Have you seen the new Strawberry Thief Bespoke Collection? A beautiful assortment of Liberty Fabrics printed on to Tana Lawn exclusively for The Strawberry Thief. Read on below to find out more about this very special and exciting new collection, and click on the link at the bottom to shop!

 

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I finally got around to completing this baby quilt for my new grandniece! Phew!
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I wanted to use hexie flowers in a fun way – scattered through the quilt like a garden bed. The bright, fresh colours of the solids give some contrast and help the flowers really pop against the background of the quilt. This quilt really was about pairing Liberty prints with Solids to help them to really sing! Although I played around with a huge variety of different rainbow coloured Liberty prints in the background, I tried to stick to the pinky peach and yellow colour scheme within the flowers to bring some consistency!
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I thought that hand embroidering around them in a petal pattern would be a sweet finishing touch!
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I chose Kayoko C for the centre of each flower – not to just give them a yellow pollen look, but also because it is just such a gorgeous yellow Liberty – I am in love! It is a bit softer than if I had have used the solid lemon yellow… Yellow and pink just go so nicely together and stops it from being TOO girly girly – which is definitely okay at times but not really what I as going for here!
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I actually used the same Kayoko C fabric as the binding to tie it all together nicely – we don’t have Kayoko Bias pre-packs in the shop – however I do have some on the roll that you can purchase by the metre, just pop me an email if you are chasing some. You can see the backing fabric here as well – Daniel DJ C was the perfect mix of all the pastel pinks, peaches and yellows!
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Here it is! Finished and waiting to head off to it’s new home. I really don’t think there could be a nicer gift than a soft and beautiful Liberty quilt! 🙂 I hope the family likes it!
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If you have any questions please ask away in the comments!
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Click here to shop | LIBERTY SOLIDS |  PINK LIBERTY PRINTS | YELLOW LIBERTY PRINTS | BIAS BINDING

Wooowee! After preparing madly to send off all of our fabric needed at the AQC, as well has hosting our Open Day, we have finally had a little bit of time to slow down and take a deep breath…

This means that for the first time since Quilters Companion published a feature on Robyn and her Scrappy Hexi quilts in their Jan/Feb edition, we actually have time to sit down and upload it to share with all of our friends who didn’t manage to get a copy of it in their crafty little hands!

So here it is – a big thank you Quilters Companion for letting us repost the feature and also for publishing it in the first place!  I’m sure most of you know it by now, but just incase, it is a GREAT Australian publication full of fabulous and inspiring projects that are sure to get your creative juices flowing. If you get the chance, it is definitely worth picking up and having a good read of it!

If you would like to make a Scrappy Liberty Hexi Quilt it is a great way to use up all the little pieces you have laying around – but remember, we also have a huge range of pre-cut Liberty hexies in The Strawberry Thief store to help you on your way… Click here to shop our hexi packs!

Below is the feature on Robyn, keep on scrolling for the Scrappy Liberty Hexi Quilt Tutorial

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Published in Jan/Feb 2017 Quilters Companion

 

EDIT: The Competition is now closed. Thank you to every body who participated! Please feel free to continue to contribute your own tips and tricks to this article 🙂

 

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We are calling it – Liberty Tana Lawn is THE BEST fabric with which to create your beautiful quilts!

Over the years, quilters have turned to Liberty Tana Lawn not only for the diverse range of beautiful classic and seasonal Liberty prints, but also for the delicate softness and beautiful feel that the fabric lends to quilts in particular. It is lightweight and silken to touch – with beautiful hang and drape- and it is obedient, holding it’s shape well.

Liberty may be a little pricier than regular quilting cotton, but it is oh so worth it. Tana Lawn feels SO beautiful and delicate. And the Liberty prints simply shine on the fabric – almost as though the highly saturated colour shimmers on the surface. ANY thing that you create with such beautiful fabric is of course going to be stunning. Liberty is an investment – it’s important that we do our best to treat it with care and respect, to get the most out of our fabric and ensure the longevity of resulting quilt.

Often people ask me how to work with Liberty, or how I care for my Liberty quilts. I decided to put together a one stop post full of tips and tricks to make sure you get the best result possible when using your Liberty Tana Lawn…

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Selecting which fabrics you are going to use is the funnest part, especially when working with Liberty!

Do I need to prewash Tana Lawn?
Nope! Tana lawn is pre-washed, so you do not need to worry about washing it before you work with it. It is also much easier to work with before it is washed again, which is an added bonus. Bearing this in mind, it is always a good idea to wash any linens or other fabrics that you are pairing with it before you start. All you really need to do with Liberty before you get stuck in is give it a good iron to ensure it is flat and wrinkle free!

Cutting
Please do not be afraid to cut in to your Liberty stash! I understand, but if you are feeling a little trepidatious, perhaps choose a quilt design that calls for small amounts of different prints so that you can slowly get in to the process with smaller pieces- this way, in the unlikely event that you mess up, it isn’t so traumatic. But trust me, once you start working with it you will fall even more in LOVE – soon you will be making absolutely everything out of Liberty!!!

I am often taking my fabric straight from the bolt so I will generally tear my fabric to ensure I get a straight line. It then settles and falls in to shape. Otherwise, for smaller pieces, I use a rotary cutter and a large rectangle ruler for absolute perfection. If I need to fold a pattern to cut it, I always check that the fold is following the direction of the pattern.

When I am making a hexi quilt using directional fabrics I try to cut them all on a tilt. Having each fabric on a different angle means that it isn’t noticeable if they aren’t lining up perfectly – it takes a bit of pressure off and also brings a lot of movement to the quilt, which I love.

Don’t forget, if you need to save time or you can’t stand cutting out shapes, like hexagons or charm squares, you can pick up a whole lot of precuts and papers in The Strawberry Thief store.

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Sewing with Tana Lawn
Tana Lawn has a very tight weave with fine threads, so whether you are using a machine or stitching by hand, it is always best to use a small needle so that you don’t damage the threads or leave any holes. When I am sewing on a machine I use a size 70 all purpose needle and for hand stitching I like to use a very small needle, around a size 10.  In order to avoid puckering, you should also make sure you are using a good quality, light weight cotton thread – Aurifil or DMC cotton threads are great.

I do know that some people like to spray Liberty with a starch to make it easier to cut and sew with – personally I don’t, and I have never had a problem using it.


Quilting
I have had great success with machine quilting and also hand quilting my Liberty. Personally I like to use a thick DMC cotton when hand quilting – this is mostly for the aesthetic because I think that it ties everything together nicely. If I send my quilt to be machine quilted on a long arm machine I always ask them to enlarge the pattern so that there is around a 2″ space between each line of quilting – I prefer this to a small and tight pattern of stitching which I find can make quilts quite stiff. The bigger pattern allows the quilt to remain quite soft and floppy which I think enhances the delicate and soft nature of Liberty Tana Lawn.

My favourite batting to use is Quilt Lite Batting. Of course, you need to take in to consideration the climate you live in and your own preference, but even in colder places I think I would still use quilt lite – I would prefer to layer lots of soft floppy quilts than use one thick, heavy one… It might be personal preference, but I love being surrounded by and using my quilts, so I can’t think of anything better than having a few on my bed at once!

Something else to consider when quilting with Liberty is that due to the delicate, almost sheer nature of tana lawn, putting a certain colour of batting behind the fabric can completely change the feel of the quilt. For instance, if you use a cream or a natural batting behind Liberty, like Quilt Lite, it will give it a vintage hue that softens the colours and ties all of the different prints together. On the other hand, if you use a really bright, bleached white batting it really lifts and brightens the colours by shining through the print. Quilt lite doesn’t come in a bright white, so if I am looking for that colour pop that comes from the the whiter batting I just make sure to select another brand that is 100% cotton.

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See the difference between the white batting underneath this quilt on the left hand side, and the cream batting on the right hand side? Normally I prefer the soft, vintage appearance that quilt lite gives to my quilts, particularly my hexi quilts, but in my Love Liberty quilt, picking a bright white batting lifted the colours and strengthened the overall appearance of the quilt. 

Using and Maintaining your Liberty Quilt
I am of the opinion that quilts should be used and enjoyed, not tucked away in a cupboard for years and forgotten about. I have piles of quilts around my home that are easy to access and use at any point by all members of my family and guests. I don’t treat them any differently to my other blankets – they go in the wash with my clothes and come out perfectly clean and ready to go again.

My best advice for ensuring the longevity of a quilt is to make sure that you don’t keep it in direct sunlight – for instance, if it’s on your bed and you get strong morning sun you will probably want to close your curtains in the morning. Prolonged exposure to the sun will definitely bleach it.

Happy Sewing!

The Strawberry Thief Not-so-Tricky Liberty Giveaway

What is your number one Liberty tip or trick? Do you have any advice that you think will come in handy for your fellow stichers? We would love to hear it in the comments below! Our favourite comment will receive a lovely little Liberty Inspiration Bundle – 10 x super sweet Liberty fat 1/16s and 2 x 3m Bias Binding packs – valued at $64.00!

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This Giveaway is open until Monday 20th March 2017… Don’t forget to include your name and current email address with your comment so that we can contact you♥  Good Luck! Invite your friends to participate too – we really want to get a conversation going with all of our fellow Liberty Lovers!

EDIT: The Competition is now closed. Thank you to every body who participated! Please feel free to continue to contribute your own tips and tricks to this article 🙂

Sign up to our Newsletter on our homepage to stay informed about future Giveaways and events! Don’t forget, you can find The Strawberry Thief on Instagram (@the_strawberry_thief) and Facebook as well!

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♥  Robyn

 

 

EDIT >> This giveaway is now CLOSED! Thank you so much to every body who entered! We had such an inspiring response.

The winners are –

Fist Prize: @thimblesandneedles
Second Prize: @miffybeads
Third Prize: @lorena_in_syd

KEEP YOUR EYES PEELED for more amazing giveaways in the future!
YIPPEE!

To celebrate Robyns big adventure over in London, we are doing a massssssive Liberty GIVEAWAY!
With one huge first prize, and two equally exciting runner up prizes!

TO ENTER: Leave a comment below telling us which is your favourite Liberty Fabric!

But wait! There’s more!
We will be multiple opportunities to enter the draw, so give yourself the best shot possible by keeping your eyes peeled and following us on –
Instagram @the_strawberry_thief
Facebook /thestrawberrythief
-Pinterest @berrythief

This giveaway runs until we announce the winners on Monday 28th November 2016.

With a prize pool of $500 it would just be SILLY not enter!

Take a peak at the prizes below…

 

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The lucky 1st prize winner will receive

1 x Liberty Florals fat 1/8 bundle
1 x Liberty Solids Rainbow fat 1/8 bundle
1 x Large Scrappy Boho Pack
1 x 1 inch laser cut Hexagon pack
1 x pack of Charm Squares
1 x 3m Loveday Bias Binding
1 x 6 pack 10mm Liberty Fabric Buttons

worth $278!

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The runner up will receive:

1 x Liberty Florals fat 1/16 bundle
1 x Liberty Solids Rainbow fat 1/16 bundle
1 x Small Scrappy Boho Pack
1 x Pack of Liberty Charm Squares
1 x 6 pack 10mm Buttons

Worth $141!

 

 

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The second runner up will receive:

1 x Liberty Florals fat 1/16 bundle
1 x Liberty Solids Rainbow fat 1/16 bundle
1 x 3m Milla Bias Binding
1 x 6 pack 10mm Buttons

worth $88!

WOW!   Don’t forget to head to our Facebook and Instagram page for more chances to enter the draw- Winners will be announced on Monday 28th November.

Good luck everybody!

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This project is perfect for using up all those gorgeous Liberty scraps you’ve collected!

You will need…

+ fabric scraps
+ thread
+ sewing machine
+ scissors

Before you begin…

Gather your scraps and sort them into colours that feel right together. One of the things we love about Liberty is that all their designs work together, we just separate those with cream backgrounds from those with white backgrounds.

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Step 1

Start matching pieces of similar length (a) and stitch them together, ironing as you go.
note: Matching pieces of equal length or width will ensure minimal fabric waste.

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Step 2

Add new pieces (b), then combine to build blocks of similar size (c). Repeat until you have enough blocks to create the quilt size you have in mind.

note: Don’t worry about misaligned seams – this is exactly what you are trying to achieve in scrappy boho patchwork.

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Step 3

Lay your blocks out and arrange to create a pleasing overall design. Stitch blocks together.
tip: take a photo to remind yourself of the overall design before you start stitching – that way it won’t matter if they get mixed up.

Liberty Scrappy Boho Patchwork

To finish

Quilt and bind your project.

Have you seen our new scrappy boho packs?

They are perfect for this project! You can find them here

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meet-robyn

Robyn is the face behind The Strawberry Thief. Today we sat down and chatted about her background, what inspires her and how The Strawberry Thief came to be…

hexi flowersTell us a little about your background and your love for making?

I grew up in a family of makers. My first memory is sitting on my Oumas lap in front of the sewing machine.

Both my Ouma and Granny loved to stitch, both in their own way. Oma was a very talented dressmaker, and Granny was an extraordinary embroiderer, and all round stitcher.

All my dolls, and myself were always turned out in the cutest clothes! I am sure I started stitching before I could talk.

What do you love about Liberty?

box of hexiesComing from South Africa, I had never come across Liberty before. A good friend of mine went on a trip to London, and came back with a little piece of Liberty Tana Lawn, and I remember our quilting group fawning over it like it was, well.. Liberty!

It was so hard to come by, and we (our quilt group) would save up for ages before one of our friends would go on an overseas trip with a wishlist of Liberty for us. It was a dream to one day make a quilt using only Liberty.

The soft delicate feel, but with the tight weave makes it so perfect for any craft, quilt or clothing. The wonderful designs and colours are very hard to beat. I have to say I am completely addicted, and get very excited when a new range is released

hexiesHow did The Strawberry Thief come about?

Well its been a long and difficult journey. My dream when moving to Australia was to have my own quilt shop, stocking only the best fabrics and products.

My husband is a chef, and when we first arrived we opened a cafe together (all the couches were patchworked, the lampshades and tea cosies crocheted, and aprons all stitched by me. It was a very successful business, but we both wanted to change direction – me to find my own quilt store and him to carry on studying.

After trying to buy a quilt store, and it not going to plan, I decided to go on my own. I really had to work out what it was that I wanted, and the answer was always Liberty! Remembering how hard it was for me to get my hands on Liberty, I wanted to make it accessible to everybody, and to have a well priced online store.

What inspires you?

hexiesI find inspiration in so many different places, but most often I find it in the wonderful people that surround me. How I feel is what inspires my work. (and instagram and pinterest…hahaha)

Which are your favourite Liberty designs?

To choose one design is very difficult! Each time I cut into a design, that becomes my favourite, until 10min later, I cut into the next one, and that is my favourite!

What are some of the things you have created using Liberty Tana Lawn?

I have made skirts, dresses, and blouses using Liberty, and my husband and son will not wear any other shirts. They are very spoilt, but have excellent taste. I have also made a few quilts, of course – hexies are my favourites. Sitting at the end of the day doing a quiet bit of handstitching is my meditation.