Thursday, 19 January 2012

Shopping Opportunity

Who can resist an opportunity to shop for fabrics and pattern books? Let's face it we all have an obsession with boosting our stash just a little bit now and again.
This week we had a great opportunity to justify our expenditure because we could sell some of our less favoured fabrics at our Bring and Buy sale. But...
I wonder how many people went home with more than they took in to sell. A little percentage of sales went to the group - what a great idea!
There are still a few places n the Annette Emms bookwraps workshop on Saturday 18th February. It costs £25 (see previous post).
If you'd like to join us please call Gill Biel on 01902 561293 or email

If you are coming you should have received a requirements list, but here it is anyway:
  Annette Emms – Textile Artist
I have several ideas for different bookwraps which we can make using coffee-dyed calico* or similar fabric, felt and chiffon. I would suggest a colour scheme of neutrals, brown, black etc. but you can of course use any colour.
During the day we will use many different techniques including , oiling papers, machine and hand stitch, burning, painting, stamping and layering.
Please bring the following things with you. –
  • A book to cover. This could be a new book, an old favourite, an album or perhaps a sketch book. – size could be anything up to  A4.
*(To calculate how much fabric you will need, measure the height of your book plus 1 inch by the width all around your book plus approx 4 inches.)*
  • A piece of calico ( or similar fabric) dyed with coffee, tea or walnut ink.
  • A piece of calico , either dyed or plain for the lining.
  • Felt or quilt batting (not the polyester type) this provides ‘body’ to the bookwrap.
You will also need –
  • Brown parcel paper (an A4 piece will be plenty), a few magazine pages(We are going to crumple and oil these pages)
  • 2 or 3 photocopies (not ink jet copies as the ink will run), with text, images or pattern
  • Printing blocks. Just bring a couple, perhaps a favourite motif, or one with writing.
  • Acrylic Paints. 2 or 3 colours, I suggest dark or neutral colours , but feel free to choose any others.
  • Brushes, Baby wipes, Palette or plate for mixing paint
  • Black chiffon scarf. You could also use some scraps of other dark coloured chiffon.
  • Sewing machine and sewing kit (tape measure, scissors etc.)
  • Apron
  • Hair dryer
  • Sewing thread. A selection of hand and machine threads (This is when we could introduce some different colours, or stick with black/neutral) we will use some of these to make cords, so anything goes really! How about string, knitting yarns, shiny threads, as well as some strips of torn fabric and anything else you can think of!?
  • Adornments. – we can make some fabric beads or perhaps this is the chance to use that little piece of driftwood, a small pebble or wooden beads?
  • Hot air tool, cutting mat, ruler.(Please don’t buy them specially, I’m sure we can share)
      Try to think of a simple motif to use as decoration, sketch or trace it onto a piece of paper. (I have some ideas if you’re stuck!)
I will bring some dyed newspaper etc, and some chiffon and felt for people to buy.
      That’s all, if you have any questions please ring me. 
Best wishes,
*To dye calico with coffee or tea . . . Soak fabric in a strong solution of coffee/tea. Squeeze out excess liquid. Place fabric a crumpled heap, on a hot baking tray in the centre of the oven (regulo 4.) for about 20 minutes, turning once. Be careful! The fabric will be hot. Don’t leave it in the oven too long . .  .it will burn!

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Happy New Year

Here's to 2012. Please go to our Calendar of Events page to see what wonderful sessions we have this year.
Have a special look at the information for the Annette Emms workshop on Saturday 18th February. She is coming to us to speak on the previous Wednesday and as an ex children's librarian always has a good tale to tell.
Have a look at her website: for more info
Her workshops are always great fun and you are urged NOT to miss this one. Contact Gill Biel at a meeting or on or 01902 561293 to book a place.