Sewing the Dream | Chapter 2.5

Yes I know I said I would be talking about other stuff at the end of my last blog but (as is usual for me) I have allowed myself to be sidetracked into more Brother XV/Dream Machine wonderfulness – hence this mini-blog.

I’m talking about the feature on the machine that allows you to make appliqués – or indeed patches – at the press of a button.

I’ve been into making Christmas decorations recently and thought how wonderful it would be if I could use some of the many, many Christmas designs I already have and make them into ornaments for the tree.

Here's the first one still waiting for her hanging loop and some decorative beads. The design is from the wonderful fruBlomgren on Etsy.

Please ignore the zigzag at the top, that’s where I pieced the stabiliser – yes I really am that mean...

As you can see the satin stitch appliqué follows the line of the design which is pretty and effective, but then I thought how great it would be if I could put my designs into a simple circle or oval or…

The Knitting & Stitching Show 2017 Alexandra Palace, London - Event Review

The Knitting & Stitching Shows are the definitive events for anyone with a love of textile-based craft. The Autumn show at the iconic Alexandra Palace is the biggest textile event in the UK, with hundreds of workshops, demonstrations, interactive features, professionally curated galleries, as well as 300 exhibitors selling specialist craft supplies. Spend a day re-stocking your yarn stash, learning to knit, mastering the art of tailoring and more. There has never been a better excuse to get involved in craft!

The 'Tiger Bag'. An original design by Vivienne Westwood, lovingly recreated here by Hand & Lock. The design is one of Vivienne's all-time favourites, accentuated by traditional goldwork, tambour beading and appliqued chiffon fabric.

Toft's wonderful Giraffe was on display on their stand. Entirely made of wool, he always causes quite the stir with the children visitors!

''Heraldic Swan' by Melita Butterall. Made entirely from fabric, it really s…

The Stitching, Sewing & Hobbycraft Show - Plus Cakes International!) Event Review

Discover all the ideas, inspiration and supplies you could ever dream of! Knitters, stitchers, hobbyists and crafters will be in their element with endless supplies, innovations, new product launches, demonstrations and workshops designed to encourage and inspire your creativity – there’s no better place to stock up and revel in creative craft inspiration!

We were at the Stitching, Sewing & Hobbycraft Show a few weeks ago. We were so busy we didn't have a lot of time to look around, but below is a little run down of our whistle-stop tour of the Cakes International Show (which was also running at the same time).

We were with one of our Birmingham dealers - DC Nutt, who helps us with all our NEC shows.
This scene is completely made of chocolate. Lifesize structures of Snow White and the Wicked Queen offering the apple. As the show progressed, the sculptors added delicate touches to the artwork.

A Balinese dancer entirely made from cake and sugar!

A green man tree over 6ft tall.…

Sewing the Dream | Chapter 2: First steps

I had planned to write this blog much earlier but to be honest I have been having waaaay too much fun with my XV. 

I have to say I am a “jump in there and press all the buttons” type of girl rather than a “get a cup of tea/coffee and read the manual” type of girl. While waiting for my machine to arrive I did read the manual - a bit - and also actually made a list of what I was going to try when she arrived.  But once she was actually ensconced in my sewing room - all bets were off!  I was drawn irresistibly to My Design Centre like a moth to a flame!

Having installed the first upgrade pack, I simply could not wait to design something all by myself, right there… on the machine!

The first stitch out I did used an initial from one of the beautiful built in alphabets and I chose a background “quilting” design featuring some beautiful roses. Very simple to do as the machine is so intuitive (remember she arrived on Friday and I created this on Saturday morning!)

I decided to join a dedicate…

Using the Brother Innov-is VQ2 at Jaycotts

The Brother Innov-is VQ2 from Jaycotts.
I recently spent a day at Jaycotts finding out from owners of this wonderful machine just what it is that excites them so much.
What became obvious very quickly was the tremendous amount of enthusiasm and passion for this machine shown by both owners and staff, so I had to find out more!
I interviewed the group of  Jaycotts customers who all own this fabulous machine and have put their comments and thoughts together so that you can see it through their eyes
Ann has been sewing all her life and has not had the VQ2 for very long so she is still learning. She loves the electronic side of it, in particular, the extra-large colour touch screen which is so easy to use.
All Ann needs to do is to simply touch the screen to edit stitches, customise the settings, change to one of 13 built-in languages and set the clock. She also loves the on-screen video tutorials and built-in tutorials and help guides which recommend the perfect settings for her project.