Introducing my new sewing studio

Earlier in the summer I had the opportunity to move from my lovely studio 27 at ACAVA Studios: Spode Works to a bigger space (2.5 times as big!) in the same Studio complex. Although it’s a scary prospect (2.5 times bigger means 2.5 times the rent!) I feel increasingly sure that I want to focus on teaching, so it makes sense to me to have a space where people can come and learn with me in my studio.

I am very gradually settling in, and I’m not done yet, I need a few more bits of storage, another table and some chairs for starters, but it is increasingly beginning to feel like home, so I thought I’d share some photos of the work in progress. First up on my wall were my selvedge mini-quilts, made for Love Patchwork and Quilting about 18 months ago. I am so glad I decided to keep these!

Mini quilts on the wall in my studio at Spode

I was also glad to get all my ATCs and mini-hoops into position on the window sills. I have two lovely large windows, but I don’t get the sun until the late afternoon, which is so much better for sewing and photography purposes! My old studio used to get uncomfortably warm on sunny days.

The window sill at Studio 5 Spode Works

This is my main sewing area. The windows are quite high, so fortunately I can’t get too distracted by what’s going on outside.

My work space at Studio 5 Spode Works

My succulents are doing well in their new home – and I am gradually acquiring vintage Spode china to put them in. This pattern is one of my favourites – Chinese Rose:

Succulent in Spode china cup and saucer

This is my favourite corner of the studio. I am on the look out for a nice comfy armchair to put next to the lamp for those times when I am sewing binding or doing a bit of English paper piecing. It’s great to have a finished quilt on the wall too!

Favourite corner of Studio 5 at ACAVA studios Spode Works

Here’s a view from the ironing board of the entire space:

Studio 5 the home of Very Berry Handmade at Spode Works

Lovely isn’t it! I’m very lucky I know. No doubt I will be sharing more photos as time goes on – I love to rearrange furniture until I have everything just right. And if you fancy a day at the studio, I am planning stitchy retreats and small class teaching in the studio – do get in touch if you might be interested.

Using colour palettes for mini-patchwork

I wanted to share my latest piece of miniature patchwork hoop art with you. It’s a 3 inch embroidery hoop with a 1.5 inch flying geese patchwork block. The geese are 3/8 inch high and are foundation pieced (SO much easier for miniature patchwork). I’ve added a border of yarn-dyed Essex linen to finish the project.

Mini patchwork flying geese hoop art inspired by 100 days of curated colour

I am working on lots of these hoops at the moment. Firstly because I love making them, secondly because I have been commissioned to make some by a friend, and thirdly because I hope to sell some in the retail space at the newly refurbished Spode Heritage Centre – my studio is also located on the Spode Works site, and I am so proud to be there, I would be blown away to be able to have stock in their shop!

I’ve been using the colour palettes I’ve been putting together for my #100daysofcuratedcolour project on Instagram for inspiration. This particular hoop was inspired by Day 57/100:

Color curated moodboard by Very Berry for #the100dayproject - 57/100 green pink peach lilac

This is the original image on Design Seeds that I used to put the palette together in the first place. I hope you can see the connections!

I’ve used tiny pieces of fabric from my vast quantity of Liberty lawn scraps, that take up (can you believe) an entire 6-drawer Trofast unit from Ikea! When faced with a scrap mountain of this size, having the colour palette photos to work with is a huge advantage, because it gives me somewhere to start, instead of randomly rummages around in the piles of scraps. For an easily-overwhelmed stitcher, it’s such a bonus to have them.

You can find (almost) all of the colour palettes I’ve made so far over on Pinterest, or through my Instagram tag #100daysofcuratedcolour – if you’d like to see more, and maybe use them to inspire your own work.

The cute little 3 inch hoops are available from my lovely sponsors Cloud Craft, who also sell the amazing Snipster scissors pictured too. Do support my writing here at Very Berry by visiting my sponsors.

100 Days of Curated Colour – Week 11

Back in April I started the #the100dayproject – an Instagram art project that’s being undertaken by 1000s of people. Of course, when you start one of these longish-term projects (I am curating 100 colour flatlay photos of fabrics and haberdashery, inspired by colour palettes from Design Seeds – #100daysofcuratedcolour), you have no idea what life is going to throw at you in the meantime. The past few weeks have been a slog – I am having one of those times when I am being reminded on all sides of our insecurity, impermanence and fragility, as friends and family struggle with illness, difficult times and downright appalling tragedy. The little gang of us here at home are all fine, but our hearts are aching for our dear friends and family.

One hundred days of curated colour header

So, muddling about with bits of fabric and thread, colours and prints, focusing on these small but beautiful harmonies of colour, enjoying the gorgeous photos on Design Seeds has been a blessed relief. It has been good to have a very structured creative project to focus on and enjoy. I hope you are enjoying them too. I have just a couple of weeks to go on Instagram, but I am a bit behind on here, so maybe 3 more posts (I should be able to do the math, but don’t have energy!

Color curated moodboard by Very Berry for #the100dayproject - 71/100 blue yellow grey

71/100: Design Seeds – Color Collage: Color Confetti

Color curated moodboard by Very Berry for #the100dayproject - 72/100 red purple grey blue lilac

72/100: Design Seeds – Market Hues: Fresh Hues

Color curated moodboard by Very Berry for #the100dayproject - 73/100 pink lilac blue

73/100: Design Seeds: Heavenly Hues: Color Set

Color curated moodboard by Very Berry for #the100dayproject - 74/100 blue red green

74/100: Design Seeds – Wanderlust: Color View

Color curated moodboard by Very Berry for #the100dayproject - 75/100 green brown grey

75/100: Design Seeds – Flora: Flora Tones

Color curated moodboard by Very Berry for #the100dayproject - 76/100 coral pink green blue cream

76/100: Design Seeds – Flora: Flora Tones

the100daysproject day 77Color curated moodboard by Very Berry for #the100dayproject - 77/100 blue green mustard yellow

77/100: Design Seeds – Wanderlust: Mental Vacation

Not sure if I have an overwhelming favourite this week, although I do like (quite surprisingly for me!) 76, which is so fresh and pretty. On Instagram 73 was the clear winner, although 75 had some fans too. I always love to know your favourites, so do let me know.