Helen from Bustle & Sew designs softie, embroidery, appliqué and quilting patterns. She also produces the monthly Bustle & Sew Magazine, shares free tutorials and runs a blog, with lots of updates on her work and life in her small town in the UK.

Helen is up next with a free softie pattern for our 6 Weeks of LOVE for Softies series, and for Spring! She’s also giving away two kits for the sweet bunny design at Bustle & Sew a little later today, so you won’t want to miss that!

Hi, I’m Helen and I’m the face behind the Bustle & Sew bunny! I’ve been stitching for more years than I care to remember(!), having learned to make my first wonky stitches literally at my mother’s knee. I don’t have any formal textile training, but come from a long line of very skilled needlewomen, learning from my mother and grandmother from a very young age. I love to create with fabric and thread; embroidery and applique are my favorite techniques, together with designing patterns for cute softies.

Even more than creating myself however, I love to share my designs with others. I design for both experienced stitchers and I also want to introduce new people to the pleasure and satisfaction of making something for themselves. I love to recycle old fabrics into fresh creations, keeping even the smallest scraps for applique work.

Bustle & Sew is an internet-based business, a global concern (even if a very tiny one!) that my daughter Rosie and I run from home, an old farmhouse near the sea in the beautiful South Hams area of Devon. Every month we publish the Bustle & Sew Magazine, a digital magazine featuring original Bustle & Sew patterns for softies, embroidery, applique and much more, as well as articles and features from guest contributors.

Living as I do in a small village, I also enjoy using my creative ideas to benefit our community. A couple of years ago I helped set up and run our “Village Bunting Project.” (Everyone cut flags from old clothes and scraps, etc., to make up into new bunting for our fete and other village events so no more plastic flags for us!) This was a great way to build community spirit, very green and saved us nearly £1,000 compared to purchasing new bunting!