Tuesday, 26 March 2013

52 books update

I thought given that we are almost at the end of the first quarter of 2013 (already!) I should do an update on my 52 books challenge.

I was up to date a couple weeks ago having read 10 books in 10 weeks but unfortunetly the last couple weeks have been really busy so I haven't gotten any further than that.  However, start of March I read 2 books in 3 days so hopefully if I can have another weekend like that, maybe over Easter, I'll be back up to date again.

The first book I picked Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall I really struggled to get on with, I persisted through a couple hundred pages hoping it would get easier to read but ended up giving up.  Which was annoying as I could have read a different book in that time. 

I think my favourite so far has to be The Racketeer by John Grisham.  I couldn't put that one down!  I also enjoyed Life Of Pi, bit of a slow starter but got really into it once it got going.  I have definitely managed more books this year than I did this time last year so this challenege is making me read more. 

How is everyone else getting on?  Has anyone managed to keep up to date and read 12? 

You can check out the list of books I've read so far here: http://www.thesewingdirectory.blogspot.co.uk/p/52-books-in-52-weeks.html


Sunday, 17 March 2013

Exeter Meet up

Yesterday was the day of the first ever Sewing Directory meet up.  I won't lie I was terrified but luckily it all went amazingly well.  In fact the time just flew by, clearly 4 hours isn't enough.  There will definitely be another and next time we'll try and make it a full day of sewing and gossiping.




We had 30 people join us at St Matthew's Hall in Exeter, even the rain didn't hold them back.  The lovely Kerry Green from Very Kerry Berry tought us all English Paper Piecing with hexagons and diamonds.  She even pre-cut a bag of fabric hexies for everyone there and bought a Sizzix Big Shot along for everyone to have a go with.  I think they will be getting a sudden flurry of orders as everyone was very impressed and wanted one of their own!
Everyone gathering around as Kerry deomonstrated the Big Shot

Kerry showing what you can make with hexies
Precut haxies in bags, the Big Shot and dies plus lots of lovely fabric for everyone to use donated by The Village Haberdashery & Kerry
 We had a brilliant raffle with lots of amazing prizes donated by Korbond, Nel Whatmore, Search Press, Vivebooks, Sew La La Fabrics, Very Kerry Berry and one of the guests (Sue) bought along lots of vintage fabrics as prizes too so around half the attendees went away with a prize.   Plus Korbond kindly provided one of their pre-threaded needle kits for every attendee to take home with them.

Everyone kindly helped out with tea & coffee making duties and setting up/clearing up at the end so thank you very much to all my helpers.  I'd also like to say a big thank you to Annie at The Village Haberdashery for sponsoring the whole event.

I have to admit I was too busy talking towards the end to take a pic of what everyone made so hopefully people will share their pics on Twitter and Facebook.  The picture below is of the hexagaons Claire Corry made (pic from her Twitter)

Plus Rachel from House of Pinheiro just sent me a picture of her pretty hexies too (below).


Kath from Sew La La Fabrics set up a lovely stall of bargain price fabrics and habby, only £1 a FQ so as you can imagine they flew off the stand!



If any of you that came have blogged about it please do post the link below and I'll add it into the post.  Hope you all enjoyed it.  I'm making enquiries as to whether we can get the hall again in the autumn.  So if you missed it this time keep an eye out for the details of the next event.

If you aren't near Exeter don't forget we have a London meet up next month and a Liverpool one in June.  There are still tickets available for both but don't leave it too long as this one sold out.   It's only £15 a ticket and that includes your materials and refreshments. 


Saturday, 9 March 2013

Glow in the dark fabrics!

Yes really, they do actually glow in the dark!  They don't even need natural light to charge them, a few mins in artificial light does the job.   Plush Addict have just got a new selection of glow in the dark fabrics in stock so I just had to order some to make cushions for my son.  Most of them are space themed which are just his thing.



They have a selection of glow in the dark space fabrics here from Camelot Cottons, they are what I used for the front of the cushion.
Front of the cushion

There's also several glow in the dark fabrics from Michael Miller which include the star one I used to back the cushion, so ghost/skeleton ones and fairy dust which looks like a plain white fabric until you turn the light off!

Plush Addict have managed to take a good picture of the fabric glowing in the dark (above) so you can see when it looks like when the light is off.


Back of the cushion

 I bought a fat quarter of 4 of the space fabrics, and 1/2m of the Micheal Miller stars one (above) and only used half of each fat quarter to make two 50cm squared cushions.  I haven't finished sewing the second one together yet which is why there's only one in the pic.  The 1/2 metre did both the backs.  So for under £20 I've got 2 funky glow in the dark cushions plus plenty of left over fabric for a future project.

I could do with some ideas of what the make with the excess (4 x fat eighths).  What would you make with glow in the dark fabric?

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Fat Quarterly Quilting e-zine

How many of you have come accross Fat Quarterly Magzine before?  It is a fabulous quilting e-zine which is available worldwide and showcase a huge range of talented quilters with patterns for quilts, cushions, table runners, bags and pretty much anything you could quilt!  You can either download it as a pdf, or view it as a flipbook.

As the name would suggest it is released every quarter, they are now up to issue 12 which features on pre-cuts.  Projects to make using packs of precut fabrics.  Each issue has it's own unique theme and all the projects inside fit with that theme.  Past themes include solids, scraps, fussy cutting, colour, using alternative fabrics etc.

My favourite projects in issue 12 are this beautiful quilt by Lynne Goldsworthy

Plus this stunning cushion made with the Lipari collection from Oakshott Fabrics by Nicki Reay.



There hold an annual sewing/quilting retreat in London every summer, there are still spaces left for this year - details here.    I went along last year, you can see my post about it here.

They are always on the look out for fresh new talent so if you have any great project ideas you'd like to submit to them do e-mail them on submissions@fatquarterly.com

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Do you run a craft business?

If you do you may be interested to know that we have a selection of craft business guides on our site here.  They give advice on business planning, craft insurance, social media, marketing, branding, protecting your designs and more.

Please do have a read through and let us know if there is any specific topic you would like us to cover in future articles.
Social media


Also you may be interested in our Business branding pack giveaway with Avery.   They have given us 2 product branding packs with £75 to giveaway, the deadline to enter is 6pm this Friday.

Product labels from Avery

Friday, 1 March 2013

Minerva Blogger Challenge (open worldwide)

Minerva Crafts Blogger Challenge

Minerva Crafts want to see what you creative bloggers can do with their products so every other month we will be posting details of a new product from their site.  If you would like to receive the product please tell us what you would do with it, and what other materials from their site you would need to go with it.   
We will select a few lucky bloggers to receive the goodies they chose in exchange for them blogging about what they make and allowing us & Minerva Crafts to share pictures of their creations on our sites or social media.


The product for this challenge is the Olfa Compass Cutter.  What would you do with it? 

A test challenge was taken up by Rachel from House of Pinheiro.  She was offered stretch bias binding and chose 2 metres of dotty fabric to go with it to make a top.  We’ll share her post & pics soon.

How do I join in?

If you have a great idea of how to use this month’s product comment send us an e-mail on challenge@thesewingdirectory.co.uk giving us:
·         A link to your blog.
·         Details of what you plan to make.
·         Product numbers of any extra supplies from Minerva Crafts website that you need to make what you want to make plus total value of the extra supplies.
·         Details of which country you are in if you are outside of the UK; this won’t exclude you but allows us to calculate the postage. 

Please get your entries in by midnight on the 14th.  Don’t worry if you don’t get picked this time there will be plenty more chances to take part.  

FAQS
  • Can I submit more than one idea?     Yes you can but please send each one separately.
  • Can I use the supplies to make up a commercial pattern or project from a book or magazine?  Yes you can.
  • Can I enter if I am outside of the UK?  Yes but please tell us what country you are in
  • Can I enter if I’ve already been picked in the past?  Yes you can.
  • What do I have to send you if I am chosen?  A link to your blog post & a couple pics of what you have made.
  • When do I have to blog/send pics by?  Within 2 months of receiving the supplies.

Minerva Crafts Blogger Challenge

Minerva Crafts want to see what you creative bloggers can do with their products so every other month we will be posting details of a new product from their site.  If you would like to receive the product please tell us what you would do with it, and what other materials from their site you would need to go with it.  
We will select a few lucky bloggers to receive the goodies they chose in exchange for them blogging about what they make and allowing us & Minerva Crafts to share pictures of their creations on our sites or social media.
The product for this challenge is the Olfa Compass Cutter.  What would you do with it?
Olfa compass cutter for quilting cutting circles in fabric
A test challenge was taken up by Rachel from House of Pinheiro.  She was offered stretch bias binding and chose 2 metres of dotty fabric to go with it to make a dress.  You can see her post here.

How do I join in?
If you have a great idea of how to use this month’s product comment send us an e-mail on challenge@thesewingdirectory.co.uk giving us:
  • A link to your blog.
  • Details of what you plan to make.
  • Product numbers of any extra supplies from Minerva Crafts website that you need to make what you want to make plus total value of the extra supplies.
  • Details of which country you are in if you are outside of the UK; this won’t exclude you but allows us to calculate the postage.Minerva online craft supplies website
Please get your entries in by midnight on the 14th.  Don’t worry if you don’t get picked this time there will be plenty more chances to take part.
FAQS
  • Can I submit more than one idea?     Yes you can but please send each one separately.
  • Can I use the supplies to make up a commercial pattern or project from a book or magazine?  Yes you can.
  • Can I enter if I am outside of the UK?  Yes but please tell us what country you are in
  • Can I enter if I’ve already been picked in the past?  Yes you can.
  • What do I have to send you if I am chosen?  A link to your blog post & a couple pics of what you have made.
  • When do I have to blog/send pics by?  Within 2 months of receiving the supplies.
- See more at: http://www.thesewingdirectory.co.uk/news/2013/03/01/minerva-blogger-challenge/#sthash.cK67niFJ.dpuf

Minerva Crafts Blogger Challenge

Minerva Crafts want to see what you creative bloggers can do with their products so every other month we will be posting details of a new product from their site.  If you would like to receive the product please tell us what you would do with it, and what other materials from their site you would need to go with it.  
We will select a few lucky bloggers to receive the goodies they chose in exchange for them blogging about what they make and allowing us & Minerva Crafts to share pictures of their creations on our sites or social media.
The product for this challenge is the Olfa Compass Cutter.  What would you do with it?
Olfa compass cutter for quilting cutting circles in fabric
A test challenge was taken up by Rachel from House of Pinheiro.  She was offered stretch bias binding and chose 2 metres of dotty fabric to go with it to make a dress.  You can see her post here.

How do I join in?
If you have a great idea of how to use this month’s product comment send us an e-mail on challenge@thesewingdirectory.co.uk giving us:
  • A link to your blog.
  • Details of what you plan to make.
  • Product numbers of any extra supplies from Minerva Crafts website that you need to make what you want to make plus total value of the extra supplies.
  • Details of which country you are in if you are outside of the UK; this won’t exclude you but allows us to calculate the postage.Minerva online craft supplies website
Please get your entries in by midnight on the 14th.  Don’t worry if you don’t get picked this time there will be plenty more chances to take part.
FAQS
  • Can I submit more than one idea?     Yes you can but please send each one separately.
  • Can I use the supplies to make up a commercial pattern or project from a book or magazine?  Yes you can.
  • Can I enter if I am outside of the UK?  Yes but please tell us what country you are in
  • Can I enter if I’ve already been picked in the past?  Yes you can.
  • What do I have to send you if I am chosen?  A link to your blog post & a couple pics of what you have made.
  • When do I have to blog/send pics by?  Within 2 months of receiving the supplies.
- See more at: http://www.thesewingdirectory.co.uk/news/2013/03/01/minerva-blogger-challenge/#sthash.cK67niFJ.dpuf

Minerva Crafts Blogger Challenge

Minerva Crafts want to see what you creative bloggers can do with their products so every other month we will be posting details of a new product from their site.  If you would like to receive the product please tell us what you would do with it, and what other materials from their site you would need to go with it.  
We will select a few lucky bloggers to receive the goodies they chose in exchange for them blogging about what they make and allowing us & Minerva Crafts to share pictures of their creations on our sites or social media.
The product for this challenge is the Olfa Compass Cutter.  What would you do with it?
Olfa compass cutter for quilting cutting circles in fabric
A test challenge was taken up by Rachel from House of Pinheiro.  She was offered stretch bias binding and chose 2 metres of dotty fabric to go with it to make a dress.  You can see her post here.

How do I join in?
If you have a great idea of how to use this month’s product comment send us an e-mail on challenge@thesewingdirectory.co.uk giving us:
  • A link to your blog.
  • Details of what you plan to make.
  • Product numbers of any extra supplies from Minerva Crafts website that you need to make what you want to make plus total value of the extra supplies.
  • Details of which country you are in if you are outside of the UK; this won’t exclude you but allows us to calculate the postage.Minerva online craft supplies website
Please get your entries in by midnight on the 14th.  Don’t worry if you don’t get picked this time there will be plenty more chances to take part.
FAQS
  • Can I submit more than one idea?     Yes you can but please send each one separately.
  • Can I use the supplies to make up a commercial pattern or project from a book or magazine?  Yes you can.
  • Can I enter if I am outside of the UK?  Yes but please tell us what country you are in
  • Can I enter if I’ve already been picked in the past?  Yes you can.
  • What do I have to send you if I am chosen?  A link to your blog post & a couple pics of what you have made.
  • When do I have to blog/send pics by?  Within 2 months of receiving the supplies.
- See more at: http://www.thesewingdirectory.co.uk/news/2013/03/01/minerva-blogger-challenge/#sthash.cK67niFJ.dpuf
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