“The House that Jack Built”

“The House that Jack Built”


With the theme of crooked / miss-matched houses, this is a workshop with two outcomes.

Firstly, you will learn to paint a background on fabric ready for later in the day when it has dried, to applique and stitch into.

In the meantime, you will be making small fabric 5-inch-tall three dimensional little crooked houses of your own. Each house is unique to you and can be decorated however you please.

When your background has dried, you can then go back and create a village of small houses, using machine embroidery and hand-stitching techniques.

This is a fun project in one day for anyone interesting in creating themed contemporary textile outcomes.


Level of Experience

This class is suitable for the beginner to the advanced, you will explore applique, hand & machine embroidery and stitching. A basic knowledge of a sewing machine is required.

Materials / Equipment required by Attendees

There will be two project outcomes to complete for the day: The 2D picture outcome and then a 3D house outcome.
The tutor will be providing:

  • Dyes and fabric paints
  • Masking tape
  • Brushes & sponges for painting

Materials list:
Fabrics: sizes from 50 cm square to small 6-12cm square scraps, bring a variety but you may wish to think of a colour story/ theme such as highly vibrant colours or you may prefer subtle country colour tones in your selection.
Scraps and reclaimed fabrics can work well also.

  • Cotton and poly-cotton Plain & Prints, Tweeds, Linens, Denim, Felts.
  • Include in your gathering of materials; trimmings, such as bits of lace, ribbons, beads and buttons.
  • You will need at least 20cm width of bonda-web/ fusing or similar for gluing fabrics for applique.

For the 2D project you will need:

  • Base fabric of heavy/ medium calico 50cm x 50cm
  • Heavy / medium weight fusible Vilene or Stay-flex 50cm x 50cm

For the 3D project, you will need:

  • Furnishing fabric or medium weight fabric for the house walls x4, base x1 and roof each approx. 10cm x 20cm (you may wish to buy extra 50cm x 50cm Vilene to back your house panels to add extra body to them)
  • Polyester wadding – enough to fill an A4 envelope
  • 100g dry long grain rice to act as a weight to the finished house.

You will need to bring a mixture of hand and machine threads that match and compliment your chosen fabric choices.

  • Scissors: – embroidery and fabric
  • Needles for hand sewing
  • Pins
  • Hand held hair dryer to speed up drying process of the painted textile
  • Optional: Your own iron and pressing mat (there is a classroom one but queues can occur to use)
  • Sewing Machine – If you do not have a Sewing Machine, or don’t want to bring your own, you can use one of our latest Brother demonstration machines for the nominal fee of £3.00 per session.

The following items on the materials list can be purchased from Threads on the day (as well as any sewing kit tools that you may need)

  • Calico
  • Bondaweb
  • Trimmings, lace, beads & buttons
  • Cotton and polycotton fabrics
  • Furnishing fabrics
  • Fusible vilene
  • Polyester wadding



Gary Mills

Duration and Price

6 Hours, £30


The maximum number of attendees for this workshop is 8


Places on workshops are secured by a £10 cash deposit at the time of booking and balance payable on the day direct to the workshop leader.


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