Episode 53 : The Great Northern Textiles Show 2022

Last Sunday, the first ever Great Northern Textile Show opened its doors to the public, welcoming crafters to mingle with artists and craftspeople from a wide range of disciplines and enjoy a celebration of creativity.

The event was Tracy Fox’s idea – my guest for the previous episode of Making Stitches – as an artist, print maker and dyer of fabric herself, she felt there was a gap in the market for a show celebrating local talent in Manchester and the wider area. As a city built on textiles during the industrial revolution, Tracy believed there should be a showcase for talent from the world of textiles, and so, after much thought and meticulous planning, the Great Northern Textile Show was born.

One of Leah Higgins’ Art Quilts called Cadence 7

I went along to experience it for myself and took my microphone with me to capture some of the atmosphere. I hope you enjoy listening to the conversations I had with some of the people I met there.

Louise from Sincerely Louise

Thank you to everyone who spoke to me for this episode including:
Tracy Fox, the event organiser
Leah Higgins, artist
Louise from Sincerely Louise

Holly Palmer from Planet Quilts


Holly Palmer from Planet Quilts
Ian Fothergill from The Knitting Gift Shop
Tanya from the Woolly Tangle
Julie from Tilly Flop Designs

Ally Rose from the International Feltmakers Association with her penguin head


Christine and Ally from the International Feltmakers Association

Caroline from Montague Patchers in Sale

Members of the North Cheshire Guild of Spinners, Weavers & Dyers

Liz Carrington from the North Cheshire Guild of Spinners, Weavers & Dyers

Carrie (l) & Helen (r) from Yarn Addicts Manchester


Helen & Carrie from the Yarn Addicts of Manchester
Great Northern Textile Show

Listen to the episode here!

To join the mailing list for the new Making Stitches Newsletter, please click onto this link.

For full show notes for this episode, please visit the Making Stitches website.
The music featured in this episode is Make You Smile by RGMusic from Melody Loops.
The Making Stitches logo was designed by Neil Warburton at iamunknown.

You can support Making Stitches Podcast with running costs through Ko-fi.
Making Stitches  Podcast is supported by the Making Stitches Shop which offers Making Stitches Podcast merchandise for sale as well as Up the Garden Path crochet patterns created by me & illustrated by Emma Jackson.

Making Stitches Podcast is presented, recorded and edited by Lindsay Weston.

Episode 52: FROM RUSTY METAL TO WORKS OF ART with Tracy Fox ~ Dyer, Print Maker & Artist

Tracy Fox

There are many strings to Tracy Fox’s bow, she describes herself as a dyer, print maker and artist creating the most beautiful art fabrics in her home studio in Manchester. She also uses her fabric to make stunning art quilts and has exhibited her work and sold her cloth at various craft shows over the years. It was at one of those shows, the Nantwich Quilters Exhibition and Fabric Sale that she was approached to take over the management and running of the show, which she has done ever since. Five years on, she’s now launching another show, this time in Manchester – The Great Northern Textile Show will take place later this month.

The Great Northern Textile Show will showcase crafts people and artists from the worlds of textiles, quilting, yarn crafts, embroidery, felting, spinning and other disciplines. There will also be craft guilds and organisations on hand to help visitors learn new skills if they want to add to their own repertoires.

One of Tracy’s scarves dyed using leaves & rust

I went along to Tracy’s home studio to hear about her own creative journey, the way she creates her beautiful fabrics and what she uses them for along with her hopes for The Great Northern Textile Show too.

Fabric being dyed

You can listen to the Episode here

You can find Tracy’s website here.

Tracy’s ‘Fire’ dyed cloth
Tracy’s finished Lockdown art quilt project using some of her ‘fire’ dyed cloth

More information about the Great Northern Textile Show can be found here.

One of Tracy’s Shibori cloths



To join the mailing list for the new Making Stitches Newsletter, please click onto this link.


The music featured in this episode is Make You Smile by RGMusic from Melody Loops.
The Making Stitches logo was designed by Neil Warburton at iamunknown.

You can support Making Stitches Podcast with running costs through Ko-fi.
Making Stitches Podcast is supported by the Making Stitches Shop which offers Making Stitches Podcast merchandise for sale as well as Up the Garden Path crochet patterns created by me & illustrated by Emma Jackson.

Making Stitches Podcast is presented, recorded and edited by Lindsay Weston.

Episode 33 : The Patchwork Girls with novelist Elaine Everest

Elaine Everest

For many of us, our crafts take a back seat as we concentrate on our careers and creativity can be stifled by everyday life. For novelist, Elaine Everest, a childhood growing up with a mother who made clothes and sewed for friends and family, that creativity stayed with her. From dressmaking as a young girl to making designer garments on a knitting machine for London boutiques to then setting up her own business sewing raincoats for dogs, Elaine achieved a lot before she embarked on yet another creative career as a novelist.

Sewing is a theme which runs through Elaine’s series ‘The Woolworths Girls’ and is centre stage in her latest book; The Patchwork Girls. The story, set in World War II, sees a group of women form a sewing circle making patchwork quilts and other items for the war effort. Elaine drew on her own experience of crafts to write the story which shows the healing effects of both friendships and creativity.

Elaine says that although her interest in crafting had waned over the years, the events of the past 18 months have reacquainted her with sewing, crochet and other crafts and that they have ‘saved’ her during lockdown. She spoke to me about her life, her love of creativity and how she ended up writing a string of novels.

You can listen to Elaine’s episode here.

The Patchwork Girls is published by Pan MacMillan.

You can find out more about Elaine on her website, Facebook, Instagram & Twitter

The music featured in this episode is Make You Smile by RGMusic from Melody Loops.

You can support Making Stitches Podcast with running costs through Ko-fi.
Making Stitches  Podcast is supported by the Making Stitches Shop.

Making Stitches Podcast is presented, recorded and edited by Lindsay Weston.

Episode 16 : Creativity for Mental Health with Emma Jones from the Vintage Sewing Box & Looking Ahead to Christmas with The Apex Singers

Creativity whether it’s music, craft or art has long been seen as having a positive impact on mental health, and after the year we have all experienced, it’s something many of us have had to focus on. This week on Making Stitches, Emma Jones from Vintage Sewing Box speaks about the benefits of focusing the mind on stitching and how that simple repetitive activity can calm the mind and our thoughts look ahead to Christmas with the Apex Singers.

Emma Jones from Vintage Sewing Box

Emma Jones says on her blog that she ‘loves sewing’ it’s been an important part of her life since early childhood. In this episode Emma not only explains how stitching has helped her deal with difficult times, she also discusses her love of English Paper Piecing and hand embroidery and has a truly lovely tale about a quilt dedicated to the memory of her Gran.

Mabel’s Garden – Emma’s quilt dedicated to the memory of her Gran
Emma with ‘Mabel’s Garden’ on display at the art exhibition

To find out more about Emma Jones’ work please check out her website: Vintage Sewing Box

The Apex Singers

Also this week, as our thoughts turn towards Christmas, we hear from The Apex Singers about a special Christmas Concert they are hosting online. The young vocalist group, which is based in Manchester, launched its first album back in March just as the UK went into lockdown and is now looking forward to performing together for the first time since that launch. Lydia Wonham from The Apex Singers explains how 2020 has changed the way the group has made music and how they now want to share their Christmas performance with as many people as they can online.

You can find out about The Apex Singers here and you can buy tickets for their Christmas Concert ‘Snowed in at Home’ here.

** YOU CAN LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE HERE OR BY SEARCHING FOR MAKING STITCHES IN YOUR FAVOURITE PODCAST APP! **

The music featured in this episode is Make You Smile by RGMusic from Melody Loops.

Making Stitches Podcast is recorded and edited by Lindsay from Postcard from Gibraltar.

Vintage Sewing Box

Episode 7 : Sewing for family & fun with Victoria Peat

Sewing teacher, dressmaker and patchwork quilter Victoria Peat this week shares her story. From getting a sewing machine for her 18th birthday and designing patchwork quilts to studying at the London College of Fashion and giving sewing lessons on live television, Victoria has a true love of making.

Victoria moved to Gibraltar last year and thanks to the recent relaxation of the lockdown rules here, we were able to meet in person and have a socially instanced chat about everything from making World Book Day costumes to how on earth the contestants on the Great British Sewing Bee cope with the challenges they face.

You can find Victoria on social media by searching ‘Victoria Peat’ as well as on her website.

You can hear Victoria’s episode of Making Stitches here.

The competition winning fox pinafore dress mentioned in the episode

The music featured in this episode is Make You Smile by RGMusic from Melody Loops.