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  • Nicola

Welcome to an English Country Garden: the British Sew-a-Row 2023

It's May, the sun is shining (sometimes) the birds are singing (always) and the garden is blooming, so it must be time for the British Sew-a-row! We'd be so thrilled if you joined us again this summer to celebrate the English Country Garden with a quilt along...

We've each designed four blocks, using our favourite quilting techniques, and this year we have a choice of settings for your blocks (and eleventy-million ideas for smaller projects, of course!). Let me introduce you to my friends and their gorgeous blocks...

The Potting Shed by Jo Westfoot of The Crafty Nomad

Jo is a patchwork & quilting teacher and pattern designer specialising in online courses to help quilters become more confident in their abilities, and get more enjoyment and satisfaction from their hobby. She teaches courses on many different patchwork & quilting techniques from FPP to FMQ and teaches a new class each month to

her fabulous community of quilters: The Quilt Hive!

Jo has designed a set of four Foundation Paper Pieced blocks from the dream potting shed. And what I wouldn't give for a pair of Liberty-print wellies... You can find her PDF Pattern here.

Fluttering Florals by Sonia Spence of Fabric & Flowers

Sonia is a quilt designer that loves exploring new techniques and slow stitching combined with modern quilting. She has been featured in popular magazines such as Love Patchwork & Quilting and Mollie Makes. When not creating, Sonia can be found trying new crafts or walking the dog.

Sonia's row is an ode to butterflies and blooms of summer, recreated in a combination of applique and traditional piecing. You can find her PDF Pattern here.

Topiary Garden by Lou Orth of Lou Orth Designs

Lou is a creator of modern quilt and sewing patterns, from Oxfordshire, UK. She loves creating modern and original designs and carefully constructed patterns that make your sewing projects effortlessly fun!

Lou's Foundation Paper Pieced row captures the wonderful whimsy of topiary (and won't require clipping every year). You can find her PDF Pattern here.

And finally, my row, Dawn Chorus

My row uses conventional piecing to celebrate the wonderful garden birds who provide the soundtrack to a summer's day. Find my PDF Pattern here.

We also designed two free settings for you this year, which are included with your pattern download: the English Country Garden setting - which we used for our quilt - along with a Traditional Row setting.

The PDF Row Patterns are available for the Earlybird price of just £6 each until Friday the 19th of May.

Because on Monday the 22nd we'll be starting...

The British Sew-a-Row sew along

This year we've broken the sewalong into week-long sections to get you going with each set of techniques, but we hope you'll take time to enjoy some leisurely summer sewing. Here's the schedule: -

22nd May - Topiary Garden with Lou Orth - Foundation Paper Piecing

29th May - Dawn Chorus with me - Machine Piecing and Snowballed Corners

5th June - The Potting Shed with Jo Westfoot - Foundation Paper Piecing

12th June - Fluttering Florals with Sonia Spence - Hand applique and Machine Piecing

In the meantime, you can make a start by purchasing and downloading the row patterns and choosing your fabrics.

This year we were so thrilled that Liberty gifted us a generous bundle of their gorgeous new London Parks prints and matching Wiltshire Blenders. It's been wonderful working with them to choose a fabric line that summed up our 'English garden' theme. They were the perfect partners.

We also want to thank the lovely people at Vlieseline for gifting us the wadding for our quilt. And we wouldn't have a quilt to show you without the beautiful quilting by Joë Bennison.

I also mocked up my blocks in another delicious Liberty collection, Heirloom, which will be in quilt shops soon, and in another favourite in quilt shops right now, Camille Roskelley's Dwell for Moda.

But, to be honest, I can't wait to see what you'll all choose - it was the real highlight of our sewalong last year - because I just love fabric, can you tell?

Nicola xx


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