Sourcing Fabrics – Finding Cottons on UK websites.

Oh how I love the World Wide Web. In the same way that people can develop addictions to alcohol, nicotine and chocolate, nothing soothes the heart of this savage beast quicker than an hour or two trawling for quirky and exotic fabrics online. It takes a while to sort the wheat from the chaff but through extensive research (and ordering) I’ve honed a selection of favourite sites where I regularly indulge my passions.

We’re very fortunate in the UK to be served by a great array of suppliers, each with their own particular specialism. The StowBags brand is very much about offering something unique which makes you feel special. Our bags are objects deserving of love and attention so sourcing the cheapest fabrics isn’t the top priority. It’s all about sourcing quality at a reasonable price and I have managed to track down some sites which deliver on both counts.

Many hours of trawling Google armed with words like ‘funky’ and ‘retro’ yielded up some real gems that have become my ‘go tos’ when more unusual or specific requests come in. I use them regularly for sourcing cotton fabrics. These are some of my current favourites:

http://fabricrehab.co.uk/ – the organisation on this site makes it very easy to find fabrics I need in a particular colour palette or theme for commissions
http://www.fabricinspirations.co.uk/ – this store carries a wide range of fabrics which you can search by theme – the selection of Japanese fabrics is particularly good.
http://www.frumble.co.uk/shop/ it’s easy to browse key fabric designers here and, in my experience, service is very fast
http://www.cottonpatch.co.uk/ – this site is a favourite amongst crafters and quilters and is great for smaller patterns which I use as linings for bags with busy patterns on the outside.

When you look inside a handmade StowBag you will often find a fun and quirky lining which came from one of these wonderful sites. They help my customers feel special and sidestep the ordinary and mundane. Check out the linings on this simple clutch to see what I mean. http://www.stowbags.co.uk/all-products/evening-clutch-sunshine-yellow-macaroons/.
Our laptops and tablets are no less deserving of the delicious frisson only a truly funky (and unexpected lining can bring). http://www.stowbags.co.uk/all-products/laptop-case-magenta-faux-suede-padded/

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