The Britex Blog
April 25, 2017 by Britex Fabrics
Archaeologists think that Greenland’s earliest people were master tailors. They used sewing needles that they created from bird bones and threads spun from animal tendons. These tools were advanced enough, that when used over 4,000 years ago by the Saqqaq people, they were able to master hunting on sea ice; and were the first to ever do this. They used an overcast stitch which does not waste material. There aren't many clothing objects found from 4,000 years ago that appear to have been repaired, but shoes and socks wear a lot since they are used so much, which is why it is interesting that part of a sock, discovered by archeologists seems to have been repaired by the Saqqaq people.
April 25, 2017 by Britex FabricsIllustrator and designer Aled Lewis created Toy Stories , a personal project, which became really popular back in 2011. Since then he’s continued creating a mixture of client and personal work, including an epic 30-ft cross-stitch tapestry depicting the Star Wars saga from Episode one through to Episode six. It was shown as part of his solo show – Such Pixels at Gallery 1988 in Los Angeles.
April 24, 2017 by Britex Fabrics
High Summer by Janet Twinn, Great BritainThe European Quilt Triennale is one of the most prestigious textile art shows in Europe and was founded as Biennale in Heidelberg by the late German textile artist Doris Winter. It first debuted in Germany, and has since traveled to other places such as Great Britain and Switzerland. This show is like a museum of quilts!
April 13, 2017 by Britex Fabrics
Recently BBC Arts featured a little bit of history of quilting with creative examples from kids and adults to inspire others to create quilts. Come check out the variety of quilting fabrics we have in stock at Britex Fabrics, or check us out online.
"For early American settlers, quilt-making inspired generations of women to work together stitching and telling stories as they pieced together a new life amidst the harsh conditions of the New World.
It’s more than likely quilting and patchwork came to North America courtesy of the first British families who emigrated there. Now, the craft is experiencing a creative rebirth with over 6,500 members of the Quilters’ Guild, plus many other artists and creative people making wonderful quilts blending the traditional and the contemporary."
For the complete article, please visit the BBC Arts website here.
March 6, 2017 by Britex Fabrics
Beyond the Surface: Worldwide Embroidery Traditions is a show that features embroidered costumes and accessories from around the world, and the garment and textiles featured will have distinct characteristics from the time period and region where they were created. Embroidery, which is the stitching of patterns in cloth with a needle and thread has been a technique used to embellish costumes and textiles for centuries. Embroidery may be used purely as a decorative embellishment, but may also be used to construct a garment as well. The threads, patterns, and/or colors may indicate who created the garment.
"Embroidery stitches, of which there are many different kinds, derive from three basic types: flat, knotted, and linked and looped. Flat stitches, such as running and satin stitches, are individual stitches that lie atop a fabric’s surface and are made without crossing or looping the thread. Knotted stitches, where the thread is knotted upon itself, are used to create raised patterns and textures. Linked and looped stitches, such as chain, are formed by securing a stitch with the following one and are used to create bands of embroidery."
For more information or to order tickets for Beyond the Surface: Worldwide Embroidery Traditions, please visit the de Young website here.
January 31, 2017 by Britex Fabrics
Now on display in the Wais and Knowles Galleries of Textile Arts at the de Young Museum, experience On the Grid: Textiles and Minimalism. This exhibit features textiles from around the world, all which share similar aesthetics found in minimalist works. The universal principles of design, such as symmetry, grids, repetition and simple forms are found in the artworks on display.
"Minimalist art is based upon pre-existing systems that conceive of the artwork in advance of its actual execution. These systems, often mathematical, rely on the repetition of simple forms. Textiles by their very nature comply with these core elements, and textile artists, like the Minimal artists, predetermine the finished work through their selection and processing of materials and in the warping or preparing of the loom. On the Grid examines these processes and further explores both the preeminence of weaving in the textile design vocabulary and its influences on the design of painted and dyed pieces that also conform to Minimalism’s repetition of forms and the grid as patterning devices."
This show expresses "beauty in simplicity", through abstraction, precision, geometry, materiality and the process itself.
For more information or to order tickets, please visit the de Young website here.
January 31, 2017 by Jamie Lau DesignsI’m often drawn to fabrics with texture, particularly fashion novelty fabrics. I particularly love working with metallic brocades when I want to achieve a certain luxury feel. You may recall this Linen Palazzo Pant Jumpsuit style from one of my previous posts. It is definitely a customer favorite! I have been exploring new fabrics to offer it in this season and was happy to find this beautiful, luxurious linen novelty fabric. The metallic finish adds visual interest and elevates the material, yet still meets my criteria for functionality since it is a linen. A brocade would be too thick for the look and ease of this silhouette. Plus, I wanted to work with a fabric that was easy to care for.
January 25, 2017 by Britex Fabrics
Our community partner, San Francisco School of Needlework and Design (SNAD) is a relatively new nonprofit on Union Square whose mission is to promote and share the knowledge and history of hand embroidery. One of SNAD’s activities seeks to include stitchers who aren’t necessarily able to visit the school in person by providing three-time per year Stitch at Home Challenges.
In partnership with Build a Nest, last fall SNAD received a donation of colorful upcycled crystals from Swarovski. (these crystals are available for sale at Britex Fabrics on the third floor of the brick-and-mortar store) Each using a packet of provided crystals, more than 70 needleworkers from 10 countries submitted their take on the theme, Jewels of the Sea, incorporating remarkable creativity. The sparkling exhibition, which includes embellished urchins, dancing jellyfish, tony starfish and an upscale sardine can, will be on display from February 4-March 4, Monday through Saturday, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm, at San Francisco School of Needlework and Design, 360 Post Street, Suite 604, San Francisco. For more information about the school and class schedules, visit sfsnad.org.
This show is on display February 4-March 4, Monday through Saturday, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm
San Francisco School of Needlework and Design
360 Post Street, Suite 604, San Francisco, CA
For more information visit SNAD online.
January 23, 2017 by Britex Fabrics
The textile arts collection at the de Young contains over 13,000 textiles and costumes from all over the world. The collection contains loom-woven textiles, and non-woven fabrics from bark cloth, felt, knitting and object embellishments, including beading and embroidery. Some of the highlights include Turkmen carpets, rare 12th 0 15th century Asian and North Indian silks, European tapestries, and contemporary Bay Area fiber art. The de Young has been known for its 20th-century couture exhibits from the post-World War II era. Some of the memorable pieces on display are by Christian Dior, Cristóbal Balenciaga, Madame Grés, Yves Saint Laurent and Coco Chanel.
One of the interesting exhibits on display now until February 12th, 2017, experience The Sumatran Ship Cloth exhibit in Gallery 31 at the de Young. This exhibit represents the three ceremonial textiles from the Lampung region of south Sumatra, a region of Indonesia where ship imagery is a major theme in woven arts.
"For many Indonesians, the sea represents their lifeblood, and ship imagery reflects social structures, rituals, and cosmological beliefs. These textiles from the Museums’ permanent collection, dating from the 19th and 20th centuries, are being shown for the first time."
For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit the de Young website here.
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.