Saturday 17 March 2012

Super Successful Sewing Shopping Spree

Last Saturday I could no longer resist the temptation of getting myself set up with the fabric and notions for my newly purchased Salme patterns so I spent a very enjoyable day shopping for supplies. It turned out to be one of those days where everything seemed to be falling in to my lap just perfectly!

First stop was Sew Over It in Brixton/Clapham. I'd only ever very briefly popped into this shop/sewing school very briefly as I used to live around the corner. However my wonderful Mum gave me a gift voucher for Christmas and I could not be doing with it burning a hole in my pocket any longer. They stock a good number of Colette patterns so I knew I was on the look out for one of those. The Rooibos dress was top of my list after seeing Lauren's version and first result of the day it was in stock! The second massive result was the little bias tape maker. I'd been looking at the Colette tutorial on making your own bias tape a few days earlier and was stumped by their suggestion to use a Clover Bias Tape Maker. Where on earth do I get one of those or something similar?! Turns out it was Sew Over It! My final purchase was this beautiful printed silk crepe de chine (at least I'm fairly sure that's what it is!). It has a beautiful drape and I think will be perfect to make up the Salme Gathered Top. The only disappointment was the fact that the lady who cut the fabric didn't snip and rip like usually but got down on the floor and cut right the way along, starting off at 1m and veering off to about 90cm at the other side. I couldn't really see what she was doing when I was in there so felt a bit embarrassed asking to check but when I got home I realised I should have! It should still be enough to make this top but I do feel a bit had considering the fairly considerable amount of money I paid for it. There was a class going on at the back of the shop and I was made to feel a bit like I was being a pain by being there so I felt bad taking up time even though there was a shop assistant separate to the class. But then when I left I thought, hey I am giving you my money here!

Anyway, moan over. I then hopped on the Victoria line all the way up to Walthamstow again. It's so worth the journey up there. First up I bought 2 metres of the fabric I wished I had when I last visited. It's the floral printed cotton above which has a lovely drape and will be perfect for the dress I am working on drafting in my pattern cutting lessons at the moment. I love the flecks of purple in amongst the other warm colours of the pattern. I also went on a notions spree in one of the tiny little shops filled with trimmings and ribbons. I managed to resist buying anything pretty that I didn't have a purpose for and simply got the zips, elastic and thread I needed for various projects I've got planned. All at absolute bargain prices of course!

Next stop was Saeed's which is a wonderful shop half full of more structured upholstery fabrics and half of a wonderful range of dressmaking weight fabrics. On my last fabric shopping trip I really struggled to find jersey's which I thought were of a good enough quality not to be completely see through on a sunny day. This time I just went for it and decided I wouldn't know until I tried! The navy polka dot is a jersey which I'm planning to make a wrap dress from, with little cap sleeves and a grosgrain tie belt. I want it to be a classic contemporary style but I always think a navy/white polka dot combination gives a fun vintage twist! My impulse buy of the day was the magpie print jersey, I spied it hidden away under a counter behind multiple other rolls and just couldn't resist! I don't really have a purpose for it and I only bought a meter so I'm thinking a simple t-shirt using the Blank Canvas T pattern or maybe a wrap top to break the pattern up a little as it's so bold which is unusual for me. The lovely green fabric feels like a lovely brushed silk haboti but I'm fairly sure it's not a £2 a metre! This has a lovely drape but I think would hold a pleat so is ideal for the Salme Patterns Sleeveless Dress.

The last purchase are a small amount of two lovely lightweight silks. the colours don't show up particularly well here but the top is a nice neutral pale taupe and the bottom a deep rich purple. These are intended for the Salme Colour Block T-Shirt for which I just loved her original colour combination too much to play with! This should make a lovely lightweight top for (the British) summer to be worn with dark skinny jeans and be just smart enough for work but very comfortable to work in.

Possibly the most boring photo on a blog ever...
But yet one of the most exciting buys of my day! And well worth the extra little trip to Ikea. This paper is meant to be used on their kid's easels but is perfect for tracing/drafting/copying sewing patterns. At £3 for 30m it's an absolute bargain as well. it's just a shame it's such a trek to get some!

After this little expedition and after seeing my rapidly growing fabric stash on my return I had imposed a fabric buying ban on myself until I'd actually made some of it up into the projects they are intended for...but then that perfect pattern for the 'An Education' dress arrived and I may have to buy a little more!


  1. What a glorious day! Your purchases are wonderful and I love the magpie jersey :)

  2. Hi Fiona, this is Lisa, the owner of Sew Over It. I am so sorry that you felt that way. I am mortified! We always want to make everyone feel welcome. Sometimes it is a little crazy busy on a Saturday, but you should never feel like you are in the way. The girls working have also read your blog and feel terrible that this is how you felt. With regards to the fabric, please let us send you an extra metre in the post. We can't rip that fabric very well which is why she cut it. I hope you will come back again, please do contact us so I can make this right! xx

    1. Hi Lisa, thank you so much for your comment! Now I feel mortified! I'd completely forgotten all about it and meant no offensive with my comments, just venting my thoughts on the day! I understand that it can get very busy, I just felt a little awkward was all. Please don't feel you need to send me any more of the fabric, I have enough for what I need. Thank you for taking the time to get in touch with me, I really appreciate it and will certainly be back, your shop is lovely!


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