Now we are open – and looking forward to starting classes and workshops again soon

Oh, it is so wonderful that The Corner Patch has reopened and it’s been great to have customers popping in again.

Although, between everyone wearing a face covering and needing a haircut, it has sometimes been hard to recognise people!

I finally had my hair cut last week and what a relief that was! And I’ve also had my second Covid vaccination – things are looking up. I’ve been able to meet with my daughter and son and their families too (separately!) to celebrate my birthday. My son wasn’t able to have a proper 40th birthday celebration last May (other than on Zoom) so we are now all looking forward to being able to get the whole family together outside soon to mark his ‘40 plus 1’!

The next milestone for The Corner Patch is being able to resume classes, workshops and sewing groups. The PM is due to make an announcement on 10th April and hopefully will confirm that the next step on his roadmap out of lockdown can take place on 17th May. This will mean that six people from different households will be able to meet indoors – so that would give the green light for our workroom to open.

We are keen for you all to be able to come and see our revamped work space. I have taken advantage of lockdown to install an air conditioning unit, the sewing machines are being upgraded to new Janome M100QDC models, and the furniture rearranged to make more space and allow distancing.

The upstairs room did get unbearably hot in summer (and could be chilly in winter), so the new air conditioning will make your sewing experience much more pleasant.

The sewing machines had served us well and worked hard for the past few years but the new Janome100 models have a higher specification while still being straightforward to use.

My plans are:

Sewing Groups: If we are given the go-ahead for 17th May, sewing groups will restart on Wednesday 20th May. Three groups are held on Wednesdays: from 10am – 1pm, 2pm – 5pm, and from 5.30pm – 8.30pm. Places will be limited to just six in each session and must be booked in advance to guarantee a place. For just £6 you will have use of the new machines in our fully air-conditioned workroom, with rulers, cutters, cutting mats etc. available for your use, and with help and advice on hand from our staff, or your fellow sewers. Bring your own project and enjoy sewing with like-minded people.

Workshops and Classes: I have had so many enquiries about when workshops and classes will resume, and there is a long list of people who had booked in 2020 but their chosen workshop couldn’t take place. I am working on a programme to get these back up and running and will be releasing the dates as soon as possible after 10th May if the decision is favourable.

I have planned a variety of workshops – I’m sure there’ll be something for everyone.

I am delighted that Jane Alcock will be returning to The Corner Patch to teach a new Block of the Month. Suitable for beginners and the more experienced, Jane will teach a variety of block designs, building each month until you have a beautiful quilt. Jane will also recap on cutting, sashing, borders and binding techniques for those that need it.

Jane will also be retuning for some standalone workshops; the Folded Star cushion, machine quilting and hopefully a Christmas runner will be on the list.

Meanwhile Faith Curry will be teaching a basic Beginner’s Quilting course based on a Disappearing 9-Patch. Over five monthly classes she will teach all the techniques you need to then go on to more complicated patterns. Many of you will know Faith as she works in the shop on Thursdays; she was taught by Jane Alcock and has made many beautiful quilts herself.

Anne Bird will be returning with her bag-making workshops. These have always been popular and Anne had planned an advanced bag-making workshop last year that was never able to take place. That will be on offer again if you have already done the basic course with Anne.

My dressmaking workshops will be on offer too, with Beginner’s Dressmaking, Sewing with Stretch and then workshops when you will be using and adapting commercial patterns – perhaps making trousers, coats and jackets. Dressmaking workshops are all limited to just four participants to allow plenty of space and individual attention.

Individual tuition sessions can be arranged if you prefer learning at your own pace, or small group sessions if you want to come with friends or family for a personalised class. If you are new to sewing you can also come and learn how to make the most of your sewing machine too. These can be arranged for any mutually convenient days and times when the workroom is free.

What with Zips and Piping, Felting, the Quick Sew groups for adults and children over the school summer holidays, and the Christmas Club from September onwards to help you prepare for the festive season, you can see we will be busy! I will be offering workshops on Mondays and Tuesdays initially, in addition to the usual Thursday and Saturday sessions, as we try to fit in all the postponed classes as well as offer places to new participants.

I will be sending out a second email with the workshop programme, and will also advertise on the website, Facebook and Instagram, as soon as any good news is released. Keep an eye out for news.

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