Betty Bag Goes Live!

By Judith on August 31, 2020
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Happy Bank Holiday Monday to all in the UK!


I’m happy to report the sun is shining (for a change). Not been the best summer for warm sunny weather here this year, but today I am thankful for (a little) heat and light!


And that makes it the perfect day to tell you that our Betty Bag class is now available for general release! Hooray! Click here to access.



The ladies from my regular classes have been beavering away on their Betty Bags these past 3 weeks, and it was so lovely to see some finished bags yesterday on our zoom call.



I’m just waiting on a few more photos to come in and then I can show you their amazing results!



So far I have made 5 Betty Bags, the most recent one as part of a secret swap between me and my ‘Threads Across the Sea’ quilting buddies! (tune in to the hashtag #justjudebettybag over on instagram this week to see the Betty Bags of my swap buddies!).



This class is made up of 1 pre-recorded YouTube video and a PDF document.


In your order confirmation email (& when you complete the order at checkout) you will receive a link to a PDF document.  This document lists the full list of materials needed, the cutting out instructions and the link to the YouTube video. To access the YouTube video, copy and paste this link into your internet browser to access the video.


In this class you will learn:

  • How to use metal or plastic zippers
  • How to insert zippers 2 ways
  • How to quilt panels using a quilting bar
  • Bag construction using interfacing
  • How to make a removeable strap
  • How to insert a magnetic clasp
  • Single-fold Binding



So if you would like a compact and slimline pouch to keep all your travel or night-out essentials safe and sound, then why not make your own!


And as my ladies have discovered, they also make for great gifts too!


To get a flavour of what my video classes  look like, checkout the free tutorials on my YouTube channel.


Happy sewing!


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Textile Art – New Class Project

By Judith on February 16, 2020
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At the end of February we will be having a half term break from classes.

Which means, a new block of classes kicks off in March up until Easter.

And a new block of classes means a new (optional) class project.



We’re going to dip our creative toes into some textile art this term, having unadulterated play-time with mixed textiles and medium.


I’ve 2 class samples to showcase several fun techniques.


Picture 1:


Textile Art Pictures - Class samples


This is a 12″ picture in a box frame.

The background can be made with strips of torn linens, cottons, lace, voile, broderie anglaise and anything else light weight which is textured or can fray well.  I even included fine strands of felting wool!

We then use a water-soluble fabric to matchstick quilt the background before adding our composition on top.


Textile Art Pictures - Class samples


I’ve chosen some flowers and seed heads, but you could quite easily go with a bird, meadow or beach theme.  Let your creativity run wild!

In the making of my picture I used the following techniques:


free motion embroidery

paper aging


I also included some cut out some embroidered yellow flowers from an old duvet cover!!


Textile Art Pictures - Class samples


What a lot of fun!  You’ll never look at textured fabrics, bedding and apparel in the same way again!


Picture 2:


Textile Art Pictures - Class samples


I love word art!  There’s nothing quite like the perfectly spoken word at exactly the right time to create profound impact and legacy.


If you enjoy poetry and literature you can have so much fun with your composition here.  Or how about the name and meaning of a loved one?  What a special gift.


The background is made in the same way as picture 1.  I’ve also included free motion sketching and printed text here.  This time though, I’ve embellished my picture with text printed onto fabric.  You need an inket jet printer and freezer paper do to this.


Textile Art Pictures - Class samples


I’m so looking forward to seeing what artistic impressions are released when this class starts in March!


If you would like to join us for some textile creativity, check out all the classes and vacancies here.


Happy sewing!


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Pleated Bag – Class Project

By Judith on February 2, 2020
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In our current block of classes we are looking at tucks and pleats.


You may remember I had made 2 examples of tucks for our classes, but at the time was still working on a pleats sample.


And here it is:


For Pleats Sake Bag (class sample)


The pattern for this pleated bag is by Lisa Lam ( and is called ‘For Pleats Sake!’.  You can find the free tutorial here.


For Pleats Sake Bag (class sample)


The tutorial doesn’t include quantities for the exterior and interior fabrics.


If you are using non-directional fabric you will need 0.5 metre of both.  However, if you have a direction to your pattern which follows the width of the bolt, you will need 0.75 metres.


And a further note on the fabrics.  I used ‘deco’ (decorating) weight fabric (or lightweight curtaining) from Ikea.  This fabric gives body to the bag, pleats beautifully and negates the need for interfacing or fusible fleece.


For Pleats Sake Bag (class sample)


I used the same weight for the lining (a vintage curtain) which also gets pleated. However if you wanted to use quilting weight cotton I recommend using a heavy weight sew-in stabiliser (rather than fusible fleece) on both the exterior and lining.  Spray baste the sew-in stabiliser rather than using a fusible heavy weight stabiliser as this could resist the light weight cotton and cause it to bubble.


For Pleats Sake Bag (class sample)


Sewing the faux leather handles through the exterior layers only can be tricky (the handles can’t be held in place with pins and the needle comes  out awkwardly between the exterior and lining!). So try sewing through both layers and covering the visible back stitching with glued on fabric or leather scraps.

P.s. you want to use really strong thread to sew on your handles, like linen, perle cotton or 6 strand embroidery floss.


For Pleats Sake Bag (class sample)


The bags currently being made in class are gorgeous! I can’t wait to show you them at half term, with the equally beautiful pleated pouches and cushions!  It’s a hive of wondrous activity!

(Want to know the difference between pleats and tucks?  See here)


Happy pleating!


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New Class Project: Jan’ 2020

By Judith on December 6, 2019
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Well it’s hard to believe that we only have 1 more week of classes left for 2019!  Where on earth did that year go!!


I can’t wait to show you the beautiful wreaths folks have been making as part of our (optional) class project this term.  They’re stunning!


But before one term is out I always present to my classes what the next term’s (optional) class project will be.


Our technique focus next term will be Pleats & Tucks.



The main difference between pleats and tucks is that pleats are formed by folding the same length of fabric into folds which are only stitched down at the top and bottom ends, whereas tucks are constructed separately and then sewn into the project.


You will of course be more familiar with seeing pleats and tucks in clothing and apparel, but I love how different techniques in textiles can cross over into other disciplines, usually with a little creative tweaking!


So far I have 2 class samples made (both tucks!), but I hope to have one more pleated sample completed before the start of term!


 Cushion with Tucks:

There are many different effects you can achieve by manipulating tucks.


Cushion with Tucks (class sample)


I really like the ‘spread’ effect you get from this variation of the Wave Tuck.  You can see each of the feature fabrics standing out nicely against the black Essex Yarn Dyed Linen.


Cushion with Tucks (class sample)


Zippy Pouch with Tucks


Pouch with Tucks (class sample)


This is an example of Twisted Tucks. Before sewing along the bottom edge of the pouch, the tucks are twisted back, revealing the secondary colour. This effect adds a lovely decorative touch to bags and pouches.


Pouch with Tucks (class sample)


So that’s us (almost) ready for next term.  If you would like to join us for some creative sewing fun, you can see all the available classes here.


In the meantime I have a few Christmas presents to make, and the small matter of workshops for February’s Retreat to make too!


No rest for the wicked!!


Happy sewing!




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Soft Toys Finishes

By Judith on October 28, 2019
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Hi everyone, how are you all?


I have just had my first quilting retreat this past weekend, and what a weekend it was! I’ll be writing a post on what we got up too soon!


But before that, last week saw the end of our season of soft toys in class!


Are you ready for cuteness overload (and a little education)?


Class Projects - Toys
Francie Fox pattern by AngelLea Designs

Collective nouns for foxes: Leash, Skulk, Earth, Lead, Troop

(did you spot the giraffe?)


Class Projects - Toys
Trunk Show pattern by Jodie Carleton

Collective nouns for elephants: herd or memory


Class Projects - Toys
The Purl Bee Penguin by Purl Soho

Collective nouns for penguins: waddle, rookery, colony, huddle and raft (when in water)


Aren’t they adorable!


Half way through the block I demo-ed how to make sock monkeys using the free pattern by Craft Passion (read more here).


And in no time at all, a troop of monkeys started to appear!


Class Project - Soft Toys


These monkeys are so tactile and soft, and a few have already had some serious play time with enthusiastic grandchildren!


Well done to all my toy makers this term!  There are some seriously satisfied children (& adults) out there now!

Happy sewing!


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Folded Double Wreath

By Judith on October 18, 2019
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We have one week left of our current block of classes before the half term break.

Folks have been beavering away on their Soft Toys and Sock Monkeys – can’t wait to show you our amazing menagerie!

But looking ahead to our final block of classes of 2019, our optional class project will help to sharpen our focus on Christmas preparations!!



The original pattern for the Fold ‘n Stitch Wreath is by Poorhouse Quilt Designs, available here.


But then I saw this amazing triple version of the wreath and thought I’d have a go at making my own interpretation of it.


Folded Double Wreath Class Project


I have used 3 fabrics in my double wreath.  I like the versions which have a 3rd fabric peeping out at the edges of the folds.  I’m a bit fussy when it comes to Christmas fabrics so I chose 2 Tilda fabrics (a Christmas red and a non-Christmas pink) and a non-Christmas cream by Lewis & Irene.


While the construction of this wreath may look complicated, let me assure you that it isn’t (I love it when patchwork deceptively portrays complexity!).


Folded Double Wreath Class Project


Each row is made the same way. The repetitve nature of making square ‘coasters’ and cleverly joining them into a circle means you can stop at a single wreath (as a candle mat or door-hanging) or keep going and make additional rounds.


Folded Double Wreath Class Project


I stopped at 2 rounds and decorated the centre with a Scandi birdhouse.  But at the class you will have the option of making a single, double or triple wreath.


Folded Double Wreath Class Project


And if you like your bling, you’ll love decorating your wreath!  Metallic threads, beads, bells and baubles are all up for grabs!  Let your Christmas creativity go wild!


Folded Double Wreath Class Project


And of course, if you’re not a Christmas fan, why not make a beautiful autumnal or winter wreath!


Lots of options and variations are open to you with this optional class project.


The new block kicks of w/c 5th November and runs for 6 weeks. Booking available here.


Happy sewing!


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Autumn Class Project: Soft Toys

By Judith on August 4, 2019
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It’s only 4 weeks until my Autumn term of classes starts back!


Autumn19 classes


Our classes are ‘open’, which means they are mixed ability and you can work on any Patchwork and Quilting project you like, getting all the help and support you need.


But I also provide an optional class project each term. These might focus on a new technique, one of my new patterns or a new challenge to keep growing those brain cells!



soft toys class project


In our new term we will be tackling soft toys!

I know these will be a hit with Grannies, Mummies and big kids alike!


I’ve curated 3 toy patterns from around the creative web to tempt my lovely ladies to try these cute 3d shapes!


Francie Fox:

Pattern available here (by Angela Lea Designs)


Francie Fox Class Project


This cute girl was a dream to make, following Angela Lea Designs’ fab pattern.

She finishes at 11.5″ tall and has moveable ‘arms’ and tail.


Francie Fox Class Project


I went a little less scrappy than the original pattern, but still had fun choosing from my Art Gallery scraps! Yum!


Ric Rac Trunk Show

Pattern available here (by Jodie Carleton)


Elephant Class Project


This little darling stands proud at 10″ and the pattern includes 3 trunk variations.


Elephant Class Project


It also includes an adorable ‘Elmer-esk’ patchwork version!


The Purl Bee Penguin

Free pattern available here (by Purl Soho)


Penguin Class Project


This cute little fella (I’m calling him Percy!) is the smallest of our curated toys, at only 9″ tall.


The free pattern and templates are really clear, and could be easily enlarged if you’re after a bigger penguin.


Penguin Class Project


So there you have it!

3 gorgeous soft toys to make, and 8 weeks in which to make them!


If you would like to enrol for a class, to make these soft toys or to work on your own project, you can get registered here (places are limited).


Happy sewing!


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Monsoon/Frost Quilt Finishes

By Judith on July 1, 2019
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Each term we have an optional project or technique focus, where ladies can try their hand at something new!



Monsoon Quilt


In our Easter to Summer term some of my ladies decided to try their hand at my recent Monsoon/Frost Quilt Pattern.


This project was all about accuracy, both in cutting and piecing lots of triangles (with pesky bias edges).  Everyone found it a little tricky at one stage or another, learning how to create pointy points, correct fabric placement or bringing the blocks in on size.


But I’m so proud of my ladies for rising to the challenge and pushing through their comfort zones to accomplish a more advanced pattern.


Monsoon/Frost Quilt Class


Here are a few finishes and progress shots, but there are quite a few more still in the ‘Work In Progress’ category!


I’m hoping with the summer recess I’ll see a few more Monsoon and Frost finishes by September!


If you would like to make your own version of Monsoon or Frost, the pattern is available here.


Happy sewing!




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Spring Class Project: Wefty Weaving

By Judith on February 9, 2019
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Already we are coming to the end of our first block of 2019 classes.  This week we will wrap up our Necessary Clutch wallets and New Year projects.


I can’t wait to show you all the finished clutches!


And I’m a little bit excited to show you our (optional) class project for the Feb-April block.


Wefty Weaving info


In our next block of classes I will be showing 3 different weaving techniques, 2 of which use the Wefty Weaving Needle.



A Wefty Needle comes in 2 sizes, 1″ and 0.5″ and enables weaving both simple and complex designs with little/no fabric waste.


Once you have a deliciously woven panel you can turn it into a pretty basket, a tactile cushion, a useful notebook cover, anything you like!


I’ll have notes available on how to make my 3 examples, but you don’t have to stick to these projects.  Just check out my Weaving Pinterest Board for lots more mind blowing inspiration!


Linen Basket Weave Cushion


Basket Weave Linen Cushion


This is a beginner friendly project, keeping the strips wider and easy to weave into a traditional basket weave pattern.


Basket Weave Linen Cushion


We don’t use the Wefty Needle on this project, a large safety pin will suffice, though there will be a little fabric waste at the end of each woven strip.


Basket Weave Linen Cushion


And if you haven’t already them sussed, how about trying some buttonholes and self covered buttons as your cushion closure?


Houndstooth Journal Cover


Wefty Woven Notebook Cover


These 0.5″ strips are woven with the Wefty Needle into a houndstooth pattern.


Again we are using a traditional basket weave here, but clever placement of strips produces the secondary pattern.


Wefty Woven Notebook Cover


I turned my woven panel into a journal cover (my notebook cover pattern is available here), but you could easily use this as a decorative panel in a bag or add some borders for a textured placemat or cushion.


Wefty Woven Notebook Cover



Triaxial Woven Basket


Triaxial Woven Basket


Triaxial means 3 angles.  Unlike a basket weave (with only vertically and horizontally woven strips) triaxial weaving involves strips woven at vertical and 2 thirty degree angles.


Triaxial Woven Basket


For my cute basket I’ve used the 1″ Wefty Needle.  Triaxial weaving is more complex than basket weaving designs, but once you get your head around it, there are many more amazing designs which can be produced from the 3 angles.


Triaxial Woven Basket


So if you fancy a spot of weaving over the next 7 weeks, or just want to carve out some therapeutic sewing time to work on other projects, why not come join the fun and book into one of our 6 weekly classes.


And it’s now easier than ever to register for a class, using our new online registration system.


Happy weaving!



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Another Necessary Clutch Wallet

By Judith on January 1, 2019
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My classes start back next week, and our class project this term is The Necessary Clutch Wallet by Emmaline Bags.



This is a great pattern, and with a little bag making experience, one can start to experiment a little with the design (you can read all about my first 2 wallets here).


Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project)


For my 3rd Necessary Clutch, I went for a stiffer interfacing in the flap, keeping the design simple to show off the Japanese fabrics ( Kimono by Makower).


Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project)


2 other additions to this clutch were the shoulder strap (instructions available here) making this more of a stylish evening bag,


Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project)


… and rivets instead of sewing the thicker sides (big thanks to Svetlana for this inspired idea!).


Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project)


I think is my new favourite Necessary Clutch!


Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project)


Now all I need is a little black dress and a handsome man to go with it (actually, forget the last part!!).


Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project)


There are still a few spaces available if you’d like to have a go at making this clutch, in a friendly and supported environment.  Just drop me an email at


Happy sewing!


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2019 Class Project: The Necessary Clutch Wallet

By Judith on December 1, 2018
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Happy December to you all!


We are on the final countdown to Christmas, and with only 2 more weeks of classes left, my attention has turned to the new class project for next term!


Necessary Clutch Wallet (Class Project Jan19)


This is the Necessary Clutch Wallet, by Emmaline Bags.


This is a well designed and written pattern, and I can think of many occasions when a stylish and compact little clutch would be perfect.


The Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project Jan19)


During this class project you will learn:

  • how to insert hardware (twist/turn locks, D-rings, swivel fobs)
  • how to make a zippered pocket
  • to use different interfacings for different parts of the clutch
  • how to vary the flap design
  • how to sew cork fabric
  • how to insert rivets


The Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project Jan19)


You will have the option of adding a wristlet or shoulder strap (not shown here) and also how to insert rivets into the bulky sides (still waiting on my rivets to arrive to show you my 3rd example!)


The Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project Jan19)


Rivets will replace the step where you sew down the thicker sides. If not using rivets here, I recommend a heavier thread and needle in your machine for this.


The Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project Jan19)


The many pockets and compartments in the wallet allow plenty of space for your essentials (phone, cards, money, passport, makeup etc.) while still folding up into a compact and easy to carry clutch.


The Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project Jan19)


The design of the flap is easily altered.  You can have fun with different fabric placement, or why not try on-trend cork fabric.


The Necessary Clutch Wallet (class project Jan19)


Cork fabric is vegan and harvested from the Cork Oak Tree. It is scratch resistant, stain resistant and water resistant, much more durable than leather (and easier to sew with too!).


There are 6 weeks in the next block of classes, plenty of time to get at least one Necessary Clutch Wallet made!


Further information about the requirements for this project (& what is available to purchase in class) will be emailed to all registrants, but you can purchase the actual pattern here.


Happy sewing!


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Class Project: Christmas Tree Skirt

By Judith on October 23, 2018
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Next week starts a new block of classes, the last block of 2018!!

In this final term, our attention will turn towards preparations for Christmas!


xmas tree skirts (class project)


Following several requests for a Christmas Tree Skirt, I’ve curated a selection of patterns which my ladies can choose from.


I don’t have time to make all of these wonderful examples, but I did make this one!


Christmas Cracker Tree Skirt (class project)


This cracker themed tree skirt was originally designed by my lovely quilty friend Reene of Nellies Niceties.


I have never used a tree skirt around my Christmas tree before, but as soon as Reene released her free pattern, I pinned it and knew one day I would make it!


Christmas Cracker Tree Skirt (class project)


While Reene’s instructions are on how to make the top only, they are really clear and the easy piecing means it works up really quickly!


This tree skirt is a good size, but if you needed a smaller one, simply omit one or two crackers until you have your desired size.


Christmas Cracker Tree Skirt (class project)


I had fun quilting this ‘skirt’ using my quilting bar, and decided to finish the opening with buttons and hair bobbles!


This was a fun venture into my first Christmas Tree Skirt! And I’m looking forward to seeing many more tree skirts over the next few weeks!


And we’ll also have lots more tutorials and inspiration for your Christmas gift and decorating ideas!


So if you would like to join in the Christmas fun, spaces are still available across all 6 classes.  Give me a shout if you would like to book a spot!



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Denim Hexie Bag: Class Finishes

By Judith on March 30, 2018
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For the past 6 weeks some very talented ladies in my classes have been beavering away on my Denim Hexie Bag Pattern.



This pattern combines techniques such as English Paper Piecing (EPP Hexies), eyelet holes, zippered pocket, handbag construction as well as some serious denim upcycling!


At times it looked like a missile had gone off in a jeans factory in my classroom, as scissors and blades feverishly amputated legs, pockets and loops! While denim is one of my favourite textiles to work with, it doesn’t half shed!


But oh boy, the results of this serious crafting were so worth it!




Not all the bags being made are represented here, a few are still being finished off.


But aren’t they brilliant!  Sturdy, stylish practical bags that I know will get lots of use!


And I also know that the bags still being finished are equally as fabulous!


I haven’t been able to capture all the individual details in the bags here, but trust me when I tell you that each bag has it’s own unique characteristics.


Details like repurposed loops, tabs and pockets from the jeans, as well as complimentary fabrics like cotton and tweed, buttons, badges and even embroidery and printing.


A huge ‘well done’ to all my wonderful ‘Bag Ladies’!


If you would like to have some re-purposing fun of your own, you can get my Denim Hexie Bag Pattern here.



I also have 3 part-kits available in my shop, which include the pattern, pre-cut hexie papers, various coloured denim squares (for the hexie panels) , 1 metre of heavy weight sew-in vilene and 4 eyelet rings.


But be quick!  When they’re gone, they’re gone!


Happy recycling!


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‘Take Wing’ Classes Roundup

By Judith on February 17, 2018
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This was the last week of our ‘Take Wing’ Butterfly wallhanging series.


31 brave ladies have been diving into the exacting and at times demanding technique of foundation paper piecing using Lillyella’s ‘Take Wing’ butterfly pattern.


And just look at some of the results!


Take Wing Butterfly Class Feb18


Aren’t they majestic!


Each one a unique metamorphosis of creative energy and courage into raw talent and beauty!


Some will be transformed into wallhangings and some into cushion covers.


I’m so proud of all my ladies for undertaking this project, especially for those who found themselves well and truly out of their comfort zone!


Well done everyone!


Enjoy your amazing creations!




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