Down here in the Westcountry there is a fast growing trend for Shepherds Huts as a place of retreat and sanctuary.
Folks with a little bit of land or a large enough garden are choosing them as an option to rent as holiday accomodation too, cosying them up with little wood burners and simple living essentials .
At Livingstone Textiles we have furnished some unusual dwellings with our cloth, most memorably a tree house in a secluded valley not far from our front door. This week we’ve been working on a shepherds hut where a simplistic approach was requested.
Our client opted for a scandinavian inspired design of lollipop trees on a white background and an unusual lining. Choosing a ticking stripe for the reverse means that the little hut will look just as lovely from the outside as from the in and we think the effect is beautifully rustic.
To find out more about this fabric and others that are suitable for curtains and soft furnishings click here.
Quite a few young and older women are discovering the liberating comfort of the Bralette.
Many of them are made from supersoft polymide and elastane and are just unbelievably comfortable to wear however some of the really pretty ones can be fairly pricey, especially if you have a love for lace or back detail.
We came up with a little idea to give you the expensive look without the price tag. Go and grab yourself a couple of bralettes from any of the discounted clothing shops and add some of our stretchy lace to the bottom panel. You only need around 80cm for one bra and at 145mm it is good and wide to extend as a sheer panel over your rib cage. It’s priced at £2.75 a metre and we stock it in both white and black.
Livingstone Textiles started out in the vibrant town of Bridport and has been a big part of the town for over 46 years. The thing about Bridport is that there’s always something going on and last year a small group of enthusiastic folk lovers put on Bridports very first Folk Festival. It was a great success so with a little change to the date (so as not to clash with Dartmoor Folk Festival) they decided to do it all over again and put it on the week before Sidmouth Folk Festival.
Launching on Friday with bands throughout the day at Bucky Doo, the festival got off to a flying start and received a warm Bridport welcome. Evening entertainment continued across many supporting pubs in the town hosting folk bands and musicians while at The Electric Palace the festival was opened in accapella song and celtic pipes from The Coves before Richard Digence and support took the stage. Then followed a weekend of frenzied Morris Dancing, lots more stage music, cream teas at Millenium Green and hasty re-scheduling before the rain came down.
Many of the Morris Dancers got to dance outside the Red Brick Cafe and on their way round to St Michaels Trading Estate they came past our front door. Consequently we had a steady flow of keen sewing ladies – and men, all eager to add colour to their outfits with our lace, ribbons, buttons and trims as well as find supplies and inspiration for their own sewing projects. We don’t list our haberdashery in our online shop but are really happy to send samples and items by post that you might need. Contact us for further information.
These cushions are new in and are a good way to add extra support where it’s needed.
They can be used as extra padding when reading in bed or in a chair and can also be used help to make a sick or elderly relative much more comfortable when eating if they are prone to slipping sideways. It eliminates the need for lots of pillow stuffing to keep them upright. Made from our top quality polyester wadding by our man in Devon, this locally made product can also be laundered in the washing machine. The V shape makes it ideal as a sleep support as it fits easily between the knees and can help if you suffer from aching legs at night as well as being invalubleif you are pregnant and struggling to get comfortable. When baby is born, it makes an excellent support for breastfeeding mums as you can prop baby at excatly the right height and angle to latch on properly. And when baby get bigger you can use the V cushion to support him while you play together.
We tried the V cushions at work and found them so super comfy that we’ve named them the Livingstones Zen Cushion.
A stunning new collection of fabrics from Chess. Made with natural fibres and featuring some beautiful iridescent colours as well as subtle hues across all designs, this range can be used to make blinds, curtains and cushions. All of the fabrics in the collection have a Martindale test of 20,000 rubs making them suitable for upholstery as well. This means that you can co-ordinate your look across your whole room and create a very smart look.
All of the fabrics in this collection are available to order from Livingstone Textiles and we have a made to measure service too where you can choose from Blinds and curtains as well as cushions. Our in-house upholsterers will also be pleased to discuss your requirements for updating any modern or traditional pieces.
This astoundingly beautiful fabric has given all of the staff here at Livingstones a great deal of angst.
We all love its bright coloursand artistic style and are busy plotting ideas on how to use it to its full potential.
One of us wants a skirt and that would be a great priced piece of clothing at £16.40 as it would only need about half a metre.
Another really wants a sixties swing coat which would look so dramatic, luckily her mum is the talented Meg who owns Livingstones so hopefully she’ll get her wish…watch this space.
I think I’d quite like a pop of colour to go with a purchase from Dorset Arts Week so I might buy a piece for a cushion to give my living room a lift. What would you use it for? Come in to the shop and have a feel, it’s so unbelievably soft.
This rather special bag was made by one of our very talented Bridport customers who from time to time pops into the shop to share her latest creations.
This time she has been working on a stunning little satchel to wear whilst riding her bike. She has used our vivid toucan fabric with bright orange twill as a contrast on the sides. We adore the fuschia pink lining that picks out the colours in the parrot on the front. She has also made a matching hat and definitely adds a bright splash of colour when she cycles around the town. Thank you for sharing this with us, we love to see anything you’ve made 🙂
Delightful country gent (and lady) style ribbons are now in stock. Featuring some really great designs of cows, pheasants and lovely stags, all on vintage coloured satin ribbons, this collection is sure to reflect a flavour of the rural westcountry on your gift or project.
We’ve got cheeky little foxes to raise a smile and as we launch into a season of rural and farming shows, these pretty cows would grace a gift of hand made local cheese.
The more exotic sounds of india can be heard echoing in these gorgeous peacock ribbons and could be used to wrap a gift of spices from your travels this summer. Come into Livingstone Textiles and see one of the largest ribbon resources in the region.
We have acquired some very beautiful fabric. ” But you’re always doing that” I hear you say. True enough and our fabric stash is pretty vast, so big that it now takes up two whole shops! The thing is, sometimes a little stash comes along that we just cannot do without and we just have to squeeze it in somewhere.
This month we are bringing you something unique. One offs.
And there they are. Absolutely beautiful hand block printed cottons from India.
Representing the individual nature of handmade, each is a short run of 6 or 8 metres or so and created with Indigo and Rust dyes.
These really are very special and as such we are not selling them in anything smaller than 2 metre pieces. Each run has been individually inspected by us to ensure clean line up of the block print with no overlaps.
Don’t hang about because the best designs will be flying out quickly and once they’re gone they’re gone.
With summer around the corner and the hint of sunshine teasing us with its warmth, it’s that time of year for light cotton or even linen clothes to help keep cool and looking summery.
We have a lovely range of 100% cottons in many, many designs from plains to florals or batiks to animals and more. We even have Liberty designs and cotton lawns, so there is plenty to choose from when you’re thinking of adding something to your summer wardrobe.
If linen is more your fabric of choice for the fair weather then we have plenty for you as well, with a colourful range of plain pure irish linens to choose from.
Alternatively, we have a range of linen mixed fabrics, some are cotton and linen unions and others are linen viscose mixed fabrics which are in fact underrated and overlooked by many of the purists who see that there is a viscose content to the fabric and run! However, viscose is a man-made fibre that is manufactured from a plant-based material called cellulose and is typically made from woody plants, such as trees and bamboo. It is a low-cost fabric and has many of the desirable qualities of more luxurious fabrics. It is used to make clothing because it is breathable, drapes well, is highly absorbent and does not trap body heat. Because viscose is made from renewable plants, it is frequently cited as an environmentally friendly fabric, particularly when bamboo is its source. So maybe give linen viscose a chance next time and you’ll be surprised at how cool and comfortable it is!
One of the staff at Livingstone Textiles has transformed a pair of 1970’s Deckchairs with some new foam and a smart striped canvas weave.
She upcycled an old pair of curtains as the backing and made a slip on cover to fit over the ends of the chairs. We think the orange fabric gives a nod to the seventies without the overpowering Flower Power Man
Some sad news today but also some happy news. After many many years of stocking a very old fashioned brand of thread that was once manufactured in the UK we are sad to be saying goodbye to Coats Threads. Last year the Coats distribution centres re-located overseas and since then we have had difficulty with supply so we have made the decision to go over to Gutterman.
Many of you ask for Gutterman now as it’s a known and trusted product and although not everyone will be happy about the change, they make a good strong thread in a great range of colours. All of the Coats threads are still reduced until we clear the old stock so now is the time to pop in and top up your colours.
We have a little treat for you at Livingstone textiles. In both our Yeovil and Bridport shops we have introduced a PERMANENT BARGAINS RACK!
All of the fabrics on this entire rack have at least 20% off the ticket price. Some have only small amounts left on the rolls for cushions and others have lots, certainly enough to make curtains with and lots more besides. There are some real beauties and the only limit is your imagination. Pop in and grab yourself a bargain.
Spring has sprung and to celebrate, we’re sharing some charming cotton prints with you.
Perfect little designs that are ideal for dressmaking, craft projects and patchwork, these are just a few selected from the huge delivery we’ve had this month. We’ve a wealth of new fabrics in stock for you, from plush velvets in stunning colours to exotic botanical prints in some really exciting colours so come and pay us a visit over the easter holidays and get a new project going.
We have them back! The glorious two tone organzas that flew out of the shop last year are back and we’re so delighted to have more colours to offer you. The blue/green colourway is one of the favourites and we expect this to sell really fast but while you’re in the shop, check out the others as well.
The grape is delightful. A combination of deep pink and petrol blue, it shimmers and changes as it moves under the light. If you can’t get in to see us over the easter Break, remember we can always send out samples in the post and you can order by telephone on 01308456844, email or online at www.livingstonetextiles.com
Fabric Manipulation – 150 Creative Sewing Techniques, by Ruth Singer
This beautiful hardback book generated a huge amount of excitement when in arrived in store at Bridport, and we all felt inspired by the projects! In the beautifully laid out pages, Ruth Singer looks at techniques to shape, embellish and, yes, manipulate fabric in astounding and creative ways, to create both traditional and strikingly modern effects.
Within the chapter headings of Pleat and Fold, Stitch and Gather and Apply and Layer, the author covers all kinds of fabric techniques, which can be used for both dressmaking and home furnishings. Although the finished projects are often spectacular, the uncluttered layout of the book and the clarity of the instructions, enhanced by the clear and beautifully photographed illustrations makes it all very achieveable – just come in and take a closer look at book to see.
She also covers choosing and using fabrics, equipment and materials, and although the techniques are often based on the author’s love of vintage costumes, she shares her secrets for using these techniques with a modern twist, and positively encourages your experimentation. Treat yourself to this gorgeous book, and be inspired!
At Livingstone Textiles Bridport we are extremely fortunate to live amongst some of the most beautiful scenery in the British Isles. As well as fast becoming a very popular holiday and tourism destination with its crumbling Jurrasic coastline, the West Dorset landscape is increasingly seen in documentaries, television series’ and as an area in which to make evocative films.
For many of us nothing beats a good traditional costume drama and in the newest screen version of the Dorset Author Thomas Hardys’ beautiful novel, Far From The Madding Crowd, the stunning countryside around Bridport is portrayed with all of its rural charm. While the filming was taking place from various locations around the town and surrounding villages, one film crew pitched camp behind Livingstones and we frequently supplied ribbons, haberdashery, elastic, buttons and various pieces of cloth to the costume department who would regularly pop in to top up their own supplies.
Inspired? Why not host a unique Regency Ball Party? West Dorset has a wealth of beautiful village halls for hire at ridiculously cheap rates and there is a beautiful Regency inspired venue at The Bull Hotel in the town complete with its own Ballroom. Local Folk Bands can perform live music for you at really competitive rates and most can arrange a local caller to teach very simple Playford Dance. For a birthday or wedding, this could be a beautifully immersive experience and at Livingstones we can supply you with authentically styled patterns to sew your own gowns as well as an array of luxury patterns and plains for waistcoats, dress shirts, petticoats and bonnets. Remeber to ask us about joining our pattern club as well to get free patterns and great price offers unavailable online.
With all of us becoming very conscious of throwaway plastics and trying to reduce our use and consumption, one of our Bridport team members decided to make up a bag to put her sandwiches in. Made from less than a fat quarter of fabric, she lined it with a ripstop nylon and popped a velcro closure onto the top and bottom of the first two corners that fold over the sandwiches. She then made a button hole in one corner and stitched a button onto the showside of the remaining corner that make a neat little packet when closed together, keeping her lunch fresh and looking very pretty in the staff fridge. Needless to say that we all want one!
Adorable! Look out for her next experiment with waxed fabrics.