These adorable little fuzzy, white-tailed bumble bees cause
such a buzz around the office of Tudor Rose Patchwork that I just had to have a
Alison Cremona of Felt and Dandy was the tutor for the day
and she guided us through the process of creating our own unique bumble bees.
We followed a guide that showed us the specific stripes of each bee, and taking
big tufts of felt we began stabbing away. I had to be careful and keep my
fingers far away from the special barbed felting needle, but when your stabbing
away at a tiny little felt bee it’s inevitable that you stab yourself….
After a little while of stabbing away, my bumble bee started
to take shape and shortly after it was time to trim around it and add the legs
and wings. After the bees all had their legs and wings it was time to do some
reverse felting. This involved a different needle that brought the felt back
out of the shape you had just so well stabbed together, however by bringing the
felt out it created the cute fuzzy appeal that made these bees so adorable in
the first place. Once all 3 bumble bees
were finished we got the frame and words and started to assemble our entomological
Alison brought along lots of little accessories that could
be added if we wished. Some of the class decided to leave their bees simple; I
however wanted to add some sparkles so I chose a crown and some flowers to add.
These adorable little fuzzy, white tailed bumble bees now
take pride of place in my craft room.
There’s another Bumble Bee Family felting day coming up in September, although if bees aren’t your thing, Felt and Dandy will also be here running other felting workshops throughout the year, click here to see them all.
Show season has started, do come and visit our stand and take a look at our fantastic range of craft products. On the 1st to 4th August we will be exhibiting at The Festival of Quilts Birmingham, and are delighted to offer you the ability to buy discounted tickets to this event using the following unique code FESTIVAL173. Check out the pinned post at the top of our Facebook page to find out how to win a pair of tickets. Then on 29th to 31st August you will find us at West Country Quilt & Textile Show, Bristol.
If you fancy learning a new craft or furthering your skills in something you currently do, we offer a wide range of regular classes and one-off workshops. New classes for July to December 2019 are being added to our website daily, these can be booked immediately. Click Here to see the latest information
Giving something back…… This month we are pleased to support the following events: on Wednesday 12th June Frances Bulmer was joined by some generous folks to make heart shaped cushions which help with pain relief for breast cancer patients at the Primrose unit in Bedford. CLICK HEREto find out how you can help next time.
Also on the weekend of 15th/16th June Chris & Kate will be undertaking their annual 24 hour Charity Sewathon, this year they and their band of helpers will be making as many cushion covers as possible which will be donated to a number of local care homes. They would really appreciate donations of fabric or squares to make the cushions which can be dropped off at Tudor Rose Patchwork.
Schools Out! it comes round sooner than you think…… Do you have a youngster who is interested in craft, take a look at our summer holiday workshop programme? These workshops focus on learning to sew and create simple projects.
We host regular charity workshops for Project Linus here at Tudor Rose Patchwork to help provide comfort blankets for babies, children and teenagers who are sick, disabled, distressed or disadvantaged. Our local co-ordinator Elaine has sent us this lovely update on our most recent session.
Hi Ladies, We had a very very successful and busy day on Friday 8th. Lots of people sewing and an enormous amount of people just calling in. I am overwhelmed at how successful this is becoming. Thank you so much for your help in making all this possible.
So some statistics for you :-
On the Friday we sewed labels on 82 Quilts and Blankets. I took home 5 tops that need, wadding, backing and quilting and gave away a big bag of small blankets for Caroline to join together and or add edging to, she also took 2 bags of knitting wool that had been donated just before she arrived! I suspect everyone else took home quilts and kits to make up over the coming months as my box of kits was nearly empty on the way home. Just as well as the car was stuffed to the hilt with the quilts and blankets.
Last week I delivered 179 quilts and blankets to the following places:-
Bedford Hospital, Brenda at the hospital wrote Thank you so much for the lovely quilts and blankets!! It was lovely to see you
I also went to Bedford Borough Council Social workers, Community Nurses and FACES a baby charity.
The next day I called into Luton Early help team and Luton North Family Support Team. I also visited Jenny Cox for the first time who is a Foster carer of long standing who has a network of other Foster Carers and people who do Rest-bite Care.
She wrote , it was so nice to finally meet you and many thanks for the goodies. We just visited our 1st ever foster child and cheered her up. She’s connected with 3 other parents at Franklin House in Dunstable ,a safe house , where they were all cooking together and they have been thrilled to receive coverlets. . We left a dad and his 2 girls wrapping dollies up and then the girls got in with them. Jenny has promised me some photos in due course which I will share with you at the next Project Linus day on 8th March at The Tudor Rose. She was busy telling me stories of some of the situation these children find themselves in and it is so nice to think that we can help her spread some love about, as a lot of these children come from very broken places.
After that I called into My Sewing basket in Dunstable where other ladies leave quilts and blankets, this time the Dunstable Quilt Group had left 22 quilts. In response to my thank you to Helen, she wrote Thank you for your email. I was surprised by the number of quilts which our members brought to our club’s last meeting and it is great that we are able to take them to a central collection point. I shall certainly pass on your thanks this week.
So I still have 28 quilts and blankets in my dining room ready for another delivery. Since taking over the group in June 2017 I have delivered 1526 quilts and blankets! with a total of 940 last year. I tend to use a scatter-gun approach and have delivered to 21 different places, just as well I enjoy driving!
Hope to see you all at the next Project Linus day.
Bedfordshire Project Linus Coordinator
Our next Project Linus day is on 8th March. Come and join us and work with the Project Linus team to help make wonderful charity quilts to help critically ill children. You can make a quilt of your own design, or you can head to the Project Linus website for free patterns. We also accept donations of knitted and crocheted blankets.
To participate in any of these days, the team making the quilts for Project Linus would appreciate a donation of £2.50 towards the materials used.
There will also be a raffle on each of our Linus days so bring along a spare pound or two if you would like to buy a ticket.
Linus days run from 10-4 but you are welcome to attend for half a day if this is the time you have spare.
WOW! What a hectic Saturday. I had lovely bunch of students in today working with the wonders of Powertex. We had a great balance of those experienced with Powertex and complete novices. It’s good to hear those who have lots of experience helping those new to the craft with hints and tips.
First we learned how to build torsos and limbs by wrapping wire and our base frame in endless meters of t-shirt yarn – all made from recycled old clothing from family and friends. Next came hats created from the natural curves of a dozen toilet rolls! These were decorated with scraps of fabric and lace and embellished with other bits and pieces.
The base layer for our wizards was made form further lengths of t-shirt before detailing such as outer robes, magic staffs, spell pouches and even spell books were added. One of our team generously sorted through her craft stash and contributed lots of beautiful ‘junk’ to our materials – old handkerchieves, doilies, pieces of lace and other trims and lots of the gang dipped into these to personalise their work.This is where the wizards started to become real individual pieces with their own style and character. Beards and hair was added making each one unique before the hats were secured on heads.
The final stage of the Powertex day involves adding touches of colour. When working on a dark coloured model it is helpful to add some dry brushed flashes in a much lighter tone so that the colour added last is more vivid. We had copper wizards, blue wizards and other wizards in tones of green. Each one a gorgeous one off piece which can go in their owner’s garden in three weeks time once they have ‘proved’.
If you look closely you can see a cheeky angel has snuck into the ranks of wizards. One of the students was unable to attend a recent angel day so we squeezed her in. This is only possible if students work in the same base colour of Powertex and we are happy to try to accommodate a different sculpture if there is room.
n the Spring I popped in my newest sample to the shop – Raggedy Eared Hare. He’s a cheeky wee chap with a jaunty scarf and beautifully textured ears caught in the wind. He proved so popular in the office that we had to add an extra session in for all of the staff and tutors to have a go.
It was a great day and at the end of it, as you can see, each hare is totally individual with little tweaks such as straw hats and bows in their hair.
Joy wasn’t very happy with the colour she created on her scarf and we couldn’t have her going home disappointed so we worked together to redo the colouring – this is actually really easy to do and one of the many wonders of Powertex.
I wonder if any of the hares have found their final homes on doorsteps and beside flowerbeds yet?
What an amazing day! Jon, Beccs and I joined two other ladies in a class with Laura from Sewell & Savill using embroidery machines. We sell embroidery machines here at Tudor Rose Patchwork and although we knew the basics, we really didn’t know how wide a range of techniques there are and how many different things can be made so simply.
I’ve been blown away by how much an embroidery machine can do. We looked at 10 different projects. We made a fancy button hole, complex designs using metallic threads, we discovered the tricks of the trade for lettering. We used embroidery designs to quilt, we learnt how to make a log cabin pattern. We made lace flowers and attached them to our sampler cushion. We explored applique and created a pretty reverse applique adding sequin embellishments. We made chenille trim and a decorative pattern using eyelets.
The whole day was a lovely experience. Not just because we were learning from a highly experienced tutor. The day was run in easy sessions broken up with tea and biscuits, a nice lunch – although we did find it hard to tear ourselves away from the machines. And just when we were starting to flag, we were treated to tea and cake.
Not only do you get everything during the day, but Laura sends all the tips and tricks to you by email so you have them to refer back to at your leisure.
If you have any questions at all, whether it be about buying an embroidery machine or attending a class with Laura to learn how to do more with a machine you already own, please get in touch. You can visit us in store, give us a call on 01234 824983 or email us on email@example.com
Another super Powertex class today. We had a group of complete beginners who have created some beautiful pieces and gone home totally inspired. Lots of the gang created steampunk pieces and have incorporated some great little details using old watch parts and recycled keys. Powertex is a fantastic way to recycle all those knick knacks you no longer have a use for. We also have some more beautiful ethereal samples made with butterflies and bows. As you can see the pieces are all totally individual and have been coloured according to all the individual tastes of the artists. Even better Powertex is totally weather proof so these pieces can be used to embellish a garden fence or exterior wall.
I’m really looking forward to seeing the work this talented bunch do at home and inspiring them again at one of the up and coming Powertex courses here at Tudor Rose. We’ve got three amazing new Powertex workshops coming up where you can try your hand at making a seated figure, a standing figure, and a fantastic fairy which would make a lovely summer addition to your garden.
Find the details and booking for the seated and standing figures here. Booking for the Fantastic Fairy isn’t open yet, but watch this space!!
My first foray into Powertex work was a sculpture of a figure so this week I have been dabbling in the human form. I am trying to use different ways to build the armature for my pieces so this was an experiment into the wonders of kitchen roll tubes and foil. With a bundle of masking tape it was all getting very Blue Peter.
Once Ihad created a kneeling form that I was happy with I started bringing it all together with lots of old, natural fabrics and a healthy dollop of trusty Powertex. I love seeing the way the fabrics take on the shape of the armature and drape so that the clothing takes place. I especially like giving my figures hoods as I like the mystery they create so this figure is no exception.
Powertex is a great way to use old, stained linens so here I have incorporated some lace and even a few charms for effect. The feather charms we have in store at the moment are my favourite and find their way into lots of my work.
I was going for the bronze statue look with this piece and focused on some metallic tones to achieve this end. I hope you like her…or him….
If I have captured your imagination and you would like a piece like this for your garden remember Powertex is completely weather proof! The next opportunity to make this figure is on Saturday April 28th 2018.
Back with my Powertex uniform on…well not so much a uniform as my painting clothes! Powertex is designed to make fabric hard so obviously it does exactly that, not so great in your favourite jeans. My ‘out of the frame’ pieces have been so popular and the course is filling up so I have produced another sample to entice you.
My fantasy house is made from a large pickle jar. I love the way this great product lets me upcycle so many things. I start with a design idea – where will the windows and door go, do I need a chimney? After some very careful wrapping, using t shirt yarn that I make with my trusty rotary cutter, I am ready to Powertex. A firm brushing embeds the Powertex into the yarn and forms a great base to build on.
An hour later I have a quirky, individual roof for my house, the door is attached and the window frames are ready for some titivation. Old lace or crocheted doilies are spot on for this part of the project. A little drying time and my house is ready for colour. Today’s decoration is teal and purple but Powertex can be coloured in lots of different combinations.
Why not come along and make your own? Your house could soon be living at the end of the garden for the local fairy population, or go darker and make it appeal to some hobgoblins, perfect for the Halloween doorstep. Because my houses are built around a jar, just add some battery powered fairy lights for a whole new effect.
Next project is a seated figure. Perfect for a spot in the garden. Best get my thinking cap on.
Join Purple Boots for her Fantasy House workshop on Wednesday 29th November.
I have been having lots of fun this week experimenting with our new range of Powertex products. Having worked with a visiting Powertex tutor I took myself off to Powertex UK to learn more about this exciting product.
Powertex fabric hardener and textile hardener is an environmentally friendly water-based liquid sculpting medium. It can harden absorbent materials such as textiles, paper, cardboard, fabrics, leather and fiberglass and can be easily combined with self-hardening clays, concrete, stone, ceramic, wood, sand and Stone Art.
Over the summer I have been collecting a range of materials to recycle as Powertex offers masses of opportunities for ‘green’ crafting. I have turned many old t-shirts into t-shirt yarn which we will come in really useful once I move onto bigger figures. Old jewellery is also a great resource, broken necklaces and old buttons and beads. I also discovered some lovely but stained old crocheted doilies in a charity shop and these too will be getting the treatment.
As a way of introducing Powertex I am running a course called Out of the Frame. This week I have been busy making the samples. First I covered my base materials – old frames and canvases – with some of those recycled t-shirts then I got creative. Powertex is absorbed by the fabric but takes some time to become hard so it allows for lots of opportunities to change my mind and reposition the elements of my designs. In order to get some elements to adhere you need a little patience and some jiggery pokery with scraps of lace and paper.
Time for a brew and step back for half an hour, and now the pieces I have been working on are well on the way to dry. At this point I need to pick a palette of colours for each piece I’m working on. Steampunk is gradually turning into shades of blue while my fantasy frame is a little more subtle with metallic shade.
Unlike other coloured media you cannot go too wrong with colour on Powertex pieces. If it’s too strong I simply take a little Powertex on my brush and blend it over to soften the effect. A little patience, a little layering, and I am done.