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Information and tutorials for folks interested in antique Italian lacework, nouveau fashion, sewing techniques and much much more!

The Britex Blog

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  • A Different Kind of Shirt By Guest Blogger Jamie (MaleDevonSewing)

    September 7, 2016 by MaleDevonSewing

    As you may know, I love shirts. Not just wearing them but of course making them too. Although shirt styles are all fairly similar (well at least for men) you can always have fun playing with the details: Different collars and cuff shapes, placket styles and of course fun fabric and buttons. So when I was asked to make a shirt for my guest blog post, I jumped at the opportunity. I wanted to do something a little different though; something a bit wild and fun. Over the years I have made countless different shirts but there was one particular style I had yet to make: The Guayabera. You don’t see many over here in the UK but I have always been drawn to the relaxed yet precision aspects of such a shirt: The pleats, pintucks, curved yoke and four pockets were enough for me. The fabric had to make a statement too. It had to be bright with a fun design so what better than a cotton print with pink with little birds!   IMG_2171 I drafted the pattern myself, opting for a normal collar with stand, a triple point curved yoke, pintucked fronts and back with a central double pleat down the spine. Four pocket ‘through’ the pintucks and a cuffed hem. Before cutting the double pleat and two rows of pintucks were added to a piece of fabric that would form the back. The pleat was simple enough but I had to carefully measure the position of the pintucks so they would meet the pointed yoke.   IMG_2179

  • Online Sale 20% Off All Online Cotton Category Fabrics 9/6 - 9/19

    September 6, 2016 by Britex Fabrics

    COTTON FABRIC SALE Sept 6 Sept 19 2

    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, nubby couture-inspired cotton tweed fabrics, travelable cotton-lycra blends, and chic designer cotton fabric.


  • Yum Yum Couture

    August 31, 2016 by Britex Fabrics

    header   Britex Fabrics customer and YumYum couture fashion designer Miriam Shepard from Chevy Chase Maryland designs and handcrafts contemporary haute couture garments in her studio. She drafts her own original patterns, and has been sewing for 15 years. At first glance you might think that youa re looking at a life sized mannequin wearing a gown, but each design is created for fashion dolls ranging 15 - 17 inches in height. Each design is a one of kind or one of a limited edition. Miriam's creates the outfits to fit very specific types of dolls from various doll manufacturers such as Tonner Doll Company and Integrity Toys. She does this so that each design will exactly fit the doll it is created for. Each design is for sale, and many of them end up in the hands of doll collectors who have commissioned work from Miriam. YumYum provides a wide variety of garments, including gowns, dresses, blouses, jackets, coats, skirts, pants, and accessories. Below is a couture dress which Miriam created from a limited edition 100% silk Georgette floral print which she purchased at Britex Fabrics. Although Miriam purchased the last of this particular silk fabric, we have over 200 other silk fabrics online to choose from. Now is an excellent time to order Silk fabric since all online silk category fabrics are on sale now through September 5th.  

    Britexruffles


  • Make an Spiffy Ironing Board Cover

    August 30, 2016 by Britex Fabrics

    ironing-board-cover

    Don't suffer the doldrums of ironing day needlessly! The talented Christina from The DIY Mommy blog in Canada has a tutorial for making a spiffy new ironing board cover to make this chore a little more easy on the eyes. This easy-to-sew home project only takes 1 1/2 yards of cotton fabric. We want to make it with this Italian print of Gerber daisies on a navy blue background -- so moderne (and on sale online as of September 6th.)

     


  • Top Runway Trends for Fall 2016

    August 30, 2016 by Britex Fabrics

    If you like to keep up with the latest fashion trends and are a sewist who is inspired by current runway fashion, here is the forecast for the 12 hottest fashion trends for the fall according to Stylecaster.com. Included on their list is fur and faux fur, ruffles, shades of tan, gold metallic fabrics, bomber jackets, turtlenecks under dresses, plaid overcoats, dramatic off the shoulder blouses, dusty pink with bright yellow, pant suits with bold prints, floral prints and chokers. While all the necessary materials to create these trends are available at Britex Fabrics, today we will focus on three. Gold Metallic

    stylecaster 1www.stylecaster.com

    Bright metallic fabrics, especially gold are the stand out fabrics gracing the runways this fall. What was once a trend for the less hip, metallic fabrics are all the rage. Britex Fabrics carries many fabrics that are similar to those used in the creation of some of the latest runway designs. This gold metallic and black fabric is available on the second floor of our brick-and-mortar store, it is a polyester and Lycra blend, it is 45" wide and $18.99 / yard. metallic fabric 1 polyester / Lycra blend 45" wide $18.99 / yard   Dusty Pink and Yellow

    dusty-pink-yellow-trendwww.stylecaster.com

    At first glance, this color combination seems more appropriate for spring, however designers such as Ulla Johnson and Delpozo used turtlenecks and coats to give a more autumnal feel. We have an array of fabrics in Dusty pink and bright yellow, including wool, silk, linen and cotton. dusty pink and yellow Pictured above are two fabrics available in 100% cotton on the second floor of our brick-and-mortar store. 100% cotton 60" wide Dusty pink $18.99 / yard 100% cotton 44" wide Bright yellow $15.99 / yard

  • Online Sale 20% Off All Online Silk Category Fabrics 8/23 - 9/5

    August 29, 2016 by Britex Fabrics

    SILK FABRIC SALE Aug 23 Sept 5 2

    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.

     


  • New Stunning Italian Silk Prints!

    August 26, 2016 by Britex Fabrics

    From birds playfully flitting with butterflies, to Ikats, to sequined butterflies with dots, to geometrics, to growl-tastic jewel-toned animal prints, to charmeuse to crepe de chine we have a slew of gorgeous new imported silk prints in our online store. Many of these have limited yardage, so we encourage you to buy them now, before they are forever gone.

     

    SILK-PRNT-201-3

     

    SILK-PRNT-196-3


  • We are Closed on Labor Day!

    August 22, 2016 by Britex Fabrics

    labor_day_new_york_1882

    Britex Fabrics will be closed Monday, September 5th for Labor Day.


  • 20% Off All Online Silk Category Fabrics 8/23 - 9/5

    August 19, 2016 by Britex Fabrics

    Silk Sale August 23 September 5 for Blog

    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.


  • WARP X WEFT: Textile 101

    August 19, 2016 by Britex Fabrics

    WARP WEFT HEADER

    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... "

     

    IMG_4195

    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.

     

    IMG_4191

    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.

     

    IMG_4180

    Upcoming Workshop Dates
    Saturday, September 10th 10:30am - 12:30pm
    Saturday, October 1st 10:30am - 12:30pm

     


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