Thursday, 31 March 2016

My New Work Space & Machines

Its been a long time coming, but I have now finally got my new sewing room set up and sorted.

The downside of being so busy with The Charity Quilt Show is that I have not been able to play with my new machines.

As most of my blog readers know - I do a lot of sewing. My domestic machine, Janome 11000,  has been well used and really takes a hammering with the amount I do, so I decided to explore other alternatives before purchasing a replacement.

I started to research the industrial market and I found a Brother sewing machine with ziz zag and fancy stitches too.  The only problem was I wanted to try it out. This was back in July 2015 and the dealer in Leeds said he was getting one in for another customer and he would call me when it arrived, so I could have a go.  Unfortunately I am still waiting on him calling me to say it has arrived in.  I think I must have asked too many questions and been too much bother for him!

I continued my research and I found another industrial supplier - Hobkirks in Blackburn and I must say the help and assistance has been fantastic. I asked Mark so many questions about the Zoje machine he recommended and learn so much and never felt a nuisance.  I was desperate to go and see, but had to wait for a suitable gap in the hotel to make the journey across to Blackburn.

Eventually the opportunity came in early 2016 and we decided to make a short break and stay in Manchester. I had also decided that it would be worth looking for a multi needle embroidery machine too whilst we were there.

The next day we set off early from the hotel to make our way to Blackburn. The shop was easy to find and they have great customer parking behind. Inside the  shop is amazing.  They have almost every type of domestic machine you can think of - a room full of each brand!

For the quilters there is a room full of fabric too

Towards the back of the shop and via the workshop area there are several rooms full of industrial machines.

We spent the whole day at Hobkirks!!  Firstly with Marcus looking at the Brother PR embroidery machines then later looking at the Riccar Diamond.

 Terry one of the engineers set up the sewing machine for me in the workshop too and after he had showed me how to operate it I was able to have a play. Wow, it surely can move! Luckily the speed is controlable - in fact just about everything is programmable and controlable!

Terry is an amazing person. He has worked in the industry all his life and what he does not know, is really not worth knowing. He showed me around the industrial machines and explained what each one did too.

 One of the most unique things about Hobkirks is there massive collection of Old Singer Machines

So after a full day at the shop - I left without fabric (which must be a first!) but the proud new owner of not one but two new machines. Yes, we purchased the Zoje sewing machine and the Riccar Diamond 15 needle embroidery machine.

 Due to work commitment however I had to wait for another suitable gap for them to be delivered.

Now that I had the new machines I needed to organise my space which has taken a few weeks in between hotel events, charity quit show and quilting retreats.

So here is my Sewing Room and Sanctuary!

I am now looking forward to spending some time getting to know my new machines.

& here is my longarm room

Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Charity Quilt Show - On line Raffle Quilts

We made two special quilts for our Charity Show - one for the Air Ambulance and the other for The Childrens Hospital, Sheffield and we put these on Just Giving,

Scrappy Happy Stars raised £509 for the Air Ambulance


Scrappy Happy Houses raised £281.53

After the close of the auction the details of donations were downloaded to spreadsheets and the correct number of draw entries entered for each contributor.

An Independent person then used a random number generator to select the two winners. These numbers were emailed to another independent person and we were informed to say the deed was done. We then provided the second person with the spreadsheets to calculate the winners and the information was fed back to us.

Scrappy Happy Stars has been won by Christine Jennings from London

& Scrappy Happy Houses by Katie Swift

The quilts will be making their way to their new owners soon. Many congratulations and we hope you enjoy our quilts.

Thank you to everyone who made donations for both these very worthy charities.

Fiona & Tim

Monday, 14 March 2016

Charity Quilt Show 2016

We at Quilt Sandwich held our second Charity Quilt Show on the 11th & 12th March 2016 at The Royal Bridlington.

This time our chosen charities were - The Yorkshire Air Ambulance, The Childrens Hospital Sheffield who are raising money to purchase a special scanner which will allow them to operate and scan at the same time - this will be one of only 2 in the world & East Riding Domestic Violence and Abuse Partnership for their safe houses.

Quilters from all over the UK donated fabrics, UFO's, Orphan blocks & quilt tops and volunteers came along for a Quiltathon and made quilt tops in return for a free lunch and refreshment throughout the two days.

Lorraine Hall who works at Peter Duffys asked her work colleagues for unwanted Xmas Presents to donate to our raffle and she came with a heap of goodies including Beautiful George - a massive Teddy Bear. Thank you Lorraine - it was a great idea.

Lots of quilt tops were made and this resulted in Tim & myself giving up our annual holidays and quilting over 70 of these on our longarm. Many thanks to Carol Barrow, Barbara Hall & Chris Sunderland who hand sewed the bindings. We had over 80 quilts on display.

We also made a couple of quilts to go online and raffle and we did this via Just Giving.

Scrappy Happy Stars was raffled for The Air Ambulance and this quilt raised £509

Scrappy Happy Houses was made for the Childrens Hospital and this quilt raised £281.53.
The ladies who volunteered their time to come to the quiltathon were asked to make houses and tree blocks and these were beautifully put together by a local lady - Jackie Woolford. Thank you Jackie you did a wonderful job with this quilt.

On the open days we served refreshments and sandwiches to those who came along and were very grateful for Diane Davison volunteering her services in the kitchen. We also had a tombola, raffle, sales stall and cake stall. All the quilt s were for sale by negotiation and those left will be donated to the charities.

Despite a very poor show from local quilters and quilt groups we managed to raise over £2,500 for the Charities and those that did come travelled from far and wide and many have sent emails of thanks.

We would like to thank all those who came along to the quiltathon in January and all the volunteers who helped on the days of the quilt show - your assistance was very much appreciated.

A special thanks to Rowena Smith who also helped on both the days, but also helped us putting up the quilts.

On Saturday, we were delighted to welcome The Mayor of Bridlington - Cllr John Copsey.

So for all those who missed the event here are some of the wonderful quilts which we managed to create -

This lego quilt was made to show that even small scraps can be used.  Running workshops and retreats here at The Royal Bridlington, it never ceases to amaze us how much good fabric is put in the bin.  These 1.5 inch pieces were sewed together into 12 inch blocks from some of this fabric then sashed.

Thanks also to all those who donated and to all the volunteers who assisted & our supporters -
Bridlington Sewing Centre, Janome, Lloyd Dowsons, Richardsons Greengrocers, Peter Duffy Ltd, Bidvest, Hopwells, Yorkshire Coast Radio, BBC Radio Humberside, Bridlington Free Press, Wimborne Fabrics (Moda), Patchwork Promotions, Popular Patchwork, Quilting For you, Todays Quilter, British Patchwork, Pelenna Patchworks.

Extra Wide backing fabrics, workshops and retreats and details of longarm quilting can be found here -