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

Designer Fashion For Aviation

Take a walk through the history of aviation and fashion at the SFO Museum’s “Fashion in Flight” exhibit that runs through January 8th, 2017. The show is located in the International Terminal and features 70 women’s uniforms from 1930 to present day, with designs from Christian Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Ralph Lauren, Emilio Pucci and more. The world’s first female flight attendant was hired in San Francisco, so it seemed logical that the show be displayed at SFO.

Check out some similar patterns which are available on the third floor of our brick-and-mortar store. Visit us at 146 Geary Street, just off Union Square in San Francisco, or call our notions department to order them.

 

The Pan Am uniform created by Don Loper was an homage to the shape of a jet. It is a more angular cut than the uniforms of earlier years. Burda 6775 resembles the Pan Am uniform from 1959 and is available in our notions department.

Pan Am 1959 looks like Burda 67751959: Pan Am (Don Loper)

The 1969 Air France winter wool uniform was one of the last designs created by Cristobal Balenciaga before closing his fashion house. The designer fitted each individual flight attendant to ensure proper fitting. It was as if the uniforms were created for a runway premiere. Burda 6669 resembles this uniform and is available in our notions department. The only difference is the pockets on the uniform design.

Air France 1969 looks like Burda 66691969: Air France (Cristobal Balenciaga)

The 1968 United Airlines uniform by designer Jean Louis was created from double knit wool and came in two different colors. He used the double knit wool to create a tighter fitting uniform than previous ones.

United Airlines 1968 looks like Burda 66421968: United Airlines (Jean Louis)

The brightly colored outlandish 1965-6 “Supersonic Derby Outfit” was worn by the flight attendants on Braniff International Airways, with bright green calfskin boots. Most memorable were the Space Bubble helmets that were worn as passengers boarded flights. This uniform, known as the “non-uniform uniform” is similar to Burda 7114, pictured below.

Space Bubble Helmet

Braniff 1966 looks like Burda 71141965-6: Braniff International Airways (Emilio Pucci)

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Britex Fabrics’ Website Redesign is Almost Complete

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We’re gussying up our website! If you experience problems, please email us at service@britexfabrics.com for assistance.

The Britex Fabrics’ website redesign is almost complete, however during this period, there are a few tiny snafus.

All customer accounts are temporarily unavailable. They will come back soon. You can still place your order without logging in. There is an odd mystery message on order confirmations, which is meaningless.

Thank you for your patience!

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Online Novelty Fabric Sale 20% Off Now – 7/11

NOVELTY SALE BLOG POST

Our novelty fabrics often have a beautiful metallic shine which helps them stand out in the crowd! Made of wool, silk, cotton, metallic, nylon, and more, these texturally rich fabrics make beautiful garments. Tweed, chenille, scuba knits, and bouclé novelty fabrics delight us with their contrast of nubby texture and soft hand. Make a swinging bolero jacket, a long mysterious cape, a Chanel-style jacket, or a tailored vest…..in order to add elegance and style to any solid, understated little black outfit. Many of our textured novelty fabrics are blends, lending them a wonderful pliability and sheen.

Quantities are limited, so order your swatches today! This sale good for online fashion novelty fabric categories purchases* only Now – 7/11.
*This online sale does not apply to in-store, email, phone, or Customized Swatch purchases.”

 

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We Love Our Customers

JOan Burgren

Today our customer Joan Burgren stopped by wearing an awesome dress that she created with some of our gorgeous cotton fabric. Joan lives locally in Menlo Park and has been sewing for three years. She drafts her own patterns, including the pattern for the dress she is wearing here. She sews for herself, for fun.

Posted: Hand-Made with Britex Materials, Made by our Customers
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A June Wedding in Paris – We Love Our Customers

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We recently received this message from our customer Denise:

Hi – I just wanted to send you a photo of a wedding gown I’ve just finished for a client, using silk and lace that we purchased at Britex. The bride fell in love with your Chantilly lace, and splurged! There are a few more photos on my page, with more to be added later, especially one of her in the gown. I hope you enjoy!
Thank you so much! She’s getting married in Paris in 2 weeks, I can’t wait to get the pro photos of her in the dress, out in the garden! And, just an FYI, we bought 3 yds of the Chantilly fabric, 15 yds of the lace trim and 15 yds of the Thai Silk – we both couldn’t be happier with everything from Britex! Douglass helped us with the silk and lace, and I know he isn’t online at home, so maybe you could show him the photos? I’d really appreciate it – We can’t thank him enough!

Thanks again,
Denise!

dress

Posted: Hand-Made with Britex Materials, Made by our Customers
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We’re Getting Fancy!

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We’re gussying up our website! If you experience problems, please email us at service@britexfabrics.com for assistance.

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Novelty Wool Challis Print Robe & Hem Facing Tutorial

Finished_Garment

You can never have too many robes! That was my first thought when I saw this amazing wool challis fabric from Britex. Wool challis is such an amazing fabric to work with and this Etro-like paisley print is exactly what I was looking for!

Since I wanted a luxurious robe with a shawl collar and did not have one drafted, I decided to use Vogue Patterns 8888, View A.

Vogue_Patterns_8888

 

Given the pattern repeat on this fabric (an uneven plaid), I ended up having to shorten the robe length by 1 ½” to get it to fit within my yardage. The amount I needed to shorten the robe by was just over the pattern specified hem allowance and I really wanted to stay as close as possible to original length. I thought a narrow hem would look out of place on such a luxe robe so I decided to make a hem facing!

 

Luckily I had decided to forgo pockets and had just enough fabric left to allow me cut hem facings. To calculate the dimensions of the hem facing, I first determined the size hem that I wanted. Keeping with the luxe theme, I decided to go with a generous 2” hem.

 

The hem of the robe is curved so to draft the hem facing, I first traced off the front and back pattern pieces along the line where I had cut the length. Next, I marked up from that line ¼” for the seam allowance to attach the facing to the robe, plus the 2” hem that I wanted to end up and finally another ½” to turn under the raw edge of the fabric and be able to topstitch the hem at 2”. Total width of the hem facing was 2 ¾” (¼” + 2” + ½”). I then traced the side seams of the garment to get the side seams of the hem facing so the facing so it would fit perfectly inside garment.

 

Hem_Facing_Pattern

Once the robe was sewn up, I applied the facings. First I sewed the front and back hem facings together and pressed under the 3/8” that I had allowed to turn under the raw edge (the extra 1/8” would ensure I would be able to topstitch the hem at 2” and capture the facing).

 

Hem_Facings_Prep

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The Outlander Dress Featured Yet Again

If you will be in the L.A. area now through August 14th. Be sure to check out the amazing costumes and set models from the Starz tv series Outlander at The Paley Center. The show is free and features the amazing dress created by Terry Dresbach. Terry created this dress with fabric from Britex Fabrics. Read more about the dress here.

The show runs Wednesdays – Sundays 12:00pm – 5:00pm
Closed Mondays and Tuesdays
465 North Beverly Drive
Beverly Hills, CA.

outlander plus fabric for blog

Admission is FREE and open to the public.

 

Posted: Fabrics
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We Go Bananas Over Our Customers

Hi Britex,
Last week, my Mom and I came to Britex Fabrics in San Francisco (my first trip) and snagged up some Tommy Bahama banana upholstery (say that three times fast).
I identify as a novice, but my mother is a seasoned seamstress and enthusiastically agreed to fabric hunt with me. I had an amazing time taking the “top down” approach through each floor of the store, starting at the fourth floor, and ending on the main floor of the store.
The inspiration here was the Dolce & Gabbana look we saw a block over in their window; with large tropical prints on a classic silhouette. We admired their attention to detail in matching up their panels, but agreed that it would not be a healthy choice for my sanity to attempt such a feat in my first rodeo.
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Thank you for the wonderful experience,
-Julie (pictured) and Terry Stephens
Posted: Made by our Customers
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Online Silk Sale 20% Off 5/31 – 6/13

Silk Sale May 31 June 13

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 is good for online silk categories* purchases only 5/31 – 6/13.

*These sale prices do not apply to in-store, email, phone, or Customized Swatch purchases.

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