Hi! I am Naomi, a sewing and textiles creative, a strong believer in the power of the repetitive, rhythmic motion of hand-sewing, and a PhD candidate at the University of Bristol.

I have been sewing for 22 years now. Over the years, I have tried a whole range of techniques (including cross-stitch, hand-embroidery, free-motion embroidery, dyeing, mixed media, patchwork, kantha, quilting and machine patchwork) but my real love is Paper Piecing. This involves folding fabric over paper templates, and then sewing them together – almost like a fabric tetris! It is a traditional technique which has continued to be popular hundreds of years later.

I contribute regularly to leading patchwork and quilting magazines such as ‘British Patchwork and Quilting’ and ‘Quilt Now’ as well as publishing some of my designs with Paper Pieces (a major US paper pieces retailer). I also host the #focuscuttingsewalong on Instagram which was (which was previously the #fussycuttingsewalong). You can click on the heading at the top of the page to find out more information about the sewalong, its history and the name change.

I have studied at the University of Bristol since 2012 receiving a BSc Childhood Studies (graduating with first-class honours), MSc Special and Inclusive Education (graduating with distinction) and an MSc Social Work Research (graduating with distinction). I am currently studying for my PhD as an ESRC (Economic and Social Research Council) funded student at the University of Bristol.

For my MSc Social Work Research dissertation I explored the experiences of people aged 40 years and under who engage in sewing as a leisure activity. Whereas my Grandma’s generation had to sew because it was cheaper to, and because of the war-time era, I wanted to explore why there seems to be a resurgence in younger people returning to what is commonly thought of as a traditional activity. I received an award for the best dissertation on my course. Consequently, I feel incredibly privileged to have been given the opportunity to continue studying sewing and its role in the lives of people today.