Hello fellow sewing enthusiasts! I’m Laura Mae from Lilacs & Lace. It will probably come as no surprise that I am a huge fan of vintage patterns. I adore reproductions, which are generally a little more forgiving because of the added markings and updated instructions, free of damage and strange smells. But there is something wonderful about working with a vintage pattern that is decades old. Some have written notes or postmarks, and even contain newspaper clippings, or facing pieces cut from newsprint. I love to imagine what the original purchaser had in mind when she picked out her pattern!
I chose a beautiful lightweight navy wool for this mail order pattern from the late 1940s. A classic fabric for a classic silhouette!
If the idea of working with a vintage pattern intimidates you, here are a few hints. Click here to read more »
It is sullenly overcast with brief bursts of uncertain sunlight – perfect San Francisco summertime weather. I’m off to meander in North Beach. My plan and my attire are meticulously laid out; worn jeans, a white shirt, a caramel vintage cardigan, red suede desert boots, a café au lait, then a long satisfying prowl through the narrow aisles of City Lights bookstore, a Luciano Special sandwich and an Orangina from Molinari Delicatessen, a Napoleon from Stella’s, and then a languorous mid-day picnic in Washington Square Park. Later, I’ll tip my two-tone caramel and baby blue silk newsboy cap over my eyes and do a little cloud watching, interspersed with reading The Edges of Time from Kay Ryan’s book The Best of It, New and Selected Poems.
“It is at the edges
that time thins.
Time which had been
dense and viscous
as amber suspending
intentions like bees
unseizes them. A
from stacks of
put-off things or
just in back. A
racket of claims now,
as time flattens. A
glittering fan of things
competing to happen,
brilliant and urgent
as fish when seas
All buttons in our ginormous online Plastic Button category are 50% off until July
16th 23rd! There are over 250 styles of plastic buttons, with something for everyone. As Gershwin said, “You like potato, and I like potahto”, but whether you pronounce it plastic or plastique, it all comes down to great-looking plastic buttons. Spiff up your older garments; summer is the ideal time to replace sweater and jacket buttons, and one of the fabulous advantages of plastic buttons is that they are washable. We carry faux wood plastic buttons, chef’s studs, imported Lucite, mock tortoiseshell, chic Italian, toggle buttons, and many other distinctive styles of plastic buttons. Fall sewing season will arrive more quickly than we think; stock up for future sewing projects! (This sale is good for our Online Plastic Button Category only – in-store buttons are not included in this sale. Quantities are limited to stock on hand.)
Hi, I’m Britex Guest Blogger Kristin from skirt as top, and today I’m back to share a dress I made using Britex’s Smoke & Coffee Stretch Cotton, which I reeeally loved working with.
This dress is actually a remix of my favorite dress pattern, Made by Rae’s Washi Dress, and though as I sewed it I was calling it “Frankenwashi,” I came up with a prettier moniker now that it’s all done. Named after one of our favorite coffee shops and alluding to the rich and complex color of the fabric—I’m calling it the Ristretto Dress!
My favorite sewing challenge is to take a proven, great-fitting, well-written pattern and modify it into something new. I do it when I sew for my kids all the time, but haven’t ventured into doing it for myself too often yet.
Click here to read more »
Get it while you can! Our 50% off Selected Fabric Sale ends Monday July 8th. We’re unpacking new imported fabrics at Britex Fabrics, so have just discounted
a slew over 100 of our online fabrics to make room for spring! Online sale fabrics include linens, woolens, novelties, suitings, silks, imported luxuries, daily necessities, cottons and more!
July Online Fabric Sale! Get 20% off all fabrics in the Silk Print Category from Monday, July 1st to Sunday July 14th. We love silk print fabrics……from glossy charmeuse, to featherweight China silk, to form-fitting silk lycra blends. Fall in love with daring color combinations, darling romantic florals, and dangerously superlative geometrics. Sale ends July 14th. Quantities are limited, so shop early for the best selection! (This sale is good for online Silk Print Category fabrics only – in-store silk fabrics are not included in this sale)
Britex Fabrics will be closed on Thursday, July 4th!
I’m excited to join Britex Fabrics as a guest blogger starting this summer. As a San Francisco native, I’ve been shopping at Britex ever since middle school – even before I could sew – and I also had my West Coast book launch party there last December.
In addition to being a fashion designer, I also teach sewing, patternmaking, and draping classes in New York and beyond. I often run across students who are intimidated to sew with silk (and I don’t blame them!). In my inaugural post, I’m going to share some tips on working with silk as I walk you through the process of creating one of my dress designs – a lightweight draped cocoon dress that works great for hot New York summers, but that can also be paired with opaque tights when the temperature drops. Click here to read more »
Karletta, San Francisco’s urbane grandmother and blogger supreme from The Urbane Grandmother, combined Liberty of London cotton lawn, little girls, and a McCalls sundress pattern. Liberty of London cotton lawn is ideal for so many garments, including heirloom quality children’s clothing, men’s dress shirts, pajamas, vintage-style frocks, and more. Liberty is great for travel, as it can be easily washed out in the sink, and dries quickly and nearly wrinkle-free! Britex carries a generous selection of Liberty of London cottons in our SF store; if you can’t make it into the store, utilize our handy Customized Swatch Service so that you can fondle and drool over these luscious fabrics for yourself!
Get 20% off all 80+ fabrics in the Lightweight and Midweight Cotton Categories from Saturday, June 15th to Sunday June 30th. Cotton fabric holds a special place in our fashionable heart. First cultivated 7,000 years ago, cotton is a timeless natural-fiber fabric, whose breathability makes it ideal for many garments. We carry an ever expanding collection of cotton fabric in our online store, including delicate Italian and Swiss voiles, brilliantly colored hand-loomed Guatemalan ikat fabric, Italian and Swiss elegant shirtings, and chic designer cotton fabric. Sale ends June 30th. Quantities are limited, so shop early for the best selection! (This sale is good for online Light and Midweight Cotton Categories fabrics only – in-store cotton fabrics are not included in this sale)