Archive for the ‘African Design Club’ Category

Hello Everyone!

I hope this post finds everyone ready for 2019, bcuz ready or not, here it is!  How did you do creatively in 2018?  Did you make time to sew, quilt or otherwise indulge your artistic side?  I hope so, and if not, we have a fresh new year to work with, so let’s look ahead with optimism and make the most of it!!

We’ll committed to doing our part here at CE to jumpstart your creative goals with a blog readers coupon – save 20% on your next online order of $20 or more when you use the code BLOG2019.   It’s valid now thru Saturday, Jan 5…

AND, speaking of “creative goals,” save the dates for our next Wine Lovers’ Quilt Retreat, in the sunny Colorado mountains, AUGUST 7-11, 2019.    ; )  Yes, a wine lovers’ quilt retreat, pairing our favorite varietals with our favorite African fabrics & inspiration, all in a semi-secluded retreat house in the mountains!  Watch for the brochure later this week via blog post and the CE newsletter,,,

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Happy Holiday Season, everyone!

I feel like I’ve been neglecting the CE blog recently, so I thought I’d offer a special Coupon Code this week just to see who’s out there and to keep things interesting.  How about this:

Now thru Wednesday, December 12, enter Code BLOG20 

to SAVE 20% off of your entire online order**

Sooo… if you’ve been eyeing a new precut pack, fat quarter bundle, kit or one of my books, this is a great week to check out the site… choose fabrigasmic gifts for your quilting friends and guild members, or pick up a few fabrics or kits to sew up for special gifts you’ve made yourself — enjoy!

Oh, and leave a comment below on what creative projects you’ve been working on lately to receive a free gift ; ) and we’ll enclose it with your order!               —lisa

**Offer valid on merchandise only; not valid on workshops or gift cards.                              


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Hey everyone!  Check out all of the Fabrigasmic African fabric and beads featured in our just-published  Nov/Dec/Jan workshop schedule!  Your favorite classes are joined by three new ones:  we’ve added String Quilts, Bordered Batik Panels, and Waistbeads, all inspired by our recent buying trip to Ghana!

Have you been to the Cultured Expressions studio yet?  Be sure to visit as we celebrate our 1st Anniversary, which is officially December 1 but will last all season long ; ).  If you’re traveling some distance, we can help you put together a complete overnight trip, including hotel choices, restaurants, and even a newly-opened yoga studio! And we’re just a 50-minute train ride to or from NYC.

We’re also booking private parties, sip-n-sews and events for the holiday season and beyond.  Details are on page 3 of the schedule – email us for details and dates!   Let us know if you have any questions — We look forward to seeing you…

DOWNLOAD the schedule here

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I’ve been running a lot lately, and except for just ONE more travel-induced studio closing from Nov 1-3 (a private quilting event in CT), I’ll be in the Cultured Expressions studio every Wed thru Saturday as scheduled!!



My latest trip to Ghana resulted in all kinds of African fabrics and other goodies, so be sure to come by the studio in Rahway, or schedule a fun and easy Virtual Visit – we set up a time for me to call you on a video phone call, and I take you thru the studio so you can see everything and make your selections.  When you’re ready to schedule yours, download the DUO video call app  on your phone — see logo at right –(it works on iPhone AND Android), and contact me to arrange a day & time.

Also, now thru Sunday, you can save 10% on our 10″ Square African Print bundles, Black/White Strip Bundles, and 40-pack of African print FQs!!  No coupon needed, the discount will show in your cart.  ; )

PLUS, FREE SHIPPING on $75 or more…

See you soon – I’ll be unpacking for a while! —-   lisa

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Hey Everyone!

As I promised last week while packing for Santa Fe, this week Cultured Expressions has some interesting specials, so you can stock up and stay busy while I prepare to leave town again (somebody has to do this backbreaking work…)

Cutting to the chase, enjoy these savings now thru Saturday, Sept 29 (in-studio), or Sunday, Sept 30 (online and Virtual visits).

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Read the full newsletter here

And please remember that we’ll be CLOSED Oct 14 thru 13, 2018.

The studio reopens with regular hours on Wed, Oct. 17 from 4-8pm, with our Winter workshop schedule.  We’re continuing with your favorite classes, and adding some exciting new ones, too!  Any requests??


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Bogolan, or mudcloth as most people know it, has always been a favorite of mine.  (I chose 866-MUDCLOTH as my vanity toll- free number for the business over 15 years ago — that pretty much says it all…)

Anyway, when I’m asked “Can you wash mudcloth?”  my reply is, “It depends…”   Since bogolan is hand crafted, the specific recipe used by each bogolan artists could give you varying results.  Will your finished project be worn or used (like a bag, garment or pillow cover) or safely out of harm’s way as a wall hanging?  Can you find a local dry cleaner willing to work with hand-dyed fabrics?  Are you willing to risk some fading of color?

If you’re making something you want to be able to wash (by hand or machine), I suggest you remove one strip and cut it into a few pieces to test various laundering methods.  Since bogolan is made of separate strips stitched together, you can easily remove one strip with no raveling of the fabric.  If you like the results, you can then pre-treat the rest of the cloth accordingly.

Last night I tested a piece of this bogolan, it’s a striking brassy-olive color.  Everyone who sees this color comments favorably on it! On the left is the test piece, which I threw into the washing machine with other stuff, then right into the clothes dryer, again with other stuff.   On the right is the original piece.  This is probably the best result I’ve ever had (“best” meaning minimal color loss AND minimal shrinkage), which to me made it fully shareworthy  ; )  The hand is also a little softer then the non-washed piece.  I haven’t even ironed it yet and it’s looking fabulous…Of course, others have not fared so well, but if you’re creative and open-minded, you might even like the newly altered cloth  as much as, or more than, the original.

And yes, I do still have a 2-yard piece of this fabrigasmic color available in the studio – unwashed ; )  $60.00.  First come, first served, as they say.  Order it now and receive it in time for #AfricanFabricMonth  ; )

#CulturedExpressions #1417MainStreet #RahwayNJ


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One of the many highlights of our recent Wine Lovers’ Quilt Retreat  was our visit to the Rocky Mountain Wa Shonaji Quilt Guild’s opening reception for “Botanical Expressions”.  The quilts are on display thru September 27 at the Blair Caldwell Library in downtown Denver, CO, and each peace is a true visual treat!  I took lots of pics, these are just a few:

Not only do these ladies show off their amazing fiber art talents, but they’re all so warm and welcoming, complete with gifts for each attendee, games, and of course an inviting spread of snacks and lite fare.  Cultured Expressions is fortunate that their reception has aligned with our retreat dates for the past three years, and we now enjoy a standing invitation to their annual reception.

Congratulations on another beautiful show, ladies!  If you’re in the Denver area, check out their work  ; )  For details on next year’s retreat, August 7-11, 2019, contact us.


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Stop by the Studio on Sat July 7 (that’s TOMORROW,) and #SAVE 20% on all of our gorgeous #AfricanPrints by the yard! New releases, classic designs, dashiki panels, etc…Swipe… Our Saturday hours are 10am – 6pm

And if you just can’t wait until tomorrow, come in TODAY until 6pm and we’ll honor the sale 😎

#1417mainstreet in #RahwayNJ

#sewing #quilting #fabrigasm #makeityourself #diy#beads #decorating #workshops #ankaraprints #africanstyle #sewafrican #wakandastyle
#rahwayishappening #rahwayissewhappening


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Finally, our permanent signage is installed and I love it!!  Now people (including those stopped at the red light right outside our door) will know exactly what’s going on here!  Thank you once again to the Rahway Chamber of Commerce for extending one of their first-ever business grants to Cultured Expressions, allowing us to redirect this precious funding elsewhere in the business ; )

So I’m just realizing that my messy cropping caught the very top of the sign…ugh!  rushing!  Will post a better one later but you get the idea, right? Better yet, come see it in person.  We’re serving mimosas and sparkling cider beginning at 12 noon tomorrow (Saturday, 9 June)!

By the way, this is Kamal, who owns Signarama in Kenilworth, NJ.  (In a prior life he was a leather handbag designer, so you know we bonded like THAT!  Planning to have him come and give a talk on handbag design, likely this fall… stay tuned.  Meanwhile, more pix from today…)

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Thank you sew much to the members of the New Mexico Quilters Assn (NMQA) for hosting me to lecture and teach this past week!  On Monday I presented my “Global Textile Influences for Quilters” trunk show (ably assisted by Judi and Nancy) followed by Tuesday’s African Mosaic workshop:

Quiltin' in Albuquerque

Debbie and Sandi went for extra credit, creating African Mosaic borders for centerpiece handpainted mask and mola designs, respectively (below).  We all had a great time, and I look forward to seeing photos of the completed works ; )

To arrange a Cultured Expressions trunk show and/or workshop for your group, contact me.


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