


Some fun sketch applique on the front, easy assembly and you'll have a sunnies case quicker than you can say 'still can't believe the weather we are getting!'

Flex Frame Sunnies Pouch


I love how these bright prints pop against the Essex yarn dyed (Denim) linen (more listed in my Etsy shop here).

Flex Frame Sunnies Pouch


So if you've still got some summer sewing prep to do, I promise these won't take long!  Popular Patchwork (June) is in the shops now!

Sunnies Cases (Popular Patchwork June16)

Happy sunning!

Jude xo

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Sketchbook Mini

Popular Patchwork are currently running a mini quilt competition.

You design and make a 10.5" x 15" mini quilt based around your favourite colour, send it to PP and they will display the entries at their Festival of Quilts stand in August.

Liz (editor) has asked some of the magazine's regular contributors to make a Sketchbook Mini to inspire others to enter.

So here is mine:

Popular Patchwork Sketchbook Mini (Log Cabin Love)

This mini quilt tells the story of 3 of my favourites in quilting:

Purple! My favourite colour, perhaps something to do with growing up in a 1970's purple bedroom!!

Scraps! I love working with scraps, and yes I keep even 1.5" wide pieces!

Log Cabins! The first patchwork block I ever made and I fell in love. This is a log cabin heart, but there are so many wonderful variations to the humble log cabin block (see my pinterest board here).

Log Cabin Love (Popular Patchwork June16)

There are some amazing prizes to be won (check them out here) and the closing date is 11th July.

So, what's your favourite colour?

Jude xo