What's New at Bobbin and Ink

Teacher Feature | Kitty Cardwell aka Mrs C April 28, 2017 07:14

Kitty, please introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about you!

Hi, I'm Kitty from Mrs C and Me. I'm based in Sydney's Inner West and I run creative print workshops for kids and adults as well as working part time as a learning support officer at a local high school. 

I also sell a range of my hand printed greetings cards and prints through my Etsy store

What creative adventures have you been on that have lead you to where you are today?!

I studied surface pattern design at college many years ago. In my working career I switched between roles in finance and retail but I always kept my toe in the creative waters! Almost 2 years ago I was lucky enough to be able to leave my job for 8 months and set up Mrs C and Me and follow my creative dream. I now work part time in a local high school, run workshops and make handmade cards.

You have such a diverse practice. What are your favourite things to make?

Oh my goodness it changes all the time, but if I had to pick one I’d say it would be making greetings cards. I think it’s so nice to receive a handwritten and especially handmade card, it’s all about emails and Facebook messages these days but you just can’t beat that feeling of getting a card via old school snail mail!

What inspires your creativity?!

I take inspiration from colours and patterns in nature, geometric and organic shapes and everything patterned. 

Kids Club Crafternoons with Mrs C

Starting in May you are running an 8 week after school craft programme here with us.  What are we to expect from this Kids Craft Club?! Also, what are your favourite craft activities to make with kids?!

We will be learning new skills and getting our creative minds flowing, making friends and most of all we will definitely be having fun. I love teaching but I also think it's important to let kids use their own imagination and ideas too.

My favourite kids craft activities are screen printing and anything involving glitter! Christmas workshops are particularly fun and a little messy.


Check out Mrs C's website and Instagram page and read more about her upcoming course with us here:

Kids Club Crafternoons with Mrs C
8 Weeks x Thursday Sessions
May 4 to June 22, 4pm to 5:30pm
From $255

Teacher Feature | Alison Balchin March 29, 2017 16:58 1 Comment

Tell us about you and what you do?

I am Alison. I am a mother, a sewing teacher a maker and freelancer. My passion lies within the realms of dress making, pattern making, kids costume making or enhancing my house with hand made unique items. Sewing is my therapy and a borderline obsession. I am definitely at my happiest whilst bent over my latest creation, carefully stitching it together with my trusty machine!

How long have you been sewing and how did you get in to it?

I have been sewing since I was around eight or nine years old. My mum was a keen sewer and I learnt the basics from her. One of my best friends at school was very creative and so we spurred each other on with our mutual love of making things. We were a couple of sewing geeks!

You were an Industry Pattern Maker in the UK. What can you tell us about that?

I studied fashion in the UK and had quite a few jobs in the rag trade as a Pattern Maker. Initially I loved the buzz of the busy city but after a while I questioned what I was doing mass producing patterns under time constraints. It really took the love away as on top of this you were often required to make patterns for things you would never wear yourself.

I hear you love kids costume making. What are some of the stand out costumes that come to mind that you have made?!

I have made quite a few kids costumes mainly for my own children. My favourite makes were a teal, velvet Shakespearian frock coat for my daughter who was playing a man character in a play and a tailored Dr.Who jacket for my son. Unfortunately they grew out of them!

Can you tell us about the courses you will be teaching at Bobbin and Ink?

I will be teaching Clothes Making for Beginners which I am delighted to be doing. I love sharing my passion and knowledge of sewing to those that want to learn. There is nothing like getting people hooked by showing how easy it can be to do! I will also be doing a Teen Sewcial. This is a very creative course where you start with something basic and then let your imaginations run wild!

Have you had any memorable teaching experiences?

One of my most memorable teaching experiences was back in the UK where I was helping to teach some immigrant ladies how to sew in order for them to move on and find employment. It was a very humbling and rewarding experience as they were so willing to learn and so grateful of my time. It's amazing how language barriers can be overcome and you learn to bond and communicate over the sewing machine.

What Projects are you working on right now?

Right now I have lots off different irons in the fire! Along with my teaching and freelance work I am a workshopaholic!! I have tried Upholstery, Felting, Screen Printing and Leather Work to name a few! I have also taught myself to knit and crochet using YouTube. I have a blog and website although I don't have much content yet. I also hope one day to create and sell some of my own patterns.

Screen Printing for Beginners Alison

Alison, a self confessed "workshopaholic" pictured above attending one of our recent Screen Printing for Beginners Classes. Of course, holding the sewing themed tote bag she printed on the day.

Where can we find more about you?!

You can find my blog here: spotandcross.co and I'm on Instagram too: sewing.mistress 

Upcoming courses with Alison:

Clothes Making for Beginners *SOLD OUT*
April 1 to May 13, 10am to 1pm
(No class Easter Weekend)
From $389

Teen Sewcial: After School Sewing Programme
8 Weeks x 2hr Wednesday afternoon sessions 
May 3 to June 21, 4pm to 6pm
From $279

Are you a Workshopaholic like Alison?

We were thrilled to have been recently included in a list of some of the best creative courses by Bupa Life Insurance: http://www.bupa.com.au/life-insurance/best-creative-courses-to-express-yourself/

Check out all the fab courses Bupa have compiled, and also check out all the sewing and screen printing classes we having coming up soon here at Bobbin and Ink!

How to Print Environmentally Friendly: Interview with Permaset / Colormaker Industries March 22, 2017 10:56

Permaset produce eco friendly water based inks/ paints for screen printing, block printing and hand printing. In part two of our chat with Wendy and David from Permaset, we take a look at their environmental credentials and the work they do for environmental campaigns.


Your inks are eco-friendly and water based. Can you tell us more about these features?

Our water based inks do not contain toxic chemicals, which is safer for the user and safer for our envionment. Most commercial screen printers print garments using plastisol inks, which are easy to use and last well. However, plastisol inks typically contain PVC resin and phthalates plasticisers that are harmful to the environment and have been linked to numerous medical disorders. Plastisol inks also require the use of harmful solvents in the cleaning process. Water based inks do not contain PVC or phthalates and you don’t need solvents to clean the screens down after they’ve been used – you can clean them with water.

Permaset Aqua inks do not contain ozone-depleting chemicals such as CFC’s and HCFC’s, aromatic hydrocarbons or any volatile solvents. They don’t contain lead or any heavy metals. In fact, Permaset Aqua inks do not contain any toxic chemicals at all! Not even white spirits like other water based inks on the market. It passed the Oeko-Tex Class 1 standard (for formaldehyde content) making it safe to use on underwear, swimwear and even baby clothes!

Permaset Aqua Process Colours have been granted approval by the Soil Association in the UK, having successfully met the requirements of the Global Organic Textiles Standards (GOTS) for non-organic chemical inputs for use in organic textile processing.

The products covered by the Approval include Permaset Aqua Process Cyan, Permaset Aqua Process Magenta, Permaset Aqua Process Yellow and Permaset Aqua Process Black; plus the entire Permatone matching range.

What are the challenges of printing organically?

Most plastisol inks would completely destroy any organic integrity that would otherwise accrue from printing on organic fabrics, so if you’re going to the effort to make your choice organic garments, then you should make the choice to have it printed with an organic approved ink such as a high quality water-based ink like Permatone.

There are a few differences between using good water based ink with no solvents (like Permaset) and using a plastisol ink.

Top tips are:

1. Always leave your screen flooded between prints
2. Work quickly to prevent ink sitting on the screen too long and drying out
3. Apply small amounts of fresh ink regularly, rather than a huge volume at the start of the run
4. Wash ink off of the screen, out of the design, as soon as you have finished to prevent drying in
5. It is good practise to use a small amount of water mist from a spray bottle on the screen between prints


Image: Deer print on organic cotton t-shirt using Permaset Aqua inks 

Are you involve in any exciting projects this year?

As an eco-friendly product which is not harmful to the environment or to people using it, Permaset takes pride and pleasure in the fact that we are doing our bit for the environment. We have been sponsoring the FREE THE REEF campaign in Australia since late 2015 and will continue to support this excellent cause in 2017. FREE THE REEF uses the power of art and live screen printing to raise awareness about the threats to our Great Barrier Reef in Australia. Rallying business, artists and the community they aim to strongly influence decision makers to create future proofing legislation, ensuring the Reef is free from all negative human interference forever.


FREE THE REEF consists of a group of committed people who travel around Australia screen printing t-shirts using our Permaset eco-friendly ink. People can choose from a number of unique designs and ‘print their own FREE THE REEF t-shirt to support the campaign’, with funds raised from the purchase of these t-shirts going towards this great cause.

FREE THE REEF raises awareness of threats to the Great Barrier Reef like the Crown of Thorns Starfish.

Thanks Wendy and David from Permaset! Where can we find out more about you?

There is lots of information on our website www.permaset.com.au. We also have a number of social media accounts with some fabulous images and videos of t-shirts, tea towels, posters, cushions, canvas artworks, table clothes, yardage and more – plus examples of projects you can make on these resources. Check them out:
Instagram Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest 

For more info about the FREE THE REEF campaign, click here.

For more info on Permaset's eco friendly products, click here.

To buy a range of Permaset's products, come visit us in store at Bobbin and Ink or learn how to use them effectively in one of our Screen Printing Classes.

Meet the Makers: Colormaker Industries February 23, 2017 15:12

We're huge fans of Colormaker IndustriesPermaset Aqua and Permaprint Premium screen printing ink! We've been using Colormaker products from day dot and exclusively sell and use their products here at Bobbin and Ink. We recently quizzed Wendy and David from Colormaker HQ about their products, and asked them to share some of their fave tips / work done with their inks. Here is a little of what we found out...

What sets Permaset apart from the pack?

The team at Colormaker Industries has always sought to revolutionise the print industry. The Permaset range of water-based inks/paints offer superior performance, without trading-off printability on the screen or the hardiness of the finished product.

Permaset's big claim to fame is 100% solvent free, water-based and low odour: these inks are so much safer for printers and artists to work with than solvent based products. A huge achievement has also been made within the Permaset Aqua Process Colours and the Permatone range, which have the approval of the Soil Association of the UK.

The pigments provide intense, vibrant colour, rich in coverage and with exceptional colour yield. The unique polymer binding the pigment to the fabric delivers exceptionally soft handle and yet shows excellent resistance to damage by rub, wash and dry-cleaning, all without the need for additives. The ink colours have light-fastness ratings of at least 6/8 on the Blue Wool scale – in fact most of the colours received ratings of 8/8!

The Permaset brand's other key strengths are:

  • It's an easy access, high quality ink developed for both commercial screen printers, art and craft users alike.
  • The inks come in many sizes to suit anything from small projects to large users.
  • Because they're water based, they're easy and safe to clean up with water
  • Fabrics printed with Permaset inks have unsurpassed softness and are comfortable to wear. They do not exhibit a ‘hard print’ feel.
  • They come in a large range of colours including GLOWS, METALLICS and PROCESS colours.
  • Permaset has an excellent SUPERCOVER range for printing directly onto dark fabrics and t-shirts.

The full Permaset range is divided into:

  • Permaset Aqua inks for printing on fabrics and textiles
  • Permatone fabric inks which can be mixed to match 950 PMS colours
  • Permaprint Premium inks for printing on substrates such as paper, cardboard, many plastics, wood, Styrofoam and more.


Images: (L) T-shirt screen printed by Seal Maiden using a mix of Permaset Copper and Gold inks | (R) Permaprint Premium Gold ink screen printed onto glass by Crooked Cartoon

What is your favourite Permaset product and why?

My favourites are the Permaset Metallics due to the beautiful and unique effects which can be achieved when screen-printing, block printing or hand-painting with these colours. See some examples above.

What have been some stand out projects you have seen your customers produce with your inks?

Here is a collection of our favourites...

a. Beautiful art cushion hand-painted with Permaset inks by @maed_by_Kristy
b. Droplet Face t-shirt screen printed with Permaset Supercover by @wasted_heroes in Birmingham
c. Beautiful painted artwork canvas created by @tiffmanuell in Adelaide using Permaset paints/inks
d. T-shirts by @sanchosdirtylaundry screen printed with Permaset Aqua inks
e. ‘Urban Decay’ block print by @littlebrowndog using Permaset inks
f. Hand painted mermaid tail using Permaset Aqua eco-friendly inks by @Vancouvermermaid

Do you have any tips or advice for any budding Screen Printers out there?

Check out helpful Blog articles:

Screen Printing Basics: What You Need to Know to Get Started.

A Basic Jargon Buster for Screen Printing Beginners

How to go Eco Friendly with Screen Printing

How to Screen Print on Different Kinds of Fabrics

How to Block Print Fabrics: Tips on Cushion Printing and Tea Towel Printing

You can also check out ‘How To’ videos on our Tech Specs and Tutorials page.

Steve Woods from @arcade_screenprinting, pictured printing with Permaset Aqua inks above.

Where can we find out more about you?

There is lots of information on our website www.permaset.com.au. We also have a number of social media accounts with some fabulous images and videos of t-shirts, tea towels, posters, cushions, canvas artworks, table clothes, yardage and more – plus examples of projects you can make on these resources. Check them out: Instagram  Facebook  Twitter  Google+  Pinterest 

A range of Permaset products are also for sale at Bobbin and Ink - buy instore or on line!

Stay tuned for part two of our chat with Permaset, where we take a look at their environmental foothold in the printing industry.

Teacher Feature: Susan of Measure Twice Cut Once February 10, 2017 17:06

Tell us about you and what you do?

Hi, my name is Susan but many people know me from my business/label name Measure Twice Cut Once.

How did you choose your business name Measure Twice Cut Once?  And do you have any horror stories about only 'measuring once'?

Actually I didn’t choose my business/label name, my partner aka The Englishman did. I had been wanting to start a sewing blog but had an idea that I would want to do more than just talk about my own sewing so was looking for a name with growth potential. After many failed name ideas on my behalf he walked in and named it perfectly first go.

I don’t think I have any horror stories on only measuring once? I try to look at everything as a way to learn so even mistakes aren’t all bad?

Where did your love of sewing begin?

I’ve been sewing since before I went to Primary school. I grew up in a sewing family: my Grandmother sews, my mum sews, as do myself and my sister. Ever since I was tiny I knew I wanted to be a fashion designer so I worked through all of primary and then high school to get into design college. I ended up going to TAFE, absolutely loved it and have been working in the fashion industry since. Now I’m mixing up my fashion work with sewing work by teaching, making patterns and even working in a fabric store a few days a week.

What is the most enjoyable project you have worked on?

I have a dress that I made to wear to a good friend’s wedding. It’s not fancy just a gorgeous printed cotton sateen but every time I wear it, it fills me with joy. I love how it fits, how the skirt is swishy and how I remember it being a great weekend for their wedding. Sometimes the everyday and practical can be made beautiful by a garment that fits perfectly and suits the wearer.

Tell us a bit more about the courses you will be teaching with us at Bobbin and Ink? 

I’m pretty excited to be having 2 classes with Bobbin and Ink. Both are designed to stretch your skills but we will go step by step so you won’t feel rushed. First up is swimwear and stretch. I so enjoy making swimwear. Once you get into it and learn a few tricks you will be wanting to make all of the swimmers! It’s also great for increasing your skills working with elastic and topstitching which can be applied in other areas of sewing.

The second class is all about luxury where we will be going over lace and silks. Traditionally a little bit more expensive fabrics they tend to be fabrics and techniques we only deal with for special occasion garments. The course will be focusing on making your everyday a little bit more special with slips and robes in luxe fabrics with lace trimming. Learning to deal with slippery fabrics increases your skills with all fabrics as you learn how to manipulate the fabric without straining it and using the properties unique to specialty fabrics to create standout garments.

Have you had any memorable teaching experiences?

I once had a class where no one spoke! It was so hard, I kept asking questions, posing scenarios, basically doing anything I could to get them to talk and just stunned silence. For 2 days it was utterly exhausting as I tried everything I could to get them to open up. Once the official class time had finished on the second day I was inundated with students asking questions so fast and furious I couldn’t keep up! Apparently they were all super shy and didn’t want to ask a question for fear of interrupting me and missing out on the information I was giving!

So lesson learnt by me - now I try to arrive earlier and get chatting to people before class officially starts and then everyone is a bit more relaxed.

Where can we find more about you and what you're up to?

For everyday updates I’d say Instagram, I love the community of sewers there and it’s a wonderful place to see pics and be inspired by everyone's makes. Follow me and you’ll see my sewing adventures and pics from around Sydney depending on what else I’m up to on any given day, oh and cat photos, there will always be cat photos.

For more in depth information you can check out my blog. Primarily I use this to do longer written pieces about what I’ve been sewing, Let you know when classes and workshops are coming up and other things to do with sewing.

Stretch and Swimwear Course

Currently in session...but more dates coming soon. Email us to be notified! classes@bobbinandink.com

Lace and Luxe: Lingerie, Delicates and Slippery Fabrics Sewing Course
5 weeks x 3hr Sunday Sessions
Feb 26 to Mar 26, 10am to 1pm

Teacher Feature: Robert Viner Jones of Bob Window January 25, 2017 17:47

Tell us about your label and what you do?

I own a boutique homewares label called ‘bob window’ though I mostly make
cushions from hand printed and vintage fabrics. All prints are designed and screened
by myself. Bob window also offers a small consultancy service to the clothing

Can you tell us more about your history in the fashion industry?

I spent 25 years in the fashion industry working in all facets of design and
manufacturing but mostly as a Menswear Designer for the Australian division of the
world’s second largest Menswear company.

Any career highlights?!

Difficult to say as I found every Range Release a highlight! I guess I was a bit thrilled the day Vogue Men called me to get (and put in print) my thoughts on an upcoming

What inspires your work?

I love colour, I love creativity and I love the fact that I (anybody) can start with nothing
and in time produce something to wear, to look at and or just give them that ‘I did this’

What project are you working on right now?

I’m working on new print designs in collaboration with an Adelaide customer and I’ve
also just finished a very hectic and short consultancy with a Womenswear company.

What aspect of your production do you undertake here at Bobbin and Ink?

I develop my printing screens at Bobbin and Ink. I pop in about once a month and I
think I spend more time chatting than doing anything else!

Where can we find more about you? Do you have any upcoming markets?

I can be found at www.bobwindow.com.au or @bobwindow on instagram for my
weekly posts on new designs. I also have regular stalls at Paddington and Bondi
markets plus major Artisan markets such as Canberra Handmade, Adelaide
Bowerbird and Finders Keepers.

Take our Clothes Making for Beginners Course with Bob!
Course starts Feb 23, 6-9pm and runs for 6 weeks on Thursday evenings.

Book now!

Print Club Maker Feature: Creatures of XIX November 02, 2016 13:14

This month we chat to Harriet of Creatures of XIX for a quick Q&A! Harriet was a recent Print Club member and regular at Bobbin and Ink (until her visa ran out and had to go back to the UK!).

Harriet was a B&I walk-in customer who enquired about print sampling back in July. We convinced her to save money and sign up for the next Fabric Printing for Beginners Class instead. She then became a Print Club regular in our studio, pumping out the Collection XIX "teevocative" range.

The tees were a hit and Creatures of XIX continues to grow as a successful, young fashion label, carving a niche for fiery fans of pole dancing and fitness.

Tell us about your label and what you do?

Creatures of XIX is a fierce brand for girls with grit. Our core market is certainly the pole dance market, both on the side of strippers and also for those wanting to dance for fun and fitness. We create a variety of products including stripper shoes (hard wearing and use no animal products unlike most of the options currently on the market), and our popular Gecko Grip Leggings. They are breathable, flexible and provide grip. The work I did with Bobbin and Ink was for Teevocative, our range of tees with provocative slogans such as ‘Pussy Power'. The tops have been a great success, selling out in strip clubs of Sydney and at Pole Dance Competitions.

What inspires your work?

The incredible pole dance community that i’m lucky to be a part of, as well as nature and music.

On your website you describe Creatures of XIX as a "fiercely feminine brand". How do you build this in to your creative practice and what does femininity mean to you?

In the pole dance community there is a tension between fitness and the exotic roots of pole dancing. For us feminism means having the right to chose your own path, whether you want to split drop in heels or train pole flips in trainers, we should be jointly building each other up and supporting each others creative expressions and use of pole for different reasons like fitness, dance, expression and art. As a brand we want to embrace the fierce femininity of pole dance. Modern pole dances roots are in the strip clubs, and we love that! We love the empowerment pole gives you from self acceptance and realising what your body is capable of doing. We want our brand to be about women, womens strength and sexuality and targeted directly at them. If you look at our brands products photos they are fierce and bold, whilst being sexy, but targeted at a female, not a male gaze.

How long have you been pole dancing for and how did you get in to it?

5 or 6 years now, I really wanted to do something for me and the most amazing studio called British Pole Academy in the UK opened its doors. I felt so welcomed and a sense of belonging to a community of supportive women.

How have you been invovled with Bobbin and Ink?

My first screen printing course was with Bobbin and Ink, and the creation of Teevocative tops ‘Heels Bigger Than Your’ and ‘8 Inch Heels’.

What business tools can you not live without?!

Google Drive is super useful as a central place, and whatsapp to speak with people around the world. Gimp is also ok editing software that is free!

Where can we find more about you/ what you're up to?

On my Instagram! @HarrietWolfX

My business partners is @MelissapoleXIX

Any plans to return to Australia?! 

I adore Australia, so who knows!


Web: CreaturesofXIX.co || Facebook: Creatures Of XIX || Instagram: CreaturesOfXIX


Teacher Feature: Melanie Elron from Elevator Girl Vintage September 28, 2016 12:24

We recently caught up with one of our sewing teachers, Melanie Elron for a bit of a chin-wag. Melanie will be teaching an exciting vintage clothes making course with us, starting 9th Oct.

Tell us about you and what you do?

I'm a dressmaker and teacher specialising in vintage fashion. I'm a librarian in my day job, so researching historical sewing skills came naturally to me. I have a large library of vintage sewing patterns from the 1930s onwards and I love making garments for clients who live a vintage lifestyle, or just want a touch of vintage style for an event. I also love sharing skills that were common in our grandmothers' day. Being able to create well-fitting clothes and mend or alter your own wardrobe gives a sense of independence that I think has been lost in the cheap accessibility of 'fast' fashion today.

Where did you first learn how to sew?

I was draping fabric scraps on my Barbie dolls, trying to replicate gowns I'd seen on Sophia Loren or Betty Grable in old movies, when I was about 10. After some sewing in high school I didn't touch a machine again until 5 years ago, and I became quickly obsessed - learning from sewing blogs, trawling online pattern sellers and collecting vintage sewing books. It all came back to me so quickly, something just clicked. I did a few sewing courses but realised there was a gap in the market - no one was teaching the old-school techniques that I really wanted to learn. So I taught myself and I'm still learning with every project.

What drew you to vintage fashion?

I've always loved vintage styles since growing up watching classic movies and musicals with my mum. I love elements of all decades of the 20th century, and how each era reflected the changing role of women. I started collecting and wearing vintage 20 years ago, and it's amazing how well made they are. I doubt many of our clothes today will still be wearable in 60+ plus years from now!

What's the most enjoyable vintage project you have worked on?

I had the privilege of making a wedding dress for a client a few years ago, and it was such a pleasure working with her and her mother-in-law, who came along to the fittings. The MIL was a country woman who had been sewing for 40+ years. That was a little daunting! We started with Vogue 2903, and I naively suggested doing the neckline and sleeves in lace. Sometimes what you can see in your head far exceeds your capacity to execute it! She was totally into it and bought a gorgeous piece of lace that cost her 2 months rent (no pressure!). So I just worked my ass off until I made it look as good as I had described to her. I learned a lot from that project!

Have you had any memorable teaching experiences?

We really do come in all shapes, even people who are the same size will be a different shape, and I love working with each student to get standard patterns to fit them. Every student who leaves my class with a garment she can wear, and the skills to make more, makes me happy.

What piece of advice would you give to any aspiring makers/ sewists?

Just go ahead and dive in. You've got nothing to lose and you'll only get better every time you make something.

Where can we find more about you/ what you're up to?

I’m pretty active on Pinterest – it’s so addictive! I post my projects on there and spend way too much time pinning patterns and styles I love. I have two little girls that keep me very busy, so while I don't have a lot of time to sew right now teaching here at Bobbin & Ink keeps me connected to the practice of sewing.

 Check out Melanie's BLOG: Elevator Girl Vintage Blog

Come learn how to Sew Vintage! with Melanie
6 sessions x 3hr
Sun Oct 9 to Nov 13, 10am to 1pm
Bobbin and Ink

Print Club Maker Feature: Gemma Threadgate September 21, 2016 19:10

This month we caught up with Bobbin and Ink Print Club regular Gemma Threadgate, for a quick Q&A.

Tell us about your label and what you do?

Threadgate is an Australian homeware and clothing label created by myself, Gemma Threadgate.

My main focuses for the label are textile design, sustainable design and supporting Australian made. I embrace a design process that encourages personal expression over conformity to fads. I aim for each collection to create unique and inspiring objects that are not only the manifestations of a personal interest but can also be used to help tell the story of their new homes.


Tell us about the process of making your work.

I support ethical and sustainable manufacturing by practising slow fashion which allows me to be involved in each stage of the process. Fabrics are sourced locally, hand screen printing is done locally at Bobbin & Ink and the digital printing is printed in Sydney. I understand the importance of supporting local manufacturing and businesses and aim to do this whenever possible.

I have undertaken previous studies in Fashion Design, Clothing Production and Textile Design so I am able to utilise all these skills in Threadgate.

What inspires your work?

I find inspiration from a wide variety of things, I love researching and finding out new ideas and educating myself on something I knew nothing about yesterday and hope to pass on those ideas through my designs. For my Threadgate debut collection 'Trouble in Utopia' I was inspired by Le Corbusier and his ideas and designs on public housing and Brutalist architecture. This lead me in a deep wormhole of research into utopias, Brutalism, concrete, communal living, new architecture and modernism. I then mind mapped all these ideas to create my textile designs. 


What do you enjoy most about the creative process?

I really enjoy the practical side of the creative process, hand screen printing, cutting fabric, pattern making and sewing. Screen printing would be my newest skill I have gained so I still learn new skills with each new design and space I work in. Through screen printing at Bobbin & Ink I have learnt new ways to do things from Laura.

What aspect of your production do you undertake here at Bobbin and Ink?

I do all my screen printing work at Bobbin & Ink with my screen printing partner Liz Bryan. As I wanted to do every step of the screen printing process myself, Bobbin & Ink was my only option in Sydney where I could come and independently use the space to work. I was able to use the space to expose my large screens, screen print yardage on the 6m table and really utilise Laura's screen printing skills and learn from her.

Where can we find more about you and what you're up to?

Through my website www.threadgate.net and instagram @_threadgate and for the behind the scenes stuff on my personal instagram @gemmathreadgate


Campaign photos shot by Patrick Mason | Additional photos by Gemma Threadgate

If you are keen to become a Print Club member at Bobbin and Ink then click here or come on in and we'll run you through the space.

The Social Outfit x Bobbin and Ink September 05, 2016 08:00

In August we were so excited to be a part The Social Outfit's second anniversary, by running an interactive screen printing workshop with IEC school kids from Fairfield High in their Newtown Store. 

The Social Outfit has been working with Fairfield High School since 2013, collaborating with and providing workshops for their Intensive English Centre students, of whom 91% speak a language other than English at home. The community of Fairfield is a wonderful hub of multiculturalism. It's wonderful to see an organisation so passionately bridging gaps in knowledge and opportunity by fostering creative talent, like these kids.

It was really great getting to meet these students, many who haven't been living in Australia very long. Everyone was a little worried at first, but they warmed up quickly as we chatted, drew and cut stencils to print on these awesome tote bags. It was such a fun day and they all walked out proudly with a unique handmade design. Such champions!


And...pull! Screen printing success! 👍🏼 #bobbinandink #screenprinting #communityworkshop #fairfieldhighschool

A video posted by TheSocialOutfit (@thesocialoutfit) on


The Social Outfit is a registered charity and social enterprise whose purpose is to employ and train people from refugee and new migrant communities. They believe fashion and creativity can lead to learning and empowerment. By providing training and employment in clothing production, retail, design and marketing they aim to build-up lasting skills and draw on the traditional and cultural strengths of Sydney's diverse communities. 

Thanks to Jackie Ruddock and Eloise Rapp for organising / running the day and reaching out to us for the collaborative workshop. We hope that there's more to come!

Check out The Social Outfit's retail store at 353 King Street Newtown.

The Social Outfit World from The Social Outfit on Vimeo.


We really love supporting local organisations and charities that produce great social outcomes (or that just do gosh-darn awesome things).

If you're keen to team up with Bobbin and Ink, please get in touch! We'd love to talk about how we could add benefits to your events or programming at schools, clubs, community groups, councils or office. Shoot us an email at info@bobbinandink.com and start a conversation!


Introducing Emily of In The Folds August 11, 2016 16:43

This month we welcome a new Bobbin and Ink tutor, Emily of In the Folds.

Emily is a Pattern-Maker and she will be presenting a three session class with us: Mastering Dressmaking: Winter "Rushcutter" Dress, starting Monday 15 August.

She's designed the Rushcutter to be an easily adaptable and flattering dress, an enjoyable sew for people of different sewing levels and body shapes. To find out more and book into this fun class, click here.

So who is this new kid on the Bobbin and Ink block?

5 fun facts about Emily!

1.  She learnt how to sew at a school holiday sewing camp at aged 9, where she was soon teaching all her friends to make scrunchies!

2. She still uses the same Janome sewing machine she claimed from her mum in her youth. It was hers in exchange for doing the family mending.

3. She holds an honours degree in fashion and textiles from University of Technology Sydney. 

4. After falling in love with the online sewing community, she decided to get involved by starting her own blog, Em Makes Patterns, which planted the seed of hope in her head, that maybe one day she could do pattern making and sewing full-time.

5. After moving to London to learn more about sewing and pattern making, she returned to Sydney in 2015 and decided it was 'now or never' ... and that is how In the Folds was born. 

Want More Emily?!

Listen to an enjoyable podcast where she chats to Close-Knit about the challenges and joys of being a pattern maker.

Check out her Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest page.

Join Emily for the following classes at Bobbin and Ink:

Mastering Dressmaking: Winter "Rushcutter" Dress Class

3 weeks x 3hr Monday Night Sessions
Mon Aug 15 to Aug 29, 6pm to 9pm
From $319.00

4 weeks  x 3hr Saturday Sessions
Sat Sept 3 to Sept 24, 1pm to 4pm
From $385.00

Blog Beginnings August 11, 2016 16:20

Blog Beginnings Bobbin and Ink Ink Tubs

Welcome to the spanking new Bobbin and Ink Blog!

We are pretty excited to start sharing with you all our musings, points of inspirations, how to's and whats on's! We'll have guest writers and maker and product features and lots more.

Please use the comments feed below to engage with us and tell us what you want to hear about. We'd love to hear your thoughts, contributions and ideas.

So let us begin by telling you what's new with us...