My Patchwork Blog

Previous blog entries . . .

August - May 2017

April - January 2017

December - September 2016

August - May 2016

April - January 2016

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Sunday 9th December
Karin attended one of my residential weekends for Anglia Leisure and worked on this quilt over the weekend. She used recycled shirts and has made the quilt for her daughter. I think that it is going to be a Christmas present. Isn't it lovely in the soft colours? Thanks for sending over the photo Karin and well done for finishing.

Wednesday 5th December
Another great finish. This is Maureen's Positive and Negative Pinwheels quilt, started in a class in August. Lots of positive and negative pinwheels stitched in bright jewel colours with a grey contrast. Great quilt Maureen; hope that you enjoy using it!

Sunday 2nd December
Here is Julie's lovely quilt from my Bumpy Circles workshop. Julie has used a Christmassy jelly roll and some very effective big stitch hand quilting with white thread. A great finish just in time for Christmas. Thanks for sharing this with us Julie.

Wednesday 28th November
I have been beavering away at my curved seams. I have always avoided them but decided that I needed to get over this and have a go. I have started with this orange peel block and after a bit of trial and error have slowly got better and managed to make this small quilt. Just quilting a curved pattern on it. Am going to try another design now....

Sunday 25th November
Had a busy day yesterday at Just Between Friends in Essex teaching Cathedral Window. I love this technique as it looks like an intricate puzzle but is actually fairly straight forward to stitch. The technique is completed partly on the machine and then finished by hand. We were working on a cushion. This is my cushion top where I have used a cream/beige background fabric and then fabrics from "Little Sweethearts" by Edyta Sitar for the windows:



The students used a range of fabrics and I am looking forward to seeing the finished cushions. Here is some work in progress:

Wednesday 21st November
Jan started this quilt in one of my workshops in September. It is made using the stitch and flip method of construction. The quilt is soon to go to Australia so it has been lovely to see it before it disappears downunder. I love the use of all the green fabrics and that lime green really makes the quilt pop with colour. Thanks Jan - they are going to love this in Aussie!

Sunday 18th November
Yesterday I taught a workshop for Amwell Quilters. We were working on my Flower Market quilt. This quilt has nine large flowers which are constructed by machine piecing. There is a lot of negative space in the background between the flowers and I have finished my quilt with some straight line quilting. Here is some work in progress - we have our own flower garden:

Friday 16th November
This is such a blast from the past. I was given this Good Housekeeping needlecraft book which was published in 1971.

There is a pattern for a patchwork quilt in the book but what I love is the way that it has been photographed out on a bed in the woods. Can you imagine getting everything out there for a photo shoot? I wonder who fancies a little sleep in the woods?

Look at the patterns and full on colour overload in this with the carpet and the wallpaper:

Tuesday 13th November
My Hugs and Kisses Quilt and pattern is featured in "Be Creative with Workbox" magazine this month. It has made the cover! The magazine contains lots of stitching inspiration, projects and articles.

Thursday 8th November
Alison has sent me a photo of her triangle quilt which she has made from one of the patterns in my book "Simply Modern Patchwork Quilts". I made my original quilt in a yellow/white colour way. Alison has used lots of grey, white and black in her quilt and finished it with hand quilting. Isn't it simply stunning? Many thanks for sharing it with us Alison.

Monday 5th November
Spent the weekend teaching a residential workshop for Anglia Leisure in a hotel in Kent. We started on Friday night and worked through to Sunday afternoon. The students chose to work on either one of these two quilts:

The hotel was lovely with a nice big room to work in, endless cups of tea, coffee and cake and some very nice meals. Here is a selection of work in progress by the students:

Lots of good conversation, sorting out the world's problems accompanied with lots of stitching. Well done ladies - I hope that you get your quilts finished.

Friday 2nd November
Last night I taught a mini workshop for Marsh Quilters in London. As Christmas is approaching we were working on felt and fabric gift bags. These are a quick and easy make but great for personalising a gift. Everyone was very industrious with lots of bags completed by the end of the evening.

Thursday 1st November
Yesterday I went and had a look at the poppy display at Hertford Castle. There is a cascade of knitted poppies from the turret of the castle to the ground. There must be thousands of poppies all knitted by a secret society of crafters. The poppies looked like they were attached to a net which I guess would help to weather proof them. Visually stunning and so thought provoking at this time of remembrance.

Sunday 28th October
I have just come back from a few days in the New Forest. I was lucky enough to visit a really lovely patchwork shop in Lymington called Nicola's Fabrics. The shop has only been in operation for two months and is packed with fabrics, thread, bag making supplies and haberdashery. The range of fabrics is superb and the service excellent. Nicola is super friendly. I managed to come away with some Lewis and Irene fabrics which I am going to use in a scrap quilt, however I could have bought a lot more!

The shop has three rooms and is organised into fabric collections. If you are visiting Lymington it really is worth a visit. www.nicolasfabrics.co.uk

Wednesday 24th October
When I was teaching the workshop last week at Connecting Threads Jo brought along her lovely journal cover to show me. She had made the textured flowers in a workshop that I had taught there some time ago. Jo's journal cover is beautiful with all the additional embellishments and tiny bees. Thanks so much Jo for sharing it with us.

Sunday 21st October
Yesterday I taught a workshop for Connecting Threads quilt group. We were working on Christmas wreaths. These are constructed by stitching lots of little fabric pillows and then stuffing them and attaching them to wire frames. Here are some photos of work in progress with some wreaths almost finished:

Thursday 18th October
Issue 55 of Quilt Now magazine is out today and I have a Christmas project featured in it. The project is a Scandi table runner in red and grey which can be made either as a table runner or a bed topper. The fabrics used are from the Scandi range from Makower. It is one of those projects that wouldn't take too long to make and could be finished well in time for Christmas.

Sunday 14th October
I have just spent the last two days teaching at the Knitting and Stitching Show in London. It was super busy for both days that I was there, but there was so much to see and so many different traders. Alexander Palace is such a spectacular venue. This is a view of the organ from the main hall with the theatre in the fore ground.

One of the exhibitions that I was really moved by was from Jenny Dolan. She had created these pieces to record her mother's life and her demise from dementia. The works had been created with stitch and were absolutely stunning:

The Embroiderer's Guild had created an exhibition of One Hundred Hearts to tell the stories of those who had fought in the First World War:

I taught five classes over the two days and met lots of very inspiring and talented students. The workshop space was in a separate annex and here is my Owl Baby Pin cushion workshop prepped and waiting for the students. It was really good to have the daylight lamps.

We made fabulous fabric brooches in one workshop and here are a couple of finished brooches. Thank you to the lovely lady who agreed to be photographed wearing her brooch. (I am sorry that I forgot to ask your name).

My Inchie Mosaic class had a lot of students in the class who were studying textiles at GCSE level and were so enthusiastic about what they were learning. Here is some work in progress:

I hope that you have enjoyed a little snapshot of the Show. I am off to rest my weary legs!

Wednesday 11th October
Last month I taught a workshop for Amwell Quilters. We were working on Strips that Sizzle which is a great flip and stitch technique. Some of the ladies have finished their quilts already and they are looking really good. We have an Autumn themed quilt, one stitched with a variety of green fabrics and a scrappy quilt. Thank you ladies for sharing these with us.

Saturday 6th October
I have just finished making a cot quilt for a friend who is expecting a baby. The only brief was that it had to have some grey in it. Here is is - I used four fabrics grey, white and two yellow fabrics, lots of half square triangles and finished it with some quilting on the diagonal. I also then made a matching zippy pouch and popped a few baby goodies inside. For once I am ahead of the game!


Friday 5th October
Congratulations to Jill D who was randomly drawn to be the winner of the tickets to the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexander Palace. Thank you to everyone who entered the draw. However, if you are purchasing tickets in advance and use this code: tutor26 you will be able to purchase tickets for £13 instead of £15.50.

Wednesday 3rd October
Don't forget to enter the giveaway for tickets to the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexander Palace. Here is a little reminder:

I have two entry tickets to give away to the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexander Palace in London. The tickets can be used on Thursday 11th October or Friday 12th October or Sunday 14th October and are valued at £15.50 each. If you would like to be in with a chance to win the tickets please email your name to info@patchworkpatterns.co.uk by Friday 5th October 9am and a winner will be chosen at random.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5UqyAsrtXsQ

Sunday 30th September
Yesterday I taught a class at Just Between Friends Quilt shop in Essex. We were working on quilts using the snowball block. It is a nice block that is simple to construct; which when put together makes a quilt that grows quickly over the day. Varied fabric choices were made from Tula Pink, Kaffe Fassett, batiks, novelty, totally scrappy and lots in between! Here is some work in progress:

We had a very prolific day so I hope that everyone goes on to finish their quilts as they are going to be stunning.

Thursday 27th September
I purchased this book at the Festival of Quilts and have been so busy that I have only now had the time to start dipping into it:

For those of you who know me well I am so not an improvisational quilter. I love a structure and repetition but sometimes you just have to push yourself out of your comfort zone and that is what I hope to do with this book. I love the definition that Alexandra Ledgerwood has used in her book; "An imporovised quilt has a pleasing randomness, something unexpected within an overall design." The book is divided into three sections; creating with strips, creating with strata and creating with slice-and-insert. Each section begins with a techniques section and then has patternns for six projects. In total there are patterns for 18 projects. The instructions are written very clearly, there are good drawings to follow and some lovely photography. I am off to start with strips....

Sunday 23rd September
I have two entry tickets to give away to the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexander Palace in London. The tickets can be used on Thursday 11th October or Friday 12th October or Sunday 14th October and are valued at £15.50 each. If you would like to be in with a chance to win the tickets please email your name to info@patchworkpatterns.co.uk by Friday 5th October 9am and a winner will be chosen at random.

Judy has sent me a photo of her finished table runner. These are blocks from the class that I taught at Just Between Friends Quilt shop back in June. She has chosen some really pretty pink fabrics and here is the finished quilt. Thanks for sharing your work with us Judy.

Thursday 20th September
The Knitting and Stitching Show is being held at Alexander Palace in London from October 11th to 14th. I am teaching there on the Friday and the Saturday. My Friday classes are sold out but there are still some places left on my Saturday workshops:
The first one is at 9am and is a breakfast workshop which includes coffee and a breakfast muffin - "Fabulous Flower Brooches" where we stitch a 3D flower brooch.

The second class on Saturday is at 10.30am and involves stitching "Owl Baby Pincushions". These are very cute little pincushions which make really lovely gifts.

The last is at 1pm - "Italian Corded Quilting". We put a modern twist on a traditional technique.

All classes are an hour long. If you are purchasing entry tickets in advance and use the code tutor26 the tickets cost £13 (a saving of £2.50).

Thursday 13th September
I have just finished a huge project. I have been working away on another book and the projects all went off for their photoshoot last week and I have delivered the final text so.... a big clean up in the studio and onto something else! I have just cut these for my next project. I love these fabrics and have already used some of them in other projects but here they are cut and ready to go. Sunprints by Alison Glass.

Saturday 8th September
Today I have been teaching a workshop for Amwell Quilters. We have been working on Strips that Sizzle. These blocks use the stitch and flip method of construction and when put together create a secondary star pattern. There have been so many different fabric choices used today and each and everyone looks fabulous. I hope that you have enjoyed your day ladies and go on to finish your quilts.

Thursday 6th September
I have recently purchased some new patchwork and quilting books and thought that over the next couple of weeks that I would do some quick book reviews. This is the first - Scandanavian Stitches by Kajsa Wikman.

A really delightful book featuring 21 appliqued projects. The designs work through the seasons and feature whimsical and simplistic projects. The Scandanavian influence shines through in each project and the fabric choices are so lovely. Projects include quilts, cushions, baskets, coasters, pouches, ornaments etc. I am enjoying deliberating what to make first but I think that it is going to be the Christmas angels. I might even get them finished in time for Christmas!

Saturday 1st September
Today I have been to the Fashion and Textile Museum in London to see the Orla Kiely A Life in Pattern Exhibition. The museum is in Bermondsey in London and a short walk from London Bridge station.

The exhibition is on until September 23rd and is a visual feast of pattern. It is not a huge exhibition but I think well worth a visit. It features over 150 patterns and products showcasing her iconic designs.

I just love the repeated nature of her designs and the stylized graphic patterns. One of the exhibition spaces is given over to clothing and the garments have been made up in giant sizes suspended from the ceiling.

There is also a section given over to bags designed through the years. They were amazing and after loads of bag envy I really had to go.

Of course I had to stop at the shop on the way out and purchase a lovely book! If you can get to London it is well worth a visit.

Wednesday 29th August
Well ... I have this lovely little pile of fabrics. I keep looking at them but can't quite decide what to make with them. My favourite is the lime green with the raindrops on it but I do love the turquoise and navy combination! Any suggestions?

Saturday 25th August
I hope that you are all enjoying the Bank Holiday weekend and managing to get in some sewing time. Rain is forecast for tomorrow so probably a good time for some sewing. Working away on a project - I know more triangles! This fabric is called Medeterraneo and is from Art Gallery Fabrics. The blue print is really lovely as it has great big bunches of lemons and grapes all over it, although not too evident in this little photo. I'm having fun with it!

Thursday 23rd August
This quilt top has been made by Maureen. She came to one of my workshops and left at the end of the day with several blocks completed but has gone on to finish the top at home. The workshop involved stitching this block in two colour ways for variation. Such a great use of fabrics. Doesn't it look effective? Thanks for sharing it with us Maureen.

Saturday 18th August
Today I have been at Just Between Friends in Essex teaching my Positively Pinwheels workshop. In this class we make both positive and negative pinwheels and then put the blocks together to make a quilt. Here is some of the work in progress:


Thursday 16th August

Thought that I would share with you some photos from some of the workshops that I taught at the Festival of Quilts. Over the weekend I taught six classes so was pretty busy. I love to teach and always enjoy seeing how students take my projects in various directions. (Just so that you know everyone in the photos agreed to having their picture taken!) First up is the floral needle case class. We were making these from felt and stitching a range of flowers, leaves, buds etc onto little needle cases.



I also taught two Cathedral Window classes. I always think that this technique is like a puzzle as you don't always see how it works until near the end. Lots of projects on the way to being finished here:

My Inchie Mosaic class was fun. We were embellishing 1 inch squares to make mosaics. Here is some work in progress:

Finally what would a trip to the Festival of Quilts be without a spot of shopping? I love a book and had to buy the odd one or three and of course stock up on some essentials such as 505, Best Press and Aurufil threads. I also managed to sneak in a little bit of fabric.

Sunday 12th August
The Festival of Quilts has been so much fun but so busy. I hope that if you visited you enjoyed all the lovely quilts and managed to make a purchase or two! I thought that I would look at the modern quilts in this blog post and have chosen three of my favourites. The first is called Happenstance by Sarah Hibbert. It is stitched in predominantly linen fabrics and has just so much to look at in all the blocks. Lots of curves but also pieced blocks as well. I think that this is a quilt that you can keep coming back to and see something different each time.

My second favourite quilt in the Modern Category was Travel Colours Your World by Susan Tabor. Susan actually attended one of my workshops and it was really nice to hear from her about the inspiration behind her quilt. She loves to travel hence the various skylines from around the world. I love the use of colour in this quilt. Check out the quilted clouds.

Lastly my third favourite is Retro by Sophie Zaugg. The colours just work together so well and the repeating block with all its variations is really clever. All those curved seams!

Wednesday 8th August
Full steam ahead with Festival of Quilt prep. I have six workshops to teach each requiring packs of materials for the students. We are all done now which is good but I don't know how I have managed to have so much stuff. Looks like a mess but there is organisation in there somewhere!

Please do come and say hello to me while I am on the Cotton Patch stand and if you have a book that you would like me to sign do bring it with you or purchase one from them. The times are below and I will be there for approx 45mins each time.

Monday 6th August
Just got back from a lovely holiday to Crete. A good week of relaxation and recharging. Count down now to the Festival of Quilts. Please come and say hello to me. I will be on the Cotton Patch stand (B21) on Thursday at 10.30am, Friday at 1pm and Saturday at 10.30am signing my book "Simply Modern Patchwork Quilts". I will have some of the quilts with me and I know that the Cotton Patch stock some of the fabrics. This is one of my favourites from the book - it is called Hugs and Kisses:

Saturday 28th July
Do you fancy a weekend away working on a patchwork project with like minded people? I am teaching a weekend workshop in Guildford in November making a modern quilt. There are three designs to choose from and all tuition is included. The weekend is organised by Anglia Leisure Learning and runs from Friday to Sunday and accomodation and meals are provided so all you have to do is sew!

Friday 27th July
I have been working away in the studio this week on projects for my next book. I do really enjoy taking a concept or theme and then designing and making the projects to fit. Quilt making is my first love but I also enjoy making smaller projects and this book will be focussing on lots of smaller items. Here is a sneaky peek at something that I am working on. The fabric has a really large design but is just great for what I have in mind:

Sunday 22nd July
I seem to be having a bit of a fabric frenzy at the moment. These delicious fabrics arrived in the week. They are from Art Gallery and are such bright and vibrant colours. I am using them for projects in my next book so unfortunately I can't show you what I am making with them. I have fallen in love with the first one in the photo which is a green/turquoise colour.

Wednesday 18th July
These fabrics are so lovely. The range is called "Little Sweethearts" by Edyta Sitar and the fabrics come in a cream, rose pink, dark pink/red with a touch of beige colour way. They would make a delicious quilt!

Sunday 15th July
I have a project in this month's Quilt Now magazine. It is a set of three little pincushions using the Kitty range of fabrics from Makower. They are super quick to make and would make cute gifts. Great for using up small scraps of fabrics. Take a look.

Saturday 14th July
Busy working on another book at the moment. The deadline is fast approaching so it is a little bit like a sweat shop in the studio with all the heat but I am having fun designing and making all the projects. I just love a triangle and many of the students in my classes say "not another triangle". Well .... there will be the odd triangle or two in this book!

Sunday 8th July
Maureen has finished piecing her Forest Stars quilt that she started in our workshop in May. It is a mixture of teal, green and cream with a soft yellow. It looks lovely there with the light behind it. I am sure that she will have it quilted in no time at all! Thanks Maureen.

Saturday 7th July
The Festival of Quilts is coming around very quickly - an event that I always look forward to. I have several workshops to teach and this is one of them - Floral Felt needlecases. There are just 4 spaces left on this class on Saturday at 1pm so if you fancy some hand stitching and making one of these; visit the workshop page on the Festival of Quilts website and sign up!

Wednesday 4th July
I have this gorgeous fabric to work with. I just love the contrast of pattern. It is called Japanese Zen Chic from Higgs and Higgs. I am hoping to make a bag with it so can't wait to get started.

Sunday 1st July
I am not sure that Carol has had time to sleep as she has stitched this quilt top in less than a week! This pattern is from the class that I taught last Saturday at Just Between Friends. Carol has used a lovely floral range of fabrics for her quilt. Thanks for sharing this with us.


Thursday 28th June

Thank you to everyone who entered the draw for the tickets to the Festival of Quilts in Birmingham. I am pleased to announce that the lucky recipient is Sarah H who will be receiving her two tickets shortly.

Wednesday 27th June
I thought that you might like to see Maureen's quilt. She started it in a class with me, probably about fifteeen years ago! It has a 1930's theme to it and is made using machine applique in 1930's reproduction prints. Maureen has recently finished the top and it is now ready to be quilted. It is always good to finish those UFOs even if it does take awhile. Thanks Maureen it is looking good!

Sunday 24th June
Yesterday I taught a class at Just Betweeen Friends quilt shop. We were working on my Floral Splendour quilt. The quilt is constructed with just one block but the blocks are pieced in two different colour ways and alternate with each other. Here is some of the work in progress:

Friday 22nd June
I found this magazine in my local WH Smith. It is not one that I have seen there before although a couple of years ago I did bring one back from the States. There are 13 projects in the mag - all with a modern vibe covering a range of techniques. There is also an article on the judging of Quilt Con and an interview with designer Andrea Tsang Jackson. I always shy away from curved piecing but there is a pattern in there for a quilt with lots of quarter circles so thought that I might just have a go at the technique and see if I can grow to love curved piecing!

Thursday 21st June
Have been working on samples for this workshop for the Festival of Quilts in the summer. These flowers are constructed by stitching and spiralling (not sure that that is a word but it best describes the technique) to make 3D blooms. It is quite a clever technique and I love the 3D effect that it creates. The workshop takes place on Saturday 11th August; is just an hour and we are going to make the little flower in the hoop.

Sunday 17th June
I have a project in this month's Quilt Now magazine. It is a floral inspired quilt and is great for using up the precious bits of fabric in your stash. I have used quite a few Tula Pink and Kaffe Fassett fabrics - the bolder more vibrant fabrics and have coupled them with some grey background.There is also a feature on me and my new book!

Friday 15th June
I just love the fabric designs by Alison Glass. Here are some of her fabrics from her Sunprints 2018 collection by Makower UK. The collection moves from aquaramarine to violet to pink, orange, lime and grey. I really like the lime and grey combinations. I can feel a quilt coming on....

Wednesday 13th June - GIVE AWAY
I have two tickets to give away for the Festival of Quilts at the NEC, Birmingham, 9th - 12th August. The tickets can be used on any one day of your choice. If you would like to be in with a chance to win the tickets, email me at info@patchworkpatterns.co.uk by Wednesday 27th June and I will choose a winner at random. The tickets are worth £16.00 each. Get emailing now!

Saturday 9th June
I have started prep for the Festival of Quilts already! I know super early but I have loads of projects and samples to make, handouts to write and packs to put together. One of the classes that I am teaching on the Husqavana Viking stand is fabric storage baskets. These are small baskets but are great for storing any number of items such as sewing goods, makeup, stationery etc I have just made this one up in this butterfly fabric with contrasting pink base and lining:

I will have some free tickets for the Festival of Quilts up for grabs next week so do keep checking back for further info.

Friday 8th June
A bit of secret sewing going on at the moment using these lovely fabrics - "Indigo and Aster" from Art Gallery fabrics. The colours are so vibrant with a real mix of pattern. I think my favourite fabric is the swirly orange one although the green is a pretty close second!

Wednesday 6th June
I have a quilt pattern in this month's "Simply Sewing" magazine. It is a smallish quilt called Floating Triangles and is pretty quick and easy to make. There are also lots of other lovely projects to make in the magazine from dresses to tops to purses. The magazine has a real summer feel to it.

Sunday 3rd June
Here is Joy's Positively Pinwheels quilt which she made on one of my classes at the end of last year. All finished and quilted. Such bright vibrant colours with the contrast between the positive and negative pinwheels. Thanks for sharing this with us Joy - it really is lovely.

Saturday 2nd June
A few weeks ago I posted a pic of a baby quilt that I had made for a friend. I then went on to make her a zippy pouch as well to go with the quilt for all those baby essentials. I enjoyed making the pouch and it was pretty quick to make:

Tuesday 29th May
If you fancy bagging yourself a bargain, my book has been discounted on Amazon from £9.99 to £7.70. Not sure how long the offer will last for as the discounts tend to come and go every few days but if you are thinking of getting a copy now would be a good time!

Here is a photo of the Starburst quilt from the book. This is one of my favourites as I think the fabric choice has a retro feel about it with a star within a star design.

Sunday 27th May
Roding Quilters have an exhibition this weekend at St Mary's Church, High Rd Chigwell. IG76QQ which is also on tomorrow from 10am until 4pm. The quilts are draped over the pews in the church and there are so many to see. It really is a visual feast. Along with all the lovely quilts to look at there are refreshments, a trader and some items for sale. If you have some free time tomorrow it is well worth a visit. At the front of the church I spied some elephants - these are quilts made from one of my patterns:

Here is a snap shot of some of the quilts on display:

Wednesday 23rd May
Pushpa has been busy finishing her projects. The first is a quilt containing the left over blocks from the Summer Sampler workshop that she did with me last year. Not only did she finish her sampler after the class but has used the left overs to make another quilt. (Not sure how she had so many left overs but I think she swopped around fabrics.) Isn't it lovely with the mix of butterflies, hearts, pinwheels and mini dresden plates?

Pushpa has also made an elephant quilt from one of my patterns which featured in Popular Patchwork magazine. I love the rogue blue elephant amonst the grey ones and also the lovely hand stitching in red thread around the elephants. Thanks for sharing these with us Pushpa.

Sunday 20th May

I spent the day yesterday at Just Between Friends quilt shop in Essex teaching my Forest Stars quilt workshop. The royal wedding was playing on the lap top, fizz was consumed to toast the royal couple, strawberries, meringues and cake was consumed and we did some sewing! We did the tricky blocks before the fizz and the not so tricky ones after...

Friday 18th May
A bit of secret sewing going on at the moment on a Christmas project for a publication. I know, Christmas in May doesn't really seem right but at least it is not really hot! Love the fabrics...

Wednesday 16th May
Here is Teresa's "Bumpy Circles" quilt. She started this in a workshop with me last year and has gone on to finish it. The quilt uses a jelly roll and some background fabric. The shades of blue create a really calming effect and the big stitch quilting in the middle of the octogons looks really effective. Thanks for sharing this with us Teresa.

Sunday 13th May
My book "Simply Modern Patchwork Quilts" is available both from Amazon and Search Press. (They had sold out from Amazon earlier in the week but are now back in stock). If you do buy a copy from Amazon I would be really grateful if you could leave a review. Thanks.

Saturday 12th May
I have been at Just Between Friends in Essex today teaching day three of the "Taste of the Orient" quilt. Today we were working on kimono blocks and fans. Everyone had done their homework and had finished their appliqued blocks so now the quilts just need to be put together. Here is some work in progress:

Thursday 10th May
I don't know whether you are aware of a charity called Siblings Together? The charity work to bring together siblings separated by the care system. Every year they run summer camps where these children can just be together and have fun together as siblings. The Siblings Together Quilt group work really hard to provide each child who attends a camp their very own patchwork quilt to have and then take home with them at the end of the camp. Each year the group needs to donate 100 quilts. If you are interested in finding out a little more about the charity here is the link: http://siblingstogetherquiltgroup.blogspot.co.uk
I have just donated three quilts and these were ones that I had made for book or magazine commissions but I thought that they would be suitable for children. I think that at the last count they had 82 quilts so need a few more to reach that 100 total. If you have a quilt that you are willing to donate the information re sizes etc can be found via the link above.

Saturday 6th May
Yesterday I taught a class at Liberty Department Store in London. We were working on a Floating Triangles Quilt which is a project from my latest book. The fabrics are provided for the students and the staff at Libertys had chosen really lovely fabrics for the students to work with:

The quilts started to grow as the day progressed and here is some work in progress:

The really good thing about this project is it is just one block but rotated in different ways to achieve the floating effect. I did work everyone really hard but by the end of the day everyone had cut out all the pieces for their quilt, made the blocks and had started to sticth them together. Great work everyone!.

Friday 4th May
Thought that you might like to see a little more of the book. My copies arrived in boxes with info printed on the outside. Sadly I was very excited about seeing my name on the outside of a cardboard box!! The projects can be made quickly and are designed to be stitched in a weekend or completed in a couple of weeks. They are designed to be used everyday and to fit into modern homes today. You can see all the quilts here:

Wednesday 2nd May
Finally...... my second book "Simply Modern Patchwork Quilts" has just been released. The book was finished in December and has just come back from the printers. It features ten quilt patterns with a modern edge to them. The fabrics are bright, clean and crisp and the quilts can be made using quick piecing methods. The book is available to purchase from Search Press or Amazon or directly from myself at £9.99. I hope that you like it!

Sunday 29th April
I posted back in March about a workshop that I taught for "Gone to Pieces" quilt group where we made fabric flower brooches and corsages. They have sent me a photo of all their brooches that they displayed at their meeting in April. What a super range of finished flowers. Well done to all of you and thank you for sharing the photo with us.

Saturday 28th April
I have just finished making a baby quilt for a friend who is expecting a little girl. The quilt had to have white and grey fabrics and definitely not much pink! I used fabrics from my stash which weren't baby type fabrics at all and as time was short I used a fairly quick pieceing method to construct the quilt. This method would be really suitable for a jelly roll. I choose four fabrics and cut them into 2 1/2" wide strips and then stitched them together in pairs.


I then recut the stitched strips into 4 1/2" squares and laid them out in a pleasing design and stitched them together.

I added a 3 1/2" wide white border and some straight line quilting horizontally and vertically and the quilt is good to go....

Wednesday 25th April
I thought that you might like to see this lovely quilt. Tansy has made this quilt from a pattern that I wrote for Popular Patchwork magazine. The flying geese are large and are made using a very quick piecing method so that there is no wasteage of fabric and the quilt grows quickly. Tansy has made her quilt in a range of fabrics from her stash including some Liberty prints. Thank you Tansy it is a beautiful quilt.

Sunday 22nd April
Yesterday I spent the day at Just Between Friends in Essex teaching a workshop. We were working on star blocks which combine to make a quilt. There were two variations of blocks. In my quilt I used a patterned fabric for the background and it was really interesting to see the variety of background fabrics being used. It was a really warm day but everyone beavered away and got quite a lot done. I hope that you enjoyed the class and I look forward to seeing the finished quilts. Here are some photos of work in progress:

Friday 20th April
If you are thinking of going to the Festival of Quilts in Birmingham, 9th - 12th August tickets and workshops are now available for booking. This can be done through the website or by phone. If you are wishing to purchase tickets in advance I have a code which you can use to get a discount on the price. The code is WT40 and when used to purchase tickets gives you a £2.50 reduction on each ticket.


Thursday 19th April

I have a project in Popular Patchwork magazine this month. The quilt is called "Bubbles" and is full of circles of different shapes and sizes. I really enjoy applique and it seems like ages since I last stitched an applique project so I really enjoyed making this quilt. I think that it has been my favourite to date this year!

Sunday 15th April
Margaret has finished her quilt that she started in a class with me last year. The quilt combines log cabin blocks with stars and makes lots of secondary patterns. She made too many blocks so used the remaining ones to make a set a cushions. Don't they look fabulous in the red and green colour way? Thanks Margaret.

Saturday 14th April
It has been very quiet on the blog here for a couple of weeks but I have been in New Zealand visiting the family. They live in Napier in the North Island. There was a huge earthquake in Napier in the early part of the 1900s so when the city was rebuilt a lot of it was built in the art deco style. Many of the buildings have been maintained and preserved in the style today so I thought that you might like to see a few photos, One day I will get around to making an art deco themed quilt.


I spied this wall paper in one building and this wall decoration:


Sunday 25th March
It is always so lovely to see students come back with their projects finished. First up we have Pippa who attended one of my workshops where we were working with lots of little half square triangles. Pippa has finished her project into two cushions. I love her fabric choices and the secondary patterns that the rows create. Thanks for sharing these with us Pippa.

We then have Jill who has finished her Bumpy Circles Quilt. This project uses a jelly roll and some background fabric and creates interconnecting octogons. Jill has used a jelly roll which has a retro look about it and finished the quilt with wavy line quilting. It really is a very effective quilt. Take a look at the back and the backing fabric - isn't this just superb? Jill has used a king sized duvet cover from IKEA, which when you open out and cut, only has one side seam. What a great idea. Thanks for sharing this with us Jill.

Saturday 24th March
Back to "Just Between Friends" in Essex for day two of A Taste of the Orient. We had some centre sections of the quilt that had been finished for homework:

They are all looking really effective and it is lovely to see the quilts progressing. Today we have been working on the various symbols:

Wednesday 21st March

I wrote a blog post earlier in the month about the Sawdust Hearts project which aims to highlight the value of occupational therapy in patient recovery with proceeds going to the charity Combatstress. As you can see I have decorated my heart really quite simply and it is ready to be posted off. I have really enjoyed participating in such a worthwhile project and hope that it is successful.

Sunday 18th March
I have just finished making a cot quilt and a teddy for a friend who is expecting a baby. The baby is due soon so for once I am prepared. They are expecting a boy and as the dad is a zoo keeper I have used fabrics with an animal print on them. Here is the teddy:

And here is the teddy and a tiny bit of the quilt:

Wednesday 14th March
I have a project in this month's Popular Patchwork magazine. The quilt has large flying geese moving in all directions over the quilt and uses a really vibrant fabric collection from Art Gallery fabrics called Dreamcatcher. The fabrics have some gold sparkle woven into them and feature horses, dreamcatchers, arrows, stars etc

Saturday 10th March
Yesterday I taught a mini workshop for "Gone to Pieces" Quilt group in Buckinghamshire. We made fabulous flower brooches and used felt, fabric, organza, buttons and beads. Here is just a small selection of the fabulous flowers created and a pic of the lovely Janet who insisted that I photograph her wearing her brooch:


Thursday 8th March
I don't seem to be able to get enough triangles at the moment and every project seems to have them in there somewhere! I am making a cot quilt at the moment for a friend who is expecting a boy so yes we have more triangles....

Saturday 3rd March

Spent yesterday at the Knitting and Stitching show at Olympia. The journey to and from there was pretty horendous with the weather conditions but I made it and managed to get back home just as it had started to snow again! I love seeing a show come to life before it opens to the public with all the stall holders getting ready and the buzz of anticipation. The classrooms were lit with daylight lamps which made a real difference to the students.

I loved this display of garments from a group of A level students from Kings Ely College. Gosh if they are designing these garments at this age what will they be able to go on to do in the future? The knitted tea room was so cute.

The Quilters Guild had a display of quilts commemorating remembrance and although I had seen the quilts before it was good to look again at the superb workmanship. Here are two of my favourires. Apologies for not mentioning the makers. I did write the names down but have mislaid the piece of paper that I wrote it on.

This brings me on to the Sawdust Hearts Project that had a display there. During World War One, thousands of sawdust filled hearts were distributed by the Red Cross to wounded soldiers who decorated the hearts with fabric, beads, sequins and pins as part of their occupational therapy. The soldiers could then send their decorated heart to a loved one. They were thus called Sawdust hearts. The project aims to distribute 1,568 hearts for decoration. This is the number of days that the war lasted. Every heart is numbered and can be decorated as wished, returned for documentation and display. There is a small charge to participate with all proceeds going to the charity Combatstress. I have a heart to decorate and return so am looking forward to getting started and feel that it is such a worthwhile project to participate in. If you would like to participate or would like some further information go to www.ww1hearts.co.uk

Thursday 1st March
Today is the first day of Spring and what can I see out of the window? Snow, snow and more snow!

In the studio serious prep is going on getting ready for my classes at the Knitting and Stitching show tomorrow. I am making up packs for the students.

Wednesday 28th February
Over the weekend I taught a residential class for Anglia Leisure at a hotel in Surrey. The accomodation and food were superb and I think that all nine of us willl have come home a few pounds heavier. We were working on my "Taste of the Orient Quilt". This quilt has lots of different blocks and covers techniques such as piecing, applique and foundation piecing. We had a very spacious room to work in:


There were some beautiful fabrics to work with and everyone worked in a different colour way:


At the end of the weekend we laid out all the blocks that were completed and look what we achieved. With a few more additions they are ready to be stitched together into quilts. I hope that you all get your quilts completed and I look forward to seeing the finished results.

Friday 23rd February
If you enjoy making bags and if you need a shopper's tote to add to your collection I have written a pattern for Patchwork and Quilting magazine and it is in this month's edition. The bag is a roomy one and ideal for everyday use so take a look....

Thursday 22nd February
I have just returned from a holiday in Norway. The scenery was so spectacular and we saw the northern lights several times so it was pretty amazing. I always love looking for things on holiday that are a little different and in one of the towns I found these vinyl records displayed on the ceiling in one of the shops. Wouldn't this translate into an effective quilt? I also saw this piece of art work on the side of a building. It was made up from shoes and soles of shoes that had been washed ashore from the sea. I love the recycling concept in both of these.

Monday 19th February
Yesterday I went to visit Stitches in Birmingham which is a trade show for all things sewing, knitting and craft related. It was really interesting to see the new fabric ranges that are about to come out and the new products to be launched on the market. It was a riot of colour.

I had been comissioned to design and make some bags for Makower in some of the new fabric lines and these were on display on the Makower stand. The patterns to make these will soon be on their website. Here are the bags ready to be posted:

This one is a tote bag and is made in the Beachcomber range of fabrics:

This second one is a Messenger bag and is made in fabrics from the Fruity Friends collection:

And finally this is my favourite bag and fabric range. This one is made in fabrics from the Kitty collection. I nearly couldn't part with it:

Saturday 17th February
I think that Judy is working overtime as she has made another quilt. This one is for her nephew and is from a pattern that I wrote for Sewing World magazine. The pattern comes together really quickly. Love the fabrics Judy!

Friday 8th February
Busy working on a magazine commission at the moment. Really good to be working on an appliqued project for a change. Here is just a tiny peek!


Thursday 7th February
Thank you to everyone who entered the draw for the tickets to the Knitting and Stitching Show at Olympia. I am pleased to announce that the lucky recipient is Maria C who will be receiving her two tickets shortly.


Thursday 1st February
Free Tickets to the Knitting and Stitching Show at Olympia in March. See my blog posting for Friday 26th January. Email for a chance to win!

Wednesday 31st January
Hasn't it been a long month? All those grey January days. Here is a new fabric collection from Makower to brighten up the day. It is called Katie Jane and is full of floral and ditsy prints in a lovely coral/aqua colour way. If you visit the Makower website there is a free pattern using this fabric range which features Irish chains and Dresden plates. It really is a lovely pattern.

Friday 26th January
Further to the blog post below re The Knitting and Stitch Show at Olympia in March I have 2 tickets to give away. These tickets are for use on either Thursday 1st, Friday 2nd or Sunday 4th March. If you would like to be in with a chance to win the tickets, email me at info@patchworkpatterns.co.uk by Sunday 4th February and I will choose a winner at random. The tickets are worth £13.50 each. Get emaiing now!

Wednesday 24th January
What are you doing in March? The Knitting and Stitching Show is on at Olympia during the weekend of the 1st -4th March. Tickets are on sale and all the workshops are open and available for booking. I am teaching three workshops on Friday 2nd March so if you fancy coming and learning how to make an Inchie Mosaic or a Fabulous Flower Brooch or try some Italian Corded Quilting have a look at the workshops on the Knitting and Stitching website: https://www.theknittingandstitchingshow.com/

Sunday 21st January
Yesterday I taught day one of my Taste of the Orient Quilt class. We started by working on the central panel which is a noshi. (strands of dried seaweed). Everyone has approached their quilt with a different colour way so I am really looking forward to seeing how they alll turn out. Here is some work in progress:

We then went on to foundation piecing the little kimono figures and the students left with a month until the next class and lots of homework!

Judy has also finished her Christmas wall hanging and has really embellished it with lots of buttons and beads. Thanks for sharing it with us Judy - looking good.

Friday 19th January
Here is the first finish of the year from Pipa. Pipa came to a class before Christmas where we were making Christmas wall hangings. She didn't get it finished in time for Christmas 2017 but has it ready for December 2018. Doesn't it look lovely embellished with all the buttons? Thanks for sharing it with us Pipa.

Sunday 14th January
The sorting and tidying in the studio has finished. Yeah! The boxes of fabric now all have little labels on them:

The quilts have been tidied and sorted.

I have some quilts to give away to family and friends and also to charity so that will be the next job. I can now start another project.....

Thursday 11th January
Popular Patchwork magazine arrived yesterday and features one of my quilt patterns. This is for a fan quilt. The fabrics had an antique look to them hence the more traditional pattern. This month's magazine has a winter floral theme which is really lovely for this time of year.

Sunday 7th January 2018
Happy New Year everyone! I know, a bit late but we get there eventually. I think that 2018 should be a year for finishing all of those projects that are tucked away. If you have a project that you started on one of my classes do see if you can get it finished and send me a photo. It would be good to see it completed and for us all to enjoy.
I have started my year by having a huge destash (is that a word?) and sort out in my studio. I have so much stuff that needs sorting and organising. Because I teach so many classes there are piles of samples and projects and quilts.
So..... I started with the fabric. Off to Hobbycraft for some new storage and then a big sort through the fabric. I now have fabric to keep, some to sell and some to give away.

The boxes are all colour coded. (To be fair they were colour sorted before but I had fabric in them that I know that I will never use as it is dated and I just don't like it anymore.) Someone else will be able to enjoy it instead.

The shelves have been tidied and I have been ruthless with the magazines.

Then a sort through of the wadding. Why do we have all those small pieces of wadding left over from quilts? Too precious to discard. I really need to make 500 cushions to use it all up!

Finally a clear up on the cutting table. I know it doesn't look that clear but this is pretty good.

Well I am feeling pretty motivated so far. I just have to sort the filing cabinets, then the quilts and then the piles on the floor!

Saturday 30th December
I have been working away on a project for a magazine with these lovely fabrics from Michael Miller:

There is quite a mix of purples, blues and gold colours. Here is just a tiny sneaky peek of work in progress:


Sunday 24th December

As Christmas Day is nearly upon us I wanted to wish you all a restful Christmas period shared with family and friends. Perhaps you will have a little time for some sewing over the next few days or perhaps you may just want to put the projects away and concentrate on other things? Whatever you decide have a Merry Christmas.

Thursday 21st December
I do get asked quite often when I am teaching the course to make the quilt "A Taste of the Orient"? This quilt contains lots of Japanese type blocks and uses techniques such as piecing, applique and foundation piecing. I am teaching this in February over a residential weekend at the Crowne Plaza Hotel close to Gatwick Airport. This is for Anglia Leisure Learning. If you would like further details they can be found at info@anglialeisurelearning.co.uk. Come and join us and enjoy a weekend with like minded people; stitching and being looked after with all your meals, refreshments and accomodation included.

Sunday 17th December
I live not far from Hettford in Hertfordshire and the it has been fun to see that all the post boxes in the town have been yarn bombed. I think that there are 25 post boxes and each has something knitted in a Christmas related theme added to the top of the post box. Here is the post box outside the post office:

This is one I spied on the street:

The one outside the fire station is brilliant with knitted firefighters surrounding a Christmas pudding. The yarn bombing has been done to raise funds for the Isabel Hospice and I think to date £4000 has been raised. Here is the link to the local paper where you can see all the others: http://www.hertfordshiremercury.co.uk/news/hertfordshire-news/yarn-bombers-give-25-hertford-841007

Sunday 10th December
Snow has finally found its way to the South East. Woke up to some lovely snowy views. This is the view about 300m from the house:

Good time to stay inside and sew I think.

Saturday 9th December
I have a quilt in this month's issue of Popular Patchwork magazine. It is called Clementine and is a smallish pieced quilt. I have used these fabrics twice now - firstly for a duffle type bag in my book "Simply Modern Patchwork Bags" and now in this project. I just love them as they are so bright and citrusy. Sadly there will be no more projects in this fabric range as my stash is exhausted!

Sunday 26th November
It is so cold! I am not a fan of the cold - I much prefer the heat and sunshine but did get warm with some frantic leaf raking and collecting in the garden. Just the right time of the year for stitching. I now don't have any more classes to teach until the new year so can spend some time making. Yeah! Here is a sneaky peek of a project for a magazine:

Saturday 18th November
Guess what I am making? Lots of wedges to make fan blocks. Lovely fabric - Crystal Farm by Edyta Sitar for Laundry Basket Quilts.

Friday 17th November
Christmas is creeping up on us! If you fancy making some quick hand made gifts for Christmas there are 25 patterns in this month's Popular Patchwork magazine which I think is really good value for the price. There are a variety of projects from tree decs to gingerbread garlands to fabric gift wrap etc. I have three patterns featured - some notebook covers, bottle bags and patchwork pouches:

Sunday 12th November
Joy has finished her Scrappy Stars quilt which she has machine pieced. This is Joy's first large quilt made on the machine and totally machine quilted. (She is usually a hand stitcher!) This quilt is going to Australia for her daughter. It was quite tricky to photograph as it was so large but look at the close up of the star with the doggy fabric. Isn't it so cute? Well done Joy - your daughter is very lucky. I can't wait to see what you make next!

Saturday 11th November
Back to Just Between Friends quilt shop to teach another class. This time it was a Christmas class. We were making a little Christmas tree wall hanging featuring nine little appliqued trees which then will be embellished with buttons. Lots of work in progress whic is looking great!

Sunday 5th November
On the last page of every Sewing World magazine they feature a Stitch Story from a designer, teacher or sewer. The story tells that person's sewing journey. Well this month it was my turn! When originally I was asked I thought that I would really struggle but once I got started I couldn't stop! There are some lovely projects in the magazine so take a look.

Saturday 4th November
Caroline's quilt from an earlier course is now finished. I love the contrast in fabrics between the light and dark - it looks so effective. Caroline has put a fleece backing on her quilt so I am sure that it will be very snuggly during those cold winter nights! Thanks for sharing it with us.

Sunday 29th October
I have just seen this morning that my book "Simply Modern Patchwork Bags" has been reduced on Amazon. It usually sells for £9.99 but today is £7.23. Head over there to bag a bargain or purchase an early Christmas present!

Saturday 28th October
I have been at Just Between Friends in Essex today teaching my Bumpy Circles quilt. This design is really interconnecting octogons and is a simple repeating block but looks very effective when stitched together. Everyone worked with a different fabric range and we had fabric in jewel tones, pastels, modern, Tilda blues, bright retro, Christmas and lots inbetween. Here are some photos of work in progress:

Wednesday 25th October
Here is another finished quilt. This was made by Tansy in my Flower Market class at the Festival of Quilts. Tansy has used fabrics from the Alison Glass collection and they have really come together well creating a vibrant quilt. It is a lovely quilt - many thanks for sharing it with us Tansy.

Sunday 22nd October
I have a project in Popular Patchwork magazine this month. It is a Winterberry quilt in delicate shades of wintery green with a touch of pinky/red. It is one of those projects where you stitch lots of strips and then recut to make the blocks. I am looking forward to throwing this quilt over the back of the sofa as the nights draw in and using it to snuggle under on cold nights! Take a look at the magazine - it is in shops now.

Saturday 21st October
Today I have been teaching at Liberty's Department Store in London. I always love going there as there are so many lovely things to look at in the shop. The sewing school is held in the Heritage Suite and on the window sill was a lovely display of Kaffe Fassett fabrics and books:

In one corner of the room was this chair covered in a beautiful grey Liberty print:

We were working on positive and negative pinwheel blocks to make a small quilt. The students were working with Rowan fabrics in a blue/green colourway which were looking really effective. All in all it was a very productive day so I hope that everyone manages to get their project finished. Thank you for all working so hard.

Saturday 14th October
I have a project in Patchwork and Quilting magazine this month and it has made it to the front cover! It is called Floral Splendour and is made in the Botanica range of fabrics from Makower. The quilt is machine pieced and quilted. Check it out!

Friday 13th October
Christine has finished her quilt that she started with me in August. Lovely soft colour choices and beautifully stitched. Thanks Christine for sharing it with us.

Sunday 8th October
I love anything that has a retro look about it from stationery to crockery to furniture. It was great then to see these fabrics from Andover for Makower called Modern Retro. I love the combination of designs and the colour palette. I think my favourite is the leaf design on the lime background. If you go to the Makower website there is a free pattern to download by Lynne Goldsworthy which really showcases the fabrics.

Sunday 1st October
I have been beavering away on a couple of projects for magazines. There is nothing like a deadline to focus your sewing! Here is a little peek at one of the projects:

Sunday 24th September
Where would we be without those blenders? Bought this a couple of weeks ago with no project in mind. Has a linen effect but with a spot. Can't wait to use it.

Friday 22nd September
In this month's Sewing World magazine I have a project featured. It is a set of six patchwork coasters. Each coaster is made from a different patchwork technique from triangles to squares to log cabin etc. They were fun to make and a bit out of my comfort zone as they are so small! They have been photographed beautifully:

Sunday 17th September
I have this lovely bundle of fabrics which have a linen look to them in shades of blue and grey. I bought them at the Festival of Quilts in the summer from Higgs and Higgs. Not quite sure what to make with them yet but perhaps some cushions?

Saturday 16th September
I taught a mini workshop at Fat Quarters Quilt group in Missenden this week and we worked on Italian corded quilting. This style of quilting involves inserting cord or yarn into stitched parallel channels. The result is a lovely raised design. A bit tricky to see the raised bit from the photo!

Here is some of the work in progress from the reverse where the brightly coloured yarn will show through and then another sample from the front:

Wednesday 13th September.
Judy's quilt just keeps growing. Back in June she completed the triangles in the centre in one of my workshops but as she wanted to make the quilt larger she has added some plain borders and some more triangles. I think you secretly love triangles Judy!

Sunday 10th September
I have a project in Popular Patchwork magazine this month. It is a quilt called Forest Stars and features stars with little pinwheels in their centres and stars with a lovely tree fabric in their centres. The quilt made it to the front cover! It is made in Birdsong fabrics from Dashwood and the stars contrast really nicely with the soft grey background.


Saturday 9th September

Today I have been teaching my "Stars in the Cabin" class at Just Between Friends in Buckhurst Hill. This is the project that we were working on:

We started with this:

and ended up with these:

Friday 1st September
Wow another month has gone by already - where is the year going? Here is a photo of a quilt made by Linda. Linda came on my Flower Market quilt class at the Festival of Quilts and went home and finished her quilt! I think that she had it completed in under two weeks so I am not sure that she has slept at all. Linda used fabrics with fruit or vege prints on them which have worked well. Many thanks Linda for sharing it with us - it is really striking.

 

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