Wednesday, 16 May 2012

FQ Retreat Supplies

I have had a funny week- feeling a lot brighter now but have been off work for 3 days with a viral thing and no voice which is no good for working with young children- so that may explain where the downer was coming from.  I have had my head/neck injections today so everything is a bit sore but they help so much it is worth it.  So I have been using the extra time to get supplies ready for Fat Quarterly Retreat.
 We will be conquering the Y seam with freezer paper piecing- these are the blocks that will be available...
There are 4 spool blocks which vary in difficutly- the easiest are 1st and 3rd working left to right.  And when you have beaten the Y seam into submission, there is a house block, plus I'll bring my Happy House block too.  The spools and house, plus full tutorial details will also be in the FQ Retreat Issue too.  So on to supplies.  I thought a picture might help!
Much is self explanatory but I may as well go through it all with a little explanation.
  • Polyester stuffing- I will bring some but if you all go crazy there may not be enough.  I also use rice to give mine a bit of weight but I won't be bringing that to the retreat!
  • Pigment ink fine liner, water and fadeproof, around 2mm.  this is a Unipin, Pigma Micron are lovely too.  Amazon/ebay/WHSmiths/Art shops all good for these.  Permanent markers like Sharpies are not good!  I have had the ink from these go throught the freezer paper.
  • Reynolds freezer paper.  You won't need a roll.  A couple of A4 size pieces will be enough to do 4 blocks, and that would be working pretty fast!
  • Piecing thread- Aurifil 50wt is my recommendation.  Fine cotton thread basically.
  • Sharp fine pins. I like Clover Patchwork.
  • Small rotary cutter.  This one is 28mm, you could use 45mm but it is harder.
  • Scalpel or paper knife.  I will be bringing 6 or so of these, they are very sharp lightweight knives ideal for paper.  I find them easier than traditional Stanley style craft knives.  If you want one of your own, try ebay-'disposable scalpel'
  • Washi or masking tape (not sellotape).  I forgot to add this to the supplies list that you all received so I will be bringing a couple of rolls along, but if you have some, bring it!  
  • Thread snips or embroidery scissors.
  • Small quilt ruler.  My favourite is a Creative Grids 6.5" Turn around.  you can bring larger but smaller is easier to handle for these 4" blocks
  • Hand sewing needles if you are not bringing a machine.  Clover Black Gold Quilting Betweens are amazing, unlike any other hand sewing needle I have ever tried.  Their only downside is the eye is tiny and I go blind threading them!
  • Fabric scraps- you may need bigger ones than you think!  Think about colours for spools.
  • Seam ripper- naturally!
  • Finger press- useful if you haven't got an iron.  I will bring a travel iron- which my usual sewing iron!

And to show you that hand sewing works I made two samples, the left is machined the right is hand sewn.  If you haven't done Y seams before, hand sewing at least one block is a great way to understand how everything fits together. 
And the same blocks from the front.  

If you want to stick with one block and make a pincushion, you can bring some ric rac, trim, lace or fabric to bind for a fancy edge- around 60cm or 24 inches will be plenty to go round the edge, and don't forget fabric for the back of your pin cushion.   I have lots of samples and can explain any techniques. Or you could make a few blocks to really master the technique and make your pinnies at home.  The choice is yours!  Any questions, please ask me!
sib blog


  1. Kerry, I hope you are feeling all better really soon.

  2. Glad (?) you have had your rough patch this week not in a fortnight's time!
    I am going scatty trying to get all my supplies sorted, I will need a personal Porter for all my stuff!

  3. Hope you are fully recovered soonest. I would have loved to have done this at the retreat. I'm focusing on the positive and not going means I don't have to try and take everything but the kitchen sink with me on public transport to London!

  4. This is really useful, Kerry, thankyou. I treated myself to some of the Clover patchwork pins and they are indeed very fine! However, some time ago I also bought some of the black gold quilting needles but they are so tiny I could barely get a grip on them!! On the plus side though, you've now given me an excuse to buy some washi tape... ;)
    Hope you're feeling better soon.
    R x

  5. Feel better soon!

    I'm about 3/4 of the way through cutting my EPP class fabrics, yours is up next :oD

  6. I have to say, that retreat sounds SO fun. I am not even in the same country or I would probably try and participate. :)

    1. I am so looking forward to it. Fat quarterly will be publishing a special issue that people who can't attend can buy with the workshop projects in too.

  7. Oh my gosh Kerry. This class is going to be so great. I'm salivating. Wishing I was able to take a class from you. I'm there in heart.

  8. I so wish I could come along to your class Kerry. It would be great to see you in action! Just a question. What size are your black gold needles? I just looked them up and found there are different sizes.
    Hope you're feeling much better very soon. x

  9. I hope you feel better soon! The class sounds amazing, so sad I'm missing the retreat this year, hopefully there will be one next year!

  10. These are so gorgeous! Would love to be in your class...

  11. That's brilliant Kerry. I am doing this class with you and have started collecting supplies together, but how much simpler is it to see everything in a photo?! I will try and get a few more bits now, thanks for all the recommendations! I am really looking forward to your class!

  12. So wish I was going to the FQ retreat ~ I'd love to be taking a class with you!
    Do hope you're in the pink soon.

    1. Maybe it will become an annual event? Fingers crossed!

  13. Envious of those who can attend! At least the rest of us can read about your class here, and it's great that FQ will put out a retreat issue.

    Your mention of the Clover pins and needles was very helpful.


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