About us

This is the start of a new adventure for Joan and myself, an exciting new patchwork and quilting shop called Dotty Dolly. We are based in Wellington, Somerset, at 13 Fore Street (opposite the Nat West). You can contact us on 01823 660879.

We are easy to get to from junction 26 on the M5 - come and see us if you are passing by.

Sunday, 21 November 2010


Anne Baxter did her first workshop for us on Wednesday - Battenberg quilt. Thought I would prove how wonderfully organised we were so got to the hall early to make sure everything was set up, as I was driving to the hall realised that I had left the tea, coffee and biscuits behind.  Anne was already there when I arrived (only just) so sorted out the room and rushed off to get refreshements. I went to see the class at the end of the day and they had all produced exciting and colourful blocks.  Hopefully she will come back and do more workshops for us.

On Thursday I was happily working in the shop alone when the delivery man arrived with a huge box which he left and went off to get another, I asked how many they were - apparently three.  I opened the first box and was convinced that we would not have ordered the first couple of bolts I looked at so rang Joan in a panic and asked her what she had done!  We both decided that it was a mistake so I pushed all the boxes back into the stock room as they were too heavy to lift and rang the supplier to tell them they had made a mistake, either that or Joan had had a breakdown and been persuaded by the lovely Alan to buy a random mix of fabrics.  I was told that it was no mistake so every so often I would go out and look at the boxes and swear.  At about 3 in the afternoon I decided to open everything as we couldn't send it back so I may as well have a proper look.  After the panic I realised that I actually liked the majority of the fabric and felt much calmer - I thought that we had completely lost the plot and all our sense of taste had disappeared, thank goodness we are okay (I think)

I held my first workshop on Saturday, I have been worrying about this for the last four weeks and as the time got nearer I was getting more manic (hence the irrational behaviour with the delivery), frantically making more things in case nobody liked what I had already produced, also Joan made some stuff as I think she thought I might have a heart attack.  I think it all went okay - everyone produced something lovely and hopefully they will all make more. Thank you to the lovely ladies - Marina, Daphne, Pat and Gloria - remember to bring in your finished work


Thursday, 11 November 2010

Turning cold

Nights are getting darker, the weather is getting colder and both Joan and I are having to find warmer clothes that look decent and that don't make us look like michelin men.  Luckily we have a heater in the shop but we are trying not to use it too often as the landlord told us that it is expensive so if you see us jumping up and down or running round the shop you know that we are just warming up.

I did my first order on the telephone this week (not that exciting to you but it is to me) so at least we know that we are able to take payments without customers being in the shop - the only downside was that I put the goods and the receipt on the cutting table and managed to cut the receipt into tiny pieces when cutting fabric for another customer. So now the needlecases have gone in the post with a sellotaped receipt which looks like crazy paving and is not going to inspire the customer with confidence although I have put a note in to explain what happened.

We have had our first workshop run by Joan - Using a rotary cutter to make a cushion.  The course went really well and I had a lady (Annette) in the shop today telling me how much she enjoyed it, so thats good news.  Joan even had a young lad on the course who is really keen and has already made a quilt with help from a relative in New Zealand! 

At the moment we have a Selvedge quilt hanging in the shop which has been made by Shirley Sherratt (stitcherydo) - everybody has been raving about it and we thought it might be nice to use this space as somewhere to hang other people's work as it can be really inspiring to see what other people are doing so if you have a quilt you would like to show off let us know. Unfortunately I don't have the camera with me today so can't take a picture of Shirley's quilt but will put one on the blog next week.

Need to stop now so that I can run around the shop


Saturday, 6 November 2010

Long break

Apologies for the long break - Joan had her holiday and the following week we had loads to catch up on then I had a week off so that my husband and I could do some decorating - we did one day and spent the rest of the week going out and shopping (he is as bad as I am).  He even offered to pay for a decorator so that I didn't have to move my arms - this probably makes no sense but after a day of stripping wallpaper off the walls and ceiling of a reasonably sized room I could not move my arms the following day and obviously moaned continually, hence the offer to pay for somebody else to do the work.  I am going to soldier on and finish the room, eventually. 

I went back to work for a week and Joan wrote down all the instructions to carry on with the blog whilst I was away, I then went off for an exciting week in Kent.  We decided on Kent as this was a county that neither of us had been to before (this is my husband and I and not Joan), our first two nights were going to be spent in Brighton (I know Brighton is not in Kent). Then we were going to be wild and free just deciding where to stop if we liked the look of somewhere!

Now I am back and the blog will resume as it has been confirmed that Joan is a real technophobe and couldn't do it, but she had produced a windows worth of new items - the red collection which is lovely and very effective. (Picture is minus a bag that Joan made and I sold yesterday - more work for Joan)

The red window (bag missing)

We are now working different days which I find odd (not sure if Joan does) I end up talking to myself a lot when in the shop alone so people walking past the window probably think I am a bit weird.  We have discussed bringing in a radio but that would be a nightmare for me as I need to sing along when I hear songs I know (and even those I don't, I just make up the words), not sure it would be a good thing to make customers wait whilst I finish singing plus I always have to emphasis musical points with body movement!!

Back to the shop - whilst I was away the new Bliss range arrived which Joan whizzed into bags and cushions.  More Kaffe Fasset is now in which seems to be delivered one bolt at a time which is giving us an opportunity to get to know the delivery man quite well. 

Kaffe Fassett

Kaffe Fassett

We had a customer in from New Zealand whilst I was away - she had read about us on Shirley Sherratt's blog 'Stitcherydo' which is amazing and just goes to prove that you should be careful what you say as you don't know how far it will travel.  We also had a delegation from another local shop (again whilst I was away) and it was a shame they did not say who they were as it would have been nice to build a working relationship with them, hopefully they will call in again.

Our workshops start next week which is exciting but also scary - Joan is running the first one on Wednesday followed by Ann Baxter and then me!!  I will panic right up to 10am when the class starts and then I will be fine - I must stress this is not unusual, this is normal behaviour so don't worry if you are booked on my day.

Blog will now be updated every week - promise