Happy New Year!

I hope that whatever you were doing, whereever you were, and whoever you were with, you had a good time over Christmas and the New Year.

Thank you for all the Christmas wishes, cards and gifts we were given by our lovely customers. Caroline, Faith, and I, were all very moved by your kindness - especially the lovely comments we received. So many of you said how much you value the shop still being there, and appreciated that it has not been an easy time in retail over the past couple of years. Many of our ‘regulars’ told us how their sewing sessions have helped them through difficult times in their lives. One lovely comment was, “I hope you know that you are much more than a fabric shop, you are a community service. People make friends, get support and there is always a lot of laughter”. Long may that continue.

We managed to see family, had a trip to the panto with our grandchildren (“Oh yes, we did!”), plus a few quieter days at home with some jigsaws and long walks with the dog.

I can now show some of my Christmas sewing: I made my daughter a “wearable blanket”. Perhaps you have seen them? They are fleecy over-sized garments with a hood and a big pocket, a cross between a dressing gown and a sleeping bag. Big enough to pull over your knees and feet when curled up on the sofa, perfect for chilly mornings and evenings, to use when camping, or to change under on the beach.

When I had finished it I realised that I needed to make two more for her children or they would be stealing hers! So more fleece was purchased and more cutting and sewing. They are quite simple to make, but it took almost as long to clean the house afterwards as all the fibres of fleece fly everywhere as soon as the fabric is cut or moved! The garments were all a great success though, as you can see!

I was also knitting a chunky cardigan for my husband (we live in a draughty old barn) and then couldn’t resist making a Christmas dress for myself in the cosy flannel from the Yuletide Gatherings collection by Moda fabrics. All were finished in time - just!

I must show you the beautiful baby quilt made by my friend Cathy, too. This is her first ever quilt and was made for her new granddaughter. Her daughter had seen the photo of my Milestones Blanket made with the panel from the Moda Little Ducklings collection and dropped a very big hint that it would be perfect for a newborn. Here is the gorgeous Amber at three weeks old modelling the finished quilt, and her big brother loves it too - perfect for racing his cars around the leaves!

Cathy has now booked onto the Beginners’ Quilting Course starting in January to make a Nine-Patch, or a Disappearing Nine-Patch Quilt and learn all the techniques. I think she may need to make another Milestones Blanket too as there is another little one expected in her family this year!

After Christmas we spent a few days in the shop giving everything a “spring clean” and getting for the SALE, which will start at 10am on Wednesday 5 January.

The sale will run until 5pm on Saturday 15 January, with reductions of between 30% and 60% on many of the fabric collections and Christmas fabrics.

Plus take another 10% off all stock in the shop and online (except gift vouchers, sewing machine repairs, and workshops and classes.)

We need to make space on the shelves for some lovely new fabrics expected in 2022, so this is an ideal time to pop in, or browse the online shop, and restock your stash. Don’t wait too long as some designs are very limited stock.

I am also planning the workshop programme for the first months of 2022. We have some new workshops added with Faith teaching the Beginners’ Nine-Path Quilting Course and a new workshop “Fifty Blocks to make with a Half Square Triangle”. Here are some of her sample blocks to whet your interest.

We have had some lovely Attic Window Quilts brought into the shop recently by customers to show us how they have used our fabrics. That prompted a few enquiries for a workshop to learn how to make these with their stunning 3D effect. I spent a day making up a sample (I used the Midnight Hydrangea panel from Studio E) and will be offering this as a new workshop on Saturday 5 March or Thursday 10 March. We have a good choice of panels in stock that could be used for this - and all 10% off during the sale!

Wendy, who taught two workshops in December of her own design of Christmas runner, will return on Thursday 10 February to teach her new Fireflies design. This makes a lovely cushion cover, or can be extended to a table runner, or even to a quilt. There are just three spaces remaining on this workshop now.

You will find the full list of workshops at the bottom of this newsletter. If there is something that you would like to learn but is not listed, please let me know.

Staffordshire Patchwork and Quilters

Meetings of the SPQ are held on the first Thursday of most months from 6.45pm. There is no SPQ meeting in January.

The next meeting will be on Thursday 3 February, when we will back at The Walton Community Centre, Whitemill Lane, Stone, ST15 0QE; we’ll have a talk entitled ‘Quilt as Desired’ by Abigail Sheridan De Graff, an award-winning long arm quilter.

There is no membership fee, just an admission charge of £4 per meeting. Bring some change to buy a raffle ticket or two, and mug - tea and coffee will be provided.


We are still taking care to make our workroom as safe as possible: the workstations are facing the wall, and we sanitise surfaces and equipment between workshops. Please do not come into the shop or attend a workshop if you are feeling unwell.

Sit and Sew sessions on Wednesdays and Fridays cost just £6 a session and pre-booking is essential to guarantee a place. Sessions run from 10am - 1pm, 2pm - 5pm (and on Wednesday only, 5.30 - 8.30pm.)The price includes use of sewing machine and all equipment, and unlimited tea and coffee.


Workshop Programme:

Block of the Month with Jane Alcock
All 10am - 2pm, £35

Session 4: Saturday 22 January

Session 5: Saturday 8 January OR 26 February

Session 6: Saturday 5 February OR 26 March

Session 7: Saturday 12 March OR 23 April

Session 8: Saturday 9 April OR 21 May

Session 9: Saturday 7 May OR 18 June

Disappearing Nine Patch / Nine Patch Beginners’ Quilt with Faith Curry, all 10am - 2pm, £40

Session 1: Thursday 13 OR Saturday 15 January

Session 2: Thursday 17 OR Saturday 19 February

Session 3: Thursday 17 OR Saturday 19 March

Session 4: Thursday 14 OR Saturday 16 April

Session 5: Thursday 12 OR Saturday 14 May

Fantastic Felted Bags with Janet. This is a two-day workshop. Both days will be from 10am - 4pm, £50 each day

Session 1: Thursday 20 January

Session 2: Thursday 27 January

Zips and Piping with Janet

Saturday 29 January, 10am - 4pm, £50

Fireflies Cushion or Table Runner with Wendy Sweetman

Thursday 10 February, 10am - 4pm, £50

50 Blocks to make with Half Square Triangles with Faith Curry

Thursday 12 February, 10am - 2pm, £40

Beautiful Bargello with Faith Curry

Thursday 24 February, 10am - 4pm, £50

Dressmaking for Beginners with Janet

Thursday 3 March OR Saturday 2 April, 10am - 4pm, £50

Attic Window Quilt with Janet

Saturday 5 March OR Thursday 10 March, 10am - 4pm, £50

Dressmaking for Improvers, including pattern adjustment with Janet

Saturday 30 April, 10am - 4pm, £50

Browse all the workshop dates and book your space online.

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