Sashiko Minis


By Judith on April 30, 2020
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Once upon a time, in the days before lockdown, I visited an Irish linen factory and purchased some small offcuts of charcoal blue medium weight linen (among other things, ahem!).

 

Sashiko minis

 

I immediately fell in love with the muted tones of this linen and thought a striking white thread would contrast beautifully with it!

 

And that started my pursuit of a series of small sashiko designs which I could stitch and frame as a set.

 

Sashiko Minis

 

I found a few free designs I liked on Pinterest and played around printing out various sizes.  I settled for 6″ designs and cut out my linens at 7.5″.

 

Then came the problems!!

 

Sashiko Minis

 

Trying to transfer the designs onto this medium weight linen proved tricky!  First I tried my lightbox, but the linen was too dense to allow the design to show through enough to trace!

 

My pattern transfer pen is dark purple and wouldn’t show up on the linen.

 

Sashiko Minis

 

So after watching a few YouTube tutorials I ordered some yellow carbon paper.  I traced the design through the carbon paper onto the right side of the linen. But the yellow pigment barely left a mark!

Aarrgghh!

 

Sashiko Minis

 

So the only option I felt I had left was to trace the design onto baking paper, sew through the paper, and then tear the paper away at the end.  I wasn’t too keen on this idea because hand sewn stitches are much less secure than machine sewn stitches and could get pulled out of shape.

 

Sashiko Minis

 

So I fused some woven interlining onto the back of the linen and tried one design to see if I could get away with it, and bar one or two stitches that needed ‘settled down’ again after removing the paper, it worked relatively well.

 

Sashiko Minis

 

I didn’t have sashiko thread so used an old spool of fine crochet cotton instead!!

 

And the 7.5″ box frames came from Hobbycraft today, so I wasted no time getting them framed and photographed (I took out the glass for the photoshoot!).

 

Sashiko Minis

 

All I need to do now is decide where to hang them!!

 

Happy sewing!

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Autumn Quilting Retreat Workshops


By Judith on September 16, 2019
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It was a milestone weekend in the Hollies’ household!

 

 

I dropped my baby off at University of Liverpool to start her 3 year degree, and came back to an empty nest.

 

 

I’ve had children at home for the past 24 years, so not having ‘on hand’ mummy duties and living alone for the first time (ever) will be quite an adjustment. But I know that once the grieving ends I will learn how to grow a new set of wings and step into new rhythms and adventures.

 

In the meantime I have lots of exciting work ventures to focus on, one being our inaugural Quilting Retreat next month.

 

In addition to oodles of time to sew, chat and relax, there are also 2 optional workshops to choose from.

 

Saturday Afternoon: Sashiko Cushion

 

Sashiko Cushion

 

The Japanese sashiko stitching trend has swept through the quilting world in recent years.

 

Sashiko Cushion

 

This is my simplified take on what can be beautifully intricate hand stitched Japanese designs, often based on themes of nature and geometric patterns.

 

Sashiko Cushion

 

At this workshop you will learn how to trace patterns onto traditional indigo backgrounds and how to make the sashiko stitches and designs.

 

Sashiko Cushion

 

Sunday Morning: Selvedge Projects

Quilters are a frugal lot, and we don’t like throwing away even small pieces of fabric!

 

Selvedges

 

So when it comes to selvedges, the edges of fabric that prevent it from fraying, to me they aren’t the pieces you trim off and throw in the bin, but rather the unsung treasures of your yardage!

 

Selvedge Basket

 

Selvedges not only display the colourful dye shades used in the print, but also the manufacturer and designer’s names and the name of the pattern.

 

Selvedge Basket

 

It can take a while to save up enough selvedges to make something from them, but don’t worry, at this workshop I will have lots of selvedges available.

 

Selvedge Pencil Case

 

At the workshop you will learn how to cut and sew selvedges with finished edges and how to stabilise them into a new piece of fabric for project making.

 

Selvedge Pouch

 

And you can choose to make a small basket, pencil case or project pouch.

 

So start looking at those selvedges differently and hoard them like precious treasure!

 

Those are the workshops taking place at our Quilting Retreat in October.  It’s going to be one fun and creative weekend!

 

Happy quilting!

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