Wednesday, 20 February 2013

My favourite finds from the trade show

I decided I couldn't wait to do full reviews and writes on some of my favourite things I found at the trade show so I've shared some of them below.  Full details and reviews will follow on the main site over the next few weeks.

Fabric torch sewing with electric conducting thread
Fabric Torch from Light Stitches
Light Stitches
This was the most exciting thing that I saw at the show.  Neil from Light Stitches has found a way of embedding electrical circuits into textiles, with the thread acting as the wire, to make the most amazing craft kits.  Think bags with lights in them, cushions turned into speaker, fabric torches and more.
We will be reviewing a kit and letting you know when the kits are available retail.  At the moment they are only available to schools and retailers but their shop for hobbyists will be online soon.
Heat moldable interfacing from Bosal
Heat moldable interfacing from Bosal
Something else that I was pretty excited about is a range of new products from Bosal.  It may sound boring when I tell you that they make interfacing but these interfacing products are so innovative!  My favourites were the inferfacing that you can heat up with an iron or hair dryer to mold into any shape you want – an easy way to make fabric bowls, boxes etc.  They also had another interfacing that crinkles when you iron it giving a shirred look effect to fabrics.  We will be reviewing them both and another of their products soon so you can see the kind of thing you could make with them.
In the UK they are distributed by Hantex, check the stockist list on their site to find suppliers.   When I write the full review I will track down some online suppliers for you.
Crafty Magazine coming in March
Crafty Magazine launching in March
Crafty Magazine
Whilst at the show I found out Practical Publishing are bringing out a new magazine next month call Crafty.  This magazine will be a trendy magazine with upcycling projects, vintage style projects, craft news and more.
I will find out more and do a full news post on the magazine before it launches but in the meantime check out their site:
Super Stitchers sewing kits for children
Kids die cut sewing kits from Super Stitchers

Super Stitchers
We discovered Super Stitchers, a brand new company who sell sewing kits for children (also suitable for beginner adults).  Unlike many kits when you have to cut out the part needed (which can be pretty tricky for children) all the components come die cut so the children can get straight on with the sewing and end up with a great looking finished project.
WonderFil prewound bobbins
 Pre-wound bobbins from WonderFil

WonderFil Pre-wound bobbins
Last but by no means least these pre-threaded bobbins from WonderFil caught my eye.  What a great time saving measure, I’m sure like me many of you hate having to stop in the middle of a project to wind a new bobbin.  With these you can just pop the next bobbin in and keep sewing.   They came in sets of mixed colours of several bobbins of the same colour. I will look into UK stockists and report back.

Which do you most like the look of?

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Busy weekend

I've just spent an amazing few days at the trade show in the NEC.  I got to meet loads of customers and site sponsors face to face for the first time, see loads of new products which will be hitting the market this year and have some exciting meetings (more about that soon).

I will put a post on the site in a day or two with details of some of the exciting products I found at the show.  Keep an eye on our news section for that.

On my way home from the show a friend sent me a picture of a beautiful Sewing Directory papercut picture that she made for me. I can't wait to get it on the wall in my sewing room, it is perfect.

You can see other examples of her work on her Facebook page here. 

Now to tackle the 70 odd e-mails that came through whilst I was away and then I will share details of what I found at the trade show.

Saturday, 2 February 2013

Craft Magazine Shop Ltd ceased trading

A quick update for those of you who were wondering what had happened to Craft Magazine Shop Ltd, or who may have a subscription to Simply Sewing (formerly Sew Hip) or Modern Quilting Magazine.

If you are a subscriber you will be aware that no issues have been produced for quite some time and rumours have been circulating since the end of last year that the company had gone under yet again.   Their web shop has been empty for a couple of months and no one was answer the phone or replying to e-mails. Well this was confirmed yesterday in an e-mail sent to Modern Quilting subcribers from Richard Rycroft (Kerrie Allman's father who had put the latest incarnation in his name).

The e-mail said:

Dear Subscriber
Modern Quilting Magazine
It is with regret I have to inform you that on 10th December 2012 Craft Magazines Ltd ceased trading as we had insufficient funds to pay our bills or to carry on trading.
We wrote to all our trade creditors giving them 30 days to accept the situation or to petition the courts to force us into liquidation at their own cost, which has not happened.
We have during this period been actively trying to get another publisher to take over the magazine, but as yet no one as been prepared to do this, although we will continue to try and find someone.
If anyone would be interested in taking over Modern Quilting Magazine or wishes to contact me please do so at the above address, as we have ceased trading this email address is not monitored on a regular basis.
Kind Regards
Richard Rycroft
Craft Magazines Ltd
Simply Sewing, Modern Quilting, Simply Beautiful

Why it took them almost 2 months to have the decency to inform their subscribers that once again they would not be getting the magazines they paid for I do not know.   This is now 3 companies which have gone under in under 2 years, owing a rather substantial sum of money.

So is this finally the end? 

Unfortunetly it doesn't look like it.  Just last week details of 2 books published by Igloo books emerged, books which featured images from the All Craft Media/Kal Media magazines, many of which were not paid for so therefore the magazine did not own the copyright.  The designers had no idea their images had been sold onto Igloo books and they received no money or credit. The images were credit to Handmade Living Magazines, which never originally published most of the images, if any of them. 

Jenna at Sew Happy Geek is getting a copy of the sewing book to see if she can recognise any of the images from Modern Quilting or Simply Sewing to try and contact the designers and let them know.

Also Kerrie and clan now have at least 2 new ventures up and running.  A sales and marketing company (oh the irony) called 5iftyfournine and a supposedly monthly local lifestyle magazine called Truffle - which appeared in digital form end of November and then nothing else seemed to happen.  Noone ever spotted any print copies in the Essex area where they were allegedly distributed and the Jan issue never appeared. 

I'm not too sure what recourse any subscribers currently have as administrators or liquidators have not been appointed and the company are not reply to any correspondence or phone calls.   If administrators or liquidators are appointed I'll add their details to the bottom of this post once I have them.

More details can be found on this Ravelry group, it's free to sign up and there is a huge amount of info on there.

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