myBearpaw Blog by Jo Avery

Sneak Peeks and Hand Sewing

I’ve entered a bit of a frantic period with lots of magazine commissions due all at once, lots of teaching in the studio, and the Stitch Gathering coming up on Sunday – eeek!

Normally I wait until I have lovely finished project to chat about over here, but alas I have nothing finished I can show you at the moment. So instead I thought I would share all the sneak peeks of the secret sewing I have been posting on Instagram, plus some new adventures in hand sewing…

I can’t wait to share more about this new project I am working on using Tilda’s Harvest fabric (I can in about 5 weeks time!). I haven’t worked with Tilda fabric much before and I absolutely love it!

The fabric feels gorgeous and looks so good that I hardly need to do anything to it to make something beautiful. I’m really enjoying using these pretty pastels and more muted shades (for me!).

This was my fabric pull for a new hand sewing project. The palette was inspired by my new Anna Maria Horner collection of Aurifil 12wt threads that I obtained at Festival of Quilts (I won’t say bought as it was a freebie ?)

Here’s a sneaky peek at the hand quilting on this project. I loved using the 12wt, it glides through the layers so effortlessly and is easier on my hands than the number 8 I’ve used previously. I’ve ordered some for the shop (including the AMH box) and they should be in any day now.
My latest quilt finish uses Denyse Schmidt’s new Washington Depot fabric. It’s such a fabulous collection, classic DS style and colour, and also available at our online store here

I’m totally in love with this new quilt and can’t wait to show it off (at the end of the year)!

In the meantime I had a little fun with my scraps. I had a rare weekend day off week last Saturday, and made these two improv panels.

Of course you can probably work out by now where this is going…

Yes, another tendril pouch!!

I am acquiring quite a collection!

In fact…

Here comes another one!

Everybody loved the last one I made using Outback Wife fabric so I thought I would try the other design I have in this line, and this time with circles instead of leaves! This fabric is Elaine in orange.

And talking about that rare Saturday off a week or so back… I actually had time to get my paints and brushes out and do a bit of design doodling.

It’s something I love to do but never seem to make time for. But I took myself off to the Tiny House and had a blissful afternoon being creative. I was chuffed with the result!
(note to self: MUST DO THIS MORE!)

I liked it so much that I used it as inspiration for this applique hand quilted panel. I am going to turn this into a fabric storage pot, and while I’m at it I plan to turn it into a Tutorial for you all! This will hopefully be later next week, so stay tuned!

It’s time for another new project! This is for another magazine and a new one to me. This won’t be published till next Spring but there is a fair bit of hand work involved so I’ve started early.

And also because I was longing to do a bit more applique after finishing that last panel above. I just love appliqueing circles, especially in these bright cheerful colours!

I am really enjoying my hand work at the moment, and my hand and wrist issues seem to be under control. Maybe it’s because of all the lovely Aurifil thread I am using along with those super fine Tulip needles?

The right tools can certainly make a lot of difference!


  1. Absolutely gorgeous stitching, Jo!
    Cute thread holder tray!
    Such a colourful post …. especially love your painting! Strangely only this week I had my mini paintbox out painting a picture of my current project …. if only it happened more often!
    There’s no painting on my blog so far!
    Look forward to seeing your tutorial.
    Barbara x

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