Spoilt for choice

One thing I have a lot of trouble with in sewing is finding the right fabric. I don’t know enough about fabric. I can tell a knit from a woven. I remember enough of my GCSE Creative Textiles to know the difference between a plain weave, a twill weave, and a satin weave. But I hear people throwing around terms that I’ve never once seen on a label in a fabric store, eg ‘Ponte di Roma’ (some sort of double knit?) and ‘Bemberg’ (which I think might be a US term for what I know as cupro…but then again perhaps not).

Descriptions in reference guides are all very well but I find that touching (and usually stretching and crumpling) a piece of fabric is the only way I can get a really useful impression of it, and you can’t do that via Google – at least, not yet! I need a collection of samples. So last weekend I signed up for Stone Fabrics’ swatch club after reading about Karen of Did You Make That’s experience with them, and my first set of swatches just arrived. They are great. I’ve just been sitting at my desk stroking them. And trying to whittle down the list of the ones I want to add to the stash to a reasonable length. I think I’ve got it down to seven or eight. Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea after all.

And in other news, I took all the good advice people kindly left me about sewing on buttons. I reattached the buttons on my husband’s coat using extra strong thread and doubling it up twice, and this time they have stayed put for a whole four days and counting. Not that I’m counting chickens or anything.