Midweek Madness

Sorrel’s Wonderful Creation


Lots of photos to share today! You may remember from a recent post that I mentioned MacCullough & Wallis and a certain fabric that had stayed in my head and heart. A Spring voile that was just begging for a gathered skirt or a … scarf. Well, Spring seemed to arrive this week and I found myself back in the centre of London. It seemed rude not to, I think you’ll agree. My feet took me down Dering Street and into the doorway of a shop where this dress dummy resides.

I bought a metre of the voile to make a draping scarf just made for wearing now that gentler temperatures tease us. (‘For how long?’ I hear you ask. ‘How long before the freezing cold returns? Don’t be a fool, Karen.’)

Below is the fabric being cut out for me. Notice anything unusual about this photo? The person wielding the scissors has decided manly hands. Yes, a man! Working in a haberdashery!

After I’d enjoyed my Fabric Fix, I had a mosey around the rest of the shop. It’s dark and Victorian. Lino on the floor, red pillars, ancient paint on the walls. Each fabric has a huge swatch cut out and hung from circular rails with the price and content details. I’ve never seen another haberdashery who uses this system, but it’s a good one. Customers can handle the fabric without huge rolls being pulled off the shelf, only to be dismissed and heaved back into place.

What was I wearing whilst pottering around? This outfit. It is almost entirely hand-made. The full gathered skirt is from one of Gertie’s lessons, made in raw silk from Walthamstow market. (Beneath the skirt lurks an underskirt, also made courtesy of one of Gertie’s lessons.) The Golden Vintage Cardigan is from Babycocktail‘s (aka Thea Colman’s) pattern on Ravelry. Thea designs wonderful cardigans. I could happily knit everything she ever produces, confident that it would suit me. And the brooch was made for me by a dear friend, Sorrel. A present for my 40th birthday. She originally made it as a necklace, but I couldn’t quite pull it off, so I’ve made it into a brooch. I’m sure she won’t mind. Isn’t it darling? Sorrel is a very clever young woman with a highly original take on the art of crafting. Oh, she also edits craft books as part of her day job. And did I mention? I hope to interview her soon on this blog so that we can all get an insight into how craft books are put together. Sure to be fascinating!

Finally, progress with my latest knitting project. See? And in the background, my sewing of the McCalls 5815. So much work going on! All in my weekday evenings. Because at the weekends, I have to work on my manuscript. No shirking, Karen! A jacket, a wrap scarf and a new fabric purchase are no excuse to ignore the other important thing in my life: my writing.

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2 Responses to Midweek Madness

  1. Karin says:

    Yea Spring! The daffs are blooming in our front garden finally and I have dried several rounds of sheets on the line. Everything is smelling lovely and fresh.

    I like M&W too, but I don’t buy much there. It always seems so expensive, and I am a hit and miss sewer! :)

  2. zoe says:

    Hi! Your outfit is really cute, plus that fabric you bought is awesome. thanks for your recent comments, the haberdashers in Southend is called Gades and it’s on Clarence Road, off the High Street with Waterstones on the corner. It’s ok, nothing by London standards. There’s a nice bar on Clarence Road though called, wait for it, The Clarence that does nice lunch time grub which is worth a visit if your that way.

    However, if you’re in Leigh-on-Sea, there is another fabric shop/haberdashers there. It’s either called Richardson’s or Belle Fabrics, it changed it’s name and I can’t remember from which to which. Anyways, it’s on the cross roads by the old church. It’s a bit pricey but they have a very nice selection of bits. I used to work in the Pizzeria that is virtually opposite it, so I used to spend lots of time in there if I got to Leigh a bit early for work!

    Happy haberdashing! (I think that should be a verb, To Haberdash!)

    Zoe x

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