On this day 14 years ago I picked up the keys to Fine Fabrics, I remember being like a rabbit in headlights, the whole prospect of owning the shop dawned on me that first day… what had I been thinking….My first customer has become an amazing friend and ally, fate definitely stepped in that day and helped shape the future of the shop though little did i realize it at the time.
Over the years I have met some truly wonderful people all whom have had a small effect on the shop, for instance whenever I do a fabric buy I always think of Mrs. D and Mrs. M they were sisters who frequented the shop on a regular basis, they would arrive immaculately dressed shoes, handbags and quite often gloves, all co-ordinating with their perfectly sewn outfits, they were French Belgian with immense needlework talents, they taught me about colours and fabrics, the importance of choosing the right fabric for the right project and how colour impacts on the skin tone, truly wonderful ladies. I am fortunate to have very talented customers, dearest Della who is the best tailoress in the world, I have learned so much from this incredible lady, she has so much knowledge of tailoring and is so happy to share that knowledge, she never minds me picking her brains on how to do things. Then there is wonderful Julie who has so much talent and is highly sort after in the theatrical costume industry she works in, again she is so generous with her time and expertise, thank you Julie for getting me through the lockdown. Then there are the suppliers that have enabled me to curate the fabric collection in the shop, a special thank you to Graham Smith Fabrics they are a delightful family business based in West Yorkshire, both father and son held my hand for the first few years teaching me so much about fabric compositions and dying processes.I may have to chase an order from time to time and I have been known to go and collect it, always a delight to deal with them. Lindsay, Carol, Sarah and Cheryl who all receive texts, emails and phone calls from me needing things urgently, you are all shinning stars, i really appreciate all the lengths you go to to get me samples, colour matches and fabric orders, you often go above and beyond
Finally, the biggest thanks go to all of you who over the years have supported the shop, come rain, shine, and snow many of you have battled your way to the shop..I thank you, For those of you who have faithfully ordered through the mail order service, I really wouldn’t be here without your patronage. An enormous heartfelt deep gratitude to the marvelous sewing group Ladies for your weekly devotion to class, making me smile and laugh with your wonderful one-liners, you are truly remarkable.. thank you
Tonight I will toast all of you with a glass of wine, here’s to the next year.
Keep sewing, stay safe and healthy