On Trend.

Everything old is new again.

I was taught to crochet by my Nan. For me it was special time, just her and I (she had nineteen grandchildren) and adored us all. She also had an incredibly unique way of making every single one of us feel as though we were her special one! (I was, but don’t tell the other 18).

I went to a tiny school in country SA, and at lunchtime the grade 5 and 6 students who could crochet, were ‘allowed’ to go into the grade 7 classroom, where we worked our tails off, making blankets. The blankets were then donated to the local Old Folks home (at which point I am sure the teachers took all the credit). But enough about my childhood hang ups.

For years I made endless things. Shawls, pillows, blankets galore.

Then the teenage years came. Time away from home to study. Jobs, cars, boyfriends. Time passed. More jobs, one proper boyfriend, marriage, travel, kids. Not much crochet.

Until the last few years. And once you learn you never forget. It was a delight to pick up my Nan’s old tin of hooks and be on my way. I again have multiple projects on the go, and find myself one of the cool kids. Crochet is so on-trend. Nan would be most pleased.

And at my Studio, it is the most popular class we run. Thrilled to have my teacher back in the loop (she has been away doing some of those family, marriage, job things), so after a short hiatus we are back in the crochet groove.

Get your groove on by joining us on Saturday 6th August. You too will be pleased you learnt.

Booking info right here: http://www.cottonfactory.bigcartel.com/product/beginner-crochet-class



Sometimes it is good to be very fussy!

Having great fun with these. A lovely distraction on a shockingly cold Ballarat winter’s day.



Online here: http://cottonfactory.bigcartel.com/product/small-wonders-elephant-in-the-room

Magpies – flying back to us

So many requests from you bird/animal/Aussie lovers to restock this baby – so as it happens it’s on its way back to us in just three weeks.

How cool is the brand new grey?

Local and overseas postage listed online.



Tula Pink


Tula Pink is in Australia! Actually that’s not news to any crafter with a computer and a sewing addiction.

I went and listened to her speak today, followed by a Trunk show.

Ummmm. WOW. Expectations exceeded.

I had briefly ‘met’ Tula at the recent Quilt Market Trade Show, but I have a whole new respect for her, her work, the design process and her backstory after having her speak – with the most extraordinary passion – to a group of dedicated fans. I was and remain a fan.

Fans or not – her story was compelling, and I will look at my wall of Tula fabric just a little differently from here on.

Sneak peak of new things, on their way. Thankyou Tula. This morning was a most unforgettable morning.

Calendar FB6HXTP22016




So this is awkward!

the #cfcblockswap link went a bit pear shaped this morning, after the swap launch. I don’t think it could deal with all the attention.

After some bundle massage (like CPR for online fabric links), we are back in full colourful action.

Link here! http://cottonfactory.bigcartel.com/product/cotton-factory-community-block-swap-packs

Cotton Factory Community Block Swap

Cotton Factory Community Block Swap


A common theme when crafters talk about swaps, is how hard they are to organise, how varied the fabrics are (some chain store, some high quality fabric store, some Vintage, some – well we are just not sure really) and how hard it is to manage when people don’t follow through.

I think we have cut through all that with this brand new Community Block Swap. I am proud of the community that has established itself around Cotton Factory, and am excited that we have the opportunity to be the central point for another community event. (So you will already have realised that #cfc is Cotton Factory Community).

Open to crafters near and far the swap will work as follows:

  1. Purchase your Block Pack from Cotton Factory
  2. Make four blocks
  3. Return as many (or as few) as you decide
  4. You will receive the SAME number of swap blocks by return mail, that you sent in.

For locals we will have some days set aside to come and sew your blocks. For those far away, you may like to sew with others in your own town, who are also part of the Cotton Factory Community.

All fabrics have been chosen by Cotton Factory. They include Carolyn Friedlander, Art Gallery, Jen Kingwell, Free Spirit and a range of well known, best quality, quilting cottons. For enquiring minds, the colour scheme is: mustard, teal, muted oranges and hints of citrus. Frankly I am loving the whole thing just sick. But that’s enough about me.

We have partnered with Eye Candy Quilts to provide the pattern in your Block Swap Packs, at cost.

Block packs consist of

  • 30cm of a Neutral background fabric
  • Two FQ’s of fantastic colour
  • Your pattern for the quilt called Exhibit, by Eye Candy Quilts.
  • A stamped, return address envelope for you to use to return your blocks.

Image 4

Block Pack (and yours will come with a stamped, self addressed envelope)

Pattern, 30cm background, two FQ’s.

(Photo credit Craft House Lincoln)

So here’s the fine print.

  • The program will launch on Sat 11th June. You can purchase your blocks before then, and I will post on Saturday.
  • You purchase a Block Pack from Cotton Factory. You can do this online http://www.cottonfactory.bigcartel.com/product/cotton-factory-community-block-swap-packs or at the Studio.
  • We will keep the Block Packs available until the end of July 2016. The purchase price of $28 is made up of fabric $18, pattern $8, postage $2.
  • Should you decide you wish to purchase other fabric packs these are only $18. (They contain 30cm of background and two FQ’s. [Obviously you only need to purchase the pattern once, and the return envelope once.]) To ensure a fantastic variety in blocks we will ensure all bundles are different.
  • You make your blocks. Your Block Pack will yield four blocks. Two pairs of identical blocks. Each additional fabric pack will yield four blocks (two pairs of two blocks).

Image 2

Two sets of twin blocks. Each Block pack and fabric pack will yield this many blocks.

(Photo Credit @graceelizabethsinc)

AND WARNING: these blocks are the equivalent of your favourite potato chips late on a Saturday night. You actually cannot stop at one. I did some block testing before launching the program. I already have 12 blocks that are ready to rock and roll! You have been truthfully and fairly warned.

Using the stamped envelope we provided, return as many blocks as you would like to swap to Cotton Factory by Wednesday 31st August.

By return mail, that same week, you will receive the same number of blocks that you sent in. For example, if you decide to keep two of the blocks you made, and send two, I will send you two different blocks.

If you purchase additional Fabric packs, and send in twelve blocks, then I will send you back 12 blocks, each of them being different. You will quickly build a gorgeous multi coloured quilt.

Image 1

Fabric Packs. 30cm background and two FQ’s.

(Photo credit Craft House Lincoln)

So, recapping key dates.

  1. To start, just purchase a Block Pack before the end of July.
  2. Make your blocks
  3. Post your swap blocks such that they arrive at Cotton Factory by 31st August
  4. Get ready to receive your Swap blocks later that same week (or early the following week – dependent on Australia Post, the Universe and the usual postal planetary alignment).
  5. In your own sweet time you make up your quilt. Keep using the tag #cfcblockswap, so we can all stay connected with your progress.

Unanswered questions, I’m sure you have some. Here’s what I came up with.

Can I join if I am International? Sure thing. The online listing includes postal options for the rest of world. The only difference is I have not enclosed a SSAE, so you will be responsible for the cost of getting your blocks back to me. Shipping two blocks will typically not be expensive, and I will assume the postal cost of getting the swap blocks back to you.

Can I use my own fabric? Nope, not this time. We are providing a well chosen, broad range of fabrics, that deliberately work with this great pattern.

What if I don’t send in any blocks? No sweat. I just won’t send any back to you. You send. You get. Simple. And then no-one is left disappointed that their block partner wasn’t able to follow through.

Quilt Market

It’s been and gone.

It’s true. My first experience at Quilt Market was done in a flash.

It was huge peeps. The space. The energy. The excitement. I have absolutely no regrets – and a head full of ideas. The challenge now is to put them into practice.

Imagine the entire Melbourne Exhibition and Convention centre (Jeff’s Shed) filled to capacity with quilts, fabric swatches, scissors and other craft notions? That’s a lot of pieces of fabric and a lot of colour.

I have to say there were a lot of Aussies in attendance and on display.

Local designers Jodie Carleton and Emma Jean Jansen both attended in their capacity as Fabric and Pattern designers. As artists each with a well established international following, and both having attended previous international markets, their knowledge and connections were invaluable to me as a first timer.

Riley Blake and Moda are the two largest fabric design companies in the world, and each have an impressive line up of Australian designers. The Australians are definitely punching above their weight when you consider both the size of our population and their willingness to travel so frequently, to establish and maintain their brands globally.

For anyone around next weekend, I am having an open house, which will include a showcase of the work of both Jodie and Emma. Sat 11th June between11am – 2pm. Locals will have the opportunity to examine the products of both designers displayed in Utah. Cotton Factory is located at 128 Clyde Street, Ballarat VIC.

And I have finally unpacked my suitcase – so there’s a bit to see.


Carkai (for the Camouflage fans).


I love modern design.

I love innovation.

I love Architecture.

No surprises then that I LOVE this range. Carkai designed by Carolyn Friedlander who was an Architect in the real world, before embracing fabric design.

Park. Out of. Blows it.

Selected bolts and pre cuts available online.

Enjoy. And now go and sniff the Architecture. (Don’t get lost in the clever camouflage).

(Photo credit to Carolyn Friedlander).

Love it, I say.






The Tram is here – and it’s full of cats

We love celebrating Australian designer’s at Cotton Factory.

It’s been a Tsunami of design excellence this week – with the arrival of two great new ranges.

All the feline goodness you can manage right here.

Cats black


Or if you’d rather celebrate sophisticated Melbourne, well then that’s a snap too. Metreage and precuts. Details here.


Trams black


All together too much good stuff. You choose.

Behind the scenes

i am so excited about this new range.

30 pieces, and all low volume and backgrounds. Called, fittingly, Behind the scenes.

i do love that.

All bundles listed online, which is where you can get excited too.