Thursday, 30 September 2010


On Tuesday I drove to a hotel in Ipswich to attend a Business Link workshop entitled "improving your website through the use of SEO techniques and technologies masterclass".
The fact that even the title was a teeny bit confusing didn't put me off although I was anxious that my baby brain wouldn't be able to cope with it...the world of google and search and meta tags and keywords is one I am not over familiar with, but one I need to get familiar with in order to make Patch work well.
This was not my first Business Link workshop, but it was the first that I felt benefited Patch, in the morning the first session was called 'Making the most of free SEO tools' - I have come away with tons of advice and info to make sure Patch is working efficiently (now need the time to implement though!!!)
The second session was about Google Adwords ..although I don't think adwords is the way for patch to advertise, this session made the whole topic must clearer.

After a rather fab lunch, we resumed with a session, run by Fiona from StreamExchange, about video streaming and media - how video can be a powerful marketing tool for your business if used on your website. We learnt that our businesses were more likely to make front page of google if our websites contain relevant video.
I had been contacted a few days before the masterclass and asked if I'd be happy to be filmed so that a short video could be made to demonstrate how video streaming online worked....I said yes and spent all weekend wondering what I had done.
The filming...all I'll say is Davina is not worried about her job on my account ;)
But I think overall its turned out well....take a look yourself.... *blushes*

I'd definately recommend some of Business Links's free workshops..I've booked onto some more over the next few months including one on website analytics and one on copywriting (only 2 hours so must be an overview to say the least lol!!).

I hope that this post may break the chain of not posting for ages..I have a lot to write about, so hopefully I can manage some kind of regularity!!

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Book Review - How to Sew - David and Charles

Fiona at The Sewing Directory gave me the opportunity to review a new series of e books by David and Charles, entitled How to Sew.
The short (24 pages long) guides cover a range of subjects to aid the sewing beginner, the guides have full colour illustrations and photographs, and include templates for the detailed projects.

How to Sew - Basics is a comprehensive guide that covers just about everything somebody new to sewing might need to know...It covers the basic sewing kit to start you off sewing, not sure about the need for fabric glue personally but its a good supply list with pictures to help identify.
It goes on to cover fabrics, sewing threads, inserting zips and making bias bindings. Along with a guide to easy patchwork and quick quilting.
I liked the fact it gives descriptions of different fabrics and that it mentions using recycled fabrics too.
It covers different threads. The inserting zips page has good clear instructions and pictures. I'm not sure of the need to include instructions for making bias bindings in a beginners guide, but again it has well explained instructions.

The next ebook, How to Sew - Machine Sewing, is again a well laid out and short but comprehensive guide for somebody in possession of their first details stitches that can be done on most basic machines, describes different needles, and their use on different fabrics and gives detailed instructions, with pictures, for some simple projects - a shabby chic bag,a scatter cushion and a pocketed curtain -if I was to look for a negative with this guide it would simply be with the pocketed looks dated and, in my opinion, unappealing as a sewing project.

How to Sew - Applique, is, once again, a short but detailed guide to starting applique. It gives full instructions on how to work with Bondaweb and describes both hand and machine applique. The projects are simple and easy to follow, I particularly like the Vintage Flags tutorial...embellished bunting made from reclaimed fabric, this is definitely going onto my to do list! Like the Machine Sewing book, I felt one of the projects was dated, embellishing a denim jacket with appliqued patches...but again, that is just my opinion!

My favourite of the reviewed ebooks has to be How to Sew - Patchwork. This is an ideal guide for anybody wishing to try patchwork and quilting. It begins with preparing your fabric - by pre washing and cutting required pieces with a rotary and cutting mat. I do feel that the book could have included using scissors and a paper pattern as, in my opinion, cutting out patchwork pieces this way is adequate for a beginner to successfully construct a simple patchwork project.
I like that it gives instructions for both machine and hand piecing and the projects it gives tutorials for are great first time or beginner projects. There is a simple quilt (large squares), a rucksack and the really cute pig cushion/toy that is shown on the cover of the ebook. (another for my to do list!)
I would have liked to see hexagon patchwork in there, as a hand sewing project, but that aside this book is comprehensive and easy to read and understand.

These guides, and other sewing titles, are available from RUCrafts here... priced at 99p each.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Patch Gallery - using gingham bias binding

One of my customers has sent me some pictures of her fabulous makes using the gingham bias binding she purchased from Patch - I am floored. Marilyn has made bags and aprons from oilcloth and the finish on them is amazing...these bags make Cath Kidston bags look like Primark!!
Seriously.....check out the funky colours of oilcloth for starters...and the internal seams have been finished using gingham bias......

And again, with the aprons..the finish is just beautiful......
 *updated* You can find these lovely items here over at

Keep your gallery pictures coming...thank you to those of you who have shared on the facebook page too.
You can find Patch on facebook here.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Kaffe Fassett - Millefiore

We have just listed 2 new designs by Kaffe Fassett on the website...This design - Millefiore - is my favourite of Kaffe's..its been around a good while but I look at it and think Kaffe!
The above picture is the pastel colourway and below it is in blue.......

I reluctantly listed can find them here
I was very tempted to keep them to myself!
I plan to make the skirt from this months (Issue 21) Sew Hip Magazine out of the blue.....

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Patch Gallery - Kids Zoo Bag

Made by a very talented customer (and friend).
This super sized bag was made from the book 'Kids Quilts in a Weekend '
with a  few tweaks to the pattern....including edging the inner pockets with fab gingham bias.
Made from Michael Miller Kids Zoo (my favourite as previously mentioned!!)
If you have made something from Patch fabric or ribbon and would like to show it in the Patch Gallery, please do email some pics to me at
(likewise if you have already emailed me pics and I haven't done anything with them give me a yell and a kick at the same email address!!!)

Friday, 3 September 2010


More fabric added to the site
Fine Lines describe the collection as " inspired and adapted from our love of French ephemera. We think you will fall in love too, with the soft teals, and petal hues in it's French drawing room floral designs"
Its more traditional than the other fabrics in the shop but its still as desirable!

I have also spent part of this week (this, the last week of the summer break  *insert huge sigh of relief here*) making more ribbon packs

fabric packs

including some Christmas themed ......
Next week will bring me - more ribbon pack making, Christmas ones this time, there will be a red and green theme and a gold and cream theme.....
I also have some FQ bundles waiting to be photographed.....thats the good stuff...I also need to do some website tweaking...moving some pics around on the bit you see......and updating meta tags....
Not my favourite part!!
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