Last Saturday I headed to lovely and sunny Brighton to spend the day at Sewmance Festival, a crafty and sewing fair that has just celebrated its third edition (they did the first one last Summer and then the Christmas one in December). It is a beautiful local event that keeps growing and growing, packed with crafty stalls selling fabric and yarn and also offering different workshops from how to use a sewing machine, to block printing (this one was super popular!) or crocheting.
I was invited to do a talk by lovely Stacie, one of the organizers, to tell again my #sewingstory. It was my third time (first one last year, then on YouTube) and I loved it all the same (and yes, was nervous as heck, hehe). I talked about how my sewing story (and changing careers on my 30s) was linked to my mental health journey. I lovely bunch of ladies (and a couple of gentlemen?) listened intently and hopefully they felt a bit inspired afterwards 😃 Other amazing sewists told their own sewing stories as well like Gabby from Gabberdashery or Elle from Sew Positivity. It was a great day.
Here are more pics of what you could find and see:
Apart from the Sewmance Festival, I took the opportunity to do a bit of a fabric shopping tour to take some pics and show you some of the best places to buy fabrics in Brighton, as well as haberdashery, patterns and more. First, I started at Fabric Land, a shop that I usually go to mainly online to search for sales and cheaper fabrics (perfect for testing my patterns!).
Then I visited New Fabric Fair (no website) and it was just like entering the cave of Ali Baba and the 40 thieves who have been stealing fabric in this case and put it all there, hahaha.
It was tooooo packed with fabrics, you could hardly move! I am sure that with some patience and time there will be some gem hidden in there but I think it wasn’t exactly for me, although the lovely couple attending the shop were very nice 😃
My next stop was at the Brighton Sewing Centre, the shop where I bought my lovely Janome DKS 30 a few years ago. It is a small shop but veeeery cute! There are a few sewing machines that you can try, novelty fabrics, quite a lot of jersey options and also sewing patterns for kids and a couple for adults.
They were also selling something I have never seen before, laminated linen which was amazing! I was thinking about getting some to make a backpack so will check their website to see if I find it (as if I needed more fabric… 😆)
Right next to the Brighton Sewing Centre, I found a new place, The Fashion School, with sewing and fashion classes only for kids and teenagers and which I think it is a brilliant idea.
Right in front of the school you can also find Wendy Ward’s studio where she teaches sewing, pattern cutting, her own patterns… I’ve never been to but it looks like a great place to learn.
My last stop was at Ditto Fabrics, a very popular shop online as well. It was my first time going to the actual shop and although smaller than I imagined (I think they were refurbishing the second floor at the time), it was also a lovely shop and they had lots of bargains at the front.
Apart from these shops there are of course others based in the area but working mainly online like Fabric Godmother for example, that has open days several times during the year.
All in all I have to say that for such a small town Brighton has a lot to offer sewing-wise. I think that because it is such a creative, vibrant community, fabric and haberdashery shops can easily find a spot. Have you ever been or do you know any more shops in Brighton that you would like to recommend?
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