The Stevenage Sewing BEE!

One of my most favourite Hobbycrafters (aside from @DavidWestman of course) is the lovely @samantha.longhurst.9 and lucky for me she was the Manager that greeted me on the 29th July at the Stevenage Hobbycraft store! Seriously I was delighted to see her after we met and and had a ball at Kirstie Allsops Handmade Fair last year.

Here’s a re-cap of images from the day, and I am so happy to hear that now the Stevenage Sewing Bee is up and running in store after my visit!



Well done ladies and happy, happy sewing!

Mycenae Gardens Summer fun at #Parksfest

The yearly event of #Parksfest signals the start of the summer holidays for us and boy did we do this in style!
All ages gathered at the Pink Sewing bus to create fabulously floppy hats.

Aside from the sewing, there was of course a lot more going on at the extravaganza!

Kerry on Dancing and her dancing school Music & more!

Creative Careers, Inspiring Kids & a new record for the Pink Sewing Bus!

This week has been all about Community and Inspiration. Monday  & Thursday I’ve been invited back to Wandsworth for  community sewing as part of the ‘Wandsworth Lifelong Learning – Festival of Learning’ I always find these sessions in public spaces around the area full of surprises while I add a sparkle of glitter to the streets of South West London

Tuesday was a day in a school in Wimbledon for a ‘Cultivate Routes – creative careers workshop’ I must admit I was a bit nervous talking and sewing with 28 kids for the day, but I needn’t have been. The day started with me unloading the Pink Sewing Bus into the classroom in advance of the kids starting the day! I had pre-cut white fabric squares and after a small presentation of ‘about me’ my journey to date, the pink sewing bus, how I get inspired, Architecture and fashion we had some fun playing with the sewing machines and before break time all piled into the pink bus for fun! and yes, we set a new record fitting 20 kids inside!

After a break we set to work creating and designing around the white fabric squares with the theme ‘London and Beyond’ we got busy drawing, cutting fabrics and using ‘Bondaweb Vliesofix’ to fix our applique pictures to the squares and then get sewing! The results were inspired and all so different – see the images of the whole piece of artwork finished result with of course the added brilliance of the janome embroidery!

Sewing with the wives and the #sewingtour begins!

This weeks adventures took me along to the Woldingham Wives group to give a talk on sewing to a wonderful group of women who meet once a month.  My lovely friend Norma Vondee (mosaic artist) had put my name forward and I felt so honoured to be a part of this lovely group for the day. I decided to base my talk around the Pink Bus (obvs!!) and discuss the meaning of why I set up this travelling sewing workshop and my sense for using sewing as a mindful tool.  I explained how the big reason I love teaching is actually not just about teaching the skills of sewing & craft (which I do love) I wanted to make a point that it actually isn’t about the sewing…

I’ve worked with people from all walks of life and the same theme runs throughout: confidence in oneself and in ones ability! I have taught in childrens centres, housing associations, community centres, childrens parties, adults hen parties, and the list goes on… What i see is a transformation…. it’s about sitting in a group and using the tools of sewing to create a space to talk openly and wholeheartedly in a safe and fun space.   People feel more inclined to chat and feel better when there hands are busy doing an activity.   It fills my heart with joy that I am starting to hear more and more involvement in crafts into the health sector.   I believe that Sewing is indeed a mindful practice and I am using the Pink Sewing Bus as a tool to get people on board to spread this message.

The vision was and still is to open up to a wide audience and to create even more of a community spirit especially within hard to reach areas.  I started this blog and called it ‘Sewing Stories’ and this is aimed at expanding community knowledge, showing how joining in with art and craft together brings out stories, and I am currently in the looong process of writing a book that is dedicated to telling these stories and inspiring others that Sewing is indeed a mindful activity.

Another tool for this is the fabulous embroidery machine courteous of Janome, I have been embroidering empowering and fun slogans into the sewing projects. Everyone from Kids to Adults can choose a quirky slogan such as ‘happy heart’ to make lavender heart bunting or even ‘singing in the rain’ on a purse. These small offerings as part of a class are there to spread this message plus as a prompt and conversation starter.

I also love to use the hashtag #sewingmakesyousmile on social media, so do use this in your practice if sewing does make you smile – not only from the outside but from within!

I had a lovely time starting the Hobbycraft Store visits last week in Woking. If you’d like to join me on the Pink Bus for a lovely price of £10 a session plus a £5 Hobbycraft voucher to spend in store… do check out the full listings here:

Reasons to be cheerful:
1. Giving the talk to a great response and spreading my message!

2. Pink Bus Birthday coming up… Turning 1 (more details in another post when confirmed)

3. #sewingmakesyousmile