myBearpaw Blog by Jo Avery

Quilts and Pouches for Grenfell

I’m sort of on holiday at the moment. The studio is having it’s summer break for the next 6 weeks so I’m not teaching, but I still seems to have a lot to do! I think that’s the problem with this ‘gig economy’ they keep talking about – I just have too many businesses to run!

But I managed to take a break from my computer over the weekend and finished this quilt top.

I’ve been teaching the ingenious Scrappy Trip Around the World method for a few years now and have amassed a number of sample blocks. I got the idea of keeping it monotone with just one other colour from a student (if you come to my class with a good idea for a quilt I will steal it from you!). Of course I was going to keep it to just red but pink and orange found it’s way in too!

Anyway this was the last class I taught 10 days ago and all I needed was another 5 blocks and I had a good single bed sized top.

I was originally going to donate this to Siblings Together, but finding out that they have enough for the summer camps (though they still need more for the Autumn!) I’m donating this instead to the Quilts For Grenfell appeal.

I’m sure everyone around the world will have heard about this awful disaster that took place in London a few weeks ago. Some wonderful quilters have started a group on facebook here (they are also on Instagram @quiltsforgrenfell) and they have been deluged with donations of quilts, blocks and fabric. In fact they have had so many quilts promised already (including this one) that they don’t need anymore just now. But they really need help to sew blocks together, plus donations of wadding and backing fabric. If you think you can help, head to the facebook page for all the info.

Meanwhile the lovely Portia Lawrie has set up @makersforgrenfell on Instagram which is raising money for the victims by asking for donations of stash or hand made items that can be sold with the proceeds going to the fund.

So with my left over scraps from the Trip Around the World top I made some improv panels.

I then matchstick quilted them using Aurifil 50wt variegated thread, and then added a few lines of hand quilting and turned it into a zippy pouch.

 This is something I have been doing more and more, every time I finish a quilt I run up a couple of panels with the scraps, matchstick and hand quilt them, and then make one of these large pouches.  I have decided to call them Project Pouches as they are big enough to carry your current craft project in (as long as you are not hand quilting a whole quilt!). They measure 8 x 12in.

I even add my own ‘handmade’ label (more on these in a future post).

 I recently finished a quilt using Sarah Campbell’s ‘Sandpiper’ line (for Michael Miller) for Today’s Quilter and again I made up a couple of panels (these were actually made as class samples at a fortuitous ‘Scrappy Improv’ class, love a bit of multi-tasking!).

As you can see I am still enjoying styling my photos ?

This is such a gorgeous fabric line – Sarah Campbell is a really famous British designer who used to design for Liberty, her new ‘Our Yard’ line has been chosen for the MQG Michael Miller challenge this year!

So how do you fancy owning one of these pouches and donating to a special cause at the same time? I will be putting them up on the IG feed tonight, and hopefully they will sell quickly. If you wanted one and have missed out then I am happy to make more as long as the fund is getting decent donations (of course they may not have sold at all and maybe one of my lovely blog readers will buy one!).

If you fancy having a little de-stash or donating a handmade item then head over to the Instagram feed for more info.

Meanwhile I have a bit of a pouch addiction so am happy for any excuse to make more!


  1. loving the pouches time I tackled making one. I had not heard about the quilts for Grenfell vistims till earlier this morning when a blogger said she is making one. I have been making hexie blocks f the Manchester bombing victims and on 17th the Manchester quilting bee are coming to our MQG meeting and we are going to be making the blocks into quilts. I have fingers crossed it will be dry as do not want to take my machine out if raining as I go by bus

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