Monday, 29 October 2012

Houston Quilt Market Day 2

Oh wow - another amazing day at Quilt Market in Houston!

Here are some of the quilts we saw en route to Starbucks each day...

Kiyomi Takayanagi - Departure
 The Jennings Homestead. Made by Suzanne Mouton Riggio and 26 Members of the Milwaukee Art Quilters
Yoshiko Miyamoto - Hope

 Ferret's quilt Prometheus is too big to display at it's full size - it's huge! You will be able to see the whole quilt hung in its full glory at the Sandown quilt show in 2013!
Ferret - Prometheus - A twist on an old favourite - Lone Star.

Using the Sizzix Big Shot to cut strips

But before more photos of today, an update from last night's Handi Quilter Reception. We met up with the Aussie contingent - Narelle from the Australian Distributor for Handi Quilter, Michelle who is one of the Australian Handi Quilter dealers. We met Narelle in Salt Lake City two years ago at Handi Quilter HQ and we did long arm training together (plus some All Terain riding in the Rockies!). Michelle won Handi Quilter Dealer of the year. In the middle is Helen Godden who is a phenomenally good quilter whose work I absolutely love! So this was a real highlight for me. We had a really great night. They call themselves the Sweet Sixteen Sheilas!

Sweet Sixteen Sheilas from Down Under - Narelle, Helen and Michelle
 As for the show today (Day 2 already!) - we bumped into Ferret by the Pfaff stand - wearing her Phoenix coat. Incredible leather coat which looks even more incredible from the back...

Ferret wearing Phoenix

Ferret checking out the Antique Quilts - nice contrast!
 The Moda stand is always impressive for its displays - we loved the Glamping feature!
Moda Glamping

It's worth saying its a HUGE show!
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Sunday, 28 October 2012

Houston Quilt Market 2012 Day 1

Visiting Houston is always an interesting trip - you never know what new products and exciting things you'll find. 

View from my hotel window towards Houston Convention Centre, I mean Center..

After a shorter than normal flight to Houston direct from Heathrow of about 8 hours, which is quick, due to the strange absence of the jet stream going from West to East we actually had a tail wind flying to the USA. Mind you looks like there could be more than a bit of wind spinning around in the north atlantic for the trip home!

Our first day was spent at Schoolhouse. Great sessions on lots of new products, tips and techniques in about 20 different rooms. Each session is 15 or 30 minutes long. The three of us (Geoff, Jean and Liz) split up to maximise how many things we can see in the day. There is no break...well other than a Starbucks at around 2pm so it's quite tiring but really inspiring too - so many new things since our last visit!

Always good to see some familiar faces like Izzy from Creative Quilting and Sue from Daisy Chain Designs as well as Barbara Chainey but not as many UK suppliers as usual. There are more Brazilians than Europeans!

We bumped into Amy and David Butler and are looking forward to seeing them tomorrow - Renaissance Ribbons are bringing out a range of Amy's Ribbons that we saw today - they were gorgeous. You can see them on our Facebook page. We may well stock them - what do you think?

Someone we thought we might bump into was Brandon Mably...we just were a bit surprised when we found him peeping out behind a quilt on this stand!

Brandon Mably on one of the stands...sorry Brandon! 

More tomorrow...we're off to the Handi Quilter Reception!

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Thursday, 2 August 2012

Kaffe Fassett: Dreaming in Colour and Kaffe Quilts Again Competition

We have signed copies of Kaffe Fassett's new books to give away!!! Kaffe Fassett: Dreaming in Colour and Kaffe Quilts Again will be launched on the 16th of August on the Cotton Patch Stand A24 at the Festival of Quilts at the NEC in Birmingham.  The closing date for entries was 5pm on Monday 13th August. Good Luck.

The Kaffe Fassett Book Competition has now closed. 13th August 2012.
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Kaffe Fassett: Dreaming in Colour. An Autobiography

We will be launching at the Festival of Quilts Kaffe Fassett's much anticipated Autobiography, Kaffe Fassett: Dreaming in Colour. Kaffe will be on our stand A24 and will be signing copies on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. You can pre-order a copy of the book now on our website and we will send it out after the book is launched on the 16th August.We also have a combined book offer with Kaffe Quilts Again with a £4 saving on the RRP of the 2 books.

Kaffe Fassett: Dreaming in Colour. An intimate, photo-filled look at the fascinating life and creative output of a renowned artist and designer.

Kaffe Fassett has led an extraordinary life and is a captivating storyteller with a vivid memory. Born in 1937 in San Francisco, he spent much of his youth in Big Sur, where his parents bought a log cabin from Orson Welles and transformed it into the world-famous Nepenthe restaurant, a gathering place of artists of all sorts (Kaffe has many stories to tell about mingling with the likes of Olivia de Havilland, Elizabeth Taylor, and Henry Miller). After attending a boarding school run by the disciples of Krishunamurti, an Indian guru, he studied painting on scholarship at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, but left after less than one year and traveled to England, where he ultimately made his home.

After struggling to make a living as a fine artist for several years, Fassett met the fashion designer Bill Gibb and began designing knitwear for his collection. He went on to design knitwear for Missoni and for private clients like Lauren Bacall, Shirley MacLaine, and Barbra Streisand, and to revolutionise the hand knitting world with his explosive use of color. Further explorations led him to needlepoint, mosaics, rug-making, yarn and fabric design, set design and quilting. Now in his 70s, Fassett continues to produce new work in his studio in London and to travel worldwide to teach and lecture. This intimate autobiography is lavishly filled with Fassett's amazing stories about his bohemian childhood, his hard-earned rise to fame, and all of his creative pursuits. It includes photos of him throughout his life (including his stint as a model in Paris), his home (which is an artwork in itself), his work (everything from childhood drawings to pencil sketches, to oil paintings, to massive tapestries and set designs, to hand knits and quilts) as well as the people and places around the world that have inspired him.

Kaffe Fassett: Dreaming in Colour

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Friday, 29 June 2012

The First European Handi Quilter Retreat

Thanks to all of the Handi Quilter Customers who came to the First European Handi Quilter Retreat at The Cotton Patch Studio from 29th June to 1st July 2012!  Thank you also to Nanc Christopherson who managed to match non-stop information and technique provision with humour and skill in an entertaining way.  The feedback was excellent and hopefully meant that you all enjoyed it as much as we did.

More important than that we hope that those skills will translate into lots of quilting so please do share some of the quilts that were discussed at the Retreat on here send us photos of those quilts completed on your HQ18 Avantes and Sweet Sixteens!
Here are some photos from the Retreat..

Marking with Stencils and Pounce Chalk


Following a Pantograph

Sweet Sixteens Times Six

Free-Motion Quilting in Ruler Work

Demonstrations of Longarm quilting techniques

Discussing Quilting Options

Echoing Quilting Around Words


Our Out of the Box Quilt Group!

Adding a Binding on the Frame

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Thursday, 12 April 2012

Nel Whatmore - Life Is a Minestrone Exhibition

We first met Nel Whatmore at the 2011 Festival of Quilts at the NEC in Birmingham with her fabric range designed for the Coats/Freespirit Brand (Rowan) - a very talented artist and designer who is a great fun to work with too!  

Nel Whatmore with Lisa Lam and Melissa White at 2011 Festival of Quilts Designers Supper

Her art works have only more recently been produced on fabric - Nel has been painting and producing stunning florals, landscapes and abstracts for many years and these have been used for licensed products as well as being sold as originals and prints. Her exhibition at Chelsea won Nel an award - the great news is that this year is her 25th Year Celebration and from 21-24th April 2012 you can see her exhibition at The Priory, Wetherby, Yorkshire (details below).

We hope that you can make it - here's your invite - just visit Nel's Page for more information,

Internationally known artist and designer , Nel Whatmore, is Celebrating her 25th Year as an artist by having a one woman show called “Life is a Minestrone.”

Nel has always produced a variety of work from abstracts to landscapes to florals. As an award winning exhibitor at Chelsea Flower Show many of her flower paintings are now inspired by her visits to the show each year.

When thinking of a theme for the show Nel says  
“In my work I seek to convey life in all it’s variety, both through subject matter colour and also emotion. So ‘Life is A Minestrone” baby!

It will be held at ,The Priory, Syningthwaite Home Farm,Wighill Park, Wetherby, North Yorkshire LS24 8BL

On the 21st-24th April. Preview 21st April 2-7pm

As well as the main exhibition just for fun there will be a display of works including the first picture she ever sold aged 6 (!) , Bonzo the gorilla, Geoffrey the giraffe and other unexpected things.

Nel, became a professional artist with the help of the Princes Trust, and was invited last year to Clarence House as part of the Trusts 35 th Year celebrations, where she presented HRH the Prince of Wales with one of her original painting called Devoted to You.

She started her business from very small beginning working in a bedsit in
Headingley and selling her paintings at Art Fairs and Markets in Leeds and
Wakefield. Her work can now been seen all over the world in the form of Limited Edition prints , ceramics and stationery. 
Nel Whatmore Happy Go Lucky Festival of Quilts 2011 Cotton Patch
In recent years she has also been asked to design fabric for Coats/Freespirit Brand. Her first fabric collection ‘Happy Go Lucky’ featured at the International Quilt Festival in Birmingham, where she was a guest designer along with Kaffe Fassett. Her latest range Sleeping Beauty will also be on display at the show.

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Monday, 20 February 2012

One of our Favourites Classes!

We really do enjoy these Grace Classes - it's probably because we get to have as much fun as our students. Plus, after a day spent up at The Cotton Patch Studio we feel pretty confident that folks are going to go home full of ideas and the skills to put it into practice. We couldn't hope for any more than that!

So if you have a Little Gracie, Grace Machine Quilter, Little Gracie II, Grace Machine Quilter Pro, Inspira, Pinnacle, Bernina Frame, Majestic or Gracie Queen and want to learn more about putting the quilt on the frame (we teach you a few techniques we learnt from the Handi Quilter), needles, threads, wadding, quilting designs (especially using Pam Clarke's excellent stencils), ruler work, pantographs and Pattern Perfects give us a call on 0121 702 2840. 

You get to try out the frame with manual foot pedal controls, the speed control and Sure Stitch. And then go home buzzing with ideas!

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