If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen that last weekend I made another pilgrimage to the World Famous Rag Market. We don’t live locally but my mum and I try and go a couple of times a year for a nice day out or weekend away. This time we had a busy one day trip which included the rag market shopping and tickets to the Sewing for Pleasure show at the NEC.
Inside it was slightly warmer – warm enough to take a few pictures at least. Check out all those fabrics for £1/£2 per metre! Unfortunately, the famous ‘Liberty Man’ wasn’t there this time but that probably saved me some money and also meant I didn’t buy any fabrics which were produced specifically to sell to dressmakers. All the fabrics I bought were ‘overstock’ fabrics left over from manufacturing. Hot tip – a quick chat with the friendly stall owners will tell you what fabrics are overstock – they are all so knowledgeable!
I picked up five pieces of fabric: 1.5m green/blue sparkly stretch denim, 2m teal jersey, 1m red jersey, 2m geometric crepe, 3m tie dye rayon and I spent a grand total of £13. I have plans for a few of these already…
The red jersey I bought with this leaf fabric in mind. I got a small piece of this in a scrap bag but it is only big enough for the front of a top so I wanted something coordinating for the back. This is destined to become a Lou Box Top. Another tip – if you know you are going shopping somewhere like the rag market you never know what you might find! I always find it helpful to have cut a few swatches of things I need colour matching and keep the swatches in my purse – just in case I happen upon something unexpected that might match!
This glittery denim has not come up well in photos at all but it is a gorgeous indigo on one side and emerald green on the other, I know it is destined to become another Tilly and the Buttons Cleo dress but which side do I use?!
Finally, I don’t know what I am going to make with this gorgeous geometric crepe but I wanted to show these flaws. My final tip for rag market shopping is – inspect the fabric! Have a good look at what you are buying as often it is so cheap because of a flaw. Watch the fabric carefully as the stall holders measure it and speak up if there is a problem. Often the friendly guys will chuck a bit in for free or give you a big discount. In this case we paid £3 for 4.2m of crepe which my mum and I split between us and the flaw is only about 40cm long.
Finally, when we got too cold in the market we headed to the nice warm NEC and had a lovely time walking round the Sewing for Pleasure show. Neither of us bought any more but we had a nice time talking to lovely people and touching all the fabric.
Thanks Birmingham we’ll be back soon!