Because Maidstone has become afflicted by some ill-placed delusion of grandeur, and makes it nigh-on impossible for any decent shops to survive in the town because of its ridiculously high business rates, I have to travel 25 miles to Canterbury if I want to visit a C & H Fabrics. Never used to, because there used to be a C & H in Maidstone but it closed about 3 years ago because of the business rates. Stupid Maidstone Borough Council.
Anyway, with the urge to sew now truly embedded in my blood (hand-sewn quilt project about 2/3rds complete!) my thoughts have been turning to making proper clothes. And when I say 'proper clothes' I mean a) ones that fit me properly and b) that are in a fabric and colour/pattern I love.
Which brings me to the question - what does one choose first? A pattern - 'Oooh, what a lovely dress! I'd love a dress like that!' - or 'What GORGEOUS fabric! I could make that up into a lovely skirt/ dress/ blouse!' (Or, as Andy suggested 'pants.' For him.)
Well, we hit Canterbury first thing this morning aiming to be in and out before it became crowded wiv da trendy kidz, innit? Andy needed new shoes, I was on a fabric mission. I had already decided on the drive over that, as I subscribe to two sewing magazines, I have already sufficient patterns to choose from so fabric was the focus. Less spending money on patterns = more spending money on fabric!
I got sidetracked into FatFace and it was here that I made a very happy discovery. Well, two in fact. Firstly, that they were having a sale and secondly, that I am now a FatFace size 14!!! (Which I believe is a size 10 in American sizes, so even better. Except I don't live in America, but you know what I'm saying.)
Well! This immediately increased the choice of sale garments available for me to choose from, so I splashed the cash (£67) and came away with one blouse, one tunic, one cardigan and one pair of woolly tight and a MASSIVE grin on my face that the past few months of eating less and moving more has paid off.
Off to C & H. So much to choose from! I could have come away with a whole trunkful of fabric but my inner financial manager took control and I chose these...
...which, as you will be unsurprised to note, are all floral because I am a flower gal.
I reckon I've got enough to make at least one dress, one skirt and two blouses. I had to guess on how much to buy because I didn't have any specific patterns in mind, but by this point I was high on recklessness and was bandying metres around like a crazy person.
Andy was far more efficient in his shopping habits because in the time I was deliberating over fabric he had visited Waterstones, a computer games shop AND bought himself a new pair of shoes, but as he so wisely pointed out, the shoe buying habits of men and women are polar opposite so it was a quick job for him.
And now I am settling in for an afternoon of sifting through my hefty stack of sewing magazines and patterns to find a project to begin when the quilt is complete.
Oooh, and I am also thinking one of those dressmaker's dummy forms might be a good idea, so I can get things properly tip-top in the fitting department.