Ali Wilkinson

Sunday Stash – The Japan Edition

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This is the first of two posts about the stash building I did in Japan last week. This week I will focus on fabric and next week I will focus on notions.

The photo above shows the three packages I bought at Mihama Cloth – a kimono fabric and two Echino prints. I love that kimono fabric even though I have no idea what I am going to make with it! The pack contains 2 metres and the width is 110cm. I think it was a bargain at 920 Yen (about $10 NZ). In Kyoto I saw so many beautiful kimonos and if I thought for a second I would wear one I would have been spoiled for choice. At this point in time I think I might make a few cushions and a pouch or two with this fabric, but I am open for suggestions!!

The Echino fabric was an afterthought purchase largely driven by the price (360 Yen for a half metre WOF cut – so about $4 NZ). Luckily this is one of my favourite prints in two colour ways! No plans for these fabrics either!

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I couldn’t got to Tokyo without buying Cotton and Steel Tokyo Train Ride fabric! The print the left was also available in the mustard colour way but I decided to stick with just these two versions. To complement these four fabrics I have ordered a few more from the range from Pink Castle Fabrics and I plan on making a Bionic Gear Bag for travelling from theseneedledown_nz_sunday_stash_11_ 9As I mentioned in my earlier post, there was quite the abundance of Cotton and Steel fabrics, though lots were the lion faces or the mustang ponies, which I am not such a fan of. I settled on just a few coloured and black and white fabrics. Those word search designs are so useful and I love the matches, especially in this sunny yellow.

needledown_nz_sunday_stash_11_ 10More Cotton and Steel, this time the Black and White range. This range must have been popular as the bottom three designs were only available in fat eighth remnants.

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And finally some Echino solids. Who knew they produced solids?! I certainly didn’t and was quite delighted to stumble across these with their intense colour saturation and lovely hand and weight. I was a little spoiled for choice and so I decided to get us these two colours which I will no doubt use for pouches or tote bags or some other 3 dimensional project.

Next year I will take more time to browse and forage and find the real gems rather than sticking with safe and standard Cotton and Steel. Just a note on prices – the quilting fabrics are between 1000 and 1200 Yen (including tax) per metre, which is less than half the NZ prices. Cotton, lawn, knits and other “non-quilting” fabrics of quality are between 250 and 1000 Yen a metre. Big brands like Echino (non-solids), Kokka and Nani IRO are more, from 1200 to 2000 per metre.

Linking up with Molli Sparkles.


Ali Wilkinson

Sunday Stash #11

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A mixed selection today with these divine Kate Spain Paradiso fat quarters and some stash building solids.

Don’t you love the Paradiso range? Oh, heavens, I do! The colours are so fresh crisp and remind me of Caribbean lazy days. Maybe I am in the mood for that having just booked a holiday for the family to Cuba for the end of the year!

I have a plan for these prints. I plan to make a modern crosses quilt using Kona Pewter as the solid fabric surrounding each cross. There are 36 prints which is very handy as the pattern I have designed has 36 blocks (6 rows of 6 blocks), each 12″ square. And I will only use about 1/4 of each fat quarter so will have plenty left for other projects (another Idea Pouch or Bionic Bag perhaps?).

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This pile of solids also arrived this week. The photo lighting is dire, apologies, but from the top there is Kona Pewter, Kona Silver, Kona Bleach White and Kona White. Elsewhere is Kona Snow, which is so much like Kona Bleach White that I thought they had sent the same item twice till I checked the colour swatches on my big Kona card.

It is the top one, Kona Pewter, that I intend to use with the Paradiso crosses for the modern crosses quilt I will make shortly. Though as I feel it will have a Cuban influence perhaps I will call it Cruces de Revolución.

Linking up to MolliSparkles for Sunday Stash.

Ali Wilkinson

Sunday Stash #10

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This was the view I woke up to yesterday morning. Gary and I took a road trip for the weekend while our daughter is away with her grandparents. We spent Friday night at Mt Cook saying in the Hermitage and were treated to wonderful weather which was great for our tramp up the Hooker Valley yesterday. This country never ceases to take my breath away.

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Yesterday afternoon we drove on to Oamaru and wandered in the Victorian Quarter where there are dozens of antique/vintage/craft stores in old Victorian sandstone buildings. We ate at Fleurs last night and as always it was outstanding.

On the trip home I was delighted to see that Annie’s Country Quilt Store in Ashburton was open and while I poked around inside Gary sat outside and ate pastries we had brought with us from the lovely bakery in Oamaru. Annie’s is a delightful little old villa, which is the NZ version of the California bungalow/craftsman style of the US.

The store has multiple rooms each crammed full of bolts of fabric, notions, patterns and tools. I always feel overwhelmed in these situations unless I have a specific project in mind. Everything is so yummy and desirable and my mind swirls with possibilities, too many possibilities, so that I end up paralysed. I have learned the hard way in the past that buying random fat quarters is not a good thing and usually results in me not actually making good use of them. I need to buy several that work well together in the hope that there will be enough to make an entire project, or at least to provide the bulk for a project, in the future. So this time I made lots of mental notes of the types of fabric they had lots of (Kaffe, Moda and more traditional “thimbleberries” type fabric) so that I can make the hour long trip south if needed in the future.

However, I did see this fat quarter bundle and pounced on it with delight! Who can resist a bit of Anna Maria Horner, especially the Folk Song bundle?!

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Here’s a bit more detail of the fabrics:

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And here are my favourites of the bundle:

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I have no particular project in mind but I am sure that I will come up with something pretty soon!

And just because it was so cute and useful, I bought this low volume notes fat Q:

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Ali Wilkinson

Sunday Stash #9 – Liberty and CurveMaster Foot


Westwood Acres Fabric came up trumps again this month with the Liberty assortment. The above four are definitely my favourites, closely followed by these two:

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I do wish I could find out the names of the prints, but I am not sure of anywhere there is an online fabric directory and the selvedges are completely blank. If you know of a source, please post in the comments.

These fabrics are still lovely, just not quite as lovely as the ones above!

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Also arriving in my mailbox this week was the CurveMaster presser foot. I have heard good things about this foot, especially when producing stacks of Drunkard’s Path blocks for a quilt (which I would like to do one day). I have yet to try it out and when I do I will be sure to post about it on here.

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My Husqvarna will accept the foot as it is above as that metal bar clips into the shank on my machine. The Curvemaster comes with a number of different shanks to fit most other machines.

Linking up with Molli Sparkles.

Ali Wilkinson

Sunday Stash #8

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It’s that time of the month when the Westwood Acres Inside Voices club bundle arrives. Et voila! For the third month running these are not what I call low volume and so I have made the decision to cancel my subscription. I think Westwood curate a lovely selection of fabrics, and in the main I have liked and will use what I have received. It’s just that when I set out with this club I had been hoping to build a good selection of pale neutral tone fabrics and not a selection of pale coloured fabrics.

Low volume to me are fabrics that read white, cream, taupe or pale grey from a distance but have some depth and interest close up. Of the ones above I’d classify five of them as low volume (top two and bottom one on the left, and the text and pale tiny blue flower on the right).

What’s your idea of low volume?