I’m guessing that a few of those of you reading this will already know about the Sew Saturday event that we have every year here in the U.K. If you are not familiar with it, it is an annual event, organised by Sew magazine, which enables us to celebrate our local bricks and mortar independent fabric store and haberdasher. Around the country, small fabric retailers sign up to take part, and offer various classes, workshops, events and discounted prices on the day.
My local fabric and haberdashery store is The Sewing Cafe, which is in the market town of Hinckley, Leicestershire. It is a friendly and welcoming fabric and haberdashery store which is owned and run by Fay and Becky. Not only will Fay, Becky and the team be able to help you with all your sewing needs, the shop also offers a huge range of sewing workshops suitable for complete beginners right through to more experienced sewists as well as the use of the machines by the hour if you feel like some social sewing.
Last year I attended one of the free workshops and learned how to make a couple of these triangular pattern weights. I promptly went home and spent the rest of the afternoon making a whole bunch more and now use them for EVERY sewing project I make. I can’t remember the last time now that I pinned a pattern before cutting out – it’s so much easier to use my weights and rotary cutter!
This year, for Sew Saturday, The Sewing Cafe were offering a free workshop making pretty little fabric purses like this one below – totally adorable and quick and easy to make whatever your skill level. I loved that you could choose a button or snap fastening and there was a great selection of fabrics available for you to choose from.
Throughout the afternoon whilst I was there, I was able to watch a steady stream of sewists disappearing into one of the sewing workshop rooms and coming out half an hour later proudly waving their pretty new fully lined purses! A free raffle ticket was being offered to each visitor on the day with the chance to win some fabulous sewing prizes, and tea, cake and generous fabric discounts were also available. The shop was buzzing!
After enjoying myself so much last year, I was thrilled to be invited along this year to take part in a little ‘social sewing’ in the other workshop sewing space during the afternoon. Happy days! I promptly packed my current sewing project, which is another version of The Scout Tee by Grainline Studios, and headed on over to Hinckley!
I was thrilled to be joined by some really lovely local ladies and we had such a great afternoon sewing, chatting, drinking tea and eating delicious homemade apple cake ( thank you Fay)! If I’m honest I was so busy chatting all afternoon that very little sewing was done by me but hopefully you will see the results of the Scout Tee that I started when the #owop17 challenge arrives at the end of November.
Two of the ladies were whipping up pretty fabric travel tissue covers ready to sell in a forthcoming charity event. They were gorgeous!
By strange coincidence two of the ladies were also both wearing handmade versions of the Tilly and the Buttons Coco pattern – one dress and one top. The top had been made in a super fleece fabric and has certainly inspired me to whip one up in a fleece for myself as the weather is now getting colder. As it happens the Coco is one of the sewing workshops offered by The Sewing Cafe – so if you are local and are interested in attending a Coco workshop or fancy a little browse through the other workshops the Cafe has to offer then you can click here.
During the afternoon we were also joined by some of the ladies that needed a little more time with their workshop purses, and before I knew it the afternoon had flown by and it was time to call it a day.
Thank you again to Becky and Fay for making me so very welcome, and to all the lovely ladies that I had the pleasure meeting and sewing with. If you are ever in the Hinckley area I would highly recommend that you pop in for a little visit, and if you’re not local you can still have a little mooch through their fabulous fabrics, patterns and haberdashery items on their online shop which you can find on the website here.
If you’re a bit of an Instagram fan like myself, you might be interested to see what the Sewing Cafe are getting up to here. This way you can check out their new fabric arrivals and get to know which events they are attending.
I hope that whatever you did for #sewsaturday that you had a great time and enjoyed the hospitality and sewing knowledge that our lovely independent fabric retailers can offer us when we call in to visit them.
Take care, and I’ll be back soon,