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New Kona Shades Are In The House!

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It only seems like five minutes ago that Robert Kaufman released their last round of new Kona shades but looking back it was actually about a year ago (where does the time go?) and we’re delighted to announce that the new 32 new shades arrived yesterday and are all in stock taking the total Kona colour count to a whopping 303 colours. Robert Kaufman Kona is a wonderful quality quilt weight solid and the choice is fantastic so you’re bound to find the perfect shade for your project.

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Celebrate With Us! 10% Off until Sunday Plus…

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Wowers, I really can’t believe we’ve just passed 30,000 followers on Facebook. Pretty amazeballs,  I still find it quite astounding that we’ve picked up such a following along the way in such a short space of time. We certainly owe a lot to the power of modern social media so we always like to mark the occasion, and this one is no exception.

There will be 10% off everything in the shop until Sunday and there’s also a chance to win this mega craft hamper worth over £250! Every order placed until Sunday will be entered in to a draw to win this fantabulous prize. Full details and what is exactly in  he hamper can be found here.

Happy days! 

What is Ponte Di Roma? A Fabric Guide

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It seems that the knit fabric ponte di roma (also known as punto-di-roma, but I’m going to call it ponte roma for short) is all the rage at the moment and much credit must lie with Tilly Walnes and her wonderful Coco Pattern. And what’s not to love? It’s an easy knit to sew, it doesn’t crease, it doesn’t cling to your lumps and bumps like some knit fabrics, it’s an all round good egg. The fabric was developed in Italy (the clue is in the name) and I’m very glad they did (to think they gave us this AND pizza – praise be for Italy!) Continue reading

50% Off Burda Patterns Ends Today

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This has been such a great promotion, who can refuse bargains that start as low as £1.98?! Well it’s about to come to an end folks so grab these half price Burda paper patterns whilst you still can as at the stroke of midnight they return to full price. You can shop for Bargain Burda patterns here. Enjoy!!

 

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Sausalito Cottage from LakeHouse

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Oh my! This new collection “Sausalito Cottage” from Lakehouse might be too pretty for words. Designed by Holly Holderman, Sausalito is actually a city in California with pretty hillside shoreline and this collection certainly nods to kicking back and relaxing through the summer months. Images of the garden are throughout; there are flowers, butterflies and bees buzzing around. I think this collection would make a beautiful feminine quilt and it’s vintage feel would be great for clothes and homely makes.

The collection is available here. What would you make with it?

 

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Forever Fiesta: A Quilt For Nanny Plush

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If you follow me on Instagram you’ll already know that I have recently made my mum a quilt in break neck speed. I have to admit to being a bit of a fly by the seat of my pants crafter and often just make hasty, unplanned decisions of what to make next, usually starting then and there (this is my justification for having a big fabric stash – you never know what inspiration is just around the corner!) Continue reading

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Can You Make Our Open Day?

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There are only a few days to go until our next open day, will we be seeing you? It’s this Saturday. We are excited to be showing off a big re-org of the warehouse and hope the changes we’ve made  will make browsing even easier. We’re open from 10am-4pm so there’s plenty of time to get lost in our fabric filled warehouse. There will also be lots of tea and cake for you to enjoy and keep your other half happy.

Each open day we have people come from further and further afield, last time somebody came all the way from Wales! Bonkers…  I’ve updated the open day info page with some local attractions so if you do travel a distance there are some ideas for making a day of it

Many people choose to come first thing and afternoons are usually quieter, so I would recommend coming then if you want to avoid the crowds. Also, if you want to collect Plush Points on the day, please make sure you have registered with us online in advance. If you can’t make it this weekend, our next open day is 30th August, so not too long to wait.

I do enjoy putting faces to names so if you make it do please come and say hi!  Hope to see you on Saturday. 

20% Off Kona Solids Until Midnight Monday!

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We’re having a flash sale on Robert Kaufman Kona cotton and there’s 20% off until this Monday. Kona is the go to brand for solid colours and comes in over 270 shades (we stock the lot!) so you’re bound to find the perfect hue you need.

Grab ‘em quick, this promotion is bound to be popular

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Sewing Workshops Are Shaping Up!

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I did say last week that things have been a tad hectic at Plush Towers, one of the things keeping me very busy is the planning and organising for the upcoming sewing workshops which we are looking to start in September. I’ve been very busy behind the scenes choosing furniture, sewing machines, meeting up with class teachers and all sort so other bits and pieces.

We are taking the office space above the warehouse which is currently occupied by our landlord. It’s so bright and airy and we’ll have oodles of space to play with. I’m hoping that as well as the area for the sewing machines we’ll have big cutting tables which will be perfect for big projects like curtains and quilts and if I get my way we’ll also have a sofa area to kick back and relax, socialise, drink tea and eat cake! I’m hoping that alongside the classes we’ll have drop in sessions and other more informal meets. We’ll also be hiring out the space for other local activities. I’ve already had interest from a local yoga group so if you’re near to Edenbridge and need a space for a club or activity then get in touch!

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So far I’ve lined up lots of beginner classes as well as some quilting, dressmaking and pattern fitting and some children and teen classes. I hope we’ll have a final timetable drawn up within the next couple of weeks and you’ll be able to book in for a class but until we actually sign the contract I’m reluctant to put the classes up to be booked but here’s are a few to give you a flavour of what we’re planning…

Free Motion Embroidery

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Sewing with oil cloth

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Beginners Patchwork

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 Make a Ripstop Backed Out Door Cushion

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 Make A Fabric Basket

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Make Perfect Fit Jeans

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Perfect Pattern Fitting

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Stay tuned for updates! As soon as we’ve signed the paperwork for the new space I’ll be publishing the timetable. I hope you’re as excited as we are and do get in touch if there are specific classes you’d like to see.

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Denim Fabric: A Guide And Sewing Tips

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There’s nothing quite like a good pair of denim jeans, is there? It’s such a versatile fabric which only improves with age and wear. We have the French to thank for denim, originally woven in the town of Nîmes for overalls and sailcloth it was known as “serge de Nîmes” which got shortened to  “de Nîmes” and the name was born.

Denim is a strong and durable twill woven fabric made from 100% cotton. Traditionally the warp yarns are dyed an indigo colour and the weft yarn is left undyed which is why true denim fabric is different colours on either side (for real fabric geeks, if your denim is the same colour on both sides it’s actually jean fabric, not denim!)

We have recently started stocking denim, you can see our collection here and we carry a range of weights and colours. We also have stretch denim which is particularly great for clothing makes.

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Uses for Denim Fabric

Denim is super versatile. As it’s 100% cotton it’s great for casual wear clothing such as jeans, skirts, jackets, shorts, children’s clothes, workwear overalls and protective clothing. As denim is very hardwearing it would also be great for home wear items such as oven gloves, cushions, decorative upholstery and bags.

A Guide to Denim Weights

Denim comes in a vast array of weights and one of our most frequently asked questions is whether a denim classes as light, medium or heavy weight.

  1. Lightweight – or under 12 Oz.
  2. Mid-weight – or from 12 Oz. – 16 Oz.
  3. Heavyweight – anything above 16 Oz.

The rule is the heavier the denim, the better it will age and fade *but* heavier weight denim will be very stiff to start off with and take time to wear in and soften. The most common denims used and the easiest to handle are the light and medium weight.

Sewing With Denim

Denim is a rough and tough fabric and the main problem is poses for sewing is the thickness of the fabric,  as such you need to right kit for the job to ensure success.

1) Use a denim needle which are stronger then “normal” needles and have a sharper point both of which will help you sew through a heavier fabric.

2) Use denim thread, it’s stronger and especially important on stress seams.

3) Go slowly! Those layers of denim might leave your machine struggling, if that’s the case then slow down and use your hand wheel.

4) Reduce bulk. Some machines will glide through layers of denim with no issues, others might not have the wellie needed to cope. If this is the case then reduce bulk where you can by pressing seams out flat or by using thinner fabrics as facings of linings which is not only practical, but will also add some pretty design features to your work. You can also trim seams right back to your stitching line (being careful not to cut your stitches of course)

5) Use a longer stitch length, about 3-3.5 should do it.

Have you made anything lately with denim? I’d love to see photos if you have!

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