Work-in-Progress Girl

Brown Paper Packages, Tied Up With Strings…


Sorry for putting that song in your head. The instant I opened the box this came in, that song sprung to mind and I haven’t been able to shake it since:

Brown Paper Packages...

I shopped at Warp and Weft for the first time ever a week or so ago. As quilt stores go, I found the website a touch sluggish, but their product a cut above. By which I mean they have a few of the standard big name lines that are out right now, but they also sell a number of very unusual but really wonderful lines that I’ve never really seen anywhere else. They have an embroidery section with some really lovely Sajou products that you don’t tend to stumble over in your average shop either. I really like finding a shop that veers off a little from the standard path because it really opens up other options you might never otherwise find. And a lot of what you’ll see inside the brown paper package are things that are unusual choices for me, colours and combinations that I tend not to gravitate towards, but which really appealed to me somehow.

Fabric Stash

Purples, blues, and browns, all stacked so neatly into place. And one rogue bit of linen that just stumbled (ahem) into my shopping cart.

Sajou linen in Sepia

It’s a much stiffer linen than I’m used to working with. It’s true I’ve mostly used Essex linen lately, which is a cotton/linen blend, but even the real linens I’ve used haven’t been as stiff as this. I’m not sure if it’s starched up with sizing or if that’s its natural feel, but I think it’s going to be really lovely to embroider on regardless. And LOVE that colour.


And then three kind of random half metres of fabric I picked up. The Anna Maria Horner one is such a strange print and I waver back and forth between liking it and hating it, so finally I bought it so I can stare at it for a while and decide what I really think. (Right now I’m falling in the “My god, it’s really kind of ugly” camp, but I’m still attracted to it, somehow, so who knows.) The other two really were quite random – they seemed to be very unusual fabrics and they’re colours I don’t often buy. They’re designed by Dan Bennett for his Ruby collection. The purple print is just so fascinating and sort of strange – you’ll look at it and think something looks like a peacock, but it’s just random fringe attached to random waves, there are bits that remind me of owl eyes, and other things that feel like underwater life-forms. I don’t know, there’s something very dream-like and fantastic (in the fantasy sense, not the ‘hey that’s awesome’ sense) about it. The lime one just attracted me by it’s colour and those little orangey-red specks.

A quilt kit for the Hexagon pattern up top

The largest part of my purchase was a quilt kit, using the Rosalie quilt Sewing Card by Valori Wells. The bottom row of fabrics are quarter yards (or metres, probably, I didn’t measure them) including Anna Maria Horner’s Sundials and Feathered prints, Plankton from Dan Bennett’s Ruby line, and the remaining three (the purple, brown, and teal floral) are from the Bromley collection by Victoria & Albert Museum for Rowan Fabric. The middle row of fabrics are half yards, including several of Dan Bennett’s Ruby fabrics – Tattoo (purple), Helix (lime), Coral (the off-white with multi-coloured bits), and Feathers (jade, far right) – and a couple more Anna Maria Horner prints – Cell Structure (light purple background) and Mind’s Eye (pink on navy). The background fabric is that kind of taupe brown on the left and the backing fabric is Divinity in Brown from the Bromely collection.

These aren’t really a combination I would normally gravitate toward, brown, blue, and purple with splashes of lime and pink, but I was drawn to it. I don’t generally buy quilt kits – I’ve never made a single one I’ve bought (and I’ve got three that I can think of off the top of my head!) so I’ve started staying away from them. But yeah, this one caught my eye. I’m excited to try out it. Here’s hoping this crazy mix will come together into something interesting!

Rando FQ

The last thing in the box was this Fat Quarter, also from the Bromley collection, which was a gift included with purchases made in September. (Was it their 1 year anniversary maybe? I don’t recall.) Anyway, it’s not something I’d have normally picked out, but maybe I’ll include a little of it when I finally make that hexagon quilt – it’d fit right in!

Linking up with Sunday Stash from Finding Fifth, hosted this week by Emily at Sew E.T.:
Finding Fifth


Author: clumsykristel

I'm a 30-ish quilter, and occasional sewist and embroiderer. I mostly talk about crafty things I'm working on, or wish I were working on.

11 thoughts on “Brown Paper Packages, Tied Up With Strings…

  1. Nice haul. I’ve never bought a quilt kit, I kind like to just throw things together and see what sticks. Haha However, I love the combo of print in the kit you bought. I would never have thought to put those together myself…but I like it!

    • It’s not a combination I’d have come up with either, colourwise or print, but I think it might be interesting. I’ve never made a kit before either – I tend to throw things together too! – but I kind of liked that it’s so far outside of anything I’d have chosen for myself.

  2. I’m in the “love it” camp of that AMH fabric but I can definitely see how you might swing the other way. I have it in a different colourway and made a really fun clutch/wristlet out of it.

    I might need to check out Warp & Weft – I think they’re even Canadian which is a plus for me!

    • They are Canadian! Actually, that’s what got me to shop there in the first place. I’m always on the look-out for interesting Canadian shops.

      I like the brown colourway of that AMH print better – I have a little bit of it that was sent to me by a different shop as an “oops I’m sorry we didn’t have the print you wanted” gift. For me, it works better in the brown, but AMH always does interesting things with colours and sometimes I just find it kind of… dissonant, which is the case here. But dissonance can be a really interesting force, too, which is probably why I still find it kind of alluring even as it’s putting me off. I don’t know.. I have a kind of weird relationship with her fabrics because most of the time when they come out I don’t really like them and I scoff at how much everyone loves it, and then I’ll see it put to use in something and suddenly it’ll all fall together and I think it’s brilliant, so I’ll decide to buy some, then I’ll go looking for it and see the prints again and go right back to my general dislike (until I see the next finished item…). I have little bits of several of her lines, but never seem to use them – I think I must have some kind of mental block about her fabric 😀

  3. Oooh, so much loveliness! This sounds like a really fun shop, too. And that quilt kit looks super fab! I wouldn’t have put those fabrics together either, but I think they’ll make a sweet quilt when done. 🙂

  4. The Anna Maria Horner Field Study feathers are one of my favorite prints of hers! The quilt kit is going to be great. Thanks for linking up 🙂

  5. You won’t believe this but I too struggle to find appropriate projects for Anna Maria Horner’s collections but then I see something that someone else has made using one of her prints and it always looks amazing! A friend of mine has made a dress using that very ‘Poppies’ print and it is just stunning! I was a bit skeptical at first when she told me what she wanted to do with it but it has turned out so well. I think that may be Anna Maria’s strength – her designs are unusual and unexpected but you will never forget them!

    The Sajou linen is very stiff because of the starch but once you start working with it and handling it, it loosens up a lot. I also found it strange at first but now that I’m used to it I can’t embroider on anything else.

    Putting this quilt kit together, I must admit, was very much a case of me thinking outside the box too. I normally tend to stay within collections but for some reason this pattern got me out of that comfort zone and wanting to mix things up a bit. I am very keen to see how it turns out so please do share some pics of the finished product and your feedback on it will be really helpful too.

    The sluggish website is a constant frustration for me too. I’ve had many, many heated discussions with the company that hosts my website and after more than a year of it I’ve made the decision to move the website because I don’t see them getting their act together anytime soon. Once I have Creativ Festival out of the way, I’ll be ready to move on to better things.

    Thank you very much for mentioning Warp & Weft in this post. Your feedback is invaluable as it helps me understand what my clients enjoy about shopping at Warp & Weft and where I can help improve your experience.

    Happy sewing!

    • Now this has just taken me such a ridiculously long time to reply to. It was a bit of a crazy Thanksgiving around my house and my four day guests turned into 7 day guests and I’m finally getting some free time now that they’ve gone!

      I agree that Anna Maria Horner’s strength seems to be making unforgettable, if unusual, prints. She’s got a way with colour that is a bit mystifying – that poppy print being a good example of both unusual design and unusual colour scheme. I always look at her fabric lines and just assume it can’t possibly work together, and then somehow it does. I find her lines sometimes on the gaudy side of busy, but somehow they all still seem to come together. She’s definitely a talented designer, in any case!

      I’m excited to try that Sajou linen – I’ve found a project I think it’ll be perfect for, now I just need to find the time to start it! Which seems to be the way with everything for me, I’ve got too many things I want to work on and not enough time to actually do it. It’ll probably take me half an age to get to the hexagon quilt – I’ve got two others in the pipeline before it’ll come up – but I’ll do my best to remember to share the outcome with you. (I forget – do you have a flickr group or something where people can share projects made with your kits? In any case, I’ll have your email so I can send you a link either way.)

      I was just thinking about how this pattern – Rosalie – is so great for large scale prints, and I pulled out the kit to look at the fabrics (again, because of course I have to touch everything a dozen times even when I’m not actively working on it) and I pulled out the Coral fabric from Dan Bennett’s Ruby line and actually opened it up – wow! I don’t know why I didn’t open these up before, but I’d just assumed that the bit that was showing from the way it was folded would be the all-over print, but really varies quite a lot! It’s so lovely I’m going to be hesitant to cut into it! That print alone should yield some pretty fascinating hexagons. As for the kit, I really like that it’s a mix of different lines because I think mixing things together is something that a lot of quilters struggle with. I don’t always want to box myself into using just one line of fabrics, but sometimes it just seems scary to think of cutting things up, putting them back together, and seeing how they blend – what if I put all that time, effort, and money into it and then it doesn’t work? But my favourite quilts are all ones that my grandma made and they’re all just mish-mashes of whatever fabric she had on hand, so I don’t know why it seems scary to think of mixing things – I already know I like a scrappy rather than precisely coordinated look! Anyway, I think that beautiful background is going to ground all the various different looks and styles that are in the print fabrics; it might be a little like flowers in a garden against it.

      I wish I lived closer to Toronto, Creativ Festival sounds like a lot of fun (I’ve just been reading the website). The April one sounds a little (a lot?) less intense an event, but maybe I should think about booking some holidays around then next year. I’ve only ever driven through Ontario (and we avoided the Toronto area entirely), but I’ve got a friend who moved to Toronto from Calgary who I could hit up for couch space.

      Well, longest reply ever! But really, I’m happy to recommend Warp and Weft to people – the website is a touch sluggish (but hopefully you’ll be able to take care of that soon enough!), but your fabric choices are lovely, and I appreciated very much that it’s not just all the same lines that everyone else carries. Not that I’ve got any issue with the standard big gun designers – I’ve got enough Tula Pink and Denyse Schmidt and Amy Butler and Joel Dewberry etc… prints to crazy-quilt wall-paper a house, so clearly I’ve got no problems buying any of those ones! – but I like that you have enough different designers to make me think a little outside my usual box of colours, designers, print types. (An example: those Dashwood Studio lines are divine. I WISH I could justify buying them, especially those hedgehogs, but I keep telling myself that I need to sew more and buy less, so I keep leaving them alone.) And then the embroidery supplies… covet. Oh how I want that costumes sewing box, even though I already have all the supplies I could want!

      Anyway, take care, and best wishes with the Creativ Festival! (And hoping you didn’t sign up to get follow-up comments by email, lest you get this reply twice!)

  6. Pingback: Cool Fat Quarter Quilt Patterns images

Drop me a line...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s