Grab a cuppa and hide your bank cards! This post is full of goodies amassed over the past few months, the majority of it is for specific projects and some were bought from necessity. There's some nice treats and 'just for fun' here too. I like to keep a record to refer back to (I can't tell you how often I have done that over the years) and also to remind myself what I bought things for. If you're not interested in my shopping habits, that's totally cool and you can check back next time for finished projects.
Most of this lot is for an ambitious project so you may not see the results for some time but bits of these fabrics have already been cut up so no doubt you will see those sooner.

First up, a lovely bundle from one of my favourite shops Sew Hot. I splurged here but all with a purpose!

I'm building up a collection of black and white prints, I also needed some greys for a specific quilt I've designed and I like neutrals with a touch of metallic in them. Originally this seemed like such an 80's thing, reminiscent of Christmas fabrics with scratchy metallic/glitter but modern metallic prints generally feel lovely and the sparkle adds a bit more dimension.

Here are a couple of prints that I got to make my mum a large tote bag. It can be hard to tell if prints are going to go together when you're shopping online but the Navy Essex works so well with the Tulip print - Essex Linens are a really good staple and even if the match isn't totally perfect colour wise, the texture always seems to make it work. So many of the projects and makes I see on social media use Essex Linen and it goes with everything. The grid print was on sale and I can't resist a grid - it's also such a nice blender.

I recently wrote about my focus on the texture of fabrics, I use Essex Linens quite a bit and occasionally I use something a bit heavier like other linen blends, Oxford Cloth or Canvas. I saw this pattern for a sewing machine cover (they also have an overlocker cover pattern), the piping and pocket are cute touches. I will need to make it slightly bigger for my machine so finger's crossed it works out, if not I might have to add another print in or a bit of patchwork!

I'm making my Dad a quilt, he loves Southwestern style and Arizona After by April Rhodes was the perfect fabric line. Sadly this quilt got started and then abandoned for a while and when I came back to work on it I realised I didn't quite have enough fabric to make it the right size. Thankfully Crafty Mastermind had a few prints still on sale so I snapped up enough to finish the quilt.

And that's when I had a stroke of genius. Rather than cutting it into strips for the Spider Web blocks, I could just cut triangles - three of the prints already have a stripe in the pattern! So while you can feel a difference in the blocks with seams, you can't really spot it when they are all together and honestly it's made it easier for me to make a larger quilt and the fabric goes further this way so I'm all about the cheating!! I just have a few more blocks to sew together and the quilt top will be complete.

This next one is a bit unusual as my mum went to Colorado and brought me back fabric from A Quilter's Corner. She video called me from the shop and I got to shop virtually! Of course this was at the beginning of the year, so before lock down - funny how now I've got so used to talking to people virtually. I got to meet the owner, who was super nice and helpful. My mum gave me a tour and it really is an amazing shop. If I was ever to visit Colorado again I would definitely make the trip for a real visit!

Following the black and white stashing theme I chose these prints and they also sent some cute freebies which they give to new customers!

top to bottom: Static Age White, True Love by Libs Elliott; Pony Boy, True Love by Libs Elliott and Spots on Spots in Guava

Next up from Paper-and-String are some things for experiments! I found this Fabric Felt and thought it would be fun to try using it... still not sure for what exactly but it's fun that it won't fray and is a bit more interesting than standard felt. The sequin bow is to decorate something (I'm sure I did have a plan but have since forgotten what that was!) and pipe cleaners - perfect for cleaning my sewing machine out.

This assortment of goodies was sent to me by Crafter's Companion, I haven't tried everything out yet but I will give a proper review when I can. I did try the rotary cutter and honestly it feels just a bit too chunky for me - that may be because I am so used to my Olfa rotary cutter having used it for years, but I won't be changing. Yesterday though I needed a new blade and had run out of my usual replacements, so tried one of the blades in my usual cutter - it works brilliantly! Super sharp and easily cut through layers of fabric so that's a winner. Non branded blades have never worked well for me but if you're looking for replacement blades I do recommend these Threaders - 45mm rotary cutter blades.

More fabric and bias binding for the ambitious project, these are from Higgs & Higgs - they have a really nice selection of different fabric types.

It's nice to have a supply of zips on hand, since there has been a fair bit of pouch making going on here I have replenished my stash with these lovelies from Rickety Rose. The large beige zip is for that tote bag for my mum. 

Also needed were new scissors, I had two pairs totally fall apart on me!! Cheap little embroidery scissors, clearly not meant for so much use and they just would not stay shut or cut properly (also they weren't very sharp anyway). I went back (online) to Sew Hot and picked up two new pairs, one tiny copper pair with good sized teardrop handles and Kai needle craft scissors - I know this Japanese brand is excellent because I already have a larger sized pair of their scissors. The Aurifloss is for my current cross stitch project - it's become a sort of colourful 70's inspired palette and needed some Copper!

It was too hard to resist fabric and so ended up buying this stack at the same time. The Manchester Yarn Dyed fabric was sort of inevitable, being from Manchester I can't believe it's taken me this long to get some! Also clearly I'm a sucker for metallics. These will probably end up in the ambitious project too, along with the solids.

from top to bottom: Kona solids in Mac and Cheese, Gold and Shell (which is a hint pinkier than showing here, also appreciate the change of name) and Manchester Yarn Dyed Metallics in Onyx and Bronze

Recently my talented friend Collette Howie has been posting her beautiful linoprint art on instagram and I jumped at getting a set of her printed cards. It's always good to have blank cards to hand for different events and occasions, even nicer when they are handmade. It's a set of 5 cards in three different designs and she was kind enough to include this stunning art print with my order. Something about the design and the swallow got me really choked up, happy tears but it's just so full of hope and peace. I adore it and will be framing it to look at every day. I also have my eye on a couple of other prints in Collette's shop, take a look here Collette Howie

Now I know I already have a cross stitch project but it doesn't hurt to have another ready to go when that's finished right?! Last year I completed the Keep it Simple pattern by Stitchsperation, that one is hanging on the wall in my dining room and everyone loves it (especially the kids!). Charlie's patterns are really modern and her hand painted fabrics are truly stunning.

I completely fell for the animal print fabric and picked the 'Have Courage and Be Kind' pattern because Cinderella, and of course it is a good motto.

The kits come with everything you need (in fantastic packaging), even needles and thread, I can't recommend Stitchsperation enough! She has loads of great designs and if you haven't cross stitched before you could try one of the mini kits to get addicted see how you like it. Just look at how pretty this is...

And finally I bought yet more fabric from another talented friend, the awesome Samantha Claridge. Again lovingly packaged and with this fabulous postcard she designed (which I am also going to frame - my walls will look fab!!).

I had been hankering after these prints for a while and they may also be part of the ambitious project, regardless they are all gorgeous and totally my style.

Right let's stop there before anything else comes through the door!! Seriously though this post is a culmination of months - I keep taking pictures and meaning to write about them but it's taken me until now. Not to encourage unnecessary buying, however if you are in need of fabric, tools for projects, kits or artwork it would be great to support these businesses as shopping small matters and independent retailers + makers need us.  

Hope you've all had a nice weekend + are staying safe and well x