Sunday, 30 January 2011

Bag workshop

The bag workshop was a perfect antidote to the January blues, and the weather (though cold and miserable) behaved itself! We tried a new venue of the United Reformed Church in Lutterworth, and while it was lovely and warm and well-equipped, it just wasn't big enough for us all to sew, cut and iron. I hadn't realised that piecing was such a physical process! I'll try and return to North Kilworth if the hall is available.

Rosemary and Paula were well organised and equipped, and kept the chatting to a minimum!

Chris, Margaret and Jane beavered away!
Jane was the first to finish, and her Australian fabrics were fabulous.
Rosie looks a little bemused here - perhaps this was because this was her first experience of patchwork, and it was a steep learning curve for her! However, as you can see, she went away with a finished bag, so well done! Everyone worked really hard, and most people got their bag together (if not completely finished) in the day.

Here are Liz, Alison, Jane and Betty showing their completed bags at Piecemakers a few days later. (Betty didn't make two bags in the day, the green one is her daughter's!) The next workshop in March will be log cabin.

This 19th century one is in the collection of the Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester, and shows the effects this simple technique can achieve. The whole design relies on the placement of dark/medium fabrics against light fabrics, round a central square. Traditionally the central square is red (to represent the fire in a log cabin) or yellow (to represent the lamp) but you can choose any colour suitable to your design. You will need centre squares which measure 1½” square and strips of light and dark/medium which are 1½” wide. If you want to cut the strips ready for each block you will need dark/mediums 1½”x 2½”, 1½”x 3½”, 1½”x 4½”, 1½”x 5½”, 1½”x 6½” and 1½”x 7½”. Lights will be 1½x 1½”, 1½”x 2½”, 1½”x 3½”, 1½”x 4½”, 1½”x 5½” and 1½”x 6½”. Each block will measure 7½” (7” finished). If you want to cut the small strips from lighter tones and the longer from darker this will enhance the overall effect.

If you would like to join this workshop, there are still places, so either email me or comment on this post and I'll add you to the list.