A new recruit!

We’re delighted to announce that we have a new team member here at DesignMatters. You know it’s already a family affair and we are thrilled to say that Frances (my sister) has joined us too.

Frances has art training, worked in brand management and at a design agency for a number of years, but like Linda and I, she’s always had a love of fabrics and making. You might already know her as the designer-maker behind Max & Rosie. She founded the business in 2018 making beautiful handmade accessories and items for the home. Everything is made in her home studio and produced with such love and attention to detail.

If you’ve not visited her online boutique before, please do head over and take a look. You’ll find lots of lovely things including zipped pouches, infinity scarves and brush rolls. Here’s a link to take you there.

We know lots of you would love to make your own bags, cushions and accessories, so we’ve been asking and asking Frances to join us and make some workshops sharing her tips for professional results. Her first workshop is now live on the website. Join her (and me) to learn How to Make a Box Bag. I just love these box bags. I had one from Frances a few years ago and have been using it daily for my hand sewing kit. It’s just so capacious and practical! I’m sure you’ll want to make several for yourself, but they also make fantastic gifts. Sewing friends will want one, but they are also great as makeup bags, for art supplies, and travelling.

Attention to detail and finish is really important to Frances and this box bag is no exception. She’s devised a construction method so that the fully lined bag is just as neat on the inside as it is on the outside, with no raw edges on show. Fantastic!

We hope you enjoy this first workshop from Frances. Please let us know what else you’d like to see and we’ll hopefully be able to get her back in the studio really soon.

Bye for now!

More to enjoy

Sketchbook to Stitch: Eye of the Beholder

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Portrait Artist of the Year: The Exhibition

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Fashion and Embroidery in Art

Take a look at some paintings from the British Portraits room at Compton Verney and explore how the artists represent the garments of the sitters with a particular focus on embroidery.

Reuseable Bottle Bag

Make a smart and reusable bottle gift bag. We’re using cork fabric, but you can use anything from your stash.

Christmas Plant Pot Cover

Add a stylish touch to your Christmas gifts this year with a handmade and reusable plant pot cover. Just perfect for gifting that Poinsettia and making it look extra special!


Folded inserts such as prairie points are a fun way to add texture and embellishment to your quilt making, but they can also be much more. Join Linda for a workshop on how you an use them to create an intriguing new dimension to traditional blocks.

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Peace and Love – Free Printable

We’d like to wish peace and love to you all this Christmas with this free printable painting by Linda. See how Laura has used it to make greetings cards and gift tags.

Beautiful Festive Bows

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Quilts: Resurgence

Quilts: Resurgence, an exhibition of quilts selected from The Quilters’ Guild Collection and co-curated by Pauline Burbidge features a quilt by Laura.