Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Project 10 - How to make a pair of Halloween Mug Rugs

Fig 1
YOU WILL NEED (see Fig 1)
Backing material (maker used a thin cotton tweed-like fabric)
Quilting fabric (maker used a black quilting cotton fabric)
fabric scraps for eyes and mouth
Firstly, Look at the shape in the illustrations above. The Ghost-like template that you draw on paper needs to measure around 23 cm (9 1/2") Long,  and be a similar measurement at its widest point along the bottom, the shape needs to narrowed to around 18 cm (7") in the middle section, and widen again to 19.5 cm  (7 3/4") along the top. The Sizing is approximate, and, of course, your design can differ.
Thread (maker used Coats Cotton 8549 Purple, Coats Duet 7288 Orange, Coats Duet 1000 Black)
Other Sewing kit essentials
fig 2
WHAT TO DO (to make two mug rugs)
1. Place and pin the template to the backing fabric and carefully cut out the shape, do the same with the wadding, and repeat with the quilting fabric (shown in fig 2 and fig 3). So you end up with three Ghost shapes in the different materials. Repeat (1) to make a second mug rug.

Fig 3

Fig 4
2. To make one mug rug, match up the three shapes in the different materials and pin together to make three layers, ensure the wadding is on the bottom, the backing fabric sandwiched in the middle and the quilting fabric on the top as in (Fig 4) Repeat (2) to make a second mug rug
Fig 5
3. Carefully machine along the edges catching in all three material layers as you go, removing the pins as you do so, and make sure to leave a opening of around 5 cm (2") and preferably not along a straight edge. Trim off the access being careful not to cut into your neat stitching. Turn the insides through to the outside by pulling the fabric through the opening, and ensure it is the wadding section that gets reverted to the inside. Push out to the seams so the rug is as flat as can be. Hand sew to close the gap. Iron flat. Repeat (3) to make the second mat. Fig 6 shows the two mats ready for running stitching across the surfaces, both have a black top and a tweed coloured reverse. 
Fig 6

 Fig 7
4. Use lines and lines of machine stitching from top to bottom, or side to side, which ever you prefer. Change the angles, change the thread, make up your own designs. Repeat (4) for the second mat.

5. For both mug rugs, cut out eyes and mouths from stiff material scraps so that the fabric does not fray. Maker used orange and cream coloured fabrics cut out from a large sample book, and she opted for the strips that still had backing paper stuck to the back. Maker cut out the facial features with shearing scissors and appliqued in position using zig zag machining. 

Note: The finished measurements end up being approx 20 cm (8 1/2") Long and 17 cm (6 1/2") wide, so perfect as a mug rug, but also ideal as a table or wall hanging decoration. This is a straight forward project idea for a first-time quilter.

Monday, 5 October 2015

This week Arne & Carlos to open The Knitting & Stitching Show in London UK

Arne & Carlos
Image source: www.makeitcoats.com

Norwegian knitwear designers and authors Arne & Carlos will officially open the The Knitting & Stitching Show this week at Alexandra Palace, London on Wednesday 7th October at 10am. Arne and Carlos are known for their knitwear designs and books including 55 Christmas Balls to Knit: Colourful Festive Ornaments
, Knitted Dolls: and, most recently, 30 Slippers to Knit and Felt

The duo attract a huge following on Instagram and Facebook, with fun how-to videos and quirky project ideas. This October they launch the Julekuler (Christmas bauble) Pattern booklet using Patons Wool DK, as well as a range of new colours in the Arne & Carlos Regia sock collection!

Following the show opening, Arne & Carlos will be at the Coats Crafts UK stand (TGD11 & TGG11) where visitors can meet them in person, ask questions, and join their selfie competition #arne&carlosselfie

The Knitting & Stitching Show is the largest craft and textiles event in the UK, offering an unrivalled creative experience. The show boasts stands from over 400 craft companies, hundreds of workshops, Stitch by Stitch demonstrations, daily Fashion Shows hosted by Coats Crafts and more than 20 Galleries showcasing the work of leading textile artists and groups from all over the world

Galleries this year include Michala Gyetvai’s Enchanted Landscapes and Kate Jenkins’ knitted fishmongers.The fish counter with a difference! The difference being that all the fish are knitted, crocheted and sequined. Visitors will be able to buy an array of fish, prawns, cockles and mussels off the counter and have them mounted and signed as original art pieces. There will also be a wall of framed tinned sardines and other fishy inspired products available throughout the show. The show will also feature leading textile artists including Isobel Hall, Stella Harding, the Royal School of Needlework and Sophie Digard in association with Selvedge.

With over 400 exhibitors at the London event selling everything a crafter desires: from a vast array of fabric to every type of sewing machine from all the leading brands; to every type of thread and knitting yarn; plus haberdashery, patterns, kits and more.

The Knitting & Stitching Show is open for 5 days 07 October - 11 October 2015. Apart from all of the above it offers its visitors more than 200 workshops in the Learning Curve in association with Groves; with classes covering a wide variety of skills including machine sewing, hand embroidery, felt making, crochet and knitting. New for 2015, The Dressmaking Studio, in association with The McCall Pattern Company and SEW TODAY, will offer a range of classes designed to improve and enhance dressmaking skills.

Who's going?

Friday, 25 September 2015

October Writing event in Leicester - Writing for children

Details below of an annual 'writing for children' event, taking place in Leicester next month (October). 

Wolves and Apples 2015 
includes practical workshops and talks from authors, agents and publishers. Geared to help emerging or aspiring writers across books, TV and theatre to develop the skills and knowledge needed to write for children and young people.

Full event details and Programme at Red Lighthouse online Note: Two panel discussions will top and tail the event

College Court Conference Centre, Leicester. LE2 3TQ

October 3rd 10.00 - 17.00

Cost £25.00 plus a small booking fee

Book on to the writing event at Eventbrite 

Route any questions and queries by using the contact form at Red Lighthouse publishing or telephone 01530 830811

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

The Alties Script Writing Competition

I have just entered a competition to win £2000 for the alternative ending I've invented for a well known crime/comedy film of 1969. I used the full 750 words to do so. Some scenes in the original film have fast-paced action so I have submitted my entry in the Best Action and Adventure category as it seems the best fit, though there are more adventure packed films, and funnier comedies so I was a little confused as to which one to go for. There are 5 categories altogether. I have written my piece in prose, but it can be presented in scripted dialogue. Why don't you give it a go? Closes 4th September 2015 so still time to get that thinking cap on.

Online retailer Cartridge Save http://www.cartridgesave.co.uk/ has set up the'The Alties' competition. Entrants are to script an alternative ending to a favourite film. The grand prize is £2000. There are runner- up prizes too. 

For details of How to submit your entry, t&cs, and categories etc visit http://www.cartridgesave.co.uk/thealties   
Two ways to enter: either by email to alternateendings@democracypr.com or post your script to Alternate Endings Competition, Democracy, 62 Beech Road, Chorlton, Manchester M21 9EG

Here is a link to Buzzfeed which lists 129 iconic  cinematography from top films which may help to inspire you with a film to choose and to write up that alternative ending. Good Luck!  http://www.buzzfeed.com/danieldalton/there-will-be-scrolling?utm_term=.mkJmdWm5W#.ju28wG83G 

Monday, 10 August 2015

The skill of the Textile Artist - The Festival of Quilts 2015

The Festival of QuiltsEurope's leading patchwork and quilting show at the NEC, Birmingham UK.

The Competition quilts (with entries from complete beginners, children and schools, through to professional quilters and textile artists) and other exhibits were displayed in professionally curated Galleries. 

There were many people clicking away with their cameras and devices. For me my attendance was more about profiling businesses on my commercial outlet and less about celebrating the competing element. But in this post the aim is to represent the skills, the colour and the intrinsic qualities of the craft work.Visitors to this post please feel free to leave your comments:

Tuesday, 4 August 2015