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A Tourist Bus Tour Through Quilt Town

Posted by Jo Avery on Feb 13th 2020

I am very excited to finally share my book New Patchwork and Quilting Basics with the world! It’s been 9 years since I began teaching my beginner’s patchwork and quilting workshop in my studio in Edinburgh, Scotland. I still start all my classes by describing the difference between patchwork and quilting, how one bed cover can be patchwork but not a quilt and how another can be a quilt and not patchwork. This seems so obvious to us quilters but it’s just one of our craft’s mysteries that can seem unfathomable to the outsider.

I tend to think of each new bunch of students as prospective candidates for our benign quilting cult. Will they get through this first initiation ritual and return as fully fledged life-long members? Or flounder at this first try-out? The clue is in the way they react when they start sewing their fabric pieces together. Are they excited? Do their eyes shine with a joy? Do they rush to the shop to buy more fabric as soon as the class finishes? I never cease to be delighted by the simple pleasure this first experience of quilting brings. And it’s something I hope I can now spread to many more newbies through my book.

Autumn Leaves

‘A tourist bus tour through quilt town’ is how I like to think of my book. You know those ‘hop on, hop off’ buses you ride to give you an overview of a new city? They are great way to find out where all the important bits are before heading back later to the ones that really interest you. There is so much depth to our quilting world, it contains a whole lifetime of learning and experience, and one book can only hope to offer a taste of this. My hope is to enthuse the beginner with easy and achievable first projects and then move them along to sample more techniques as their confidence grows. I want this book to last through the many years of a quilter’s journey, giving them something to return to when they are ready for more challenges. This also means the book has plenty to offer the already established quilter who likes a mix of different projects. The book is also aimed at those quilters who are already fans of my style and have been imploring me to write a book for years now.

Spool Notebook and Stream

Quilts like Autumn Leaves can be finished in a weekend whereas the Bedding Plants row quilt is a proper heirloom that you can take your time over. If you’d like to dip your toe into some new techniques then the Spool Notebook Holder or the Stream Quilt provides the opportunity to try both FPP and curve piecing with gentle, hand-holding projects. Once you’ve mastered everything the book has to offer you can embark on the show-stopping pinball wizard quilt and pass your final initiation ceremony with flying colours!


Pinball Wizard 

I do hope that all quilters, from absolute beginners to old hands, will find something that appeals amongst the pages of New Patchwork and Quilting Basics.

Find me at these places

Instagram: @joaverystitch

Blog: blog.mybearpaw.com

Shop/Studio website: www.mybearpaw.com

Pattern/Retreats website: www.stitchgathering.co.uk

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