Tuesday, 27 October 2015

We are now partnering Janome sewing machines exclusively

We're really pleased to be able to start this page off with some excellent news - we're now partnering Janome, the world’s largest manufacturer of domestic sewing machines. Most of you will have heard of them, but how much do you really know about them? A couple of  factoids to entertain your friends below:

  • Janome is famed for the quality and reliability of its products and was the first company to produce a multi-coloured embroidery machine for home use and still leads the world in this advanced technology field. 
  • Janome UK was established in 1969 as New Home Sewing Machine Co Ltd and changed its name to Janome in the mid 1990’s. Operating in nearly 200 retail outlets throughout the UK, Janome is the No1 choice of brand by independent retailers and department stores.

Thursday, 22 October 2015

Awarded an Excellence in Coursework C&G commendation

Sylvia Cavanagh's work was put forward by her tutor for a excellence commendation and we're delighted to say that she received it. As well as Sylvia's work you can also view the completion galleries for many of our recent students at this link

Monday, 21 September 2015

Ruby Seppings Blog

Every wished embroidery would erm...get out of the dark ages?  It's not so much the techniques that can look dated, but the way they are used.  Ruby Sepping's blog is on a quest to bring embroidery bang up to date and is well worth taking a look at here  RUBY SEPPING BLOG

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Ten Plus Textiles Exhibition

If you're looking for something a little different over the next few weeks, why not visit the Ten Plus exhibition?

Friday, 19 June 2015

Lights, Camera, Action....more flippin' video!

My goodness it has been a busy few weeks!  The EQA visit on Monday took some time, of course, but the main source of 'busy-ness' has been our new Getting Started courses and their video contents.  50 videos have been shot, edited, voiced over and put online over the last 3 months.  We're just finishing off the written content for the new online course software and we're good to go.  Which is lucky as our webdesigner is just completing the coding on our new site which will be up middle of July, along with the 9 new courses.

This time we're specializing more so rather than beginners courses covering basics on a wide subject we've listened to what our customers have said to us and produced a range of more specialized 'dip in and out of' courses on things like goldwork, wet felting, shibori, machine applique and more.  Each one has a small design video to help those new to it take a few tentative steps towards designing their own pieces, goes on to cover an average of 4 techniques and then takes the student through a completed piece at the end using the techniques they have already learnt.

We're also not leaving it at the nine - oh no - we'll bring out another 3  three times a year, so nine new ones per annum in total, because again we listened when you told us you want something new to look forward to, so we'll do our best to oblige.  Of course whilst we're doing all of this we're also building up a great video library of different techniques and methods which as a longer term project we'll build into the C&G course materials.  Phew - no wonder we all feel tired out!
This is a little peek at one of the items made in our new Getting Started with Automatic Stitch Machine Embroidery

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Louise Gardener makes Quilt for Liberty of London

Read more about Louise Gardener's quilt on Liberty's own BLOG
"Louise Gardiner is bringing embroidery firmly into the 2010s thanks to a unique combination of spontaneity, crafstmanship and creative vision. After a whirlwind career – including an exhibition at The Saatchi Gallery, multiple industry awards and a feature in The Guardian – Louise continues to produce work to inspire the next generation of crafstpeople. Last week, Louise staged some guerilla embroidery live in our Great Marlborough Street windows to coincide with her exclusive quilt being on display. We caught up with her to talk needlework, inspiration and creating a commemorative quilt for Liberty’s 140th birthday. . ."

Monday, 27 April 2015

Wilmslow textile artist at Liberty London

Isn't it wonderful to see a local artist (at least local to us here at SST!) doing so well?  Below is an extract from SoCheshire's interview with Louise;
"Cheshire textile artist Louise Gardiner has been commissioned to create a giant painted and embroidered quilt as part of Liberty of London’s 140th anniversary celebrations.
The quilt will be on display at the famous department store from 23rd April for a whole year. It will first be on show in the store’s window for a month, and then in its new Haberdashery Department for the remainder of the year.
The quilt, entitled Steering the Lighthouse of Love, uses Victorian maritime tattoos as its theme, inspired by the fact that the Tudor-style department store itself was built using timbers from two naval ships, HMS Impregnable and HMS Hindustan.
The quilt depicts a stylised red and white lighthouse, with its torch beaming out over stormy seas set within a rope frame.
Beneath is a ship’s wheel surrounded by old English roses and steered by two busty ladies reminiscent of the female figures sailors had tattooed on their arms.
Above is a decorative scroll worked with the name Liberty and supported by two pouting mermaids, while other motifs include swallows and union jacks.
Louise spent time researching historical maritime tattoos and says she was attracted to their subversive, faintly cheeky nature.
To reflect this, she has used the strong reds, blues and blacks associated with traditional tattoos, but has also added brasher colours such as neon, gold and metallic and has placed the central lighthouse in frame of high-visibility fabric which will glow in the dark."
To read the full article please visit http://www.so-cheshire.co.uk/news-4/10555/wilmslow-textile-artist-at-liberty-london

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Friday, 10 April 2015

CREATION: The best of arts and crafts coming to Milton Keynes

Staged in thecentre:mk, Springtime CREATION is the annual event which presents all the best in the world of art and crafts, from traditional to avant garde.
In Middleton Hall the world of Arts & Crafts is brought to the very heart the UK's most modern city. There is sure to be something for everyone, from paintings to patchwork, ceramics to soap, frames to fudge, sewing to stoneware.
If visitors can think of a material, it's probably going to be there, with artisans using silver, gold, wood, paper, wax, slate and even Alpaca wool!
This craft event will encompass a wide selection of hand crafted items by nationally selected artists, designers and craftsmen. See free demos of sugarcraft, models, flower arranging, scrapbooks and chocolate!

The event runs from Friday April 17 until Sunday April 19. Entry is free and is open at the following times:
FRIDAY 9.30am - 8.00pm
SATURDAY 9.00am - 6.00pm
SUNDAY 10.30am - 5.00pm

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Self taught textile artist is new artist-in-residence for Claydon House

Looking for something to do over the Easter weekend?  Why not visit Claydon House?
A self-taught textile artist who creates ‘paintings’ by hand stitching pieces of fabric together is this year’s artist in residence at Claydon House.

By the summer, Barbara Shaw will have produced seven pictures using the stately home in Middle Claydon as inspiration, and is currently working on a picture focusing on the ironwork of the grand staircase.
She will be demonstrating and chatting to visitors at the house over the Easter weekend, and exhibiting all seven finished pieces in July/August time.

She said: “I’ve come to it very late in life, so I think people find it quite inspiring. I started doing patchwork and had loads of scraps of material left over, so I started making cards.

Mrs Shaw, who lives and works in Aylesbury, said: “I was just sticking bits of fabric on top of eachother using Pritt Stick. It’s like a jigsaw coming together.
“It’s such an easy medium, and it builds colour like a painting.
“It can be quite intense, but it’s knowing when to stop. If I aimed for perfection, I’d never get anywhere.
Mrs Shaw’s uses ribbons, chiffon, lace, tweed, cottons and ‘anything textured’ to create her pieces, which look like watercolour paintings when seen from a distance.
To find out more about visiting Claydon, go to http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/claydon/visitor-information/

Barbara Shaw's Claydon House

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

A unique exhibition of ecclesiastical embroidery from the Collections of the Royal School of Needlework and Ely Cathedral in Cambridgeshire. 4th to the 28th Feb - check opening times online before you travel, just to be sure.

Friday, 6 February 2015

Fancy a trip to the Czech Republic?

In the Czech Republic, it happens only once a year that those interested in textile art have the chance to see more than 700 original quilts from all over the world concentrated to one place.

You still have time to book your flight - the meeting is in April!


Thursday, 15 January 2015

Judging by the many adverts on TV right now, everyone's mind must have turned to booking their holidays after the Christmas rush is over. 

You may wish to consider one of the wonderful ones on offer from Colouricious - you can view them HERE