Back in the saddle, thanks to Sew Saturday

Sew Saturday - 17 October 2015

You know how sometimes, you just don’t feel like sewing? All the projects you’ve got planned seem really difficult or time-consuming, and you feel more like slobbing on the sofa or lurking on Instagram than threading up another bobbin. Well, I’ve had one of those fortnights.

It’s partly because I’m busy at work, and partly because I’ve let myself be distracted by the joys of knitting, but I think it’s mainly fear of failure. The next project on my list is my second version of the Thurlow trousers. My wardrobe needs these so badly it hurts – currently I don’t own a single pair of (non-denim, non-waterproof, non-workout) trousers. But I’m scared they won’t fit. Or that they won’t fit well. Even though I’ve officially labelled this next pair as the ‘second toile’, I’m still pressuring myself to make them perfect.

So Sew Saturday has provided me with a reason to give myself a kick up the backside, a stern talking-to and an excuse for spot of fabric shopping.

Sew Saturday - 17 October 2015
It’s today, and it’s worth getting off the sofa for

Sew Saturday is all about supporting local fabric shops – something we can all get behind. Sometime between 1990 (when sewing was deeply unfashionable) and depths of the credit crunch in 2009 (when high business rates and declining footfall made so many shops unprofitable), fabric shops started to disappear from UK high streets. Malvern’s fabric shop, Sherwoods, went online-only shortly before I moved here in 2010.

So if you have a great local fabric store, get down there and… er… cop a feel. There’s no substitute for holding the cloth in your hand and wrapping it round yourself to see how it’ll look.

It’s great to see new shops opening, too – especially those with an eye for modern design, and which really make an effort to connect with their customers. Exhibit 1: Guthrie & Ghani, where I went this morning to pick up some swoonworthy cotton lawn for the lining pieces of my Thurlows.

Teal polka dot lawn fabric hanging on a washing line to dry.
Sevenberry cotton lawn in teal spot, bought this morning in Guthrie & Ghani.

It’s already drying on the line, and I’ve just cut out the main fabric pieces. Funk. Officially. Over.

Pattern pieces pinned to navy fabric, ready to cut out
The main fabric is a navy twill I bought at Birmingham Rag Market. Sold as cotton, but very definitely polyester. It’s got a touch of the school uniforms about it…
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