User Archives: Britex Fabrics
The Britex Blog
August 22, 2016 by Britex Fabrics
August 19, 2016 by Britex Fabrics
Britex Fabrics loves everything about silk and it shows. Silk is a natural fiber that is usually derived from the mulberry silkworm’s cocoons. Silk has it all; it is smooth, soft, strong, and lustrous. Silk is ethereal for a summer frock, and just as smart for a winter frock-coat lining. We delight in traipsing about to find you the most chic Italian silks, natty necktie silks, brilliant jacquard silks, and airy sheer silk chiffons.
Quantities are limited, so order your swatches now! This sale good for online silk category purchases* only 8/23 - 9/5. *This online sale does not apply to in-store, email, phone, or Customized Swatch purchases.
August 19, 2016 by Britex Fabrics
At Britex Fabrics we believe it is important to know your fabrics. Knowledge of how fabric came into being is equally as important, and can be an endlessly fascinating topic. Enter Geana Seaburger, with her workshop Warp X Weft: Textile 101. Geana, a former Britex assistant buyer and marketing whiz, is an Oakland-based maker with a design studio,and owner of GDS Clothgoods. Although she is currently making aprons to order-and quite successfully-her passion seems to be textiles from the ground up, literally.
Attend her workshop Warp X Weft: Textile 101 at Britex Fabrics and you will hear, touch, smell, and see cotton, linen, wool, and silk in their most natural form. These natural fibers each have very different characteristics, which becomes evident the more you handle them.
In the classroom, she encourages students to touch, poke, prod, and pull apart a cotton ball, flax (linen fiber), wool fibers, and silk. Each fiber has differences in length, texture, strength, and beauty.
"Typically with fibers, length corresponds with quality... "
As she talks, students rip or pull pieces of the natural fibers and cut swatches from the corresponding finished fabrics, then glue them on sheets of paper, labeling them and taking notes. This exercise helps to illustrate the process that these fibers must go through to become fabrics. Students swatch different examples of fabric weaves, and learn that the sheen of a fabric is controlled by the type of weave it is woven into/from.
Terms such as hand, sheen, drape, resilience, wicking properties, protein vs. animal fibers, plain weaves, and matte vs. reflection, are thrown around the room as the students handle and catalog examples of each of these. Synthetics and man made fibers are also discussed.
"If we're interested in textiles, it's good to know the whole story."
It is a given that Seaberger is very passionate about her subject matter. She touches on environmental matters as a part of her discussion, at one point saying "conventional cotton is terrible for the environment" in the way that it is produced. She praised polyester for its ability to "imitate so many natural fibers," and described one of the fabric swatches she used as an example of a synthetic blend as a "coarse wool and yucky acrylic."
Her workshop is given practically every month and tickets sell out weeks, sometimes months ahead of time.
August 18, 2016 by Britex FabricsLance Victor Moore and Emily Payne, wearing masks designed by Lance for Emily's fashion line Leathertongue. These masks will be worn by models for PROJKT MAIDEN LANE, a Britex Fabrics event on September 23, 2016.
As September approaches, we're gearing up for the Britex Fabrics fashion show, PROJKT MAIDEN LANE, featuring Project Runway designers Kini Zamora, Richard Hallmarq and Emily Payne (our own Britex alumna and Project Runway All Star) and Under the Gunn designer Rey Ortiz. Showing new pieces for her edgy Leathertongue line, Emily's focus is a loose-lined, non-gender-specific look featuring painted fabrics by designer Mary Rosenberger.
Emily also commissioned a series of unique masks created by artist Lance Victor Moore, (L.V.M.) who utilized a different organic material in each exquisite piece. Emily's mask in the picture above, for example, features gilded branches gathered in Golden Gate Park, while Lance's look sports gilded starfish arm tips. Lance explains, "Emily contacted me in July asking if I'd be interested in making some masks for her runway show–her line is very ungendered, and the masks are designed to give the models an anonymous, androgynous look." Enhanced with trims and hardware (most of which can be found in our Third Floor notions department), the masks are crafted from leather, animal bones, tusks, shells, wood and even porcupine quills: anything that "had a sharp, spiky feel," as Lance puts it.Lance holds one of the masks he made. He used a variety of materials such as chain, open work metal, studs, and thorns that he covered in chrome powder coat. The mask is attached to the head with an elastic band across the back of the head.
Lance and Emily's collaboration is unforgettable–we're so proud to feature their work in PROJKT MAIDEN LANE! We'll be posting photos as soon as we can after the event.
Lance describes the materials he used as things like "leather, stamped metal, beads, chain, horn, shell, wood, glass, crystal, antler, etc., along with airbrushing, hand painting, sculpting and burnishing metal."
We asked him what his favorite mask is. "My favorite three masks are the wood one, the antlers, and the gold shell one. "
Check out Lance Victor Moore's new website coming soon.
August 11, 2016 by Britex Fabrics
We have this vintage circa 1920s-30 bobbin lace that we roar for! We have over 200 vintage lace trims on our third floor at the bridal counter. Many other animals, and lifestyle activities, such as tennis are represented. As well as traditional floral and geometric designs. In addition to vintage lace trims we have hundreds of modern lace trims and ribbons on the third floor of our brick-and-mortar store. Many of these trims are also available online.
To learn more about vintage lace and vintage lace trims, please visit the third floor of our brick-and-mortar store, or if you're not local, please chck out our excellent selection online.
Additionally, an excellent resource for vintage fashion enthusiasts is available through the San Francisco Public Library. This includes The Vogue Archive 1892 - present, Harper's Bazaar Archive 1867 - present, Women's Wear Daily Archive 1910 - present, The Design & Applied Arts Index 1973 - present, as well as The Women's Magazine Archive: Homes & Gardens 1922 - 2005 Good Housekeeping 1885 - 2005 and Redbook 1903 - 2005.
August 9, 2016 by Britex Fabrics
Recently, the New York Times wrote an article about the incredible bedazzling of the leotards, worn by the United States Olympic Gymnastics Team this year. According to the article, in 2008, when Nastia Liukin won the gold medal in the individual all-around at the Olympics in Beijing, her leotard had just 184 crystals on it, whereas, in 2012, when Gabby Douglas won the same event in London, her leotard had 1,188, and this year, many of the Team USA leotards will have close to 5,000 crystals on each. Ironically, the amount of crystals on the U.S. Gymnastics Team's Leotards has been growing along with the point system by which they are scored. In 2006, the Assessment System went from a 1-10 scale to an infinite one. Be sure to check out our amazing Crystals by Swarovski™ wall on the third floor of our brick-and-mortar store in San Francisco.
Leotards, which were once called maillots, were popularized in the late 1800's by Jules Léotard, a pioneer acrobat, known for the flying trapeze. In the mid-twentieth century, leotards took on a more modern shape, where they began to fit the human form, and were less baggy than they had been in the past. As recently as the 1970s, leotards were made from polyester, and it wasn't until the early 1980s that they began being manufactured from Lycra. With this new material came bold graphics, such as the stars and stripes on the side of the leotard worn by Mary Lou Retton and the rest of the U.S. gymnastics team during the 1984 Olympics.
Currently, the U.S. Gymnastics Team's Leotards are made of a shiny Lycra-like fabric called Mystique, which in addition to the crystals, adds even more sparkle to them. Despite being judged on their performance alone, and not by their outfits, many of the gymnasts like to feel good, and sometimes the added sparkle helps.
On the second floor of our brick-and-mortar store, you can find shiny nylon Lycra, similar to the Mystique fabric used in the manufacturing of the U.S. Olympic Gymnastics Team's Leotards.
Whether you are creating an outfit for your next circus act, trip to Burning Man, costume for a dance competition or your kid's dance recital, we have an amazing selection of Lycra and crystals available in almost any color, in our brick-and-mortar store.
To order Lycra swatches for your next project, please use our Customized Swatch Service.
August 9, 2016 by Britex Fabrics
Wool fabric from Britex Fabrics is perfect for every season. Summer-weight wools make elegant pleated slacks, wind-resistant boiled wools are perfect for snow-angel expeditions, tricotine is retro-glamorous for a 1950's gored skirt, and everyone craves a snappy bespoke double-breasted pin-striped jacket for year-round urban flair.
Quantities are limited, so order your swatches now! This sale good for online wool category purchases* only 8/9 - 8/22. *This online sale does not apply to in-store, email, phone, or Customized Swatch purchases.
August 4, 2016 by Britex FabricsThis truly sensual process is fascinating to watch, from ripped straps of fabrics placed in the loom, to watching the weaving process, to finished garment. Filmed in a seductive manner what is Chanel, if not seductive?Britex Fabrics carries similar Chanel-like tweets, boucle', and other textural beauties such as this.We are two doors away from the Union Square Chanel boutique, and we love to study their Geary Street windows for inspiration and hints of the latest look from Paris.
August 2, 2016 by Britex Fabrics
Announcing free Britex buttons with purchase in our brick and mortar store! A new staff favorite is the new houndstooth one. Collect all six of these awesome buttons. Come in and make a purchase and any one of them can be yours!
July 29, 2016 by Britex Fabrics
(INVENTORY IS SOLD OUT)
Double bouquet fabric panel (as featured on Outlander)
is available for $99in our brick-and-mortar store, on the second floor in our home furnishing fabric department, or by phone.
If you are interested in ordering a panel, please contact Joie or Dina at 415-392-2910 as soon as possible, as we have limited stock available.
Remember the fabric we featured that Terry Dresbach used to design that amazing dress in the Outlander Starz official trailer and all over the Internet? Well, we originally thought that we wouldn’t be able to get it back in stock, but the manufacturer has made it for us, and we have it available for the general public. The dress is made of a heavy, luxurious furnishing fabric produced in Turkey by one of our favorite sources. Unusually, the floral pattern does not run up the roll, but was designed in panels. Each yard and 1/8 panel contains 2 full bouquets of flowers, and is $99 . We are generally wary of carrying panels like this in the store, because the square design tends to limit application to pillows, ottomans and the like–but we absolutely fell in love with the colors and were confident that our customers would feel the same!