March Show & Tell

Well – here we are – our very first online Show & Tell!

First off the mark to send a photo of a completed project was Corinne. This cute little dog was made from a kit that Corinne bought at Malvern Quilt show last Autumn. Her intention was to use him as a pin cushion but she can’t bear the thought of sticking pins into him! He’s been waiting to have his coat finished for 3 months and how smart he looks now.

Rosie has been busy on her sewing machine. Having finished a Project Linus quilt she moved on to making a large seat plus back for her swing chair. She was quoted £120 for the foam. So, to make do, she used an old table cloth, old wadding and her parents old curtain. All Quilted together and she has a very successful seat for nothing!

Pat has been making sashiko bags Here is one that she has finished. She is trying to work more slowly otherwise she is worried that she will run out of things to make. Oh NO!!!

Janet has been busy making the most of the weather to get on with gardening but she has made a couple of fabric jingly balls for her grandchildren

Lesley Anne took up the challenge that Monica had set her, which was to make something with a little vintage cloth as part of our Make Do & Mend project. Lesley was originally going to use boutis to embellish the vintage linen, but she didn’t think that would work so she used it as an overlay on a pouch instead. The lola pouch pattern is from Sotak handmade and it was really easy to use. Beautifully creative – well done Lesley Anne.

Before lockdown Gill Harris from Sorrento Furnishers Cowbridge gave Liz a nursery fabric sample book which she has been inspired to use, though she would like to hand some on to members of the gorup when we are eventually free to roam!

This is a little shoulder bag and sunglasses case that Liz has made = getting ready for her next holiday!

Monica has made an Alice in Wonderland themed collage from vintage fabrics. Some of the images have been created by using soluble fabric – a great way to practice free machine embroidery.

And, this is an Alice fabric art piece that she made in 2014. A first attempt at free machone embroidery!

There all sorts of great ideas on the internet at the moment for people to keep busy and be creative. Monica has recently come across a company in Aberystwyth that has made available free downloadable activity sheets. She has used one of the designs to create a nautical stitched postcard

The beads of courage bag challenge is going well. Truda has made nine lovely colourful ones. She is not sure when she will be able to post them but promised to get them posted as soon as she can

Monica has started to make some as well – still mmore to come!

And we are sure that there wil be more as people have been asking where to send them. Keris contact detials have been emailed around along with the pattern to make the bead bags

Keep busy and keep safe

Monica & Liz


“So pleased to receive all your posts, as one of many on my own at home. Keeps us in touch”. Truda Theodore x

Never a Dull Moment at DtP

It might be a damp, dull and drizzly day but you could never say that DtP was in any way similar. There is always lots of chatter to start the day and plenty of laughter and enjoyment once everyone has focused on their latest idea

Chris was no exception – she was busy on a sea theme for 2020 – drawing and colouring an octopus which was looking fabulous by the end of the day

Janet was busy block printing a calico bag for her sister who has just started keeping bees! And waht a perfectly clear image has been achieved

Dawn was busy painting backgrounds and showed her ice dyeing from last time – which was a great success

She had also made some lovely cards using some of her painted paper from last month – with the addition of fabric scraps and free machine embroidery

Monica tried out Mary’s new Indian wood block – such a fabulous design and destined to cecome a book cover once embroidered. Could be featured in the Make Do & Mend exhibition as the fabric was taken from an old duvet!

Jan was busy painting fabric for a later quilting project

Dianne was experimenting with stencils on a piece of ice dyed fabric she created last month – and plans to do a bit of free machine embroidery on the mandelas

Alison and Steph decided to have a go with the new lino cutting kit and produced some lovely images. Alion was planning to make some cards which is a great idea

Steph also had a go with a stamp that she found in the resource box and embellished the image with pencil colours – which gave it a great lift!

Meanwhile Corinne and Keris were quietly beavering away in the corner watercolour painting on fabric – can’t wait to see the finished pieces of work.

Another great month where the creative juices flow and we can enjoy some lovely pieces of work – well done everyone!

Making for Pleasure

February Cutting Edge was busy as usual with plenty of projects on the go and some beautiful completed work. And a welcome addition this month was the chance to do a bit of willow weaving courtesy of Dawn who showed how to make a small tree – a little early for Christmas – but great potential!

First off Dawn showed a few she had made earlier and then gave a short demonstration of how to get started …..and it wasn’t long before there were some fab willow trees to admire!

Many thanks to Dawn for her sharing her knowledge and skill – a very enjoyable exercise and one that some might decide to take further in the future!

Whilst the weavers were busy at wortk other were getting on with various projects

Sallys quilt that has been in the making for at least 30 years!

Elaine’s sashiko

or having a chat…

Work was also underway on projects that will are destined for the forthcoming Make Do & Mend exhibition. Keris was busy embroidering the shawls on the tablecloth – so beautifully done that they look like woollen ones! Monica and Caroline (L) were busy selelcting plate designs that wil be printed on fabric and appliqued onto the tablecloth. Recipes are going to be incorporated onto the plate.

Chris was exploring how to renovate the hood on the dolls pram and Liz has taken the pram home to look at making a cover.

And Amanda brought in her finished pieces for the Make Do & Mend exhibition

As usual there was some beautifuk work shared at Show and Tell.

Truda is well on the way to completing a lap quilt made from vintage fabrics – which will be hung at the exhibition

And she showed a quilt that she has recently completed

Marie had also completed a bed size quilt

and Keris had completed a quilt for her new grandson

Monica showed driftwood boats that she had made for a beach hut event on Barry Island in May and she also showed a book cover that she had made using a felted sweater

Finally Pat showed a jacket that she had recently made using Oakshott fabrics

Our Cutting Edge sessions never fail to deliver with so many lovely things to admire and skils to learn whilst enjoying each others company. Bliss!

Ice Dyeing And All That Jazz!

Today’s Dyeing to Paint was a bit full on with a ice dyeing and experimenting with the new Koh – i – Noor paints to create vibrant backgrounds which will hopefully will be turned into lovely pieces of work in the not too distant future

It could be argued that it wasn’t the right sort of the day to ice day – or – as it was a frosty morning outside maybe it was. Either way the ice making machine came out, the fabric was soaked in soda ash and everyone was eager to get going with the procion dyes.

And, after that flurry of an introduction I am afraid that you are going to have to wait to see the results – as the ice takes it’s time to dissolve taking with it the dyes into the fabric. Meantime – here is a photo of the merry band of ice dyers at work!

This was followed by yet another activitiy – to texture paper with tissue to create a background ready for painting. And not just any old painting – the fun part was using a straw to move it around the textures created with the tissue. A great exercise which allowed for some time out for a coffee and a chat whilst the paper dried…..

Or…. using the hairdryer to quicken the process!

And here are some of the lovely images that were created

Next month the plan is to stencil over the background ready for stitching – great fun!

Finally Monica was trying out a lino cut that she had made of an INdian stencil design – destined as a design for a book cover in the future

Another wonderful creative day with lovely takented people – what more could we want? And- we were thrilled to welcome and enjoy the company of Dianne and Clare today. We look forward to seeing them again soon!

Fashion in the Frame

Yesterday Jaci Mc Quillan went to the costume learners show in the National Museum Cardiff and below is her report.

The commentary, by Prof Lloyd Llewelly-Jones of Cardiff University, was fascinating – there is a lot more to the clothes people were painted in than meets the eye.

There was no information beforehand regarding which paintings would be used for the costume reproductions. While we were waiting for the ‘fashion show’ and judging a friend and I were admiring Augustus John’s work and discussing his painting ‘Dorelia McNeil in a Feathered Hat’ when along came a model dressed as Dorelia – a lovely surprise!

There was a very limited amount of her clothing visible in the painting as it is a ‘head and shoulders’ but the maker had researched the person and the likely bohemian clothing worn and had even included green and purple because of Dorelia’s support of the suffragettes.

The event was packed and, once we sat down, it was difficult to take good photos so I’ve taken the one of the winner – ‘Fair Rosamund’ – and a little video of some of the costumes from the college’s website

Apparently all the costumes can be seen in June at the end of year show. I’m going to keep an eye out for the date.

Many thanks to Jaci for taking the time to send a write up and photos – much appreciated! We will keep an eye out for the June date and share the date when we have it as we are sure that there will be members who would like to go along

Viewing Embroidery at St Fagan’s

Today members of Cutting Edge visited St Fagan’s to view some of the museums embroidery work – and oh my word what a wonderful time we had! Elen, the curator selected pieces that gave a wonderfful insight into costumes of the past. There were men’s waistcoats delicately embroidered with flowers. Some completed and which had obviously been worn. Others in the making. How could you do all that embroidery and then not finish it???

This 1660 piece of stump work below was incredible and so well preserved

The gloves from 17th century were exquisite – tiny birds and animals hand stitched with fine threads

This panel is thought to be an 17th century chair back.

…. and this a pelmet from above the bed

So many stunning things to examine and our tour wasn’t over yet. Elen then took us to the textile department in the storeroom to view some of the huge range work stored there. Cross stitch samplers (some done by 8 year olds!), celebration handkerchiefs and tapestries

And on the way we came across coracle boats, walking sticks, weaving looms, harps….

dolls houses


the Vulcan pub sign!

….and a beautiful 18th century gown, created in silk from Spitalfields in London – stunning and what a privilege to be able to get up close

How lucky we are to live so close to such a fabulous museum where we can enjoy the exquisite craftsmanship of the past- a HUGE vote of thanks to curator Elen Phillips for making the day so special and memorable for us all!

Time to start thinking about what we can view another time!

A Make Do & Mend Sort of Day!

Well, it might have been dark and miserable outside today but inside the atmosphere was positively glowing. And, as ever we had lots of lovely work to admire – particularly around our theme of Make Do & Mend

There was a table overflowing with some beautiful pieces of work…. and a pram waiting to be renovated. You will be pleased to know that we now have a plan – so watch this space

Amanda brought in a wonderful piece of work focused on pigeon post and featuring an authentic pigeon feather obtained from the pigeon society.

She was also busy today making a boro bag

Caroline was busy making a whole cloth cot quilt on recycled sheet which fellt beautifully soft to touch

Truda showed an amazing lap quilt that is work in progress. It is made from vintage fabrics and embroidered cloths. She has also made a lovely fabric picture featuring a little cross stitch robin

Frances brought in a beautiful collage made from vintage materials

And a book about feedsack secrets – fashion from hard times and a panel that she bought in the USA

Janet had made cushions from wool blankets and Sorrento furnishers off cuts – coordinated with embroidery

And Jan emptied out her Mary Poppins bag to reveal a Christmas tree skirt, a quilt that she had incorporated some old fabric crackers into, her advent calendar and some lovely felt birds that she made for the 12 days of Christmas – more to come we assume?

Kerry also showed three quilts that were made from fabric scraps

Pat, Janet and Rosie were quietly beavering away in the corner . Janet and Rosie were making quilts for Project Linus using fabric scraps from their stash

Julie was busy working on an embroidered dragon and showed an exam piece that she had done for the Embroideres Guild

Fiona is obviously on a mission with her floral theme – and had made a fab lampshade

And was busy working on some wonderful floral pieces. She failed t mention that she had made the tunic and matching scarf that she was wearing!

A huge thank you to Truda for sharing her skills with members – pictured here demonstrating embroidery stitches

Finally Dawn brought in some vintage pieces to show and Rosie had brought in a child’s Vulcan sewing machine that she found in a charity shop last week – what a find and so appropriate for our theme. It hardly needs saying but we will have to have a an exhibition later in the year to showcase all the beautiful work that has been done by our very talented group. Well done everyone!