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April Meeting 2017

After a brief start to the meeting by Sue Rainbow informing us of things coming up both within and outside the group – details of which have been sent out separately to members, Carol Scott introduced us to Chris Yates and her talk ‘The Artful Teabag’.

What a treat we were in for.  Chris gave us some background information as to where she came from and how she ended up talking about Artful Teabags.   She came from Cheshire and always had an interest in fabrics and textiles.   When she first left school she got a job in textiles in industry making shirts, dresses and ribbons.   She was eventually made redundant from there and started up her own lingerie company.   This changed when she had her two boys and she did different work to fit around them.   

After a time the pull of fabrics and textiles proved too great and Chris did a City and Guilds course.   After completing this course she took her works to exhibitions, and she then joined a group – which she advises is a brilliant confident booster as other people see your works in all their glory and worth, which we do not ourselves

It was while attending a workshop herself that she heard talk of someone keeping teabags to dry out and use at a later date.   Chris didn’t pay much attention, but after returning home this overheard conversation wouldn’t go away, so Chris began experimenting with teabags.

Now I am sure that most of us thought this meant how one could stain fabrics with said teabags – this was not the case.   Chris actually dries out the teabags and then takes them apart, gets rid of the tea leaves and opens up the bags, irons them on to Vilene and then makes her own sheets of fabric out of the actual teabag itself.

Chris then proceeds to make the most amazing items out of her own fabric – with her on this evening was a kindle cover, a phone pouch, various pictures and wall hangings, but my favourite was a most beautiful tome which she made to go with an exhibition she was showing her work at in a private school.   They asked for workbooks to go with the items on show.   Chris’ theme was wild animals – the cover of the book looked like it was animal skin itself, it looked and felt amazing considering it was made out of old teabags.   Other items on show were bowls, light shades, cards and many more – all with the base of old teabags.   

This is not bad from a lady who does not drink hot drinks at all, and so relies on her husband and friends to keep her supply of teabags well stocked.   It is also very interesting to notice how a builder’s teabag – such as her husband drinks, compares to herbal and fruit teabags.   It is using the herbals and fruit teabags that Chris gets her creams and reds from.

This was such an interesting evening, and I have to admit to getting my family to put aside their teabags rather than throwing them away – It will be interesting to see how I fare dealing with my round Rooibos bags – but all the bags are dried, emptied, cut and laid out.   I just have to get hold of some of the iron-on Vilene and I’ll be all set – watch this space as they say …

Theresa Johnson

June Meeting 2017

Korean Patchwork

We were treated to a fabulous talk by Penny Chattey on Korean Patchwork - a subject that I knew absolutely nothing about!

In her younger days Penny worked several  month fixed term contracts in order that she could spend 4 months every year travelling soaking up the cultures and traditions of many countries. Later, when health issues and family meant that travel was no longer possible Penny decided that the 'travel' had to come to her!

On re-joining the Mimram Quilters Penny was given the opportunity to attend a Korean Patchwork & Quilting course and the rest was history!

Penny explained that the material is marked with a Hero Marker and that the stitches are all on the 'right' side of the material. Penny went through all the different stitches that are used and showed us lots of examples  of blocks worked with these stitches. We were shown pincushions filled with human hair broaches, thimbles made from left over fabric scraps, a 100 day baby belt, purses, good luck charms, small bags and a baby sock.

We are looking forward to Penny's next talk as her next 'journey' is to the Tent Makers of Cairo!  

Anne Francis

July Meeting 2017

Our July meeting was well attended by members eager for strawberries and cream washed down with Theresa's famous fruit punch. Sue told those assembled that they would be allowed to eat after they had listened to the notices!!! Final arrangements were made for our display at Caldecote Church on July 22nd and 23rd and Sue thanked everyone for the quilts that have been loaned to show, Penny Chattey had some very exciting news. Following her talk last month  about Korean Patchwork, she is going to run some workshops and she has been approached by Grosvenor Shows for Icknield Quilters to exhibit the work produced at their Spring Shows. Stephanie North produced a slide presentation about our forthcoming exhibition so that members could have an idea of what help will be needed during the exhibition weekend. Staging an exhibition every 4 years is a mammoth task and we need 'all hands on deck'. 

Once the strawberries had been eaten we brought out the Show and tell Items. As usual there was much to 'oo and ahh' over. Rose had been to a workshop run by the 'Teabag lady' and had made 2 fabulous bags from a pair of jeans and an old overall. The only cost was the zips. Anne Styles showed us a quilt that she was making to be raffled by the Romantic Novelists Group in memory of an agent who has sadly died. It took the form of bookshelves stacked with books, jewellery, handbags, a doll's house and Venetian souvenirs, all items important to the lady being remembered. What a lovely tribute to someone.

After this we enjoyed chatting, sewing and pouring over the fabrics and cards that needed rehoming. Sue drew the raffle before everyone went home.

Sue Rainbow