Monday, 31 December 2012

A Year In Fabrics

Well, its the end of another year.  I've spent the last hour or so reading blog posts of reflection and resolutions, so thought I'd add my two-pennys worth!

I can honestly say 2012 has passed all my expectations....and its all thanks to you, my lovely customers!!  When the idea of opening my very own little fabric came into my head I never, in my wildest dreams, dared to believe that it would all take off aswell as it has.

*Warning - self indulgent post follow!!*

Since we launched on 1st March 2012 (read the launch post here) we have, as promised, brought you lots of gorgeous fabrics, tripling the amount of prints we have to tempt you!  We have attended many, many craft fairs including the two day Cardiff City Craft and Hobby Show (and will be attending again this year in May), we have over 3800 friends over on our Facebook page and over 1100 twitter friends.  However, most importantly we have worked with and served 100's and 100's of lovely lovely customers!!!  

Some favourites from 2012
So what does 2013 hold for you?  

For us, I really hope its much of the same.  We will be bringing you more lovely fabrics (take a look at our pre-order album to see exactly what!), a range of sewing patterns to inspire you, a regular newsletter so you can keep up to date with the goings on here at TSB HQ and we may even throw in a giveaway or two!!

So that, my friends, just leaves me to wish you a happy and healthy 2013!!


from Rhi @ The Sewing Boutique x x

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

{Whats New} In The Shop

We have (almost) been inundated with new fabrics coming in over the last month or so!  Not that Im complaining....who would when surrounded by all this beautiful fabric!!  And beautiful it is....

Happy Every After - Riley Blake Designs
Have you ever seen such a perfect fabric for a little princess?  Designed by Sandra Workman for Riley Blake Designs, the princess castles and little dresses would look perfect as maybe a patchwork bedspread.  I have two little princesses who fell in love with it as soon as it was delivered!!

Little Monkeys by Blend Fabrics
Not wanting to forget the boys, how cute is this monkey fabric?!  If you know the words to "No More Monkeys Jumping On The Bed" you'll be singing it to yourself after making something for your little one with this!!

Type By Windham Fabrics
A bit of a grown up print in comparison with the others, Type by Windham fabric is illustrator Julia Rothman's debut fabric collection.  My mind has been whirring with ideas since ordering this, and a few people came up with some fab ideas over on Facebook too!  Glasses case with the glasses fabric, messenger bags with the letters, fabric baskets to organise your desk with the paper clip one....too many ideas, not enough time to do them!!

All these are available over in the shop now.

Rhi @ The Sewing Boutique
x x 

Monday, 17 December 2012

Christmas Posting

Its always a bit of a dreaded time of the year for online businesses, but posting around Christmas doesnt seem to have been that bad this year!!  First class has taken around 2 to 3 days, but at least all our lovely customers have had their fabrics rather than them going AWOL (touch wood - a load of parcels went out today so maybe I shouldnt speak to soon??)

Our last posting day before Christmas will be this Thursday 20th December.  Orders made after 2.30pm that day will then go out on Wednesday 2nd January.

So make sure you have your fabric stocked up ready for the break!  You never know, you may even get an hour or two to yourself while the kids play with their new toys ;)

Time is flying by and I'll be honest, I'll be glad when Christmas is finally here! 

Rhi @ The Sewing Boutique
x x 

Saturday, 24 November 2012

{Quick Tutorial} How To Make Bias Binding

Whilst there are a huge number of bias bindings in all colours, patterns and widths, do you ever find you just cant find the right one to bind that quilt/edge that apron/finish that project??

Well look no more and keep on reading!  We may just have the answer :) A fab little gadget came into the shop a couple of months ago so thought I'd put together a tutorial on how to use it!  

For this you will need:

- Bias Tape Maker (I prefer the 25mm one but it also comes as 12mm) 
- 1 Fat Quarter of fabric (I used Anthology Raining Rainbows - Spots)
- ruler
- scissors
- iron and ironing board
- sewing machine

1. Cut your FQ so its a square, then cut diagonally so you have two triangles.

2. Lay out and pin as per the diagram below then stitch along the pinned edge using a 1/4" seam.  Iron the seam open.

3. You will end up with, what I believe is called, a parallelogram (maths was never my strong point).  At this point, draw lines length ways 45mm apart.  Depending on how big your FQ is, you may need to trim a little from one of the long edges.

4. Putting right sides together, bring the short sides together and pin, matching up your pencil lines.  Sew using a short straight stitch and you'll end up with a tube kind of thing (technical, I know).

5. Starting at one end, cut along the lines so you end up with a continuous strip of fabric.  You'll almost be cutting around the tube shape, if you see what I mean?!

6.  This is the fun bit!  Feed one end of the fabric strip into the tape maker, right side down.

7. Pin one end of the fabric of to the ironing board and as the fabric feeds out of the tape maker, carefully press it with the iron (I dont want to state the ridiculously obvious but please be careful the iron is hot and it gets quite close to your fingers)

8. Keep that going until you reach the end of the tape.  You may need to go back over some part a few times, including where you've stitched the seams.

9. Ta dah!  Lovely bias binding that you can make to match ANYTHING!!  

Rhi @ The Sewing Boutique x x

p.s. a few tips...this works better with thicker cottons or cottons with a slightly stiffer texture.  The Anthology fabric I used in this worked out well but did keep slipping.  

Also, any square of fabric would work, doesnt need to be a FQ, could be bigger or smaller.  A FQ will make around 2.5 metres of bias binding as a guide.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

{Freebie Friday} A Winner And Whats New

Its like Christmas every week here at The Sewing Boutique HQ at the moment!  New fabrics arriving, lots of lovely fabrics going out to customers, it couldnt be nicer!

These are our latest additions....

Three fabrics from the Bella collection by Lotta Jansdotter. I've loved these since they were released and have waited AGES for them to be re-printed so we could get them in stock.  We're still waiting for one print to come in but for now, Im happy with this little lot! 

Another new one, Michael Millers Bunting Stripe in Denim.  I wish we'd had this for the Jubilee/Olympics as the colours are very fitting.  Still, you cant go wrong with a bunting print.  How amazing would this bunting print look as bunting?!  Hmmmm...might give that a go!

Also we've re-stocked the very popular Michael Miller - Forest Life.  Like me, you seem to love those crazy owls!

And finally......the winner of our {Freebie Friday} Giveaway is

Mrs M Makes 


Apologies for the late result, blogger was not my friend yesterday when I tried to post this....actually, neither was Facebook when I was checking out the shares, so I gave up and tried again today! 

Rhi @ The Sewing Boutique x x

p.s. we have a lovely week coming up on the blog, a couple of tutorials and something I hope will get your festive juices flowing! :)

Friday, 9 November 2012

{Freebie Friday}

From here on in, one Friday a month shall be known as FREEBIE FRIDAY!  Who doesn't love a freebie right?

As a thank you to all our lovely Facebook Friends, blog followers and twitter peeps, every month we will have a giveaway.  It may be some fabric, it may be some buttons, it may be a felt bundle, but it will definitely be fabulous!! 

To kick things off, this months Freebie is.....

Pretty Peony Bundle

The newly listed Pretty Peony Bundle, which consists of four FQs and two metres of pink and green satin ribbon.

As always, the rules are simple.  All you have to do is...

1. Follow our blog and comment below for one entry.

For extra entries....

2. Follow us on twitter and tweet about the giveaway


3. Follow us on FB and share our status.

Please leave a comment for each entry to make sure I dont miss anything. 

You can enter up until midday on Friday 16th November and a winner will be randomly chosen and announced later that day.

Good luck!! 

Thursday, 8 November 2012

New in the Shop...

For those that dont follow us over on Facebook, I must inform you that I am not the most patient of ladys!  Especially when I am waiting for a delivery of beautiful fabric!!  Its not easy for an impatient person like me, ordering so far in advance then having to wait (and wait, and wait).

So I was very excited when I had the call to say this lovely little lot had arrived....

Riley Blake Polka Dot Stitches.....finally! 

If its possible to have a favourite, this one is it....

This was my least favourite when I ordered, but its stunning in real life!  The yellow is a lot more vibrant and the flowers are so pretty!  

These would make a beautiful quilt for an older girls room as its so pretty but a bit more grown up!

Cant wait to show you what arrives next! 

Rhi @ The Sewing Boutique 

p.s. for a sneak peak of whats going to be arriving over the next few months, take a look at our "Coming Soon" album over on Facebook

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Help Me Decide!

Im very lucky that my little fabric shop is growing at a rate I never thought it would so soon.  This has meant I've been able to get so many lovely new products on the site including new fabrics, new buttons and not to mention the new ribbons!

It was always my intention to stock sewing patterns.  Im not much of a pattern follower myself but I do love having a pattern to start with (I often trail off and do my own thing towards the end!)and inspire my makes.  I've started making clothes for my little ones and need a pattern to know where to start!

One of the patterns we could be stocking soon!
I've found a fantastic company that stocks the most amazing range of patterns and my question is this...

What type of pattern would you like to buy?

I also asked this recently over on the Facebook page and there has been a clear winner!  The original choices are...

Accessories i.e. bags and bunting
Childrens clothing
Adult clothing
Quilt and soft furnishing patterns
Soft toy patterns

A few more were added but I think these are the main ones.  Feel  free to suggest any others!  I would love to hear your thoughts and your help is very much appreciated!

Super cute twirly skirt pattern
Just comment below with your choice and who knows, you could see some gorgeous patterns of your choice within the next month!

Rhi @ The Sewing Boutique x x

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Who Doesnt Love A Sale?

Ok, so I know the sales start traditionally in January, but I thought I'd start mine now.  Except with this sale, there will be none of the queueing for hours waiting for it to open then pushing and shoving and elbows in the ribs you get with some other sales!

One of the reasons I thought I'd start the sale now is because I've included all the Halloween items!  Theres still time to grab a bargain for this year, or if you're having a belated party this weekend, why not whip up some bunting ready for it?

Halloween Bundle - now on sale for £7.20

Halloween ribbon - now on sale for 50p per metre

Riley Blake Costume Clubhouse - now £2.40 per FQ!!
There are some other fabrics in the sale section too.  So if you've had your eye on something for a while, why not pop over and see if its in our Sale Section?


Monday, 29 October 2012

Join In The FB Fun!

I would hate for my blogging friends to miss out on whats going on over on the Facebook page (do you follow us over there too?).  To celebrate being back from a wonderful holiday, there is a fab discount code that can be used on anything on the site!!  

You could get 15% off this....

Red Polka Dot Bias Binding
or maybe this....

Floral and Gingham Bias Bindings
or any of these!!

Shabby Chic style fabrics
So how do you get this fab discount??  Just enter


at the checkout and the website will do the rest.

Have fun picking what to use it on!

p.s. I dont really have the holiday blues, its fab to be back and this week there are LOTS of new things arriving :)

Sunday, 28 October 2012

My Five Minutes of Fame

Firstly, let me apologise for the lack of posts recently.  As a busy mum of two and with the shop getting busier and busier (Im pleased to say!) the blog seems to have suffered a bit.  I promise to try harder and blog on a more regular basis!

There will be lots more tutorials coming up and new Design Team packs will be going out very soon, plus new and beautiful fabrics to hopefully inspire your creativity!!

We've just come back from a lovely holiday in Weymouth but before we went, two pictures of me and my girlies were in the local paper.  A journalist who was writing an article about mums in business contacted me about working around your children (it's not easy but I'm so fortunate to LOVE what I do!)
Here is one of the pictures they used.  The faces behind "The Sewing Boutique"!
Keep an eye out for a new money off code this week!!
Love Rhiannon @ The Sewing Boutique x X

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

{Dont Miss Out} Join In Our Giveaway!

Yesterday morning, we were very (very!) pleased to see that over on our Facebook page, we passed 3000 likes!  We are extremely grateful to each and every person that takes time to like our page, look at our fabrics and sometimes even leave a little comment.  

We couldn’t let this milestone pass without a celebration of some sorts, so pop on over and take part! 

There is....

You could win any one of these!
.....the chance to win a metre of fabric OF YOUR CHOICE!!  It could be any of these, or maybe you've had your eye on a Christmas fabric??  Or maybe you just cant decide, in which case, you could pick four FQs!  To enter you have to just visit our facebook page and comment underneath the giveaway photo.

Thinking that may not be enough, as there can only be one winner of a giveaway, we also have a discount code to receive a whopping 20% off everything on the site, for everyone to enjoy!  To claim the money off voucher, take a look here for more info (the offer is pinned to the top of our Facebook wall).

Thursday, 30 August 2012

{Quick Tutorial} Easy Toddler Skirt

I've come across quite a few toddler skirt tutorials over the last few months.  Some of them were simple, some of them were more complicated with pin tucks and waistbands.  However, seeing as Im not very good at following a pattern, or a tutorial for that matter, I decided to do my own and share with you what I feel is a simple, but pretty, toddler skirt!

First things first you will need....

1/2 - 3/4 of a metre of 1" wide elastic
Pins and Sewing Machine

* you could use half a metre of fabric but for some reason this skirt falls better if two pieces are sewn together

1. Firstly you need to cut your fabric.  I used Riley Blakes So Sophie For my 2 year old I cut two rectangles 19.5" by 14.5".  This will make a skirt about 10.5" long which falls just on the knee (I should point out at this point my 2 year old is quite small, bless her!).

2. Next, iron your hems.  Take the long edges and iron a 2.5" seam on one side and a 1.5" seam on the other.  So each piece will look something like this....

3. Pin and sew your 2.5" seam with a zig zag stitch.  Dont worry about it being too neat as we'll be covering it up in a bit.  It does need to be relatively straight though.  Do this on both pieces.

4. Now pin your ribbon over the zig zag stitching on the right side of the fabric.  Effectively you're covering up the stitches and lets face it, making the skirt look pretty!  Sew into place top and bottom with a straight stitch (tip: satin ribbon tends to gather and ruffle if you sew it too quickly so try sewing with a longer stitch

5. When pinning the ribbon on the second piece, you might want to measure it against the first piece so when you sew your side seams, the ribbons match.

6. Unfold your 1.5" seam allowance.  Sew your side seams, going all the way to the top on one side but stopping at the fold line on the other as you'll need this gap to thread your elastic through in a bit.

7.  You will now have a tube, type shape.  Turn it inside out and fold and pin your 1.5" seam allowance.  Sew around it to create the casing for your elastic, stopping where you've left your gap.  I like to use a zig zag stitch as this stops the edges fraying but you could tuck in the raw edge and do a straight stitch, whichever you prefer.

8. Cut and thread your elastic.  I measured mine around my little ones waist and added an extra inch before I cut it.  Its the most accurate way to do it!  

9.  Then thread it through the casing you've created on your skirt.  Easiest way to do it??  If you know one, please let me know!  I put a safety pin in one end then, making sure I catch the other end near the opening before its lost, carefully feed the safety pin through.  As you feed it through your ruffled waistband will start to form.

10. Pin in place so it doesnt slip back through then, making sure you catch all your edges, sew into place, sewing your opening shut at the same time.

And there you have it, one toddler skirt expertly modelled by my adorable little girl....

You cant see how long the skirt is on her (trying to get her to stay still was bad enough) but it is just on her knee, so the perfect length for playing in, twirling in and....

..apparently climbing through your car window!!

They really are easy to make, infact, this probably took me an hour.  I've also made one in green from fabric I had in my stash!

See, quick and easy!

Monday, 27 August 2012

{Whats New} Dare I Say It.....

....Christmas!!!  There I said it!  Too early?  Maybe a tad, but with the kids going to back to school next week the shops will soon be filled with cards, decorations and gift ideas (but please no carol cds just yet!).

If you are a crafter, Christmas will be a huge event that will take additional prep for your stall to look festive and indeed, you will probably have been thinking about Christmas makes for a little while now.  

So we have carefully selected our Christmas fabrics and trimmings and they are now available in our Christmas Shop! 

Here are a few of the fabrics we've selected to inspire your festive makes.  There are also bundles available too! 

Michael Miller - Nordic Holiday

Michael Miller - Deck The Halls

Christmas Stars - Red
Christmas Toys - Green

Looking forward to seeing the start of the festive makes!  I may even be ready for Christmas early this year (then again...I probably wont).