Wool fabric – for cold weather.

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Clothing made from wool fabric has always been considered the best for wearing in cold weather, it traps heat and will prevent the body from cooling. Wool absorbs moisture, but stays warmer than many other fabrics, it is also inherently flame retardant. So a good choice for clothing when the weather gets colder.


A lovely soft wool fabric in royal blue and navy blue check with threads of red and yellow.

s-l1600-4aVintage veruna wool fabric in a great abstract design, light weight for dress making or scarves. Rare to find vintage fabric like this without moth holes, as they seem to love this more than anything.

s-l1600-3aA heavier tweed wool fabric, ideal for skirts and jackets


Vintage wool and cotton mix brocade fabric in a geometric design. Good for interiors or heavier clothing .



Wool fabric bundles for sale in my Etsy shop are very popular for using in crafts, patchwork cushions, clothing etc.





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Toile de Jouy Fabric

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Toile prints were originally produced in Ireland in the mid-18th Century and quickly became popular in Britain and France. The name Toile de Jouy originated in France in the late 18th century and means “cloth from Jouy”, a town near Paris.

Christophe-Phillipe Oberkampf set up business in Jouy-en-Josas outside Paris in 1759, where he joined with engraver and designer Jean Baptiste Huet to design idyllic pastoral scenes for their fabrics.

The designs on toile de jouy vary greatly, but they all have detailed scenes scattered over the fabric. Originally the scenes were carved on woodblocks or engraved on copper then printed in only one colour (often red, black, or blue) on to a white or cream background.


Les Traveaux de la Manufacture (The Activities of the Factory), 1783–84, designed by Jean-Baptiste Huet



Toile fabrics are a fascinating record of the times both past and present, often depicted historical events, such as the pattern above c. 1784 based on two etching made shorly after the Montgolfier brothers successful ascent in hydrogen-filled hot air balloons


Detail from a more modern toile fabric  by Ashley Wilde.



Even more recently, Mike Diamond from the Beastie Boys designed Brooklyn Toile (above) as a wallpaper. Together with designer Vincent J. Ficarra he created a toile depicting his favorite Brooklyn scenes.

toile de jouy ALL

 Toile has come to be used for interiors, both wallpaper and soft furnishings in this vibrant room.


Here Toile de Jouy is being used for clothing  in this 1950’s style Bernie Dexter dress.




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20th Century Rayon Dress Making Fabric

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Considered the oldest manufactured fabric, rayon is made from cellulose ( often wood pulp), and thought of as semi-synthetic. There are several different ways of processing the cellulose each producing slightly different fabrics such as viscose, modal, lyocell and tencel.

Known as artificial silk when it was first introduced in the late 1800’s early 19o0’s, it soon became very popular as a cheaper alternative to cotton and silk.  By the 1950’s the versatility of rayon meant it was being used extensively often printed in a great variety of fashionable designs and colours.



1960’s Walric rayon shown above is a heavier dress fabric which has a stiffish linen feel.


this lighter silk crepe like rayon is perfect to dresses and blouses


Cold satin rayon in great 1950’s geometric design

blpray1950’s silky rayon


Rayon brocade fabric which could be used for dress making or interiors


1960’s 70’s interiors fabric in a rayon and cotton blend


Check out the excellent blog  by Emileigh of Flashback Summer – The History of Rayon and how to care for it  Rayon blog





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What People Make with the fabric I sell – ‘The Village Hippy’ Gifts and Clothing

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I met  Lindsey of  ‘The Village Hippy’ on facebook some time ago. Such a lovely person with a kind and positive outlook on life.  She makes great bags, hangings and memo boards using vintage fabric, buttons and bindings.

Here is one the memo boards she made with linen fabric she bought from me, the design is ‘flowers waltz’ a 1960’s design from Jonelle.


Recently she has turned her hand to dress making and like everything she does, makes a fabulous job of it.  The finishing of this ‘buttercup’ Doris dress is wonderful. She has adapted a vintage pattern and used 1970’s St Michael  yellow daisy fabric for the sleeves, frilled hem and binding.


What a clever person..



Check out her unique range of gifts, clothing and quirky items. TheVillage Hippy


Since posting this blog Lindsey has made another dress with the vintage St Michael fabric..lovely.

Further information about Vintage Fabric can be found at the links below.



Ideas for Using Vintage Fabric – 1950’s Style Striped Dresses

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I always loved the dresses my mum wore in the summer when I was little. The ones I remember most were striped, with full skirts and a fitted bodice, sometimes the stripes would be horizontal on the skirt and vertical on the bodice.

mums dressa

Here’s our family in 1958, with Mum in one of her striped summer dresses. (I am the one with plaits!) I think her Mum (my Granny) made it, she made lots of our clothes and was the one who first got me interested in sewing, often taking me to markets in Manchester for fabric.

This blue green wide striped fabric on background of floral sprigs by Crowson is called ‘montana’, it was made for light weight curtains and interiors, but would be great to use for one of these dresses.


As would this green striped cotton by Lee Jofa, the stripes run vertically, but shown here side ways on.


From a Dutch magazine advert dated 1958.




Further information about Vintage Fabric can be found at the links below.

My Vintage Fabric Stash

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Bundles of fabric from my collection.

This one include several spotted fabrics, the green in silk, the navy rayon and the bottom one cotton.  1940’s  fabrics  inc early Liberty silk  and 50’s crepe.


The one below has some lovely pieces of 1940’s rayon and cotton, French toile and old Liberty checked silk.IMGP0260aa

This pile is made up of cotton an rayon orange and pink shades includes William Morris ‘golden lily’ and a Laura Ashley cotton interiors fabric


Several 1950’s and 60’s pieces here, including, barkcloth and basket weave both popular at the time.


I have used this pile as my logo for a while now, it has some great William Morris prints on linen and cotton as well as  a piece by Pat Albeck a well know designer in the 1960’s.


Further information about Vintage Fabric can be found at the links below.

Ideas for using Vintage Fabric – Pink Shot Silk & Cotton Dupioni.

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This vintage late 1930’s early 40’s  pink dress making shot fabric has a darker pink slub cotton one side and satin-like silk dupioni on the right side (though each side could be used uppermost).


Wonderful stuff which is fairly heavy and could be used in many different ways..


It would make a lovely long full skirted evening dress shiny side up, like the one shown below.


or how about this evening dress with matching cape.


or  ankle length tea dress darker side up using the silk side for trim.


Also heavy enough to be used for light interiors, curtains etc.



Further information about Vintage Fabric can be found at the links below.

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