Saturday, 25 May 2013

Brighton Meet-Up: The Day I Went Dotty in Ditto!

01- Fabric from DITTO FABRIC shop 

...well now, I'm feeling very remiss as I should learn to post up about meet-ups as soon as possible after they happen (this is now a week after the event itself - my bad!).Last Saturday was the great Brighton meet-up, and the sun decided to come out to play with us. As did reams of tourists and fun-makers attending a very lively festival (the streets were certainly crowded with happy faces soaking up the sunshine and atmosphere).

02 - Clock Tower in Brighton 

Myself, Zora and Jo met up at the allotted time at Brighton station - and then we made our way to All-Bar-One, where we joined Zoe, Stevie who were waiting for us at our reserved table. Later on we were joined by Joanne (no blog) and Rehanon - making 7 happy sewing ladies all together.

En route to the bar we side-lined quickly to the North Laine Antiques and Flea Market (on Upper Gardner Street). There were a bunch of stallholders selling fabric, vintage notions, one stall had a teenie tiny antique sewing machine on it (see below centre-right pic). There was a stall with very random looking fabrics, another with vintage notions, and a couple of old sewing machines lurking too LOL!

03 - Sewing Machine 04 - Sewing Machine

05 - Antique Irons 06 - Antique Mini Sewing Machine

07 - Fabric Stall 09 - Notions Stall

Zora picked up some great printed hessian sacks for only £2.00 a piece - she's going to re-purpose them for cushion-covers in her kitchen.

10 - Hessian Sacks 
We had a lovely lunch, followed by a very civilized swapping session (not as overwhelming as the size of the stash at the recent Goldhawk Road meet up, but just as much fun!).

12 - Sewists 11 - Sewists

I acquired some lovely things, and I hope that the things I brought to giveaway are feeling equally loved as my new goodies are :) I got a great top pattern from Zoe - Simplicity 2593 (a Cynthia Rowley design). The cute red "oh deer" fabric (v. Christmassy!) I got from Joanne (I'm thinking collar/cuff trims), and the lovely Mustard-ey Yellow knit fabric is courtesy of Stevie.

13 - Swap Items

The top pattern intrigued me when I spotted it - because the neckline finish kind of reminded me of a Roland Mouret dress in check (plaid) that Keira Knightley wore back in 2005. "One-day" (in the very distant far-off future), I intend to sew my own version of this dress - but the way to re-create the neckline had eluded my little grey-cells. Hopefully, the pattern instructions for 2593 will give me inspiration LOL! (Vogue Pattern 8280 which I already own will be the main body/basis for my knock-off.)

14 - Simpicity 2593 Top Pattern 15 - Keira Knightley in Roland Mouret (2005)
Image Sources: Left - , Right -
This 1971 pattern in the swap pile (we all thought it looked very Margot Leadbetter from The Good Life) didn't come home with me though ;)

16 - Simplicity Pattern 9509 (Vintage)

After the swapping was over, myself and Zora whizzed off to the local Oxfam charity-shop to [as now is customary after a sewing-swap] drop-off the items that no one wished to take home with them. This way nothing should end up and landfill, and we also get to "pay it forward" somewhat too. We then swiftly made our way back to catch up with the remaining ladies at the New Fabric Fair shop (a small but crammed to the rafters emporium - not v. trolley friendly LOL!), before wandering down to the fabulous Ditto Fabrics (on Kensington Gardens). It's at Ditto that I succumbed to these lovely dotty-spotty polka-dot lovelies for sale by the proprietress Gill. I bought 5-pieces, plus some felt (which I intend to make a needle-book for my Mum to match the Knitting-Needle Roll I made for her at Christmas)

17 - Fabric from DITTO FABRIC shop  

We then popped into the Brighton Sewing Centre, where Zora picked up some awesome giant-sized ric-rac, and I got this zig-zag, chevron-effect black and white fabric in a fat-quarter (I'm not a patch-worker/quilter, but I think that buying a small piece of fabric that "calls" to you to keep in your stash is a) cheaper, and b) more space saving - than buying a couple of metres that you may never-ever use LOL!). By this time just Zora and I were left - with the other sewists having peeled off to their own devices (or to make their way home). So, we walked Westwards back into the more High Street end of town to check out C & H Fabrics (where I picked up my second fat-quarter of the day - with thread spools/reels!). 

18 - Zig-Zag Black & White Chevron Fabric 19 - Thread Reel, Spools Fabric

And, we also just managed to slip into Fabric Land just as they were closing where I grabbed  a couple of metres of this blue coloured elephant fabric (so now I can emulate one of Winnie's make and sew a cute blouse for myself :) ).

20 - Elephants Fabric, Tweezers & Stencil Set  

I also grabbed a pen and stencil set - as I want to experiment with writing words on fabric that hopefully do not wash out! And, I got a pair of tweezers for £1 from TIGER - great for removing stitches that the seam-ripper leaves behind LOL!

21 - Name Label Set (with Pen & Stencil)

I've also updated my Google Map of Brighton sewing/fabric places too in case anyone wants to visit by themselves :)

Here's hoping that Birmingham (in 3 weeks!), and London in August are just as much fun if not more!!


  1. I love the fabric you got! It looks like a great day,.,and the size actually gives you the chance to talk to everyone at the table ;) wishing I lived closer

  2. Those little vintage sewing machines are so cool -- I would have wanted to buy them! And how awesome are those irons?! I'm so envious of your flea markets.

    It sounds like you had a wonderful meet-up! Those are fantastic elephants. :)

  3. Looks like you all had a fantastic time at your meet up! I am really excited about the Birmingham one, I can't wait :D

  4. Looks like you had a great day! I love the fat quarters you purchased - I definitely need some chevron in my stash!

  5. Wow, amazing fabric!! I am heading over to the UK in October/November and would love any fabric shopping recommendations! We're headed all over, including Brighton/London/Birmingham and all the way up to Scotland, Ireland... the list goes on!!

    I'm so sad I'm going to be missing the other meet ups you mentioned :(


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