Friday, 14 October 2011

Introducing my new sponsor: Dragonfly Fabrics


Looking at this delicious fan of wools, knits and flannels makes me feel quite giddy - they're perfect for some winter dressmaking. These samples have come from my lovely new sponsor, Dragonfly Fabrics, who started life as a sewing school, but when Dorte found that many of her students also wanted fabrics, she opened Dragonfly Fabrics.

I'm particularly in love with the knit boucle that Dorte stocks. Several years ago I bought a cardigan from Gap in exactly the colour below (the one at the top) and it's such a perfect shade of blue that I now ration the wearing of to minimise its time in the washing machine. I can imagine it making a very lovely blue version of this jacket, although I'd possibly extend the length making it a second time (when I met with Amy and Kate recently we did discuss the psychological difference between making of a jacket and a coat: for me a coat needs full lining, where a jacket requires just the sleeves to be lined (or in some cases, not even that). This fabric is rather wonderful in that it doesn't fray, and so would be easy to work with.


You can find them here...colours I believe from top are blue, melange grey and petrol green, although to my eyes it looks more of a kingfisher blue. As well as the boucle, I also love these wool/cashmere mix fabrics - again, perfect for a coat, but also a dress or trousers (I can imagine Colette Patterns new Clover trouser pattern looking wonderful in the grey), as it's so incredibly soft.


Perhaps Dorte has picked up on my rather sober tastes when it comes to dressmaking, as the sample fabrics that arrived this week were all in muted shades of grey and blue. However, if you're sewing for children or have tastes a little more extrovert than my own, then you'll also find a whole host of wonderful corduroys, soft flannels, adorable jerseys (look out for the toadstools) and wools and some completely stunning velours from Westenstoffe on the website. There are some people that I know will also be delighted to find a good range of organic fabrics - I love the red and pink flowered print which doesn't look overtly wholesome as some organic fabrics can.

Finally, the range of linens is exceptional. I use linen in a lot in the patterns that I sell and so have often had emails asking if I could suggest a supplier. I've always bought mine from Ikea in the past (or that should read, dear Joanne has always bought my linen from Ikea for me in the past), which in the absence of you all having a friend like Joanne, isn't overly helpful as Ikea isn't easily accessible for everyone. So it's super to find a supplier of linen offering such a wide range of colours. Admittedly it's a little more expensive than Ikea, but comparable (if not more reasonable) than the Cloth House in London where I've also purchased linen in the past.

On price, one of the first things I noticed when I discovered Dragonfly Fabrics was that they don't offer a particularly 'budget' range of fabrics. However, I'm becoming increasingly convinced that when it comes to handmade clothing it's worth investing in beautiful fabrics, especially if you've made a toile and are confident you'll love the finished garment. The amount of time and effort that goes into dressmaking is huge and it's disappointing if the fabric doesn't reflect the quality of workmanship that's gone into the finished garment. I also think that there's nothing wrong with feeling a little in awe of the fabric that you've chosen to work with - it certainly encourages me to take my time and to make extra effort to achieve a better finish; binding seams and putting in contrast facings or pocket linings. Having spent the last day or so stroking the lovely samples I've been sent I feel completely confident in saying that these fabrics aren't overpriced, but are just incredibly good quality. I do hope you like them too.

What are your plans for the weekend? My husband has been building something special for us in the back garden and after a test run last Sunday, I'm looking forward to possibly trying it out for real this weekend...I'll give you a clue...it involves fire and pizza...both things that set my pyromaniac, pizza-loving husband's heart aflame. His pizza oven's completion follows literally months of research, visits to reclamation yards and building. I can't wait to share some photos with you next week. 

Florence x 

10 comments:

  1. Having seen and felt these fabrics in Dorte's beautiful studio I can guarantee they are gorgeous! I already have a couple of projects lined up in my head for when I resurrect my (very limited!) dressmaking skills.

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  2. What a great site, Florence. Lovely flannel and those wool boucles are such great colours. Better lock away the credit card!

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  3. Lucky girl! I love Dragonfly Fabrics, from my one purchase so far, and even blogged with great enthusiasm about how beautifully wrapped it was when it arrived!

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  4. The blues are so tempting!
    But interestingly it was reference To the pizza oven that caused me to comment. My builder-partner has also built us one this summer and we have not been disappointed. The great thing is that hes also taken ownership of developping his dough and pizza sauce recipes, so it's a treat all round. I'll look on with interest to see how you get on. We're investigating best wood to use ( having identified limitations of standard DIY bags for fires) and how to make the most of the whole heat by cooking all day. Enjoy yours!!

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  5. Congrats on your new sponsor - their fabric range is gorgeous, nice to see a site dedicated to dressmaking fabrics rather than just quilting/crafting fabrics. Can't wait to see what you make. (I'm attempting to start my winter cape coat this weekend, cutting out the wool/cashmere blend fabric....eeek!)

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  6. Thanks for including the organic stuff, Florence! This pizza oven sounds AMAZING and I may be able to interest my boyfriend in your blog if you write about it...

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  7. Absolutely fabulous wool boucle. Thank you Florence for drawing attention to this lovely fabric and the website. (I'm off on my first ever knitting course this weekend learning how to design knitting patterns and adapt new lace stitches to incorporate in the design)

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  8. I have been making a skirt with the petrol blue boucle - it has such a rich warm winter colour and feel to the fabric. All Dorte's fabrics are beautiful to the touch - I am eyeing up some of the bright flannels for some pj bottoms for my nieces for Christmas.

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  9. Beautiful fabrics! I can imagine the boucle making a lovely 3/4 sleeve jacket or 3/4 sleeve simple swing coat. I always seem to associate boucle with 60's styles! Looking forward to seeing pictures of the pizza oven. I think this will be the start of the next big garden trend (I want one!)

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  10. So lovely that so many of you have already discovered Dragonfly and can attest to its loveliness.

    Wag Doll how did you get on? I too have been coat making this weekend.

    Nina... there should be plenty of that to follow!

    Catherine - how exciting - I hope it was good. Where did you go for it?

    Anonymous - yes, that's odd - I associate them with 60's inspired creations too.

    Thank you so much for your comments. x

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Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a message - it's always really lovely to hear from people.

I now tend to reply within the comments section, so please do check back if you've asked a question or wish to chat.

Florence x

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