As 2023 gets going I have some news I would like to share with you.

I can’t believe that 1 February will mark my 10th year at The Ropewalk and 16 working as an independent tutor. It has gone in a flash of sewing, creativity, fun and friendship.

Over the past 16 years we have had fun at the Sewing Bees, explored pattern cutting, tailoring, lingerie making, sewing machine skills, conquered our overlockers and so much more.

We have said hello to new sewing friends and a sad farewell to others. I often think of Pauline, Jeanne, Sandy and Wendy with a smile and feel grateful we met over our love of sewing.

We were undefeated by Covid moving to Zoom Sewing Bees, courses and tuition. I know it kept me going through those difficult times. It was certainly a steep learning curve for us all but I am still amazed at what we achieved. Who would have thought we could make jackets and shirts through the ether!

But, and it has been such a hard decision, I feel it is now time to start winding in the thread and downsizing the stash.

On 1 February I will be moving into a smaller studio – still at The Ropewalk. I will continue to have space for one-to-one or two person sessions but the group classes as we have known them finished in December.

I will continue as a baby lock supplier with support, workshops and Zoom tuition.

Our once a month Online Sewing Bee is greatly enjoyed by us all with Bees as far away as Scotland and the south and we will carry on sewing, chatting and drinking tea (but not necessarily in that order).

I would love to mark the 10th anniversary so I hope you will be able to join me at the studio on 21 January from 10.30am for a ‘sell or swop or donate’ stash busting social session. I suspect you have sewing ‘stuff’ in the cupboard looking for a new home – I know I have!

If anyone has cotton fabric they would like to donate, the Barton Community Sewers and The Ropewalk warm space group are desperate for fabric for their charity quilt projects.

Most of all I want to say thank you. Without you lovely sewers the past 16 years would not have been possible. It has been such a privilege to help so many of you on your sewing journey whether it has been for pleasure or to move into the fashion and costume industry.

You have been an inspiration and helped me achieve my goal of providing skills-based tuition in a flexible and fun way.

I am looking forward to the next step on my journey.

Best wishes