Sunday, 29 November 2015

One Year On...

It is amazing how time flies!

It has been a year since I stopped teaching for Adult Education Gloucestershire and started working at a community hub.

Module 6 Course Sampler
A whole year!

In that time my creativity and energy has been failing me. I thought it was because of the change in work and the new responsibilities that I have. My energy to blog, sew and keep up with the boys just disappeared.

Then in the summer I tried to give blood and they wouldn't let me because I failed the anaemia test. They suggested a visit to the doctors to confirm my levels. Turns out I am extremely anaemic! The kind of anaenic that involves huge iron tablets 3 times a day and sleeping 16 out of 24 hours a day!

Sept 2015 Curves Class

The last 2 months have been a long haul back from being so poorly. My energy levels are slowly growing and I only need an afternoon nap at weekends!

The biggest problem has been the loss of my sewing mojo. It has just disappeared. I have so many quilts in progress and course work to complete...

Close up of the curves

I am desperately hoping my creativity returns soon from where it is hiding!

Much love

Monday, 27 July 2015

City and Guilds Module 5 - Form

My City and Guilds course has been taking a back seat - much like all my sewing in the last 8/9 months.

My job has expanded and changed, which is fantastic and I love it! But it has led to less time for me to create.... and less time to complete the work load that is a level 3 certificate.

BUT I am still working, slowly, steadily and in every spare moment that I can!

Module 5 was all about form and focused on the Media. I am not going to lie - it took me AGES!

But I think the results were worth the perseverance and time:

 My design development had to be presented in 3D, so I created a radio themed exploding box.

Which opened to reveal sections of design work based on the radio speakers, radio in society and speakers.

In centre I placed my artist exploration and explanation of the design element Form.

As part of the module I explored water soluble fabrics and created samples based around the speaker designs

I also explored using the computer to create repeat designs. I then cut acetate stencils to use in my new printing screens. This was stressful, but great fun.

I used the design to create a shadow quilting sample - hand dyed wadding and cotton backing fabric.

This technique uses water soluble thread. I kept forgetting it was water soluble when trying to thread the machine need.... yup, when you lick to get it through the eye of the needle it disappears!

Taking inspiration from Rosie James, I created a stitch sample of a 1930's family gathered round the radio. 

This unit was quite unusual as I didn't need to create a large final sample, but I did experiment with all the techniques I had learnt and created this simple piece. I am pretty pleased with it!

I was so frustrated that this module took me 6 months... but the satisfaction of getting it and then getting great feedback made it all worth while.

I am currently plodding through module 6 which is different again - no more design elements to explore, just techniques to experiment with, samples to make and design notes for a large piece that I will be creating in the future... all very exciting!

Much love 

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Once Upon a Star!

During my break from blogging things changed dramatically here, I now have an actual job as a Community Development Worker! It is a job a love and builds on the teaching I have done in communities around the county.

It has meant a massive shift in how my family works, I no longer have the freedom to manage my time that I had as a freelance teacher. It has been a major adjustment for us all, but one we have all come through still smiling!

I have been teaching around the hours I work - 3 after school clubs and weekend classes!

My monthly sampler class has just had it's 6th class and we have a selection of gorgeous blocks. We now have the fun job of creating the quilt top and exploring machine quilting. Another round of this class will start in September - more info soon!

Foundation piecing star
I recently met a lovely new student who is coming for patchwork lessons. We will be making a quilt using different star patterns and techniques. It is going to be a fun adventure in piecing.

Part of a Christmas Star

I mentioned the idea to my Saturday class who all asked to give the course a go - and a new class was born!

HST Star

The Once Upon a Star patchwork course will start on Friday 17th April at 10am at GL11 Community Hub in Cam. There are 4 places left if you would like to come along. Just email me too book a place.

It is going to be a wonderful adventure in piecing techniques to create a gorgeous starry quilt!

Monday, 9 March 2015

Travelling Back

Detailed shot of my City and Guilds coursework - I love the colours!

It has been a long time since I lasted posted a here.... infact it has been five and a bit months!

It was never a break I had planned - infact I had ideas lined up and things to show you. Then everything changed... and even when things settled down I found I was afraid to come back to my blog - sounds silly doesn't it?

But at 5.30am on a cold Monday morning, I have beaten the fear and wanted to say hello to the people who are still visiting my humble blog!

I have loads to share from the 5 months, sewing adventures and course work, which I plan to blog over the coming weeks.

Thank you for still visiting my humble blog - now the first step has been taken the next few are much easier!

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Patchwork Cushion Classes

There is a lovely shop in Malmesbury called Dolly Bobbins. It is full of yummy yarn and bits and bobs for sewing.

I am lucky enough to be running a 6 week patchwork cushion course there next term.

The course covers:

  • Cutting fabrics with a rotary cutter and ruler
  • Making Half Square Triangles (HST)
  • How to sew patchwork accurately
  • How to machine quilt
  • How to make an 18" cushion

The course starts on Friday 12th September and costs £99.00 including all, equipment, materials and use of a sewing machine.

Please contact Tracey here to book a place.

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Modern Sampler Group 2014/15

After a lot of jigging around, I have finally managed to sort out the Monthly Modern Sampler Group!

Over the course of 10 months you will learn how to accurately cut and piece a variety of patchwork blocks. You will learn how to hand applique and machine applique fabrics to make a wonderful patchwork top.

We will then look at how to quilt your quilt using hand and machine quilting methods.

This course will give you all the skills you will need to start confidently creating quilts at home - be warned everyone will want one!

The course will start on Saturday 13th September 9am until 12pm - a change to the previous post about the course.

The other dates are: Saturday 25th October
                               Saturday 22nd November
                               Saturday 10th January
                               Saturday 7th February
                               Saturday 7th March
                               Saturday 11th April
                               Saturday 09th May
                               Saturday 13th June
                               Saturday 11th July

It will be held at St Micheal's Hall, Tetbury.

The cost will be £25.00 a month, payable by Standing Order.

If you would like more information or to book a place, please email me.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Year 1 done!

Phew, I have been gone a long time!

It has been a long 8/9 weeks of work, children and trying to get module 4 handed in..... that and 2 nasty injuries finished me off!

So as the title suggests I managed to get module 4 handed in and my first year of the 3 year course is done! Yay!

Here are some of the things I made for my portfolio...

Mono Printing

Raised pebbles


Mark Making with tracing paper.

Lulworth Cove.... It is honestly!

More collage.

Mini book with designs.

Larger handmade design book.
Stitch sample.

Ruffled, gathered fabrics.

Mixture of textures.

My first attempt at cords with beads - love these!
A year seems to have gone by so fast - although sometimes it has felt very slow!

I have moved so far from my starting point that when I look back I am slightly shocked! When I started last August I was in a panic, it all seemed so hard and my dream seemed impossible. One year on, and 4 modules completed, I feel ore confident of my skills and that my dream is almost on the horizon...

It has not been easy though. Teaching lots of classes, looking after 3 boys, being a Scout leader and working through the course has left me very little time to think! It feels worth it though!

So to year 2... well, there is one more design module looking at Form and then I get to work through my designs to create 3D pieces of work. They look scary when I look at them in my student booklets.... but oh so exciting!

I am also turning towards the new teaching year and I have been working hard to pull together a fun and versatile teaching schedule. I will be sending out the details of classes and workshops in a newsletter tomorrow, so if you want to receive the newsletter just drop me an email: