Sunday, 30 September 2012

what's new British pussycat?

A big week for UK fabric shops. Lotsa good shizzle for you people this week.

Oh yes.

Where shall we start?

Simply Solids has a flash sale for this weekend ONLY  on all pre-cuts. 15% off all pre-cuts, including the new in stock ones (such as oh deer and sew stitchy).

Kate at M is For Make has a special coupon code for you until 8pm GMT on Monday 1st october - use ginger for 15% off all purchases.

I'd like all of this please.

Jo and Simon at Eclectic Maker have had some fun arrivals this week

Alchemy by Shell Rummel for Blend fabrics...

and Out to Sea by Sarah Jane...

Lots of good stuff there.

I urge you to start following Annie from the Village Haberdashery's blog The Daily Stitch if you're not already. It's a great blog, full of tutorials and interviews and all round good stuff.

If you are a fan of Jay Mccarroll you may have already spotted that Annie has midtown Center City in stock. Her first shipment has arrived, and the rest will be here shortly.
You are incredibly unlikely to find it in any other store in the UK, so if you like it and you want some get it now. It's not being distributed over here, and once it's gone that will probably be it. It's one of my favourites, I think it's amazing.

Finally for this week, we're heading over to see Alice at Backstitch. Alice has had a really busy week, putting together more gorgeous bundles. I love the names and I love the fabrics - she has a real knack for putting together some delicious combos.

Look at this one, called Arbor Martini. Yum.

And what about caipiroska (I can't even pronounce it, but it sounds delicious and looks like a frosty morning, doesn't it?)

I'm a sucker for greys, so Gotham gets me all excited.

This one is my favourite though. Red Snapper.

Want to win one?
Here's what you need to do....


Go to the bundles page, and pick which of the colour collection bundles is your favourite (basically from Gotham to Paris is Burning). You could win it!

There are a couple of rules (please, please read the rules!);

1. UK/Europe entries ONLY

2. leave a comment telling me which of the bundles you like best (EXCLUDES plain solids bundles, the designer collections - such as flea market fancy - and the pink grapefruit fizz super bundle)
3. sign up to the Backstitch newsletter and leave a second comment saying you have for a second chance
4. follow the Backstitch blog and leave a third comment saying you have for a third chance

A winner will be picked next Sunday (October 7th) and announced on What's New British Pussycat.

Now, off you go and shop - because those coupons and flash sales are ending really soon!

Saturday, 29 September 2012

what's new American pussycat?

Are you ready?

Let's go!

Pink Castle Fabrics has 20% off all pre-cuts and bundles this week only (so hurry!) with the code PRECUT20
This includes blogger bundles and collection bundles, so if you wanted to grab a Liberty bloomsbury gardens bundle or center city or any of the in stock bundles do it now!

And if you didn't want a bundle but wanted some yardage - use code SPIN15 for 15% off any purchase. There's a heap of new stuff added to the sale section too - never leave the store without a little browse through there!

Fat Quarter Shop have Winterkist by Monica Solorio-Snow (aka the Happy Zombie). There are 2 colourways, the Freshly colourway which is cool and full of greys, blues and greens......

and the Tart colourway, a spicy warm group of reds, oranges and pinks...

Also in stock now and well worth buying is the book written by the Fat Quarter Shop team, Simply Fat Quarters. I've got a copy on it's way to me and I can't wait to see it!

Sew Me A Song is, as you should know by now, the place to go for Japanese or slightly eclectic prints.

I love this bundle of fabrics selected by Amy

I also really love these color basics bundles....



or pink or yellow or grey or black. A great stash building bundle of basics.

Sew Fresh Fabrics has had these adorable prints from Creative Thrusday in. Absolutely love the bunnies.

There are a heap of new specials and Cosmos by Laura Gunn is in stock too.

I love this beaded stripe print

And this gorgeous floral

Lola Pink Fabrics have some amazing deals to be had in the specials section. I really love this collection by Erin McMorris. Also, if you buy 3 yards or more of any one fabric you get an automatic extra discount applied. Did you know that?

It's a great way to stock up on larger cuts for clothing and quilt backs. The pattern section of Lola Pink is a perfect place to find some inspiration!

That's it US peeps, I'm back tomorrow with what's new British pussycat, so be there or be square.

Happy weekends!!!! x

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Liberty Scrap Challenge

A while ago, Nova and Jo asked me to take past in this Month's Liberty scrap challenge. Being my usual self I'm running to the 11th hour, but it's still September (just) so I think I'm good. Phew.

Jo sent me a scrap pack of Liberty prints from her shop...which I put in a lovely safe safe I have no clue where they are. Fortunately there's no shortage of Liberty prints and scraps in this house, so I used my own scraps and made this ruffle front clutch to make me look like a fancy lady when I go out (looks can be deceiving - don't be fooled by my fancy clutch).


You will need;


scraps cut into 1.5 x 3" strips
FQ of essex linen in natural for purse body
FQ of fusible wadding/batting
FQ of cotton fabric for lining
strong fabric glue. I recommend this one
a 6" x 3" kiss clasp purse frame (available from here) - if you have a different size frame head to U-Handbag for a great tutorial on drafting your own pattern
something pointy like a skewer or some scissors
piping cord (available here)

purse template - download PDF here

Step 1;
cut out the template and press your fabrics well. Fold the FQs in 2, and lay the straight edge of the template on the fold, pin and cut out 2 of the purse body, wadding and lining fabrics.


Iron the fusible wadding to the reverse of the purse body fabrics, following the manufacturers instructions.


Fold the purse body in half across the width, and finger press to give you a centre line.
Fold a scrap strip in half to make a loop and pin to one side of the centre crease, do the same to the other side of the crease, and then lay a 3rd strip loop in the middle of the 2 pinned loops. Stitch into place.


Repeat step 3 to the top of the purse. You can do the same on the other piece of purse body fabric if you want a double sided clutch.


Place the purse body fabrics right sides together, and pin together - making sure you start at the little dash on the template, and finish in the same point on the other side. Using a generous 1/4" seam, sew the 2 pieces together in the direction of the arrows. Repeat with the lining fabrics.


Box the corners of both the purse body and the lining. You want to mark a point using a pencil or disappearing ink that is 2" across.



Place the lining into the purse body, wrong sides together. Poke the corners into each other, and match up the edges and pin well all around the edge.


Topstitch carefully all the way around the edge - lengthen your stitch a little and use the needle down position. Take this bit slowly, and pay extra attention to the sides as these will be visible when you're all finished.


Glue the purse body into the frame. I had no-one to help me with photos for this step and it is the trickiest part, so I'm going to send you off to Lisa who has a fabulous tutorial on making framed purses, and taught me to make them through careful nudging and hand holding (she's a good egg, that one). Step 12 is the glueing bit in her tute - download it and keep it safe, you'll want to come back to it again and again.

That's it. You're done! Have a cup of tea and a little rest and get your fancy shoes on ready for a fancy night out with your clutch.


Wait - there's more!

Do you want to do a tutorial for the Liberty Scrap Challenge? You can win a bag of Liberty Print scraps and have your tutorial featured - just leave a comment saying YES PLEASE! I'll pick a winner in a week.


Thank you again to Jo and to Nova for having me, be sure to check out all of the previous tutorials and if make something using one of the projects, upload it to the flickr group!

Monday, 24 September 2012

spinning stars winners and progress

I completely forgot to draw the winners for the Spinning Stars giveaway!

My bad.

First up we have winner number 95, Lynette

and secondly number 1 (I love it when number 1 gets picked!) which is Carol

I'll be emailing you guys today for your addresses!

There has been some progress over in the flickr group.

Look at this amazing version by Elizabeth. I'm a teensy bit jealous of this quilt if I'm completely honest. The chevrons with the new Liberty Lifestyle cottons are GENIUS.


And this version by Rachel is just about perfection isn't it?

Spinning Stars 6 Blocks

Adrianne has proven that Chicopee is as amazing as I thought it would be in any pattern. *Sigh. Love*

4 of 12 Spinning Stars w/ Mosaicmaker

Jump in any time with the quilt along, just join in with the flickr group here!!!! And get 15% off your fabric purchases from Pink Castle Fabrics using the code SPIN15

Saturday, 22 September 2012

what's new worldwide pussycat?

As I am going to be teaching this weekend and trekking from Suffolk back home to Yorkshire I've decided to condense this weekend's what's new posts into one.

Mama Said Sew is in stock now at Pink Castle fabrics. Just in case you have been incredibly busy since it was shown at spring market, Mama Said Sew is the new line by Basic Grey.(edit - it totally isn't is it? It's sweet water. That's what happens when you are having a text conversation about basic grey with your friend and writing a blogpost at the same time!) It has texty prints. Those texty prints are sexy texty prints and are essential for a happy and fulfilled life (that's a medically proven fact you know). I've got a bundle hoarded for safe keeping and emergencies.

Also in this week are the rest of the prints from Center City. Technically I'm on a ban from buying anything until I go to Sewing Summit next month, but Center City is excluded from that ban because rather like air and water it's a necessity. I'm treating myself to a big old stack of this lot. I just love it so much.

You can get 15%off anything in store using SPIN15 as a code on check out. Snap up those sexy texty prints before they sell out, because they will.

CHICOPEE CORDUROY!!! LOOK!!!! Oh I got shouty then. But seriously, can you imagine how lovely that feels? Annie at the Village Haberdashery has it in stock right this very minute, so go and buy it and make me a dress for the Autumn. Thank you.

Annie has also had a delivery of Indie by Art Gallery Fabrics. If you're not familiar with Art Gallery fabrics I urge you to try them out, they are beautiful. The quality is amazing, the drape great for dressmaking, but they also work brilliantly for quilts and regular sewing.

Cuzco pre-cuts are in now at Fat Quarter shop, with yardage to follow in the next month.

I made a pillow using some Cuzco that Kate Spain sent me, and I have to say it's her best collection yet.

it's a biggie

Another newly in stock pre-cut is Marmalade by Bonnie and Camille. Again, this is the best collection yet. The addition of orange adds something awesome.

Backstitch has put quite a few prints on clearance, so grab a bargain while you can!

M is for Make has been closed this week due to a family bereavement, but should be open again at the weekend. There are lots of new treats in store though, so keep an eye out for them and until you can spend your pennies check out the blog for pretty pictures.

Lola Pink Fabrics have a fabulous selection of new lines in the sale section. Domestic shipping (US) is never more than $5. Check out their perks plus section to find out what kinds of great deals you can pick up from these lovely ladies.

Justine at Simply Solids is working on her new site, but she is now on twitter so follow her @simplysolids and if you are looking for a kona colour card with the new kona colours in as well, she's your girl. She has them in stock now at £18 - just give her a shout and she'll sort you out.

Becca at Sew Me A Song has had LOADS of new Yuwa prints in this week with more arriving shortly. There are some great bolt end bargains to be had as well, you can pick up some real treats in that section if you keep an eye on it.

Speaking of bargains, Peg at Sew Fresh fabrics has a massive sale section with new items added this week. I have snapped up the backing for my new scrap vomit quilt from this section, as soon as it arrives I'll show you. I love a bargain!

Another quick mention - I have Spinning Stars Templates back in stock now. I don't have many, and I won't be ordering any more until I get home from Sewing Summit at the very earliest, so if you want some get them now. They really do make a difference to cutting your fabrics for the spinning stars pattern.

Friday, 21 September 2012

wombat wonderland blog tour

I have been a huge fan of Saffron's fabrics since 2008 when I bought a quilt kit with her owl and elephant fabrics (we even used the owls for the squares and rectangles chapter in the Fat Quarterly book!), so when I got an email asking if I'd be part of the blog tour to celebrate Saffron's newest collection, and her first organic line, Wombat Wonderland I jumped at the chance.

 As to be expected, Wombat Wonderland is typically 'Saffron' - a lovely mix of prints in different scales, which make them perfect for all kinds of applications. There's even a panel for making softies (this is one of the things I love most about Saffron's fabrics - the softie panels are such a great idea and would make a great craft activity with a little one)

Before the fabrics arrived I had planned to make a quilt, but once I saw them in person I wanted to make a million things, so the quilt got shelved and using my friend's daughter (who has just turned one) for inspiration I made some fun bits that would be ideal as a first birthday present (and then I kept them all because I liked them too much - I'm really selfish, aren't I?)

Some scalloped bunting (which even looks great above the teenager's bed). This was really simple, I drew a half circle shape onto some card stock and cut out pairs of each fabric multiple times, sewed them right sides together, flipped right way out and used a shop bought bias tape to string them on to.

I think I prefer scalloped bunting to regular pointy bunting, it looks softer and cuter, somehow.

This was the first block I made from Anna Maria Horner's spinning stars pattern, and I used paper templates which gave me slightly squiffy points (due to my wonky cutting probably), but it's ok, I can't see them when it's on the bed. I'm planning on a couple more of these pillows (this is 18"and stuffed with a 20" form which makes it really fat) with some different coloured pom pom trim so this little pillow won't be all alone.

And finally, a zipped pouch to put the bunting in. Which would make it a lovely gift for the birthday girl if I hadn't been so selfish. I should make some more so I can be a little more generous. I'd probably end up keeping it though, I'm not as nice as you might think.

I'm the penultimate stop on the tour, with Siobhan being the final stop next week. Be sure to check out all the other stops on the tour, there's all kinds of inspiration going on;

Friday 31st of August - Katia of Plushka Craft
Friday 7th of September - Toni of Make it Perfect
Friday 14th of September - Amy of Badskirt
Friday 21st of September - you are here!
Friday 29th of September - Siobhan of Beaspoke Quilts

You can find Wombat Wonderland in Saffron's store now

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