This is a very overdue newsletter, hence the reason why I am covering October and November in the same publication. I have been waiting for several parcels to arrive from Australia before putting this newsletter together and tell you all about them…to cut a long story short, I’m still waiting on said parcels, but I can’t wait any longer to tell you of several upcoming classes – Christmas will be upon us before we know it, and it’s always nice to throw in a couple of Christmassy projects in November to get you in to the spirit of all things Christmas.
What an interesting few weeks we have had!
A fantastic workshop with Maryann Paterson at the Acacia Bay Hall early in October was a highlight for those who attended, to learn Foundation Paper Piecing techniques and to put together the Bear Paw pattern. It was certainly challenging, but well worth it…I suspect we have some new converts to Foundation Piecing – more on this at the bottom of the page about future classes!
A personal highlight for me was the rather late arrival of my first grandchild – Lucy Rose arrived in New Plymouth on October 6th, so as soon as I was able, I had to hot foot it over the Paraparas, to get my first cuddles. She’s a dear wee girl, and after having 4 boys of my own, a feminine version is a very welcome addition to our family. This may affect some of my fabric choices going forward, as I have always tended to be a blue girl – but I rather enjoyed sewing up some pink fabric last weekend for a change.
A DAY AT THE ZOO – INTERACTIVE PLAYMAT
Having said that, I have finally completed this interactive playmat (which is neither pink nor blue) but which became my Lockdown challenge. It was a great way to master my applique and quilting skills, and I know this mat will be well used when family come to stay; I have decided not to churn out one for each family member – it can stay at my house instead and be used by all my future granchildren.
If you would like to make this playmat next year, we will be running it as a Block of the Month. I still need to order the patterns, so please in the first instance register your interest in store, and we will go from there regarding settling dates for classes in 2022.
We will put together a kit for each page of the quilt (cost still to be determined) and this will also include the cost of the $40 pattern.
We will start this BOM in early March and it will run for 9 months, but we will not have a set class time for this project.
Stock and supplies coming from Australia have slowed almost to a halt, so anything I have ordered from across the ditch seems to be taking forever to get here. There has been a lot of interest in the Stoneleigh BOM due to start in February next year – I have been waiting at least 6 weeks for the patterns to arrive and I’m unable to provide more details until they do. ‘Stoneleigh’ by Australian designer Susan Smith (Instagram- notjuzahuswife) has a combination of needle turn, flying geese, English paper pieced hexagons, and several other techniques, in soft taupes and creamy backgrounds – although you will be able to choose your own fabrics for a lot of the blocks.
If you haven’t already, please let me know if you want to commit to this BOM. We will be holding this class in store on the 3rd Friday of each month, starting on Friday 18th February.
Final costings will be done once the patterns eventually arrive.
MAXWELL BAG CLASS
This bag has been much admired in the shop and I’m delighted to say lots of these patterns have arrived from the US! The Maxwell bag could be a great present to gift at Christmas – think home made & original!
We will run a 2 day workshop to make this bag in store on Friday 12th & Saturday 13th November, from 10am – 3pm both days.
You will need to buy your fabric and pattern from The Eye Of A Needle. We have a couple of samples in store, and will have some kits made up with the fabrics we have used, or alternatively you can choose your own fabrics.
The class fee will be $90 (which includes the pattern). You will need to purchase your fabric/kit and bag supplies on top of this fee.
These little Christmas stockings have a cute Christmas design and involve doing some simple hand stitching before making up the stocking. We will run a 2 day class to make one stocking – the first day you will be taught basic embroidery techniques that you will stitch on to your stocking template, and your homework will involve completing the hand stitching before the second class a week later.
We will have 3 different kits made up so you can choose which fabrics & colours you would like to use; the background stocking fabric will be a basic natural linen and will be the same in each kit.
This class will be held on Friday 19th November with the second class a week later on Friday 26th November. Both classes will run from 10am – 2pm. The class fee will be $40 + your kit.
STOP PRESS!!! STOP PRESS!!! STOP PRESS!!!
Yesterday I was delighted to have a lovely conversation with Maryann Paterson regarding her teaching classes through The Eye Of A Needle next year.
We have locked in dates and booked the Acacia Bay Community Hall for one Friday a month for the WHOLE of 2022 so that Maryann can teach you how to construct the Coral Reef Quilt using the Foundation Paper Piecing method.
Maryann is giving us exclusive teaching using her expertise in 2022 and we feel very privileged that she has agreed to come and take classes through our store. She is the only fully qualified Quiltworks instructor in NZ.
I anticipate that once the word gets out that this class is going ahead, it will book up very quickly so if you are keen, I need you to register in store with a $280 deposit as soon as possible please. Your deposit will cover the cost of papers needed for the class, which need to be ordered now to start the first class on Friday 11th February.
The full course fee for this class for 10 months will be $930. This includes Maryann’s tuition fee, the pattern, and hall hire each month. Once you have paid your deposit, the monthly class fee will be $65 each time you come to class. We will need to collect your payment monthly, even if you do not attend, as this covers the cost of having Maryann Paterson’s professional teaching. Your fabric requirements will be additional to this fee – I already have my eye on some very nice new batiks coming through soon.
Please in the first instance front up with your deposit. The maximum number for this class is 15 people, so it will be a matter of first in to claim your spot.
FACE MASKS & SEWING MACHINES
With all the shipping issues world wide these days, it’s always a bit exciting when parcels arrive with the courier. We have recently had several drops of Moda Grunge with more to come next week, and Christmas fabric has also arrived, better late than never! Some gorgeous collections from French General, Suzy Bee, Flea Market and Betsy Chutchian have filled some of our previously rather empty shelves.
Creative Grids rulers have started to come in and we are slowly building up a selection of these lovely rulers, which are very popular with quilters everywhere.
Several products from The Gypsy Quilter are hitting the shelves too; bobbin holders, bobbin clips, and thread peels to name a few. These are always interesting products to add to our collections, but also make great gifts for those hard-to-buy-for quilting friends.
With creative stitchers making their own, and with the perfecting of the ideal facemask for friends and family, whether you wear glasses or hearing aids has meant that ‘one size facemask’ does NOT fit everyone after all.
Sewing machines long forgotten have been dragged out of the cupboard so that people can make their own individual masks. With this happening, we have seen a huge increase in sewing machines coming in for a service, and in some cases have needed to be replaced with a more ‘modern’ model.
Due to increased demand, we have had to reassess our sewing machine service charges. A standard service on a Bernina Sewing Machine (outside of 2 years since purchase), will now cost $110, with a $50 deposit required at drop off in store.
Sewing machine repairs will now cost $90 an hour + parts needed for the repair.
David is happy to pick up/deliver your sewing machine within a 10km radius of the shop if you are unable to bring it in to the shop yourself. If you have a Gold card this will be a complimentary pick up service – you will still need to pay for the service of your sewing machine, but we would like to make it easy for you if you are unable to lift your machine in and out of the car. If you don’t yet qualify for a Gold card, a minimal $10 delivery fee will be added to the normal service charge.
Please call the shop to book in your machine if you would like to take advantage of this.
I was very disappointed today to hear that at least one particular customer has decided not to come into our store any more because they ‘heard’ that I haven’t had the vaccine.
I find this kind of gossip very upsetting – firstly because it is actually no one else’s business whether I have or haven’t had the vaccine, and also because it is untrue.
Unfortunately we seem to be experiencing a lot more manipulation and hate speech these days, and some of what is going on in our nation is causing increasing levels of division across many sectors of our society.
So, for the record, here are the policies we have at The Eye Of A Needle regarding the recommended COVID guidelines:
* Please scan in at the door or on the register just inside the door.
* Please wear your face mask in store unless you have an exemption
* Please respect 2 metre social distancing while you are in the store
* If there are no customers in store, we (Carol, David & I) may at times remove our facemasks so we can take a natural breath or two.
* When we have classes in store, it is at our discretion whether masks need to be worn or not – but if a customer comes in to the shop while a class is on, mask wearing is mandatory.
* We welcome both vaxxed and non-vaxxed customers in our store. I will not enter into ANY discussion about whether you have or have not had your vaccination. Quite frankly it is none of my business; neither is it your business regarding my/our vaccination status.
* If any of the above points offend you, then I am terribly sorry but perhaps you are better to shop online or shop elsewhere.
* We endeavour to keep the peace at all times in our store, and we like to keep the atmosphere friendly and as virus free as much as we are able to. Please respect this – we are all human after all and would like to maintain peace & good will in our store to the best of our ability.