Spring has officially arrived in the Hollocks household! There are daffodils on the windowsill, Easter eggs in the cupboard, floral fabrics everywhere… and I couldn’t be happier. Something about this time of year fills me with joy and optimism, and I find it impossible to resist those creative urges to take on a new project – or several! This issue of Pretty Patches is packed with gorgeous ideas for spring makes, and whether you follow them to the letter or interpret them in your own style, there’s inspiration for everyone. I love Debbie von Grabler-Crozier’s pared back quilted throw, which embraces the spirit of Lagom – the Scandi trend based on the Swedish word meaning ‘just the right amount’ – whilst Judith Hollies’ big block medallion quilt uses a similarly simple design to showcase sweet ditsy prints that have a fabulous retro vibe. With Easter just around the corner, Corinne Lapierre’s fun chick decorations are a quick-stitch seasonal make, and we’ve also treated you to not one but two patterns for playful softies this issue: Mariska Vos-Bolman’s adorable Kim Koala and Simone Gooding’s inquisitive little snail stitched in felt.
It’s not often a best-selling author curates a quilting exhibition, but Tracy Chevalier, the talent behind Girl With a Pearl Earring, not only did that, but invited prisoners working with the charity Fine Cell Work to contribute to the event. The story of the resulting work – the Sleep Quilt – is now the subject of a fascinating and inspirational book, and Tracy tells us more about it in our interview with her. We also meet the gifted textile artist Sylvia Paul, and learn more about the creative process behind her stunning collages, and why she finds working with different media ‘energising and stimulating’.