About Barbara

teacher and writer http://barbarachaineyquilts.wordpress.com www.barbarachainey.com

It all starts again

After what seemed like a never-ending winter followed by one of the longest summers we can remember our thoughts are now set on a busy autumn programme of classes and projects.  At C&B Towers renovations to an adjacent property are a noisy disruption to the calm required for creativity (and gardening) – all staff have been given leave of absence so Chris is manning the fort (almost literally) armed with noise-cancelling headphones.  Barbara has taken off, yet again, for the peace and quiet of the Overseas Office.  Maybe what we really need is somewhere that would be a Not-Overseas-C&B Towers, with all the benefits of both locations and none of the drawbacks.

Chris’s classes at The Corner Patch in Eccleshall begin this month, Barbara’s classes are scheduled for October.  Samples and worksheets are being put together even as this page goes to press, new EQ doodles are posted on our Doodles page (you can download a colouring sheet here) and notebooks and lists are being consulted.  It really feels like autumn!!

Mini Star Sampler quilt top for one of Barbara’s Corner Patch classes –

Rick Rack Star block for October –
A Star Sampler from EQ, recently “discovered” in Barbara’s files.  Fabrics might be being selected at this very moment…… just when another project is the last thing you need!

Chris’s next Block of the Month – starting next week – at The Corner Patch is on display on the shop wallRemember Chris’s regular Wandering the Web feature in P&Q magazine, also take a look at the UKQU website and Facebook presence.  Happy stitching!

 

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Totally time out

It has been a hectic few weeks since we were enjoying the fabulous Corner Patch retreat – so much so that we missed our monthly deadline for updating the Electric Quilt doodle page and also our regular update post.  In fact, we’ve been so busy that we can hardly remember what we’ve been doing, it’s all been rather a blur! – over at C&B Towers all activity has been restricted to early morning only in a bid to ‘beat the heat’ and the Rural Office has not fared much better.  Various computer tech issues have reared their little heads, mostly in the shape of unasked for updates to Windows 10 – complete frustration all round.  Barbara achieved her third annual Grand Tour teaching in Devon & Cornwall leaving Chris to start the planning for the next Corner Patch retreat (you can never start too soon!)   Lots and lots of projects are being progressed from the ‘Just Begun’ pile to the ‘Halfway’ pile and the ‘Almost Done’ pile is gradually building up.

So, we hope you are having a good summer too and getting lots of stitching done.  We thought you might like a quick re-run of a few of our favourite EQ doodles from previous years –  back soon!

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June 14 4

June update

Just to announce the arrival of our EQ Doodles for this month and also to remind you that there are still one or two places available on The Corner Patch Retreat later this month.  Only yesterday, or so it seems, we were sitting with Jane making plans for this retreat and now it’s just a couple of weeks away.  We’re really looking forward to reprising our tandem teaching on the Saturday of the retreat, it will be quite like old times!!

If you want a colouring page for the doodles to while away a few sunny minutes in the garden (in between the thunderstorms) you can download one here.

Maybe it’s May…

… but we’re not convinced. This year is rushing by and we think someone has forgotten to include spring in the plans. The Rural Office is surrounded by tall meadow rather than lawn as it has been too wet to mow, days of strong cold wind at the Overseas Office and all staff at C&B Towers have been issued with new raincoats and wellingtons.

Chris did manage to escape and take a few days to enjoy gardens and tulips –

Somewhere in her travels Chris  managed to pick up a mystery virus which has confined her to C&B Towers for several days – we’re hoping that it will disappear as quickly as it arrived.

Meanwhile, at the Overseas Office, Barbara spotted a new resident –

  • a little stitching has been achieved –

And the most neglected sewing machine ever was spotted in a reclamation yard –

This is probably a timely reminder for us to clean out and oil all our machines and give them an appreciative pat!

Our Electric Quilt Doodles for this month are mega simple, so no downloadable pdf – but do click over and take a look at our May offerings.

We are currently experiencing a number of background technical issues with our blog host WordPress which we hope to have resolved before our next post. 

Also, to comply with new data protection legislation we may need to remove all email subscriptions from the blog – our Technical Department is currently investigating. 

 

April news

We’ve changed all the clocks and moved forward an hour but, in the UK, we don’t appear to have changed the winter weather.  Chris has been marooned in the Executive Suite at C&B Towers watching the rain, cold and wind sweep over the surrounding park grounds and Barbara has got so cheesed off with snow rain and cold that she has packed up and left for the Overseas Office where everything is a little brighter and considerably warmer. . .

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. . . and the desk is already in use –

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Tucked away out of sight at the Overseas Office are many project bags, plus books, fabric and other sewing basics (chocolate and caffeine perhaps? – Chris).  In fact the Overseas Office will soon be as well stocked as the Rural Office and C&B Towers, we just need to persuade the staff there to sit down and actually use it and make stuff/finish up some of those projects…

Lots of stitching in store for both of us this month as we make samples and storyboards for our Chris&Barbara day at The Corner Patch retreat – Chris started on one of her class samples and suddenly found herself finishing up a quilt top that wasn’t on the list (as you do).  Barbara has fabric to starch, press and cut into a small stack of 10inch squares before she can start her share of the samples and then a whole new Layer Cake can be opened and used.  And rumour has it that a certain Singer Featherweight might be taken out of it’s box and put to work alongside Chris’s trusty vintage Singer machine.

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We’ve refreshed the Doodle page so do click over and take a look at this month’s offering and to download a free colouring sheet (if Barbara has managed to conquer some of the “issues” with Links – Chris thinks it might just be an ageing brain, but the link is now added). EQ Doodle April

Happy sewing!!

March – is it spring soon?

This winter seems to have lasted for quite some time and we’re more than ready for spring.  Barbara is counting off the days until she heads south at the end of this month to open up the Overseas Office.  C&B Towers has remained fully operational throughout the extreme weather although the Catering and Refreshments Suite has been much in demand and staff have been working long hours to meet the need.

We both have classes at The Corner Patch this month.  Barbara will be teaching the first sessions of a Hand Stitched Sampler, plus a hand quilting class and a Star Sampler class session

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and Chris will be teaching her regular Block of The Month and Technique of the Month classes on Thursdays and Saturdays.  Our planning is well under way for the Corner Patch Retreat in June which is a good thing as time is going so quickly that it will be June before you have chance to blink.  Don’t miss out on this event – book your place now!

We’ve updated the Doodles page to reflect a new month (even if we are a few days late!) and kept everything very simple, no commentary, no colouring page download – just a few doodles using our favourite Electric Quilt design program.

February update

If it’s February it must be just a bit nearer longer days and shorter nights and maybe better light to sew by (although it goes without saying that our sewing spaces are wonderfully illuminated with the very best of task lighting….).

Chris has had such a busy start to the year with a full schedule of classes at The Corner Patch – not that much humming of sewing machines over at C&B Towers, just the whirr and clatter of the printing press as worksheets are put together.

From  the Overseas Office there are reports of lots of silent sewing/quilting but very little pictorial evidence so far.  However,  you will note that certain C&B traditions are being upheld –

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In other news our Electric Quilt Doodles page has been updated for the month – why not click over and take a look? And download the colouring sheet for a quiet coffee break.