Over the last year, fabric prices have risen sharply. I'm paying up to 70% more per metre - you might not have noticed because I'm still absorbing these costs. But by Spring 2022 no one will be in any doubt that fabric in UK shops has shot up in price. Why are they rising? And will it last?
Fabric prices are rising – but why?
The problem with deadstock fabrics...
Deadstock fabric is big right now. We're told it's eco-friendly and sustainable - buying it is good for planet. If we don't get our wallets out, deadstock fabric is going into landfill, right? But it's become clear to me that the vast majority of deadstock is not dead and it's not going to landfill or incineration. Rather, it's just your average fabric that's being 'greenwashed' to increase profits. Some UK fabric shops now sell almost as much deadstock as they do other fabrics and the only way we can all force manufacturers, designer brands and fast-fashion chains to up their game is by not buying deadstock fabric at all.
Brexit, Fabric and the Textiles Industry – what’s going to happen next?
The UK left the EU on the 1st January 2021 and over the coming months and years lots of things are going to change. Some things will become more interesting, and others will become more infuriating. Prices may increase or decrease. We'll see new goods and brands in our shops and supermarkets. But what does Brexit mean for sewers, small businesses, fabric buyers, fabric shops and the textile industry in general?
Fabric in the Time of Coronavirus
We’re living in deeply worrying and uncertain times. Coronavirus has put most of the world into a form of stasis, while health workers and scientists do battle on our behalf. There is little most of us can do to help them except follow the rules, stay home where possible, practise social distancing and try to protect ourselves and the lives of others.
Where does this leave the fabric and textiles industry, and how does it impact us, the buyers and sellers?
Quilting and patchwork: Birds and animals in textile art
Animals and bird fabric prints have a long history but when I fell across a photo of the Homestead and Forest Cot Quilt designed by May Morris the daughter of William Morris, founder of the Arts and Crafts Movement, it prompted me to dig a bit deeper into the history of nature in quilting and patchwork.
What is OEKO-TEX certified fabric and does it matter?
OEKO-TEX certification of fabric gives buyers some comfort but it's never going to be the whole solution. The textiles industry is huge, and growing. That means we need to make smart, informed choices, do the maths and research and never ignore fabrics without an OEKO-TEX label.
Sewing with jersey fabric and stretch viscose is not hard!
In the UK, we’re regularly told that sewing with jersey fabrics and stretch viscose fabrics is hard; that you need new techniques or equipment; that the results are unpredictable unless you're an expert with a big, white self-contained sewing room. This is just not true, and it's a shame because it puts beginners off even trying to sew with stretch fabrics.
Welcome to Simple Life Fabrics!
Simple Life Fabrics opens its online doors for the very first time this week, and I'm excited! It's a big leap into the unknown but fabric is soft and hopefully the landing will not be too hard! Whatever happens, like many people, I needed to change direction; shake things up and do something I really love.