July Classes and News Updates

Hello Sewing Friends.
Wednesday 4th / Thursday 5th: Junior Applique Group:
Let’s do Monica Poole applique animals. What a fun way to learn applique. There is limited seating left. Do 1 day or 2. Choose the day. Grandma / Mum / Aunt is welcome to come along.
Saturday 7th July: More than Feathers: Free motion quilting with Chris Dowell. Join Chris for the next step in your quilting journey and learn more about Feather quilting. Not to be missed. Limited seating left.
Thursday 12th July: Premier Software Lesson: Let’s have a look at Premier and Premier+2. Start with a basic lesson in Windows and learn the shortcuts to getting your designs into a folder that you can’t lose. We’ll go on to Embroidery Software and some lessons to make you more comfortable finding your way around, it doesn’t matter what level you’re at. I will help you.
Saturday 21st July:Block 5 of ‘Grose on You’ a QAYG 9 block sampler quilt with Kerry Grose. Growing your skill level each month. Fun, interesting and great tips, techniques and challenges for the inspiring.
Saturday 28th July: 9 – 12 English Paper Piecing the Sue Daley Way. Mug Rugs. Something new each month.
Saturday 28th July:12:30 – 3:30pm. Sashiko Club. A new design each month, make a Mug Rug or build it up to a Table Runner or on to a quilt. Endless.
The first half of 2018 is upon us, and what a busy time it’s been at MK’s Sew-Able. Firstly I would like to introduce you to Janine and Leanne, my 2 part-time casuals. They have both been at MK’s since March and have adjusted well to the mad whirl of MK’s. They are both mad keen Bag Makers and I think they secretly compete, as they seem to come in with a new bag each work day. Leanne is a member of the Toowoomba Quilters and has some good working knowledge of quilting but Janine is no slouch in this area as well.  They are both becoming familiar with the machines that I sell and it won’t be long before they can boast of making a sale. The poor girls have been building good biceps as I have had them madly slicing fabric for pre-cuts. Watch out for these future announcements about our strips and packs.
MK’s clubs and groups,English Paper Piecing, Sashiko and Sit’n’Sew, are forging ahead with new members joining on a regular basis. These groups have formed new friendships and support. The Sit’n’Sew group has a diversified range of activities – it could be Knitting, Crochet, Cross stitch, Paper piecing, Sashiko, and the latest is Diamond Dots – we even bring our mending and clothes repair along, it’s always good to get a second opinion. But, no matter what the activity, the one thing that doesn’t stop, is the chatter, the jokes and laughter and, most importantly, the care and concern of friends.
We’ve had exciting classes with exciting projects created.
The classes have been very well attended and I am constantly asked for new class lists. The first half of the year was so busy that I have taken time out for a second wind but there are exciting new things to come.
Classes such as the Free Motion for beginners and The Next Step with Chris Dowell are proven winners, and everyone is excited about the next class, which is ‘More than Feathers’ on Saturday 7th July. I am sure this will be quite exciting and I will be poking my head in, every chance I get.
The ‘Grose on You” QAYG 9 Block Sampler with Kerry Grose is also a Winner. The numbers are building and we may need to run the class over 2 days a month to take on new members. Kerry is a great teacher and we have learnt so many techniques with her, that we are more confident in our piecing processes.
Margaret Olive from Patchwork Paradise, Rockhampton, came for a 2 day workshop with the Judy Niemeyer Bali Star Wedding Qult. 10 ladies came along and though it is a challenging process to get started, there are some happy completions, with others going along quite well. Wednesday is the day they come in and you will hear a lot of voices, talking in what could be mistaken for maths formulas when they start calling for the A or B units, the CDMS, and the Melons. Great to hear them helping each other. Annette has completed her bed runner and it looks magnificent.Tracey Sims of Tracey Sims Designs and Zundt, came to do a Trunkshow which was a resounding success and led to 2 Lace workshops. Traceys designs are very well digitised and I am happy to say that I am inspired to do more lace work now that I have heard her tips and techniques. I am hoping to organise another workshop with Tracey in August but in a different field of Embroidery. I will have more on this soon.

Other events we hosted were product orientated, such as the PFAFF Creative Icon launch with Cath Quinlan of Blessignton, this was a very informative day with a good reception of the the machine.
Cath followed up with a very successful event for the Premier+2 software. The software has certainly come into its own with simplicity and, hooray, NO DONGLE. I’m afraid Di has moved away from Toowoomba and I am finding it hard to fill her space but I will get some new ideas to keep you creating with the Software and the Embroidery machines.The first of these lessons will be Thursday 12th July.
I led an Event day with Feet and Accessories and I’m happy to say that I believe that all who attended, appeared to enjoy learning more about their machine feet and the after sales accessories that are available. I will host another event later in the year and show more accessories to help you decorate and create while sewing or quilting your creation.
I do try to slip in some machine maintenance during these events but I do sometimes wonder if everyone is so excited about the feet that they pay scant notice of the importance of what I say about threading and cleaning etc. If you are having performance issues on your ‘normally’ well-behaved machine, do the 1,2,3 checks before assuming that the machine is having problems.
1. Take out the Top thread and re-thread it, make sure it’s in all the guides, the tension unit and the take-up leaver.
2. Take the needle plate off, take out the bobbin and bobbin case, give it a good clean, while you’re that far into it, feel the needle plate and bobbin case for burrs ( this happens often )
3. when you put everything back together, may sure that the bobbin thread is coming off the right way, clockwise or anti-clockwise.
These few tips usually fix your little problem If not, did you you wind a bobbin, have you moved the bobbin gear back to position. Have you done some free motion, check you have moved the lever across to raise the feed dogs and then turn the hand wheel one rotation,if your machine is automated, have you cleared the memory. On the subject of Feed dogs, when did you last clean the teeth, I have had machines in here that won’t feed the fabric through only to find the lint is higher that the teeth.
The right machine for the job. I sold a Creative Embroidery machine recently, to a lady who made a great point on the right machine for the job. She has 2 other machines at home, a Passport and an old metal Bernina. After doing a couple of bag days, she has decided to leave the Passport at home and bring the solid Bernina as it is more suited to the heavier work. If you have a Mini Coup and a Prado or Pajero in the shed, why would you pull the 25ft Caravan with the Mini.I’m not saying that the Passport is not capable of making bags but it makes sense to think twice, if you do have a choice.
Enough of that stuff, I’m sure that the majority of machine owners can work things out when things go wrong and we all know when it’s time to go to the doctor. I believe in caring for my customer, whether it’s a $2 purchase or a Top end Machine. You are my first priority. I am very conscious of the good name of the brands I sell and I am very conscious of my Reputation so I will go the extra to satisfy your needs.
I said at the beginning that the shop has been busy and that is true in many areas, not only with machine and Embroidery Software sales, but in all areas through the shop. English Paper Piecing still holds special interest and we are always happy to assist in your queries and stock., as is the continuing interest in Sashkio.
We are seeing new faces on a daily basis and that is a good thing for us. I know my store is no longer ‘exclusive’ on many of my products or classes but I am happy to say loyal customers stay loyal.
The Toowoomba Quilt show is coming up fast. The 2018 exhibition will be held at the Salo Centre, St Ursula’s College, Rome Street, Toowoomba, 22-28 September, 9am to 4.30pm. $5 entry. We will be there with lots of things to look at and buy.
I am sorry that the time between newsletters is so long but when I get so busy here, I seem to spend my time on orders and pricing and lately, keeping up with class organisation.

I will post another very soon as I have 2 August dates to send through.
Stay Well. Stay Happy and Stay Stitching.
warm regards
Marilyn of MK’s Sew-Able