Newsflash 19 September
Life here continues to be very busy as I am preparing for two shows coming up - one in October and one in November. I hope you are going to come to them both. If you would like to place a fabric order prior to the shows you are most welcome. But I can only fill them if I receive your order at least a week in advance of the show dates.
Waiuku Village Quilters at Waiuku Town Hall, Queen Street on 5 - 7 October from 10.00am - 4.00pm
Festival of Quits at the Auckland Netball Courts, St Johns on 2 - 4 November 10.00am - 4.00pm
Two big boxes of Japanese woven (yarn dyed) taupe fabric arrived this week. If you purchase 10 or more fat quarters this week you get free postage. Or you can place an order and pick your fabric up one of the Shows listed above. $9.80 per fat quarter or $38.90 per metre.
Japanese Snippets - Cherry Blossoms
The cherry blossom (sakura) is Japan's unofficial national tree. It has been celebrated for many centuries and holds a very prominent position in Japanese culture. Sakura is different from the cherry of other countries. Japanese cherry trees do not fruit like other cherry trees. Most cherry trees feature blossoms that have five petals and a notch out of each petal. Cherry blossoms are beautiful, fragrant and delicate. They come in shades of light pink and white. The fleeting beauty of the cherry blossoms is symbolic to the Japanese. They represent the brevity of life and the frailty of existence. The Japanese celebrate Spring with hanami (cherry blossom viewing) parties under the blooming trees. This has been a Japanese custom since the 7th century when the aristocrats enjoyed looking at the cherry blossoms and wrote poems. People drink, eat, and sing during the day and night. It is like a picnic
Newsflash 12 September
By the feel of the weather here in Auckland today Spring is on the way. I have been busy making new samples for Festival Quilts in November so do save the date and check them out - 2 - 4 November at St Johns Netball Stadium, Auckland.
This week sees a few more to add to my indigo range. It is great to see some new designs coming in and often with new shades of blue. A couple of these are old favourites brought back. Order a fat quarter of each and get free postage. So nine fat quarters will be $67.50.
Japanese Snippets - Spring Blossoms
Plum Blossoms - Ume blossoms in Japan are herald the coming of spring, offering the promise of warm weather, renewal, and growth. Surprisingly these trees blossom while the snow is still on the bough. Japanese tradition holds that the ume functions as a protective charm against evil. For this reason, the ume is traditionally planted in the north-east of the garden, the direction from which evil is believed to come. Like Japanese cherry trees, plum trees come in many varieties. Most plum blossoms have five petals and range in colour from white to dark pink. Some varieties with more than five petals and weeping branches. Japanese Plum Blossoms have a strong fragrance
Newsflash 5 September
I am loving semi-retirement and getting out and about around New Zealand visiting family and places we haven't been too before. Over the last two weeks we have been from Auckland to the very southern most tip of the North Island (Cape Palliser) and many places in between. Now back home to follow up on your mail orders and get ready for two Shows coming up soon - details below.
A great Photographic Exhibition "Where Children Sleep" at the Expressions Gallery in Upper Hutt, Wellington
Loved the colours on this rural barn near Mangaweka.
Sashiko Threads - I have just had a shipment in from Japanese so these are the current colours that I have in stock.
Block of the Month
This week is Block of the Month mail out time. I have just four sets of our Nantucket Baskets left. Should one of them be yours? The wallhanging is made with wool fabric. The baskets and flowers are appliqued on and embellished with simple embroidery stitches. The monthly cost includes fabrics for the top and the binding. You will need to add your own threads. Finished Size: 31" by 38". $41.00 per month for 10 months.
I will be at the following Shows over the next few months, so I look forward to catching up with you there.
Waiuku Village Quilters at the Waiuku Town Hall, Queen Street on 5 - 7 October from 10.00am - 4.00pm daily.
Festival of Quits at the Auckland Netball Courts, St Johns on 2 - 4 November 10.00am - 4.00pm daily.
Other events are:
Taupo Quiltmakers Exhibition at Taupo-nui--a tia College, Sap Road, Taupo on 5 - 7 October 10.00am - 4.00pm daily.
Newsflash 11 July
These are some additions to our Japanese Indigo Collection. For a while now I have been looking for lighter blues to add to this collection, so there work really well. I have cut fat quarters but you can order any cm measurement (minimum cut is 20cm). It is $7.50 per fat quarter or $29.90 per metre. Order by email and I can send you bank account details so you pay online. Read more about the Koi design below.
Oakshott Shot Cotton Fabric Specials:
I have a few bundles of Oakshott cottons available at almost half price. These are one-offs so first in wins. 1. Twenty 5" squares in Autumn shades $5.00 2. Eight fat eighths in Jewel colours $18.00 3. Fifty 5" squares a variety of colours $13.00 4. Sixty-seven 5" squares $18.00 5. Twenty six 10" squares rainbow colours $30.00 6. Eighteen fat eighths in dark Lapari colours $40.00 You can order buy quoting "Oakshott and the number". Email through your order with your address and I will send you the shop bank account number to pay into with your cost including postage.
Japanese Snippet - Koi
Koi are actually a mutated form of carp that originally came from China. When they were introduced to the Japanese in the1800s the Japanese saw their potential and began breeding them to bring out their beautiful colours, Rice farmers had originally only kept the Koi as a food fish. They are now pirzed as decorative fish.
On fabrics and other products the Koi symbolizes fortune, good luck and perseverance
Newsflash 4 July
Our 2018 School Programme at Redoubt North School finished last week with an amazing display of 26 quilts. A big thank you must go to all our Sponsors who donated the fabric for the quilt tops, the batting and the backing fabrics. We really do appreciate your generosity. We will be doing it again next year and so many of you have already opted back in - thank you again.
Toadstool Clasp Purse. This cute little Japanese Purse with a metal claps opening measures 7 1/2" by 5", is hand appliqued and comes in kitset form with the handle, fabrics and pattern included for $50.00
New Pattern - Peace and Longevity This wallhanging measures 23" by 51" and is hand appliqued and hand embroidered. To complete the project you will need a variety of indigo background fabrics , some red applique fabric and a variety of red embroidery threads. These designs are taken from Kamon (Japanese Family Crests). Read more about the significance of Japanese cranes below. $20.00
‘Tsuru’ is the Japanese word for crane. Cranes are used often in Japanese textiles and generally represent longevity and good fortune. They are most closely associated with Japanese New Year and wedding ceremonies – for example the crane is often woven into a wedding kimono or obi. An ancient Japanese legend promises that anyone who folds a thousand origami cranes will be granted a wish by a crane, such as long life or recovery from illness or injury. The Thousand Origami Cranes has become a symbol of world peace through the story of Sadako Sasaki, a Japanese girl who contracted leukemia as a result of radiation from the atomic bombing of Hiroshima during World War 2. A popular version of the story is that she fell short of her goal of folding 1,000 cranes, having folded only 644 before her death, and that her friends completed the 1,000 and buried them all with her.
Newsflash 26 June
I hope you spent yesterday inside somewhere cozy - wasn't it wet and cold weather - perfect for stitching!
New this week - I have made up my Kogin Mini Purse. This was one of the projects we did with Jane from Australia a few months ago. It is 6" long and 4" high with a nice Japanese metal zipper. Read more about Kogin in my "Japanese Snippets" below.
Kogin Mini Purse I have kitsets for the Kogin Purse. Each kitset has everything you need to make it included. $22.00 It comes with the green Kogin thread shown below. I changed out the green Kogin Thread for indigo. I have some Kogin Thread colours available. See the photo on the right below.
I only have a few of each colour so be in quickly with your first choice. They are $5.60 each if you want another colour. Order by quoting 3rd from the left, etc.
This week some new fabrics arrived. They are actually 'Farmhouse Living" by Jeanne Horton which are circa 1830 Reproduction fabrics.But I chose them because I like most of them with the Japanese indigo range. I also have some newish indigo fabrics.
Japanese Snippets - Kogin Stitching
Kogin embroidery is traditional stitching method coming from of the Aomori region at the northern most tip of Japan’s main island. Traditional kogin uses ecru cotton thread embroidered in geometric patterns onto deep blue indigo fabric. It was originally devised to strengthen or to thicken sections of clothing to increase the warmth. Kogin stitched fabric was used for the dressiest clothes in rural areas.
The art of Kogin embroidery has been handed down from generation to generation and is now popular with modern embroiderers.
The geometric patterns are formed from a running stitch, but as you stitch you count the threads to create the pattern, a little like creating a cross stitch design. The threads need to be thick enough to fill the holes in the canvas, otherwise it looks too skimpy. Kogin thread is similar thickness to sashiko thread but it is stranded whereas sashiko thread is not. Originally the stitching was done in sequential rows. Work from right to left on one row and at the end of that row, turn the work upside down and work the next from right to left. When stitched traditionally the back of the work is as finely finished as the front.
Today Kogin is stitched using a wide variety of colours for the design instead of solely relying ecru on indigo fabric.
Newsflash 20 June
Last week we had a wonderful Staff Retreat at Vaughan Park. This was our finale as a Patchwork Passion team. We all got lots of sewing done over the three days and enjoyed having time altogether. I finished the embroidery and hand quilting on my Yoko Saito Panel.
I have these panels for sale at $22.50 and I have cut a backing as an option too $22.50. Each piece is a 75cm cut of the full width of the fabric. There is a couple of extra designs top and bottom of the panel that I used. They can be used for a cushion or other projects.Order just the panel or just the backing piece or both pieces.
The dragonfly shows how I quilted around every design. The two flowers shows how I pick up the texture of these flowers with quilting around the "scallops" within each flower. And the berry stem shows French Knots that I added in the middle of each blue berry.
Japanese Snippet: Bashofu Fabric from Okinawa in Southern Japan
I have just finished this little quilt which is based on the colours of Bashofu fabric which I collected a few years ago in Japan. At the Yokohama Quilt Show we met a lovely lady from Okinawa with a stall of Bashofu fabric and she shared a lot of information with us and inspired this quilt. Northern Okinawa's special fabric is bashofu. It is made from a special type of local banana plant. It is a massively time consuming process to get it from plant to fabric, taking many hours of dedicated work from growing the plant, peeling, boiling and splitting follows cropping from autumn though the winter to make the slender thread. The process of just making thread has eight steps. After that, there are the processes of dyeing, weaving and finishing. Furthermore, all of the steps have to be done by hand. With this process bashofu is hard to come by these days.It was originally used as kimono fabric.
Newsflash 13 June
We are up to week two of our Quilt Making Programme at Redoubt North School. These young people have worked so hard and many of them have their quilts tops made already. Now it is on to putting the three layers together and starting the quilting. They have worked with such focus and enthusiasm. We are always so very impressed with their manners and attitude towards each other and the adults they interact with. I had only just got out of my car when a student stopped to see if I needed any help or direction - what a treat.
I have patterns for the Boro Kinchaku Bag that I made when Jane was over from Australia teaching for us earlier this year. They are such fun to make and the pattern also includes a traditional sashiko version. I have made up kits of the sarashi base fabric, the French Fusing stabiliser, the cord and the Koki attachments that the cord goes through. I also have some kits of indigo fabrics. And o course we have sashiko threads at $5.60 a 20m skein in ecru, white, red, blue and navy.
Pattern: $25.00 Kit of Product: $36.00 Fabric Kit:$17.00
Japanese Snippet - Boro Stitching
In Japan, mended and patched textiles are referred to as "boro". The word ‘boro’ comes from Japanese boroboro, meaning something tattered or repaired. So Boro became the collective name for clothing and bed covers made by the poor of rural Japan, who could not afford to buy new versions of the same items. Cotton was not common in Japan until well into the twentieth century, so when a kimono or sleeping futon cover started to run thin in a certain area, the family’s women patched it with a small piece of scrap fabric using sashiko stitching. Boro was predominately clothing worn by the peasant farming classes, who mended their garments with spare fabric scraps out of economic necessity. In many cases a boro garment would be handed down over generations. For this reason, boro are seen to have significant socio-historical status as they provide an insight into the modest lives of their makers and a snapshot of Japan’s impoverished past. Boro fabric dates from the Edo period of before 1865 and the Meije period from 1865 to 1920. The strongest characteristic of these periods is the use of indigo dyed cotton. The variety of shades of blue and juxtaposition of patterns and patches with meandering forms of stitching make these items unique and attractive. Set against the hardness of rural life, the women of Japan managed to create what is now acknowledged as a stunning form of art. Covered in indigo scraps, what is beautiful to us was at one time shameful to these Japanese. As they recovered after the end of World War II, to some the boro textiles reminded the Japanese of their impoverished rural past.
The first photo is a small triptych I made and the second is an old Boro Jacket
Newsflash 6 June
Well, the shop is closed and looking totally empty. The storage unit is looking great - all the Japanese fabrics, kitsets, Block of the Months, etc nicely shelved. The sewing room at home is still very much a work in progress, but will be good soon, hopefully. Then it is down to some serious sewing instead of serious sorting and storing!
So now it is welcome to my new look Newsflash
School Quilt Programme
For two days a week during June I am back out at Redoubt North School running their Quilt Programme. We have 13 boys and 13 girls each making their own version of this Brick quilt. At the end of the month each of the students will take home their own quilt to snuggle under for the rest of winter.
Thank you to all those who have sponsored a student - we couldn't do this proramme without your support.
Each week I will feature a snippet of information about things Japanese. I hope your enjoy it. Kamon (sometimes shortened to Mon) are Japanese family crests. They are usually a circular outline with a plant, animal, man-made object, or geometric designs inside. It is said that there are more than 20,000 distinct individual Kamon in Japan. Today many companies or organisations use a kamon as a trademark or logo. You will find kamon on formal kimono, fabric, furoshiki, craft work, bags, noren and many other things found in shops in modern Japan. This website has heaps of kamon shown if you would like to use some of these designs in your quilting. https://doyouknowjapan.com/symbols/
Newsflash 30 May
Well tomorrow is the end of an era. We close the doors of the shop for the last time. It has been a wonderful 15 years. I have been blessed with super staff members who have all added to the Patchwork Passion family bringing in their own skills, opinions and passion for quilting.
Thank you guys - the shop would not have been such fun and so successful without you. I owe a huge thank you to all of you - our customers - for supporting us so well over the years. So many of you have become friends as well. You have continually inspired us, challenged us (in good ways) and sent us off in new directions.Many of you have also followed our changing passions over the years which has been very rewarding.
We have loved watching many of you come through our classes and grow into stunning quilters.Thank you for sharing that journey with us. We hope you will all stay in touch in various ways - through Shows, Website, Email, my visits to your local groups or at our socail group programme.
Next week I am off to Redoubt North School to begin our Quilt Making Programme with their Year 7 and 8 students. This will run over June and by the end each of the 25 students involved will have a stunning quilt to take home.
Thank you to all our sponsors - without you this programme would not work. Watch for photos in the next Newsflashes.
We have three sets of Sue Daley's Rouge Provence Kitsets left. This beautiful quilt is 62" square. It was $345.00 but is now $207.00. Get yours now and join me - now I might have time to finish mine!!!!!
Back next week with a new look Newsflash with a very definite focus on all things Japanese.
Newsflash 23 May
Shop Closing Update
Saturday is our last planned day of trading from the shop, but we will be in the shop all mornings until the 31st if you would like to pop in for that really last minute bargain.
Groups will continue until Thursday 31 May and then move to Onehunga Community House in Selwyn Street, Onehunga. They are full to the brim, so we are unable to take new enrollments - sorry.
Gradually we will develop a new website with online shopping. Meantime the current site will continue.
Our weekly Newsflash will continue each Wednesday.
Little Quilt Update
I am thrilled that Els and Debbie are taking over the NICU Quilt Programme. I will do one more delivery Sunday 3 June and then it will be up to them. We started the programme in 2007 and have made 7,056 little quilts over the years. So thank you so much to all those of you that have been involved at some stage. We have created an awesome tradition. Our quilts have been so loved by many families. And our stashes have decreased quietly as we create little quilts. Els and Debbie have several delivery options. The Mt Eden Hospice Shop at 453 Mt Eden Road have kindly offered to be a drop off point or you can ring Els on 021 1607505 for city-side drop offs or Debbie on 021 401158 for North Shore drop offs. You can also contact them if you need a pick up option. They are keen to keep in touch with you so do contact them to add your details to their list.
I wish them every success in carrying on this amazing community programme.
Furniture for sale:
We have four classroom tables and some chairs available at $10 each but they must be picked up on the afternoon of Thursday 31 May. We also have Lundia shelving ready now. It is sold in units of two or three bays. It has shelves that can be placed at various intervals so is very flexible. Give us a ring on 09 622 2270.
Newsflash 16 May
Shop Closing Update
Well we are definitely in count down mode now. Our last day for selling over the counter is Saturday 26 May. Then gradually the website will be revamped and the Newsflashes will continue.
Meantime there is still some nice fabric on the shelves for 60% off. First photo the printed Japanese Taupes. Next 1930s Reroductions
Then the 1800s Reproductions 1800s Reproduction fabrics
Furniture for sale
All our shop furniture needs to find good homes. We have several of the white cubbyhole units that our wool has been displayed in. They come in two or three units high. $10 or $15) We have the green cupboard that we had quilts for sale in ($400) and one two door credenza (with one shelf across the middle, $100) and very soon the classroom tables and chairs can go to. Let us know if you are interested quickly as they are up on Trade Me too. I can send you measurements and prices.
There are also sets of Lundia shelving.
Little Quilt Programme
Our April delivery of Little Quilts to NICU at Auckland Hospital was 48, making 187 for this year so far. As always they love receiving them but always need more of the larger size - 1 metre by 40cm. I will be making one more delivery at the end of May and then I will be handing over to Els and Debbie. It was so great to have them volunteer to take over this role. More information about this coming in the next Newsflash. Meanwhile keeping creating little treasures for these tiny babies and their families - they are so appreciated.
Newsflash 9 May
Our Sale Continues
We still have fabric and furniture for sale so it still definitely worth visiting. We are still really busy with people going the door with bargains. We will be here for the next two weeks with the last trading day at the shop being Saturday 26 May. We have added our woven taupe end rolls to the sale so check them out when you are in. They are a variety of cuts but the full width of the fabric. If you want me to choose a few for you just suggest some colours and I am happy to mail them put to you.
For the last two weeks everything in the sale is 60% off
Kitsets new to the sale
We have made two of our Block of the Months into kitsets to be purchased all at once as there are only a couple of sets left of each one.
"Rouge Provence"designed by Sue Daly and has hand applique and English Paper Piecing. It includes the fabric for the quilt top and the binding plus the Paper Piecing Templates. 62" square. Was $345.00 but is now $207.00
"Mosaics" is hand appliqued with English Paper Pieced borders. The fabrics are predominantly from Laundry Basket Quilts part of the Moda Collection. The design is by Irene Blanck and her book is included. 67"square (170cm) This was $316.00 but is now $189.00
Half Metre cuts We have a range of our 1930s and 1800s fabric now cut into half metres. So be in to grab some of these while stocks last.
1930s Half Metre Pieces
800s Half Metre Pieces
Newsflash 2 May
Our closing down sale is going well, but it is still worth a visit. To give you an idea - these are our 1930s shelves at the moment,s o you can see there is still plenty of choice. We have been making up fat quarter bundles of ten co-ordinated fabrics and these have been really popular. The regular price is $75.00 but with the sale on that comes down to $45.00. Order your set of 1930s now - they make great cot quilts as well as thirties projects.
This weekend is The Auckland Quiltmakers Show at Parnell's Jubilee Building from 10.00am - 4.00pm. We will have a stall there with all our fabrics reduced by 40%, so if you haven't made it into the shop see us there.
Please check that you are using our new email as it seems that xtra our old provider is no longer forwarding emails and we would hate to loose contact with you. The address is email@example.com - not the nz at the end of the name and change your address book.