Class, New Skills

Craft Swap at Marcelle’s Patchwork Cottage

This time last year, Marcelle’s Patchwork Cottage hosted their inaugral craft swap! Everyone got in the crafty zone to exchange patchwork cushions in an effort to keep the good vibes coming as the weather cooled down!

And now, we’re getting ready to go again! This time, Marcelle’s Patchwork Cottage, Tinker and Stitch, and Kell’s Crochet are teaming up to bring you a swap that’s better than ever!

What on earth is a swap, you ask? Let us enlighten you!

What is a Swap?

A swap is like a crafter’s Kris Kringle. You get given a person’s name, and you make a secret something for that person (hereafter known as your “swap-partner”). Someone else gets given your name, and they’ll make a secret gift for you!

This year you have the option to make your mug rugs out of patchwork OR yarn! There will be two separate swaps (one for patchwork, one for yarn) running side-by-side, so you can choose your preferred crafty medium, or even have a crack at both!

Because we have such a diverse community at Marcelle’s Patchwork Cottage, T & S, and Kell’s Crochet, we’re going to give you a little questionnaire to fill in when you sign-up, so that the person who’s making for you can get a few ideas about what you might like.

To close out our swap, we’ll finish with a pot-luck lunch together! It’ll be a great excuse to hang-out, get to know our little community a bit better, and exchange our swap-gifts!

What are we swapping?

This year, we’ll be swapping Mug Rugs at least 9″x9″ (feel free to go bigger, though!). Each participant will make a pair of mug rugs for your swap partner. Style, colour, and technique is totally up to you, and your swap-partner’s preferences. There’s plenty of inspiration of both the patchwork and yarn varieties in store at Marcelle’s Patchwork Cottage!

Who gets involved in a Swap?

Everyone can get involved! The swap is being hosted by at Marcelle’s Patchwork Cottage, and the finale pot-luck lunch will be at the shop – so it’s best if you can attend the lunch, however, it’s not necessary. Also, skill level shouldn’t be a deterrent – this is a great, bite-sized project for getting involved in, whether you’re a beginner or a pro!

We do ask, though, that you be realistic about your time – making a pair of mug rugs shouldn’t be a daunting task, however, if you know you’re especially busy at this time of year and that there’s a good chance you won’t get around to it, then please be fair to the other people participating. It’s not good swap etiquette to drop-out at the last minute (although we do understand that sometimes unforeseen circumstances just happen – there’s allowances for these).

How long do we get to make our Swap-gift?

You can sign-up to the swap between 11th July-3rd August 2019 by completing and handing in our entry questionnaire, and then you should be allocated a swap-partner by 10th August. You have until the 7th September 2019 to make your gift, because the 7th will be our pot-luck lunch and swap-gift exchange.

If you can’t make it to lunch, never fear! Just arrange to get your swap-gift to the shop before the 7th September 2019, and we will also arrange for the gift made for you to find you ASAP.

Are there any rules?

We have a set of guidelines to help take out some of the guess-work in this swap. You can find the guidelines here.

How do I get involved?

Just fill in an entry form and drop it off to Marcelle’s Patchwork Cottage or to Marcelle, myself (Nic), or Kell by August 3rd. The entry form includes a questionnaire about your likes and dislikes, and then we will let you know when you’ve been allocated a swap partner! From there, you are welcome to work on your swap-gift during any of our classes or at home – your choice.

In the meantime, we encourage you to look for inspiration – find patterns and things that suit your style on Google or Pinterest or Instagram. It might be helpful to your swap partner if you can show them your style, if you’re having trouble describing it. You don’t even have to find pictures of mug rugs you like – mini quilts and cushions are another great example of patterns on a small scale.

For some inspiration check out the picture below of the finished cushions from last year’s swap!

So that’s it! If you have any questions or concerns, talk to us! We’d love to hear from you, and we really hope you can get involved in this great little community event!


New Skills

More than I thought

I was talking with a friend the other week, and she said it made her the happiest as a quilty-educator when she was in a position to watch people push themselves, and learn new skills. At the time, I grimaced with the thought that I’m not usually the best at getting outside my comfort zone.

But then I was thinking about it, and I realised that I’ve done quite a bit this year – and most of it involved learning new skills.

I’ve made my first ever piece of clothing.


This skirt was a pretty big deal for me! I hadn’t really tackled anything beyond the standard straight-line before this. It includes a zipper and everything! I am so happy with how it turned out! And it has the perfect amount of fabric to be a great twirly-skirt πŸ˜€

I ran my first quilt class.

People actually came! And made quilts! That’s amazing to me!
I also ran some highschooler classes, and had a LOT of fun in the process!

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I have another two quilt classes lined up for October and November, and I’m SO keen.

I conquered curves and made a hoop quilt.

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Originally, I joined Gen X Quilter’s Hoop-quilt-along, which was meant to take about 4 weeks. I took about 2 months, and those drunkards path blocks were a significant factor in my procrastination! I also made bias binding for the first time in this project. I think it all turned out pretty well, though!

All of the fabric used in this hoop quilt is from Dapper by Luke for Moda and Moda Bella White

I made my first ever English Paper Pieced hexies.


This is definitely an addiction… they are just SO pretty! But what to do with them all???


I’ve learned how to Foundation Piece.


I attended one of Marcelle’s skill-builder workshops, and I’m really glad I did. I made the above circle of flying geese during the class, and then got a bit adventurous and attempted a Scottie Dog (pattern from Love Patchowrk and Quilting Mag) the following week. I love it! Those accurate points just make it so worth it!


So thereΒ you have it, apparently I really can push myself outside of my comfort zone! At least, I can where sewing is concerned πŸ˜‰

What new skills have you learnt this year?