Fabric shopping – the good and not so good

After buying the Sewaholic Renfrew pattern at the beginning of the year I’ve been itching to make one up. I’ve been searching for some cotton striped jersey, either navy & white or red & white. I wasn’t having much luck as when I did find some it would be out of stock. In the end I plumped for polka dots.

From top:- navy and light blue jersey - myfabrics.com red and pink jersey - myfabrics.com red and white striped jersey - John Lewis Printed Ikea curtains

From top:-
navy and light blue jersey – myfabrics.com
red and pink jersey – myfabrics.com
red and white striped jersey – John Lewis
Printed Ikea curtains

I was a bit disappointed when I opened the parcel from myfabrics.com. I had ordered the navy expecting that the polka dot was white, it’s not, it’s light blue. (Which it clearly states in the description). Then the red and pink, well, I don’t know what I was thinking of. I’ve put it to one side as it will be perfect for a summer skater dress for my daughter. A few days later I was in John Lewis and they had in the sale the red and white jersey stripe at £7 a metre so I snapped up 2mts. It was just what I wanted, a knitted stripe, not printed.

The bottom fabric is actually a pair of Ikea curtains. They caught my eye in the display and when I touched them they had a nice handle and drape. The fabric is 70% polyester and 30% cotton. £15, or if you have an Ikea family card like I do, £11.25. For that you get two lengths 3mts long, 145cm wide so a total of 6mts. Bargain! I immediately pictured a summer dress. Time will tell if the fabric ever gets made up but with 6mts we could make like the Family Von Trapp.

When I was at John Lewis they had a stand of some fantastic fabrics I hadn’t seen before. These are by Hemingway Designs from Wayne Hemingway who founded Red or Dead.

Fabric by Hemingway designs at John Lewis

Fabric by Hemingway designs at John Lewis

At £20 per metre it’s not cheap but is 150cm wide. I would say it was a medium weight cotton, heavier than quilting weight. I haven’t bought any yet but I love the green and blue mixes, in fact I love them all. For a bit of inspiration I saw this dress.

John Lewis 'weekend' shift dress

John Lewis ‘weekend’ dress

I’m sure I could get something like this dress out of 1.20mts. This was just a simple straight up and down with bust darts, invisible back zipper and elastic at the inner waist seam. The only thing it was missing was side seam pockets. Or this sleeveless one which is a similar shape.

Anyway – first off I’m going to sew up the navy polka dot into a scooped neck Renfrew.


16 thoughts on “Fabric shopping – the good and not so good

  1. Oh I am definitely due for a fabric shopping fix. I don’t like buying online – I really want to touch things before I buy. And then I stash things, and get attached to them…
    Saw a lovely one at John Lewis with little 1920’s style people. 🙂

    • I buy quite a bit of fabric on-line as I don’t get the chance to go out and browse that often. Occasionally I’ll order a swatch first. Despite the fact that the jersey colours weren’t quite what I was expecting I’m happy with the quality of it for £9 per metre. Yes, John Lewis have some really nice prints in at the moment

  2. The navy polka dot will look great as a renfrew. I really like the red and pink fabric too. I finally got to Ikea over here and found some really nice heavy cotton that I think will make a lovely bag if I ever get round to it!

    • When I was in Ikea they had some of the fabrics made up into garments, such as shift dresses but to be honest I thought what they had used was too stiff. After all, most of it is furnishing fabric. Years ago I made a great bag out of curtain fabric.

  3. I love all your new fabrics, but the two blues spot is my favourite – it’ll make a lovely Renfrew.
    Wish we had a John Lewis nearby, yes they are expensive, but it’s my favourite department store.

    • Despite my disappointment of the navy not having a white spot it is growing on me. I was ordering during lunch break so obviously not paying attention to the description.
      My local John Lewis has this wall full of great quilting weight cottons in fabulous patterns, you walk in and feel really inspired. The red and white stripe jersey was a lucky buy, I don’t usually expect to pick up a bargain in there.

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