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Sending Fabric with Love

Remember that you don’t have to use plastic based, foil or even paper wrapping to send a gift at Christmas time because fabric makes the perfect wrapping and can be used over and over again or just made into something by the recipient. It can be secured in place with ribbon too, removing the need for sticky plastic tape as well.

Go green and wrap things up a bit differently this year.

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Dragon Toy Make & Toy Making Resources

Making toys as gifts is enormously satisfying and one of our staff recently got bitten by the bug with this fantastic dragon pattern by Simplicity – number 8715. We hope you like the results!

This pattern is designed to be made with lightweight minke fleece, but we wanted to use a delicious raspberry plush fabric we have in store to make it even more cuddly. This meant a few extra things we had to think about in the making up

  • The cutting layout. We had to think about what direction we wanted the nap to lie on every piece, which meant we couldn’t use the cutting layout in the pattern. (You have to be able to stroke your dragon just like a cat!)
  • Transferring markings. It was not easy to transfer markings from the pattern pieces as the plush fabric did not take markings well (probably also true with fleece). We ended up using tailors tacks to mark the position of the horns and eyes on the head.
  • Securing fabric for sewing. The plush fabric has a tendency to move around when you are sewing because of the pile. The seam allowances on this pattern were pretty small so this mattered more than ever. We solved this by choosing to tack every seam before sewing.

If you are thinking about making some toys yourself to give as gifts or just to have at home, we have lots of items here at Livingstone Textiles. The Simplicity catalogue has a whole section devoted to toys and accessories (patterns are kept in stock), and we also have a good range of books containing toys to sew, knit or crochet. We also stock the following:

  • Hollowfibre toy stuffing in 3 different sizes of bags
  • Pompoms and bells
  • Toy safety eyes in black and amber in various sizes
  • Yarn for knitting and crochet at our Yeovil store
  • Knitting and crochet patterns at Yeovil
  • Felt in a wide range of colours by the metre and as 9″/23cm squares
  • Ribbons and other trims
  • Extra long doll making needles
  • And of course a massive range of fabrics
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Day of The Dead

Funky House Trousers

These groovy trousers were made by Laura at Livingstone Textiles, Bridport and are perfect for slipping into after work and lounging about. They are made from 100% cotton poplin in a simple pull on style and feature a comfy sewn on waistband with a channel for the elastic so it doesn’t spin round. The channel also adds a decorative frill effect at the top of the trousers, creating a feminine touch. There’s a single pocket for your phone at the front and openings in the leg hems so that cord can be added for a tied up effect.

We have lots of this great material in stock at both of our stores and it’s available in three different coulourway; black, pink and yellow. It’s 112cm / 44″ wide and at only £7.50 per metre the cost of making these trousers was under £15, what a bargain!

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Fat Quarter bundles

We have lots of lovely quilting fabrics to choose from here at Livingstone Textiles with all kinds of patterns, colours and designs!

We all know that it takes lots of great fabrics to make a fabulous quilt not just one. Choosing the perfect combinations also takes time, so we make bundles of fat quarters with a selection of fabrics that we think look great together. When we do this, we try to ensure that the fabrics all tone in and work to enhance each other to give you a great selection to work with

All our pre bundled fat quarter packs contain 4 patterned and 2 plain fabrics that are all carefully hand selected in house for you. You can if you like choose to create your own fat quarter bundles and select your own 4 patterned and 2 plain fabrics .

Fat quarters are great for quilting but they can be used for many other things like small project such as sandwich wraps or dolls clothes etc… that don’t require much fabric. We also have lots of individual ones to choose from along-side of the bundles.

Currently we have packs of Christmas fat quarters that contain 5 patterned Christmas fabrics! These are great for making Christmas quilts or Christmas decorations and crafts, we will be keeping these topped up in the run up to Christmas.

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Christmas Fat Quarter Packs

New into our Bridport store are these gorgeous Christmas patterned fat quarters. Perfect for festive craft, they come in sets of 5, and cost £12 a pack. Approximately sized 25cm x 25 cm.

These can be used to make Christmas bunting, tree ornaments, patches, and more. We also have our on-the-roll Christmas fabric available throughout our stores if you are in need of a larger festive fix !

Available in both Bridport and Yeovil stores, and in a variety of fabrics, from now up until December!

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Hat’s The Word !

Bridport Hat Festival 2019 is fast approaching, and with that comes the inevitable pressure to create an astounding garb for your head. Well fear not, as out selection of ribbons, trims, feather and more is sure to offer something to anyone looking to spruce up their headwear.

This piece was brought in on Saturday by a customer, and they used our rainbow feathers (£6.45 /m – 60cm used) and rainbow cord (40p /m) to add some colour and life to this vintage top hat!

We have a huge range of different fabrics and accessories you can add to any headpiece to help prepare you for a Saturday of crazy hat-ness.

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School’s Out

Summer is well under way with all of the long and hot days we’ve been having and we’re very lucky to have the beach so close to enjoy after work or at weekends with family and friends.

Many of us will probably have a holiday planned and we always see a lot of holiday makers in our Bridport shop at this time of year, stocking up on their fabric stash and buying Christmas Fabrics too – don’t forget that these fabrics have 10% off during July as well.

As we move further in to the holiday period, ideas for childrens activities can start to dry up so we suggest you try our new Craft Packs. A bargain at only £2 they all contain various textures and weaves of fabric from samples we are sent by our suppliers. We also put in small end pieces of trim like lace or pompoms plus a reel of thread and usually some vintage buttons or other haberdashery and each of the packs is based on a colour theme so whatever you decide to use it for, everything will work well together. They are excellent for creating textile pictures and small projects like dolls clothing or patchwork mug mats and can be enjoyed by both children and adults alike. We have a strong recycling and reuse ethic here at Livingstones and for us it proved to be an excellent way to make something out of small pieces of fabric that might otherwise go into the dustbin.

Colour Themed Craft Packs

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10% Off Christmas Fabric in July

We know Christmas seems like a long way away and that the sun has only just about come out of hiding, so feels way too early to be thinking about Christmas! But we all know how fast it creeps up each year, so we are getting ready early and giving you a chance to get organised and grab a bargain.

Throughout July we are offering 10% off all Christmas fabrics including Christmas fat quarters. So why not take some of the pressure off at Christmas time. Buying early helps spread the cost and the workload through the year a bit. We have a wide range of festive fabrics and lots of ideas for lovely things to make and you’ll have plenty of time to make them.

This offer applies in both our Bridport and in our Yeovil shops so pop in and have a look.

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Festival Fabrics!

With festival season in full swing and Glastonbury this weeekend we thought we’d get you all in the festival spirit with some of our amazing fabrics that would be perfect for festival outfits!

We have loads to choose from ranging from sparkly sequines to shimmery golds and silvers and summery designs!

Look at these colour revesible sequines these would make a great skirt or dress!

Other shiny materials include shimmery silver mermaid scales, gold and silver stretch fabrics and more sequins!

We also have this UV reactive fabric which changes colour in UV light so during the day when the sun is shining and during the night when the UV lights come out this will transform from black and white into multicolours!!

Other fab fabric includes cotton batiks and shimmery organzas, why not visit us to have a look at our full range and get creative.

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Chambray Now In Stock

We have some rather cool cotton chambray in stock at both our Bridport and Yeovil stores and we think they’ll look really fabulous made into a bag or a denim style jacket.

The cloth is lightweight and has a little stretch in it so would also look great as a jeans style skirt or trousers and you can now buy all three designs  from our online shop by clicking on the links below the videos, but first have a look at how they sparkle!

 

 

 

 

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Floaty Double Gauze Cottons

New in as part of our spring and summer range, we have these lovely double gauze fabrics. Made out of 100% cotton, they have the crinkled cheesecloth look, but the double layer gives more body and means they are not so see-through. We think these fabrics would be lovely as a floaty scarf, or a boho top (hint: we have a pattern sale on during May 2019!). They are also suitable for baby uses – you could make a baby wrap-style carrier or just a more robust baby muslin. At the Bridport fabric shop we have these fabrics in pink and grey, and at our Yeovil fabric shop you can choose from pink and blue. Whichever colour you choose, we think you will love these high quality gauze fabrics.

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The Wild Wild West

Welcome to the Wild Wild West, home of the fastest drawn scissors at dawn.

Livingstone Textiles has two fabulous fabric outlets in the Westcountry bursting with hundreds of metres of gorgeous material ready to be made into lovely projects.  Did you know that as well as stocking fabric for dressmaking and material for making curtains, blinds and cushions, we also stock a number of wipe clean pvc tablings and oil cloths that are not only used for covering tables?

Here you can see that this vintage design of Cowboys and Indians has been made into a waterproof bag or shopping, books or school/college stuff.  It’s been lined with one of our bright and cheerful childrens fabrics featuring orange dinosaurs and has strong canvas straps stitched firmly between the layers.  The whole bag is robust and we think the design has a vintage vibe cool enough for both adults and kids.  The fabric is 130cm wide and costs £8.50 per metre and can be bought at either of our shops in Yeovil or Bridport.

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Quilted Dressmaking Fabrics

We’ve just taken delivery of two great new quilted fabrics in navy and coffee colours to go with our super shiny silver quilted material.

The navy colourway is available in a traditional diamond quilt pattern as is the silver and the coffee colour is a little bit different because it has a quilted flower pattern.  All three are great for projects like a gillet which having no sleeves is quite quick to make up and the fabric can also be made into a funky picnic rug or an anorak if you fancy a more involved project.

The navy and the coffee designs are available in a 148cm width and cost £7.50 per metre and the silver quilted is 110cm wide and costs £9.80 per metre. They are not yet available on our webshop but you can purchase by mail order over the phone or pop in to one of our shops at either Yeovil or Bridport. Clicke here for our contact details.

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How to make a scrunchie

We are now doing scrunchie packs here in Livingstone Textiles Bridport, this is a little pack containing all the fabric and elastic you need to make four hair scrunchies. These would make great gift packs for people learning to sew or getting back into it, they would even be fun little projects for the Easter holidays to keep children busy for an afternoon.

We have written this step by step guide on how to make these with lots of pictures to make it easy to follow!

Here’s how to get making…..

What you get in the pack (makes 4 scrunchies) :

  • 2 long strips of fabric (approx 7cm x 112cm)
  • 1m of elastic
  • 1 Safety pin

What you will need:

  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • Needle (for hand stitching, optional)
  • Iron

Step 1 – Take your long strips of fabric and cut them in half, this will give you the four pieces of fabric that will be your scrunchies.

Step 2 – Fold one of the shorter strips in half lengthways with right sides together (wrong sides out) and press with an iron to keep the fold.

Step 3 – Using a zig zag stitch sew along the edge of the fabric to create a tube.

Step 6 – Overlap the ends of the elastic by around 2cm (1″) then secure them to make a loop. Carefully pin the ends of the elastic together ready to be sewn. Stitch together the ends of the elastic with a zig zag stitch (this will allow the elastic to stretch still), make sure the are firmly secured.

Step 7 – Tuck in the raw edge of one end back inside the tube by 1cm (1/2″) next take the other end with the raw end and poke this inside the tube where you have already folded in, this will complete your loop neatly.

Step 8 – The final step is to stitch the ends together to secure them. This can be done with a machine stitch through both the fabric and the elastic over the join to keep it secured. However, for a slightly neater finish you can hand stitch the seam, this allows you to only stitch through the fabric and not also through the elastic so the seam is less noticeable.

 

 

 

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No Business like ‘Sew’ Business

 

 

Bridport Arts Centre is all ready to kick off its Fashion Week event to celebrate fashion history, costume and the recent upsurge in the popularity of sewing.  Starting on Monday 4th March and running through to Sunday 10th March there is sure to be something to whet your appetite and inspire you to get your sewing machine out.  Livingstone Textiles is very proud to have been able to sponsor this event and during the week we will have a stand in the Arts Centre foyer where you can pick up information about our locations and the products and services we provide as well as a huge selection of fabric and haberdashery to choose from.

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The events consist of talks on pattern drafting, pattern reading, historical fashion and the influences of modern London fashion through the experienced eye of Saville Row tailor, author and tv presenter James Sherwood. Also visiting Bridport to talk about the Royal Wardrobe are the Curators of Bath Museum of Fashion. They will be explaining their current exhibition on modern royal fashion as well as the royal wardrobe of Queen Alexander, Princess Margaret, Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother and our current Queen Elizabeth. Continuing the fashion history theme, Bridport museum will be giving a unique insight into their textile and costume collection dating back 150 years and Arts Centre Director Curtis Fulcher will be giving an informed talk on Tudors and Historical costume. Curtis is an experienced costume designer and maker and has made a couple of recreations to demonstrate his talk with questions. There are also a great range of films to watch about some of the greatest fashion designers that have ever lived and you can find more information about the whole weeks events here

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Dragonfly Bag Accessories

We are so excited to share our new range of bag accessories with you.

Many of you come into the shop with your gorgeous bag creations and over the past twelve months we have focussed on expanding our range of straps and webbing tapes to give you more choice when matching your fabrics to the handles you need.

We also stock D rings in a couple of sizes and some adjusters as well but we have now arranged for you to be able to purchase whole sets of rings, adjusters and sliders in two sizes available in gold or nickel.  Howeve our current favourites are these anodised accessories, also available in two sizes.  Their irridescence is really beautiful and they will certainly be a talking point on any of your creations because they are very unusual.  We’re calling them the Dragonfly range and we also have cute thread scissors in this finish as well.

Beautiful thread snips

Pop in and ask us to show you what we have available and bring your project in too, we love helping you to choose something special that works with your fabric.

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Vintage Patchwork Quilt

This beautiful patchwork was constructed in Wales and gifted to a friend in the 1970’s.
The hexagons are very clearly Laura Ashley cotton dress fabrics from that period and have been beautifully hand pieced together using a technique known as English Paper Piecing or EPP, to create a double bedspread.  One of our makers was asked to remove the nylon bedsheet that had been used as a backing and to replace it with something more suitable.

She decided that a plain white cotton sheeting would look the most fitting as a backing fabric as it compliments the blue and white design of the patchwork top.  She also created a thicker quilt by adding a layer of batting between the top and the sheeting.  The batting used is our Warm & Natural needle punched cotton and it is a completely natural product that does not seperate or bunch up.  It can be machine washed and because the fibres are pure cotton, the needle can pass through the layers quickly and easily when quilting by hand or machine.

The batting can be purchased from either of our shops or you can order it by ringing us and we will ship it out to you the same day.  This product is not currently available to buy on our webshop but we are happy to send out free samples on request.  We stock both cotton and polycotton sheeting in plain black, white and royal blue and can also mail out samples and whole pieces.  We have a few more colours to choose from in the poly cotton.  The quilt was made using an unconventional method where the layers were placed right sides together along with the cotton batting and then bagged out through a gap left in the top.  The gap was carefully top stitched together then the centre of the quilt was marked.  The Hexagon that fell in the centre of the patchwork was then hand quilted followed by random other hexagons.  In this way the quilt could be enjoyed very quickly as a coverlet but added to at any time our seamstress wanted to do a little hand sewing.  And of course January is the perfect time for disappearing under a mountain of fabric layers to quilt on a winters evening.

If you would like to learn more about patchwork and quilting, or just take some basic sewing lessons then have a look at the classes we will be running over the next few weeks.

 

 

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10 % Discount on Christmas Fabrics!

We’re very excited to offer our customers a 10% discount across all of our Christmas fabrics until the end of January 2019.

We still have some beautiful timeless designs in stock that you can now pick up at a great price and squirrel away ready for next autumns projects.  Now is also the time to come and browse our extensive collection of craft books too.  You can spend a little time with yourself and get acquainted with a new project for the cold months ahead.

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Advent calender packs

With the start of advent, and Christmas, fast approaching there is just enough time to get your advent calendar kits and make your very own calendar.

We have a choice of two lovely festive designs available. We have made these up into packs for you with everything you need to make your own, including simple step by step instructions. We also have these available as just the panels of fabric if you would like to use different bindings and backings etc.

 

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Cozy New Fleece Designs

We’ve just got some gorgeous new fleece designs in and they’re super soft!

Lots of new designs are available for snuggly projects and some are reversible.  We’ve even got a couple that feature a different design on each side and the wonderful thing about fleece is that it needs absolutely no hemming at all, making it perfect for quick and easy projects like scarves, hats and ponchos.  Its competitive price means that you can make some quick and easy handmade christmas gifts without breaking the bank.

 

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Christmas Fabric

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The time for Christmas makes is well and truly upon us, and we’re ready for it!

We’ve got a fantastic array of Christmas fabric waiting for you at Livingstones, and with traditional prints, christmassy patterns and rustic scandi to choose from, you’re bound to find exactly what you’re looking for.

See you in store!