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Valerie's Blog

Same pattern different quilts.

November 16th, 2015

One of the enduring joys of patchwork I think is that the same pattern, using different fabrics ends up creating such a different quilt and I wanted to share with you my latest favourite scrap quilt.

Here it is made up three times and just how different can they be!

4_abcd-2 - Valerie Nesbitt - valerie

4_abcd-3 - Valerie Nesbitt - valerie


4_abcd-1 - Valerie Nesbitt - valerie

Their destination is the charity Momentum (based in Kingston upon Thames) who look after and suppport children with life limiting illnesses and their families, and also to St.George's children's ward (where one my students is the nurse in charge!)

My thanks to Lynne Goldsworthy for the original pattern which is featured in the Sept/Oct 2015 issue of Quilting for You  entitled Sherwood Forest - I did make one quilt using her instructions and then rescaled for the three above down to a 6" block.

How NOT to make half-square triangle units.

November 13th, 2015

As someone who thinks the rotary cutter is the best bit of kit ever invented for patchworkers, I am open to any idea that is quick and easy.  BUT that doesn't mean throwing caution to the wind and the current trend flooding the internet to completely ignore the grain of the fabric when making quilts, fills me with horror (and I know lots of quilts that will be horrific too!)

The current issue of Love Patchwork & Quilting shows a stunning quilt on the cover designed by Amanda Castor, but when looking at the making instructions all the half-square triangle are off-grain, and then the blocks are set on point, and then the edges are cut - for a beginner this is a nightmare scenario and if you haven't someone to ask, you will wonder why everything goes wobbly when you try to quilt it - and applying spray starch is not the answer.

The answer is to keep the grain in mind when you are making the quilt! - get it right at the start and you won't have to 'fix' it later!

Here is a link to an excellent piece on the subject for you to read:  How not to make Half-square triangles:

There are lots of ways of making half-square triangle units, which keep the grain in the right place and are quick and easy - especially when using the sewing machine and the rotary cutter - some of them take a little more thought and care in the making, but how much quicker that is and less tearful than getting it all wrong - which you can't mend!

If you want to check our some of Valeries' methods: click here:

Quilt by Karen Nicol in the Habby Dept of Liberty's London

October 15th, 2015

Karen Nicol (one of our contributors) has a quilt now hanging up in Liberty's which you can all go and see; it's in the haberdashery dept.

Here are some pics and more info:


4_quilt-in-liberty - Valerie Nesbitt - valerie


To celebrate their 140th anniversary, Liberty's  chose Karen ,Lou Gardiner, Amanda Fatherazi, the Shoreditch Sisters and the Darlings to each produce a quilt. The shop was built from the wood of two ships so the theme for the quilts had to be sailors tattoos...brilliant!

4_liberty-quilt-1 - Valerie Nesbitt - valerie 4_me-and-quilt - Valerie Nesbitt - valerie

If you want to see more of Karen's amazing work and learn more about her, here on the website: use the quick search Karen Nicol

Forgotten Heros?

October 15th, 2015

Many of us make quilts for our military hero's but one of our viewers, Dr Jacqueline Jeynes written an amazing book entitled 'Forgotten Pensioners of War;  FEPOW's and their stories'; she was inspired to write this by her own father


4_fepow-book-cover - Valerie Nesbitt - valerie

The book is a testament to everyone affected by the long, savage imprisonment of our military personnel in the Far East 1941-45, many of them like my father, just teenagers. There were thousands of civilian internees too, mostly women and children, not just from Britain of course as many American, Canadian, Australian, Dutch and New Zealanders were held captive.

These are the personal stories of POWs, internees and their families, collected over 25 years. But research evidence also gives a wider picture of the fall of Hong Kong and Singapore, the orders from Japan to kill everyone in the camps, by whatever means (issued a few days before the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki), and shows just how desperate it had become by 1945.

To all those involved “We Salute You!”


If you are interested in obtaining a copy it is available through Amazon or you can contact Jacqueline directly:

New Video Layout

August 28th, 2015

We have recently upgraded and improved our video system on the website, as some of the eagle eyed amongst you may have spotted. It will also help those of you who may have recently experienced difficulties seeing the videos, caused by browser updates.

For those of you unsure about the new controls, here's a picture to help you, but if you still need help just click here to contact Juliet with your queries.


To try to keep you in touch

August 26th, 2015

Here is a lovely comment from one of our viewers:

Hi, as a member of this brilliant club , I would love to win this month's giveaway prize Thank you so much for your hard work, it is much appreciated. It keeps us in touch with the quilting world.
Kind Regards

and it is what we aim to do -

So keep watching for more from Jennie, Angela Daymond, Paula Doyle and myself as we share new workshops and some of our favourite things.

AND we plan to be more active on all those social platforms everyone keeps talking about - Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook ! - just to keep in touch more.

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Product of the Month November 2015

Candlemat Kit in Red and Green from Creative Quilting
Candlemat Kit in Red and Green from Creative Quilting.

Simple tablecentre using 2 ½” strips of fabric and the special 'Thangles' papers.
Free P&P in the UK in November 2015 PLUS entry into a draw for 1 months FREE subscription.

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Book of the Month

Christmas Wreaths & Garlands by Mandy Shaw

Christmas Wreaths & Garlands by Mandy Shaw

Create beautiful wreaths and garlands for your home with this festive selection of projects designed by Mandy. Free P&P in the UK for November 2015.

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