So here we are and this is my first post of 2018. A new year and an exciting new website from UKQU! I am so happy to be involved with this new UKQU project.

Let me introduce myself. I am a married mum of four and grandmother of two. I work full-time in a manufacturing research and design environment but my true love lies outside of work with fabric and the almost endless possibilities there are for using it.

I have been crafting for as long as I can remember and I spend all of my spare time designing and making things. I am primarily a textile artist, making everything from quilts, to wall hangings, embroidery, appliqué, cross stitch and soft toys – but I also knit and crochet and I may sometimes incorporate elements of these skills in some of my projects.

When I quilt, I really like working with pre-cuts – jelly rolls, layer cakes, charm packs and so on with the odd FQ or half yard thrown in for feature blocks, sashing and binding. I have a king-size Grace quilting frame with a Janome 1600PQC sewing machine in my sewing room, but to be honest, I tend to stick to making smaller quilts, baby gifts in particular which I can quilt on my domestic sewing machine. They are very quick to run up and give fantastic opportunities for personalisation as well as lending themselves very well to techniques such as embroidery and appliqué – but don’t worry, any block patterns I share on the website can easily be utilised to make larger quits as well.

I may publish the odd quilt block pattern throughout the year, but what I really want to do is share ideas for stash busting… small projects that help use up the scraps of fabrics we all have bags and boxes of… pieces that aren’t really big enough to do anything with, but we just can’t bear to get rid of because they might just come in handy sometime. You all know exactly what I’m talking about!

Each month there will be a different project using scrap piece of fabric pieces no wider than the width of a jelly roll strip (2½”), aimed at the beginner/intermediate skill level. Those readers who are more skilled can take the patterns and embellish and adapt them in their own way if they want to. I’m planning pin cushions, small soft toys, postcards and greetings card ideas, some crazy patchwork and even techniques like simple English Paper Piecing (EPP) and Foundation Paper Piecing (FPP) to use up some of those scraps. I will often incorporate other optional elements such as hand and machine embroidery (FME) and appliqué into my designs.

I really like making photo memory quilts and complex appliqué pictures from photographs. I will be writing up some step-by-step patterns on how to do this yourself.

I will also be working in collaboration with the amazing Andrea Walpole from time to time, to bring you a range of small soft toys that complement her fantastic Block of the Month designs.