At first, I wasn't too sure about going to this event, but was persuaded by a 2 for 1 deal that came through from the Sewing Quarter. So I thought I would give it a try and drag my husband down to London for the weekend.
It was good to see a few friendly faces there, Charles from Empress Mills, Barnyarns, Fabrics Galore, but my mission was to explore the stands of the independent pattern makers and fabric suppliers for ideas and inspiration. We did watch the fashion show first which showcased some of the independents as well as the majors.
As you can see I bought a few patterns. I started at The Maker's Atelier stand which was draped with beautifully elegant clothes. Which patterns to get? In the end I went with the book, signed by Frances, together with a coat and tunic pattern.
My next stop was the Guthrie & Ghani stand. They have a fabulous range of fabric and had put together some great show bundles. Again the choice was too much. Looking for soft fabrics for the coming months I plumped for the baby pink and deep maroon loopback jersey fabric. I also bought a kit for the Linden Sweatshirt by the Grainline Studio which came with a light grey marl fleeceback jersey, matching thread, a pack of jersey needles and a twin needle.
Moving on I bought a couple of the Tilly and the Buttons dress patterns. I have made a couple of the Zadie dresses and they look great and went together so well. I have never really worn dresses but with the range of modern patterns available I am encouraging myself to change.
The next stop on the tour was MadeIt. After seeing the top version of this pattern in the fashion show I thought it would make a great autumn/winter addition. It only comes in a PDF version but these days I prefer patterns this way, especially if layered. They also have some great children's patterns as well.
By this stage we had walked around for a good few hours so we treated ourselves to Champagne and cake. Suitably refreshed we were then ready for a final tour. I had noticed that a number of exhibitors were offering "design your own fabric" services which seemed a great idea for future projects. Late in the day we came across Fabworks where I picked up the wool fabric for the shawl collar coat pattern I bought earlier in the day. This was there first show and they were having a great time. They also had a fabulous range and some great show bundles. A really friendly bunch of people and I am looking forward to a trip to their shop. They even suggested a good place for lunch!
For something different I bought the Vogue formal dress pattern, once again because I saw it featured in the fashion show and was being offered at half price that day! Most of my recent projects have been lingerie and casual clothes in stretch fabric. This patterns calls for nearly 3 metres of boning, something I haven't used before so an interesting make ahead.
Overall I enjoyed the day. I would have liked to have seen a greater variety of fabric suppliers to complement the patterns on offer as the venue was a little empty in places. As a maker of lingerie I was disappointed that this was not featured at all especially as it was one of the GBSB challenges. Conversely, I thought there was a little to much focus on patchwork/quilting. I go to the Festival of Quilts for this!
Hopefully next up will be pictures of all my fabulous makes from the show!