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Foam Offcuts

We cut sooooo many pieces of foam for our customers at Livingstone Textiles and we have a re-use or re-cycle policy where we every member of the team makes maximum effort to minimise waste. Part of our efforts to do this include recycling all of our packaging, both plastic wrappings and cardboard and also our foam.

When the foam is delivered to the shop it arrives in enormous sheets measuring over 2 metres square! This is manhandled up the 3 flights of stairs to our roof where it is carefully unrolled and laid out for use. We then cut your requirements from the sheets in a way that creates as little waste as possible. Obviously, you all want different sizes and shapes, from window seats to sofa cushions and dining chairs to campervan beds so we always generate odd pieces that we cannot make use of. These offcuts are saved up and the really small and hopeless pieces are returned to the foam company where they are chopped up into little pieces and used to make the coloured chip foam that we also supply, but we also have other pieces left over that can be quite a useful size and because reuse is even better than recycling,  we pop all of these into a basket that we put outside our shop door every day that we are open. Folks can then come and choose what they need and make use of it when packing parcels for safe transit, stopping draughts and wedging into gaps in sofas or caravan beds for better comfort. We only request a donation that we collect for Harbour House in West Bay, for the benefit of the residents.  Follow the link for more information on our foam and services we can offer you.

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Zebra Fabric Transforms Junk Shop Chair

One of our customers has had our upholstery department transform this lovely junk shop chair using our delicious zebra pattern chenille fabric. We think the finish is just fantastic, and you can see how the upholsterer has centred the fabric carefully so the zebra pattern looks just right. This quirky low slung no-leg chair is now updated with an equally quirky fabric, giving a totally individual finish which will look amazing in the customer’s home.

Even better, a project like this will not take much fabric – a single metre of fabric is often enough depending on the pattern. If you are inspired to try a project like this yourself you can now purchase the fabric directly on our website by mail order, by clicking on the picture below.

See also our full range of online upholstery fabrics here

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Interlined Curtains

Curtains made with interlining or ‘bump’ are much fuller and more luxurious than those made with just lining alone.
The bump literally ‘bumps up’ the fabric making it thicker and has the added quality of providing a layer of insulation against cold windows.
Interlined curtains are an especially popular choice in a house with older windows and those with listed building status but are also used in more modern homes where an appearance of luxury is required.
The window size must be taken into account when considering interlining because they can easily swamp a room with too much volume. The fullness of the finished curtain also has to be taken into account but don’t worry because all of the staff working across Livingstone Textiles are trained to advise you in the appropriate way. Find out more here.

 

 

When we make your interlined curtains we use a more involved method of making where the interlining is first locked into place with Herringbone stitch under the side turns of the fabric and along the seams of any joins.

A picked hem is then worked through both the interlining and into the show fabric where a tiny line of equally spaced stitches will be barely visible.

 

Finally, the pencil pleat heading tape is sewn into position making the curtains look really plump and luxurious.

You can buy this elegant grey bird fabric in our shops and throughout September you will receive free curtain lining* with any curtain or blind order.

 

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Free Curtain Lining Offer

We are once again offering all of our customers free lining with any curtain or Roman Blind order placed throughout September.

The offer is for FREE poly cotton lining on any size of blind or curtains .

If you wish to choose a different lining, you can still take advantage of this great offer because we will simply subtract the price of poly cotton lining from any that you’d like instead.

This offer is running from both our Bridport store and our Yeovil one so pop in and talk to us with your measurements and we’ll work out a quote with you.

This is an ideal time to get your house smart and cosy, ready for Autumn and Winter.

Shop a selection of our fabrics here

 

 

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A favourite chair gets some beauty treatment

This lovely old G-plan chair was given a quirky and stylish makeover by one of the fabulous upholsterers in the workshop attached to Livingstones.

The customer chose this richly-coloured upholstery fabric, which is a personal favourite of mine. It’s a playful geometric woven fabric in gorgeous colours that works equally well in a classic or modern setting, and will definitely stand the test of time.

While in the workshop this treasured piece of furniture was also repaired to stabilise the joints and the wood was polished to retore it to its full beauty.

If you’ve got a piece of furniture that you would like to see reupholstered and bought back to life by a skilled professional, then do come into the shop to discuss it. We’ve got a huge range of fabric to choose from, both to order and on the roll, and we’ll work with you to ensure you get exactly the look you want.

 

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Tools For Self Reliance

You may already be aware of the sewing machine repairs and maintenance servicing that we offer our customers to help them keep their machines in tip top condition but you may not be aware of what might happen to your machine when its past its best and you decide that its not worth throwing any money at.  Many of our customers leave their old machines with us when they’re done with them and we’re very proud to support communities in Africa to help reduce poverty by working with Tools For Self Reliance.

This marvelous organistaion works to enpower communities by providing tools and the training they need in order to earn a living and create a positive impact within their communites.  All of your unwanted and broken sewing machines and overlockers are collected by one of their volunteer tool collectors when we have a little herd of them.  All of the serviceable parts are then used for refurbishing or repairing other machines by even more volunteers in the UK before being sent out to places like Ghana, Malawi, Sierra Leone, Uganda and Zambia as well as many more.  Once the machines are out in Africa, they are used by people like Uma Jalloh as she trains as a tailor and learns the skills that she needs to contribute to her brothers household.  Uma escaped an arranged marriage at 14 and had never been to school until she got involved with TFSR.  You can read her story and others here. 

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Livingstone Textiles has worked closely with Tools for Self Reliance in Southampton for many years now.  If you would like to get involved with volunteering, you can find out more here  You could also share this page to your Facebook Feed and help us to raise their profile in the UK.  Alternatively, just hand in your old and broken machines and we’ll make sure they get into hands that will really put them to good use.

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Curtain Makers

At Livingstone Textiles we are proud to have excellent curtain makers working for us.

In Bridport we have 3 makers covering West Dorset, one in the popular town of Beaminster, one in Charmouth and one in Abbotsbury.  They will come and measure up for your new curtains and blinds, discuss your requirements for soft furnishings and will happily show you samples as well as books of fabric.  They will also quote you for box cushions and window seats on request.  Call us on 01308456844 to arrange a visit. We have a curtain maker working from our Yeovil shop as well, please call 01935422631 to arrange an appointment if you live in the South Somerset area.

Dress Curtains with trimmed Roman Blind

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Embroidered Amulet Fabric

Combining stripes with a pattern is always a good thing but its not alwasy an easy thing.  We have a smart hanger that does the thinking for you and its put together in colour blocks so the only thing you have to do is match it to your colour scheme.

One of our customers has bought a brand new house in Axminster and has a new grey suite of furniture.  She has lime green cushions to cheer it up but wanted something bright but smart at the windows.  We helped her to select from this hanger and she chose the pink combination to be made up into Roman Blinds for a large bay window.

The main fabric is called amulet and it is all embroidered onto a linen look cotton.  The lattice is worked in long grey stitches and the circles are heavily embroidered in a pink spiral.  Edging the embroidered fabric with pink the woven stripe borders makes the blind look smart and picks out the pink embroidery.  The maker lined the blinds in stone lining and used the stab stitch method to hold the materials together.  This method can be used when embroidery might make it hard to achieve very straight stitching on the show cloth.

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Christmas Gift Ideas

Are you wanting to make a special gift this Christmas but are not sure where to start? Not sure how much fabric, or how much piping you might need? Or do you know someone who loves making things and want to give them a present they will love? We have produced a “cushion pack” to take out the stress of making your cushion, all you have to do is sew it together, and we have helped there too, by production a step by step guide on how to  make your cushion with one of our packs. Doing on of our packs will give you the skills and abilities to make you want to sew more and more. Materials cropped

Within each pack, you will receive, one 18″x18″ cushion pad, half a metre of your chosen fabric, 2 metres of piping in your chosen colour and an instruction booklet. All of this for a bargain price of £10.00. If you’re passing through Bridport, pop in and see us then you can pick your cushion materials from our full range of fabrics

DSC_4365On our web shop, you will have an ability to choose from 7 different fabric panels that will make up your cushion with designs including dogs, sea, spots, tape measures, birds, wellies and Egyptian. you will also be able to choose from 17 different colours of piping.

If you would like a sample of any of the materials mentioned on this page please contact us with your details and information on the material or fabric you require and we will be happy to help.

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Moses Basket

We think our makers at Livingstone Textiles are very talented people, they can take our fabrics and make the most beautiful things, whether it’s turning the fabrics into a beautiful pair of curtains, roman blind or cushions. They can also make things that are a little bit special. This moses basket has been transformed into a beautiful white fresh looking bed for a special baby. We can cut new foam for the mattress, and add new wadding to the sides and we have a range of fabrics that you can choose from.

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If you have something that you would like upholstered, recovered, remade or would like something completely new out of one of our fabrics then ask a member of our team and we can see if we can help.

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Funky Chairs

Get into the Groove!  Don’t you agree that these chairs look absolutely delicious?  Our upholsterer has shown off her talents again with this stunning swivel lounge chair and ottoman.


These iconic chairs were designed by Charles Eames for Herman Millar and this model dates from around the 1980’s.  Herman Millar was known for bold and beautiful designs and founded the company in 1923 in Michigan.  These streamlined designs began to be favoured by wealthy clients who had previously favoured heavy, dark and wooden bedroom furniture.  A self- taught furniture designer named Gilbert Rohde came along in the early thirties and used his knowledge of modernist and art deco styles to persuade Millar that modern, smaller homes needed a different approach.  The Millar company survived the Great Depression by moving with the times and the striking iconic designs are recognisable the world over.

More information on Charles Eames can be found here

 

 

The fabric used on this chair was a limited stock line but we have many other furnishing weight materials to choose from in both of our shops and online

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Collapsed Sofa Cushions

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Are your sofa cushions starting to sag? Are you getting back ache from your sofa? Are you thinking it might be time to get a new sofa?  New manufactured cushions contain a wadding that sags very quickly and all the spring is lost.  Our foam gives your furniture it’s bounce back!

You might be able to have your sofa saved by having some new foam put in. At Livingstone Textiles we offer a foam service where you can bring your old sofa cushions and we can put new foam cut to shape.

Is your foam still ok but your cover’s looking a little tired? We offer a full and bespoke upholstery service from our workshops in Bridport Dorset, so your well loved sofa can have a new lease of life.

 

If you would like information on sofa cushions please contact us and we will be happy to give advise or a quote.

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Summer Vintage Vibes

Summer Holidays are ahead of us (and hopefully more sun than rain!)
One of our staff members has a 1970’s vintage caravan and she decided to give it an overhaul. The original and rather vivid orange flowery seat cushions were very worn and have been renewed with a bright flower and bird fabric that has postcards on it to reflect the holiday mood. They still have orange in the colour scheme in order to blend with the original interior.

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The box cushions are made with a zip in order to make cleaning easier. We can make box cushions for you in most of the fabrics that we stock and we can add piping if you wish.

 

To make the new interior complete, she decided to make some new curtains and to keep the cost down she used a basic dress weight cotton poplin.  In order to make them hang well and to look authentic from the outside, she used a coloured lining that picked up the orange in the cushions.  DSC_0435

 

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The polka dot gives an up to date vintage look while the lining is true to the 70’s colour scheme.

 

 

Here’s how the curtain lining looks from the outside………..along with a couple of vintage recliners she picked up in Penzance, much to the dismay of her husband who had to carry them back to the car!!

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Blinds

Blinds can be practical and decorative but sometimes you don’t aways need to the same type of blind in each room. A different style of blind can change the look of a fabric and a room.

Here’s a quick guide to the different types of blinds  available to you.

Austrain Blinds

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Austrian blinds are a cross between blinds and curtains. They act like blinds but are close to curtains with the texture. Most Austrian blinds have a gathered top like a pencil pleat curtain but then are stringed and pull up like a blind. Unlike a Roman blind they dont have the horizontal rods running through them giving them a ruffled bottom when pulled.

 

 

Roman Blinds

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Roman blinds are structured blinds that use a system of vertical strings and horizontal rods. When pulled they fold into straight even folds. When let down the blind is completely flat.

 

Swedish Blinds

2016-05-18 16.21.01There are two different types of Swedish blinds, one is rolled and held with ribbon and one is corded. Both types work really well with coordinating fabrics as when it is rolled the back of the blind is seen.

Theses are all blinds that we can make to measure for your house. We can advise you on how it will hang with the space you have available in your house. We can offer the full service from measuring, making and hanging. If you are at all interested or would like more information please contact us and we will be happy to help.

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Make- Matching Blind and Curtain

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One thing that is worth thinking about when you are picking material for a roman blind or curtains is the other windows and door in the room, whether they will have matching fabric and whether the material will then be too much in the room. bron curtain

These two pieces of soft furnishings are examples of how this has been thought out. The window and door in this kitchen are less than a metre apart, and this gives the risk of the material over powering the room. The customer didn’t want the window and door to become a feature in the room and only wanted them to dress the openings in a subtle way.

The customer liked the patterned fabric but was concerned that when made into a door curtain it would then become too much, so it was suggested to her that adding a contrasting material in a plain to brake up the pattern. This then frames the patterned material and draws the eye towards it.

At Livingstone Textiles we pride ourselves in our complete service where if you want us to, we can measure, make and hang leaving you to the fun part of choosing your fabrics.

If you would like an further information on the service we offer please contact us and we will be happy to help.

 

 

 

 

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Brilliant Big Bean Bag

Another piece of customer inspiration for you today – this fabulous bean bag! In this case the customer had an existing large bean bag but it had no separate cover so was impossible to clean. They chose this stunning Clarke & Clarke fabric and our seamstresses made up a new cover, leaving the old cover to become the bean bag liner. We think you’ll agree the result is amazing!

 

 

 

You could also make an outdoor bean bag using our range of new waterproof outdoor fabrics.  Available in various patterns and plain colours, there is sure to be something to fit in with your outdoor colour scheme.Heavy Poly Wproof All

Bean Bag Filling

As well as being able to supply some great fabrics for bean bag covers and a bean bag liner (such as calico) we also stock the polystyrene beads for the bean bag filling. You can refill your bean bag or top up your existing bean bag filling, with small bags of bean bag beans starting at only £6

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Flame Retardant Treatment for Fabric

Flame retardant sprayFlame retardant fabrics are needed in public (non-domestic) buildings in the UK for curtains and blinds. However not all fabrics are available pre-treated to be flame retardant, and that is where this spray comes in handy. It is ideal for you to treat any fabric yourself to be flame retardant for domestic or contract use for curtains or blinds.

The spray is sold in litre bottles, complete with spray nozzle. We are also able to refill bottles once empty, or supply 5 litre refill containers.

The flame retardant spray will not affect the properties or appearance of the fabric, nor cause shrinkage, if allowed to dry naturally before use. The flame retarding is not affected by dry cleaning, wear or exposure to sunlight. However treated fabrics cannot be washed, as wetting the fabric requires it to be re-treated.

One litre of spray covers 6 square metres of fabric. Fabrics treated with this coverage have been tested and approved to safety standard BS5867 Part 2 Type B (for Hotels, Public Buildings and Offices).

To calculate how much spray you need for the quantity of fabric you are treating:

( No of metres x width in metres ) / 6

Example: 24 metres of fabric 183cm wide
24 x 1.83 = 43.92
43.92 / 6 = 7.32
So 24 metres of this fabric would need over 7 litres of flame retardant liquid, so you would need to buy 8 litres in total to cover it all.

A 1 litre bottle of Flamesafe flame retardant spray costs £11.90 and refills are available at £7.50 per litre – either in the original bottle or as a complete 5 litre container.

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Scissors and Cutting Tools

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Life is too short to use cheap tools and as any maker will tell you, high-quality sharp scissors are a joy to use when cutting out your fabric.  We stock a good range of Fiskars, which we believe are the best you can buy and we use them every day, many times over here in the shop when we cut cloth for our customers.  They will last a lifetime with occasional re-sharpening and this is another service that we are pleased to offer for a few pounds

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We stock Large Dressmaking Scissors, All Purpose Scissors for both left and right handed people, Pinking Shears and two sizes of finer scissors for detailed cutting and embroidery. We also keep these rotary cutters in stock.  They come with a safety guard and you can also purchase interchangeable straight edge blades or a set of pinking blades that give a fast and crisp zigzag through multi layers of fabric.  Rotary cutters save time when you wish to cut out multiples of shapes for smaller projects that involve patchwork and applique.

 

September posts 029Then we come to these clever little chaps, an absolute essential for any sewing kit.  Thread snips are so quick to use and make a fast job of neatening up those little ends when you come to the end of your project.  Just hold them in the palm of your hand and nip off the threads left at the start and end of your stitching line.  They are super sharp and so effective that you’ll wonder how you ever managed without them.

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Conservatory Cushions

Now summers on the way we are all spending more time out side and in our conservatories but the conservatory furniture might not be looking as bright and fresh as it did a few years ago. Rather than buy new why not have fresh covers made for them. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Our makers cost start at £30.00 per cushion for a boxed cushion depending on size.

For more information please pop into our shop in Bridport Dorset or contact us on 01308 456844 or email people@livingstonetextiles.com

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New Sewing Classes

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Fancy Learning to sew? Or haven’t sewn in years and want to get back into it? Then why not look into our sewing classes that we hold in our store in Bridport, Dorset. Starting in September we have a range of classes that would suit any one.

We have a range of beginner classes from our popular “learn to love your sewing machine” and our new and exciting range of  “dressmaker techniques classes” so you can see that the zips and seams aren’t that scary after all.

If your more interested in re-decorating your home then why not have a look at our range of curtain making classes.

Let our talented teachers show you that making sewing isn’t as hard  as you might think.

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Gimp upholstery braid

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gimp 12Here at Livingstone Textiles in Bridport, Dorset we offer a traditional upholstery service. We also keep upholstery supplies in stock for those people who wish to have a go themselves. These gimp braids are brilliant to add a decorative finishing detail to an upholstered stool or chair and they are designed to hide any tacks used. Price per metre: £5.00

We now also have stock of our new line of single and multicoloured upholstery gimp.

 

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Curtains Made to Measure

We work with a number of local seamstresses to produce high quality made to measure curtains to your specification. We can produce a wide variety of curtain headings, including pencil pleat, triple pleat (pinch pleat) and eyelet headings. Triple pleat curtains are made using buckram, eyelet heading using header tape. All curtains can be lined or interlined and you can choose from our range of linings which includes thermal and blackout linings. All curtains are hand finished to give the best results and you can be sure of the standard you will get because we only work with some of the most experienced and professional curtain makers in the area.

The example you can see in the picture is a triple pleat finish, which looks especially stunning with a pole as you can see.

Curtain making prices are quoted per width of fabric in each curtain. So for a pair of curtains made with one width of fabric in each curtain you would pay for 2 widths of making. For a pair with 1.5 widths in each curtain you would pay 4 widths of making. Current prices are shown below and do not include fabric or other materials. These prices include VAT, which is charged on mail orders. For curtains collected from our shop in Bridport, Dorset you may pay the seamstress directly and VAT is not incurred.

Curtain making prices (per width)

Pencil Pleat Lined curtains up to 70″/179cm – £24.00
Pencil Pleat Lined curtains over 70″/179cm – £26.40
Triple Pleat Lined curtains any length – £33.60

Extras:
Blackout lining additional £2.40 per width
Eyelet curtains additional £3.60 per width
Tab top curtains additional £3.60 per width
Interlined curtains additional £7.20 per width

We also make Roman Blinds (making cost from £78 each), pelmets, scatter cushions, boxed cushions, bedspreads and valances, tiebacks, chair arm protectors and many other items. Quotes are available on request.

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Contract Upholstery

We are able to undertake contract upholstery for pubs, restaurants, hotels and other premises. We specialise in bench seats, and can cut fire-retardant upholstery foam to fit your space exactly (to your templates, or to our measurements for local premises). These are then covered by our experienced seamstresses to your requirements. Covers can be made with zips in order to be removable or can be fixed. Fire retardant upholstery fabric is available, but is usually not required as the upholstery foam is fire-retardant.
Amongst our recent customers is the Wynyards Gap public house, whose replacement seating you can see featured in the pictures.
We also undertake traditional reupholstery and furniture restoration on our premises in Bridport, Dorset. Camper Van and Caravan bench seating is another area of expertise.
Please contact us regarding all your upholstery needs and you will get a personal and professional service.

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Update Your Holiday Cottage for the New Season

If you are a holiday cottage owner, January and February are probably when you are thinking about how to make sure your property is ready for the new season. New curtains or cushions can make a huge difference in freshening up a room, and we can make to measure in your choice of fabric from our huge range. We have budget fabrics in stock as well as a fantastic range of fabric to order from our display hangers. There are several seaside themed designs including these from Prestigious Textiles – already making their appearance in some local holiday rentals. You can take the fabric hangers away to check the suitability at your holiday cottage subject to a small cash deposit.

Other items and services we offer include making cushion covers, supplying cushion pads and foam cut to size for everything from dining room chair pads to replacement sofa cushions. All foam supplied is fire retardant and up to the latest safety standards. Another item which has been popular recently is sofa or chair arm covers – see these examples we made for the cottages at Rudge Farm. These arm covers can significantly extend the life of your furniture by protecting from both spills and wear and tear.

If you have traditional deckchairs we can also supply replacement deckchair canvas and upholstery nails for fixing. See here for more details.

If you would like to learn more about what we can do to help you, either call in to the shop or phone us Monday to Saturday on 01308 456844.

(Main picture is from the holiday apartment in Charmouth owned and run by one of our staff. Click here for more details or to book!)