I'm so excited to introduce my newest sponsor, The Village Haberdashery, run by the lovely American-on-English-shores, Annie. Annie only opened her online shop this month, but, like me, you may already have been a reader of Annie's lovely blog, The Daily Stitch. I mention her blog, firstly, because if you haven't read it, then I think you'll love it, and secondly, because when you scroll through it you'll know just how perfect it is that Annie has started a fabric shop because she is so very passionate about fabric and sewing (and I've just discovered that she's even a founding member of the recently established London branch of the Modern Quilt Guild). Annie has recently been sharing some peeks of what she saw when she went overseas to the Kansas Spring Quilt Market and my eyes felt like they had extended out on crisp green celery stalks when I saw these Heather Ross prints. And I then proceeded to fall in love with every fabric line in this whole post - I'm keeping my fingers crossed for dressmaking weight fabrics in some of them).
Anyway, my custom with new sponsors is that I enjoy picking out a few of my favourite things to share with you, however, Annie's shop is a haberdashery in the true sense of the word - she sells everything from knitting wool, to wadding; bodkins to button hole scissors; needlework supplies to fabric; patterns to pins and even seamstress-orientated gifts - so this post could be long. I've fallen quite loopily in love with so many of the unusual things in her shop that I'm not sure I can edit my selection to make this brief, so please join me in nibbling on a biscuit as we take a long, hard swoon around her shop together.
Firstly, I adore this mug. For one who will read a thesaurus for pleasure, rather than hunting through it with a specific purpose, dictionary definitions offer a similar pull of loveliness for me that I can imagine many of you may share with me - especially when the definition pertains to sewing. My photograph is a little small, so I shall save you the squinting and tell you that it reads: Seamstress ('semstris): a creative and intelligent women engaged in the noble art of clothes making: both at home and in the workplace. I think this may be stretching the official dictionary definition, but I love it.
I was both surprised and delighted to find that Annie has chosen to stock Anna Maria Horner's tapestry kits as I'm yet to spot these anywhere else in England. These kits are an odd thing as, like many sewers, I don't think I've ever previously considered branching out into tapestry, but the familiarity of the images within the tapestry kits which are magnifications of some of the florals which appear in Anna Maria's much loved fabric ranges, make them feel only a small leap away from sewing. They come complete with all the necessary yarn and a pre-printed canvas which makes them feel an unintimidating possibility for feeling cornerishly 'new girl' about giving it a try. Annie has four varieties of tapestry kit and you can find them here.
Staying on the kit theme, when Annie sent me a link to her new site a month or so ago, I fell in love with this dress that Annie is offering in kit form - it's the Oliver + S family reunion dress teamed with this delicious blue Rock Garden print and even comes ready to buy with buttons and thread - I think this ready-to-go way of presenting things is so lovely, especially for a new seamstress who may feel overwhelmed by the gathering of supplies that must take place before embarking on a project.
While rather utilitarian, I feel compelled to tell you that, as well as standard quilt waddings, Annie also stocks insulating wadding - this is something that quite a few people have written to me asking for a stockist of after I mentioned it in my tutorial to make drinks coasters. Because it's heat-resistant, insulating wadding is also perfect for using inside oven-gloves, coasters, heat pads or hot water bottle covers and it's very easy to sew through. Hurrah!
Annie stocks an extensive range of knitting and crochet yarns and notions, which you can find here and is currently offering 15% off all DMC embroidery floss (simply enter FLOSS15 at the checkout), but as you may have guessed, my main excitement lies with what fabrics she's chosen to stock.
As you know, from both my last post, and many others, I have a fox fascination so I adore the Walk in the Woods range the Annie stocks (convention says that it was a wolf who accompanied Little Red Riding Hood into the forest, but I'm absolutely positive this is a fox, possibly a protector from the wolf who appeared at a later point). Isn't it glorious!
Annie kindly sent me some of her favourite print from the Maman collection as she didn't feel photographs were conveying quite how it felt in your hands. Although this wasn't a range that I'd previously felt overly excited by (as I am by many of Cloud 9's ranges - Alegria is arriving at the Village Haberdashery at the end of this week - hurrah!). However, Annie is right - this fabric needs to be felt to be truly fallen in love with. The Maman range is printed on Cloud 9's premium base cloth, but I don't think I'd ever really appreciated what this was - it's actually a 200 thread count sheeting, so it has the feel of expensive crisp bed linen and actually gives a crisp rustle as you drape it. It is divine. I think it would hold its shape wonderfully and so as well as nursery makes, instinct tells me that it would be an amazing choice full a full-skirted dress and I was hit with a little moment of longing when I felt it and admired the lovely print as I could just imagine how delicious my own little girl's chubby toddler self would have looked as she went about the industry of playing wearing the Maman dress that momentarily appeared in my head. You can find the rest of the Maman range here (I feel certain that even an adult could get away with the Chinoiserie print if she wanted a sundress with a little 1950s twirl to it - what do you think?).
I fear I may lose you if I discuss every range in the shop, so do go and discover what else there is there. But finally, I want to also point you in the direction of Annie's ribbons - she stocks a really unusual twill in fantastic colours (although guiltily, my favourite is actually the cream, which I think looks so elegant).