Oh my goodness that was quick!!

Sorry but these are all SOLD – Thank you SO much for the response!

A gorgeous box of goodies that will arrive through the post!

Aimed at stitchers with a love of vintage

At long last it’s time for a new Workshop in a Box so introducing the second in my series of ‘Laundry Tales’  – Rules for Ironing. I do so hope  you love it! It’s designed to sit beautifully alongside the first but equally it looks just gorgeous on its own.

I aim for these boxes to fall somewhere between an inspiration pack and a kit, so my expectation isn’t for you to make an exact replica of the piece pictured below, though by using the materials provided, working through the Making Notes and referring to the diagram and picture you can, of course, do so.

I’ll walk you through the stages I took during the making of my lovely Cloth Collage, explaining some of the whys as well as the hows! But I absolutely encourage you to personalise my design and I offer suggestions along the way.

Laundry Tales Story Collage – Rules for Ironing

To inspire & delight

The aim of these boxes is a simple one – to inspire & delight – in fact it’s become a bit of a mission statement.

I prepare everything in the box myself, as I would for a workshop and I love the thought of you rummaging through it!

The prep is completely ‘low tech‘, with everything done by hand which is incredibly time consuming, intensely satisfying and, in my opinion, rather beautiful. This is just one of the reasons why numbers are limited.
Tapes are typed by hand on my vintage typewriter that belonged to my mother-in-law.

The story behind

The inspiration behind Laundry Tales is an old domestic science jotter that a very lovely workshop friend found in her local charity shop and then very kindly gifted to me. This wonderful friend is clearly much more generous in spirit than me –  I’m afraid I would never have parted with it!

Anyway it belonged to a girl called Patsy who had the most beautiful handwriting, and generally scored 9 or 10/10 for her exercises. I do wonder if she is still using the skills that she learned at school such as making starch and polishing collars – probably not but I’ll be very disappointed if she doesn’t still follow her eight ‘Rules for Ironing’!

Reading through the jotter makes me smile and invokes a sense of nostalgia as I remember wash day as a child. I’m not of the age where we had to set the fire & fill the copper, but it took a whole day, was always on a Monday and I did enjoy hauling the continuous tangle of washing out of the twin tub with a pair of wooden tongs. A pair of tights could double in length resulting in wrinkles round the ankles every time you wore them! Mind you I’m very aware that those of us with these nostalgic memories were not the ones actually doing all the hard work but what fun to run between the sheets as they blew on the line…until you were caught that is!

The inspiration came from an old domestic science jotter belonging to a girl named Patsy

The most beautiful  fabrics…

If you know anything about me, you’ll know that my passion lies in using materials that are used, washed & worn however, for my workshop boxes, I soon realised that this was really limiting me and that the only way I could create gorgeous ‘Cloth Collage’ boxes was to use new fabrics.

I searched around for vintage inspired fabrics and became more than a little smitten by French General, who design beautiful cloth inspired by their antique French collections. For this box, I have chosen pieces from their La Vie Boheme collection and I’ve loved working with them! I’ve always been drawn to a Paisley pattern and incidentally spent a happy hour while stitching my sample listening to a wonderful Haptic & Hue podcast about the history of the Paisley design – so worth checking out if you have time (as well as all their other amazing episodes). Anyway I completely digress. I’ve also added a beautiful blue floral pattern by Morris & Co and you may recognise it if you already have my first Laundry Tales box. When I am creating a series of work, I often replicate some of the fabrics & threads in my pieces so that they connect with but complement each other beautifully.

I’ve also included a page of my treasured jotter, digitally printed onto organic calico, providing a lovely piece of fabric text for you to work with.

Old, new, washed & worn, ripped & torn

Old, washed & worn

But of course there are also scraps of gorgeous old fabrics & haberdashery. The background to your Story Collage is a piece of vintage mangle cloth with that oh so beautiful red stripe. I’m a bit obsessed with these lovely long lengths of linen. Your background may not be exactly the same as the one pictured, but I can promise you that they’re all equally delicious!

However using vintage does mean that there may be marks on some of the fabrics, or they may be faded or slightly damaged. I only include pieces that I would choose to work with myself – but be warned, I make a bee-line for the wonky and imperfect like these glorious checked hexagons unpicked from an old patchwork quilt.

Your finished Story Collage can be hung from the bulldog clips provided or you could also mount and frame it in your own way.

Hang things of a kind together…

I’m so hoping that you’ll enjoy using bits & pieces that I’ve collected together for you but also hope that you’ll personalise your own story collage by adding wonderful stuff from your own stash!

Many of my followers on social media and in person are already enthusiastic and often experienced stitchers so this box is aimed at them. Anyone who is not familiar with any of the stitches used can look for online tutorials, or even better in my opinion, invest in an embroidery stitch book. I love collecting vintage of course and still use my very first sewing book “Embroidery Stitches’ by Barbara Snook. But the stitches used are simple and I very much encourage an intuitive approach.

See that lines and pegs are clean

The finished dimension is around 32 x 32cm – but don’t expect straight edges!

Also please note that my style of stitching (and therefore teaching) uses torn, unfinished edges so if you embrace the perfectly turned edge then this one probably isn’t for you! If you already have my first Laundry Tales Workshop in a Box please be aware that the making process for this one is very similar.

To inspire and delight…

To Order

There is a limited number of 50 Laundry Tales boxes available and I will be posting them out in small batches over a couple of weeks. Please order by contacting me by email. I don’t always receive messages left on my Facebook & Instagram accounts, so please do email!

Payment will be by BACS or Paypal.

The cost of the box is £50 plus UK postage of £4.00

I am so sorry but I am not posting out-with the UK.

I know this will disappoint and I truly apologise but parcels have gone astray and I end up out of pocket so please be understanding!

I hope you love it and I can’t wait to see pictures of the results!



Laundry Tales – Rules for Ironing – a new Workshop in a Box