What’s in Your Sewing Bag? Special Guest: Flip & Co
Have you ever received an email that instantly made you adore the person?
The way they write and the words they use just warm your heart and make you feel connected to them?
That’s how my friendship with Flip, from Flip & Co, started off – with a simple email inquiring about hand quilting. That email sparked a modern-day pen pal relationship that I am forever grateful for – especially when a new one lands in my inbox and I get to settle in for a lovely ‘chat’ while drinking coffee 😉
Along the way, we’ve discovered our mutual love for colour, texture and anything hand stitched!
And for all my lucky readers in Australia, Flip is bringing this joy to you through monthly Stitching Groups, Workshops and (soon) all the sewing notions you’d need for your quilty practice. Cue the jellies that I can’t partake in all of these on the regular – ha!
Without further ado, let’s dive into Flips cute as a button sewing bag and see what nifty notions she’s hiding in there!
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Introduction – tell us a little about yourself! How did you get started on your quilting journey?
Hi, I’m Flip! An Aussie living the farming life with hubby & our three little boys. Luckily, we have plenty of room for their boisterous activities!
My quilting story only started a few years ago with my beginning as cliché as it gets – I had that elusive lightbulb moment watching the movie The Dressmaker, *of all movies, hey!* and decided I could make a quilt myself. In typical Flip style, I researched quilting inside and out and became obsessed with it. From that very first quilt I knew that I had found something very special to me – I was hooked my friends!
My Mum is an incredible dressmaker/seamstress so I wasn’t a complete beginner to sewing and I could do the basics *a straight-line* but I never really learned to sew, I mean, why would I when I had Mum to make it!
Don’t ask me to sew a button – but I can sew a killer ¼” seam.
Shortly after finding quilting I met and fell in love with the amazing quilt community on Instagram. It blew my mind how incredibly friendly and open everyone was. So that’s how Flip & Co came about – I’m Flip & you *quilty community* are my Co! I have been fortunate to form some lovely friendships here and I am so grateful for that.
I LOVE how you got started quilting, Flip! I haven’t seen the movie The Dressmaker yet, but you know I’m going to have to hunt it down so I have a fulllll understanding of the spark that led to you creating Flip & Co. Also, I never knew who “Co.” was and love it even more now that I do 😊
What kind of sewing bag do you have? (e.g. did you make it? Buy it?)
I made my small bag, a petal pouch from Noodlehead and it is the *perfect* size. Made from some favourite scraps and lined with a beautiful RK linen, all my hand stitching essentials fit in it nice and snug.
I have a second that I store my extra thread stash in. It’s a beautiful pouch created from drop cloth from a screen printer here in Australia. It’s unique and I love it!
Lastly, I cart my quilts in a tote I purchased. It’s completely oversized – but you should see what I can fit in her.
Noodlehead has some fantastic bag options and the Petal Pouch is just too cuuuuuute! I love that you went scrappy for the outside and bet it sparks some fun quilty memories just seeing those prints. It’s making me want to make one too!
What are your all-star essentials? Your tried and true must haves that you can never run out of?
Oh gosh, this question is a goodie! I’m a hand quilting lover, hand binder and stitcher so my essentials are pretty simple.
My all-star essentials that I can’t be without are – needles, thread, thimbles and snips! I’m a real try and tester to find *my best* and I’ve discovered a love for certain products from different brands. My *Jen Kingwell and *Jena Kimball needles are beautiful as are *Tulip Sashiko. Threads I’m obsessed with for different qualities are *Aurifil, *Wonderfil and *Cosmo Sashiko threads. The weights and quality is superior in all of them and the colours – oh, the colour choices!
The quality of product makes such a difference not only to my productivity but also my end results.
One that hasn’t arrived yet – but I KNOW it will be invaluable addition is Sew Fine Tread Gloss! I am Jenn’s first Aussie stockist. Exciting!
Wahoo! Thrilled to hear Sew Fine Thread Gloss is making its way to Australia!! I love that’s it’s 100% natural and smells divine too! I haven’t tried Cosmo Sashiko thread before and I’m super curious after seeing those pretty spools in your pictures 😊
What is your favourite item in your kit? Why?
Tough one! I was leaning toward threads, but I am going to have to say thimbles. I have two that I swear by. My *open-sided Clover thimble and my Little House needle gripper. Working with the heavier weight threads like the Sashiko and perle #8 I was finding I was pushing my needle too much. I discovered the needle gripper and it changed the game for me! It teams perfectly with my thimble which still pushes my needle but then together they make light work of pulling the needle through many layers of fabrics. Go team!
Where would we be without thimbles? Oh, that’s right, we’d have massively bruised and calloused hands, that’s where – ha! I keep meaning to try a needle gripper but got lazy once I found a rubber band was doing the trick in a pinch! Yours is wayyyyy more adorable though 😉
What’s one thing we’d be surprised to find in your bag?
Oh, that’s an easy one – my needle minder. It is attached to my bag so I can sit my needle there while I organise threads without trying to remember where I stuck it – or finding it later on the floor! Quilting time is precious, and I get annoyed when I waste it looking for things. I also have a handy ring in my pouch I can attach it to.
A non-quilty surprise item that I don’t put there, but often find - rogue pieces of Lego that one of the boys has stashed in there for safe keeping from a pestering brother!
Hahaha – who’s the smarty pants hiding Lego from their brothers in your sewing bag?!! That just totally warms my heart and I bet it’s an instant shot of happiness when you discover it in there! Also, I’ve yet to try a needle minder even though I keep coming across so many cute versions out there.
QUILT KITS WILL TRAVEL
When do you find yourself using your kit the most? (Travelling, on the sofa, attending sew-ins?)
My kit is used for all these things, although the travelling hasn’t happened for some time now!
These days, you will find it sitting with my daylight lamp next on the lounge (sofa!). Sitting down after a day of farm, boys and whatever else the day throws my way to do some quiet stitching/hand quilting is perfection to me. There is always a project draped across the armchair in our loungeroom to work on.
It is relaxing and there is something about it that is so meditative for me and what a bonus that it is also productive!
When you say “daylight lamp” do you mean one of those official *Daylight Company lights? I’ve been wondering about them forever and considering bringing them into my studio for nighttime stitching too. Your stitching routine sounds blissful, Flip. Such a glorious and calming way to end the day.
What’s your favourite travel memory with your sewing bag?
Hands down our family holiday to the beach in January. It was our best holiday to date and a time when things were much simpler in the world. I remember the project well and I would pull it out when the boys were in bed after another day adventuring, pop the Australian Open *tennis* on, listen to the ocean while hubby ducked out and gets up both a sneaky ice cream! Such a treat…can you tell I live in the country? – ha!
That sounds amazing, Flip. I love the sound of water and can just imagine how soothing it must have been to stitch while listening to the waves. I also love that your hubby brings you ice cream – what a gent!
WHERE CAN WE FIND YOU?
Tell people where we can find you?
You can find me on Instagram @flipandco and over at my website www.flipandco.com.au this is my new baby and I’m uber proud of it! A new beginning with so much potential and big plans ahead. Head over for a look and let me know what you think!
I’m SO excited that your website is up and running! I know you’ve been working hard on pulling her together and it’s always fun to see her finally published and released into the wild! I just wish I lived closer so I could join in on your monthly Social Stitching Group. (well, let’s be honest, it would probably be more like a weekly Sunday pop-in if I lived nearby – ha!)
Anything else you’d like to share?
Yes! I’m beyond excited *and slightly nervous* to announce that I am opening my online quilt shop built into www.flipandco.com.au and it is a one-stop for quality quilting essentials. This venture started back in Feb of this year but with the crazy world happenings I only recently reached lift-off! Still a work in progress but I’m excited to watch it grow.
I also co-host workshops here in our little community and if I’m honest, they are pretty awesome – ha! I am always on the search for new teachers and welcome attendees from all over. If you have any suggestions about teachers or workshops I would love to hear from you.
Flick me an email, say hi and share your idea with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fantastic news, Flip! Congrats on this new venture – I look forward to seeing all the quilty goodies you’ll be stocking!
Thank you so much for sharing more about how your quilt journey came to be, inspiring us with your gorgeous handmade sewing bag and tempting us with quilt workshops and soon, modern quilt accessories!
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