Hello everyone! How are the current restrictions affecting your Lockdown Sewing?
Our lives have all been changed so much due to Covid-19. With the UK and other countries heading into their 7th week of lockdown and materially changes being made to the way we shop, work, socialize and live together we wanted to check in with our favorite sewing shops and see how they were doing. How is lockdown sewing affecting them and their business?
So we have contacted all of our favorite sewing shops and asked them to let us know how the pandemic has affected their business. We think they have done an amazing job under the circumstances to keep us all in our favorite fabrics, patterns, and haberdashery items during lockdown!
We know that you may need a little treat to lift your mood and inspire your sew-jo and we want to encourage you to support these businesses in any way you can. We are all in this together and we want to save as many of our favorite shops as we can.
So here is our guide to what’s on offer from your sewing favorites and what to expect in lockdown.
The Foldline’s online shop is open as usual and are sending out all the orders twice a week at the moment.
They send everything out via Royal Mail and are still shipping overseas. It’s understandable that they have noticed that things are taking a couple of days longer to arrive to customers. As always, for those of you not wanting to wait for a pattern to arrive they have got loads PDF’s to pick from!
They have told us that it’s been really interesting seeing what people have been sewing over the last month. There definitely seems to be a desire to make something that is not too taxing, which is completely understandable. The two patterns that have been really popular are the Ogden cami from True Bias, especially with the warmer weather on the way. The other product that a lot of people have fallen for is the Loungewear pattern e-book from Workshop (recommended by us in our Lockdown Sewing – Indie Edition on Youtube).
They are still producing content for their blog & vlog and are the best place to go for Sewing Bee news.
Material Girl Laura is very much still open for business!
Laura is despatching daily and still within 2 working days from receipt of your orders. She is continuously restocking and receiving new fabrics throughout the week so make sure to check out the website regularly for new updates.
She has just added a new section to the website, called Material Girl Laura Kids. This exciting addition has all of the cute prints for kids you’re looking for and its also making Laura’s kids super excited too! (check it out for yourself too….not just for the kids!)
She has kindly offered a 10% discount using the code PICKMEUP throughout the pandemic.
Minerva Crafts has confirmed that they are definitely still open for business. Their turn-around for orders is about 5 days at present, but we are working really hard to reduce that time, at the same time as keeping all of their lovely staff safe.
They are still posting out orders 6 days a week using Royal Mail. The mail does seem to be sporadic throughout the country so you should expect some delays. They are still shipping internationally and some delays there are to be expected in the current circumstances.
As you know Minerva have a huge selection of fabrics in stock and they have had loads of new fabric arrivals in the last couple of weeks. These new John Kaldor fabrics look amazing so make sure to check out the collections, perfect for all of your lockdown sewing.
They still have their wonderful Craft Club membership which offers 10% off orders all year round for regular customers.
Fabrics Galore is a bricks and mortar business and online shop based in Lavender Hill, London. The shop is currently closed and will remain so for the foreseeable future, but the online store is very much open and we are keeping it up to date with all our new fabrics.
They are running on a smaller staff, so orders are taking a few days to process, but they are working as hard as possible to get the orders out to you.
Postage is taking place twice a week at the moment, Tuesdays and Thursdays but they hope to get back to their daily postings as soon as they can.
They use Royal Mail first class for deliveries and have been experiencing some delays; parcels are taking between 5-10 working days to arrive. However, we must say the majority of orders have arrived with only minor delays as we know that Royal Mail are working hard to keep everything going.
International shipping is still happening but additional delays should be expected.
Sarah from Like Sew Amazing confirmed that she is still open and sending out orders via post. if you are in the Bristol area then you can also arrange for a collection.
She is turning around orders in around 1-2 days and is posting usually daily via Royal Mail. She is still shipping overseas.
Luckily fabric deliveries haven’t been affected much and she confirms that she has lots of lovely new summer fabrics coming in all the time! A particular favorite is the new Ruby Star collection. The animal double gauze was hugely popular last month and is coming back in any day!
The wonderful Tilly & The Buttons confirmed that they currently open to send physical sewing goodies to UK addresses (printed sewing patterns, fabric), and for all our digital products for anyone living outside the UK or wanting to get sewing immediately.
Tilly has one member of her team sending out orders twice a week, on a Tuesday and a Thursday. You should expect some delays, but orders are generally being received within two weeks. They use Royal Mail for postage in the UK and they are finding some customer receive their parcels in just a couple of days, but some are taking slightly longer. No overseas shipping at the moment but keep an eye on their website for updates.
Tilly currently has a lockdown discount on digital sewing patterns and online workshops with digital patterns. You can save 10% on digital sewing patterns* (not the digital trio bundles) and online workshops (with digital pattern) with the code DIGITAL10.
Rachel let us know that when the lockdown was brought in she closed the shop, canceled the classes and all my staff went home. She thought she might just about manage to cope with online orders by herself but of course, they massively escalated because everyone was sewing at home.
Fortunately, it coincided with her two of my daughters being sent home from university so of course she commandeered them and they are now the super Ray Stitch family team of 3! She is going into the shop every day and is trying to keep up with the orders.
She told us “This is actually a very interesting time for me personally, I’m really getting back in touch with what people are buying and it’s giving me a lot of time to evaluate stock. I’m really very grateful that the orders are rolling in and we will survive this, but I’m worried too. When we open the shop again who knows whether the trade will be at the same level as before? And I can’t see us being able to hold classes again for a long time. The school was/is a huge part of the business but how do you social distance in a sewing class? And it’s so terrible for the self-employed people involved with sewing – including my lovely teachers – who make their living from teaching and running workshops which are all about getting up close and seeing how it’s done.
So that’s my experience, bonding with my daughters, getting back in touch with the nitty-gritty of my business, and hoping everyone gets to the other side.”
Sew Hayley Jane
Hayley Jane is still taking orders for her subscription boxes. Orders are open for new subscribers every month between the 3rd-25th
She told us that the subscription boxes are being dispatched every month as close to the regular shipping date, the 8th, as possible. This is obviously dependent on getting all the supplies in time and help packing the boxes whilst practicing social distancing.
In April there were delays with Royal Mail but the May boxes have all been arriving with those in the UK in a really good time. Understandably, there are still delays for international shipping, especially to Australia and New Zealand.
My Classic box is the most popular of the subscription boxes, inside every themed box you receive 2.5m of dressmaking fabric, 4 fat quarters, haberdashery supplies, and sewing gifts. Its the perfect thing for a little pick me up treat.
There will be some leftover stock from the last few months subscription boxes available to purchase at a discounted rate on the Outlet Store very soon, so keep an eye out for those – https://shop.sewhayleyjane.com
Sew Over It
It sounds like Sew Over It have a great system in place for orders. They are sending orders from both Lisa’s parents’ and Rosie’s houses. Lisa is posting out paper patterns and fabric, and Rosie is printing and posting copyshop patterns.
How long on average is it taking to dispatch orders? It is taking a little longer than usual, around three to four days. Posting of orders takes place every 2-3 days, as often as they can in the circumstances.
Postage is done via Royal Mail and most orders seem to be reaching people within one or two days as usual, but some are taking longer as they work their way through the system. Their customers have been really understanding about any delays, which they are really grateful for!
They are only offering tracked shipping overseas right now, just to reduce the risk of parcels getting lost. The only thing they are not shipping internationally at the moment is copyshop patterns.
They have been running live sew-alongs on YouTube and have had lots of people joining in with those. People were telling them that buying fabric is more difficult than usual, so they are making sure to order in some pattern-specific fabrics for the sew-alongs so they’ll have something to choose from.
Lamazi Fabrics are open as normal we are pleased to report. Due to very high demand, and having the kids at home, they are turning around orders in about 2-4 days instead of next day delivery. They are still able to post every day luckily and have temporarily switched to a courier service due to the delays with Royal Mail. Overseas shipping is as normal.
They are still receiving deliveries of the newest collections so make sure to check the website regularly for lots of delicious fabric. In particular, the new Atelier Brunette collection, See You At Six Replay, and Rifle Paper Co rayons have been really popular in the last few weeks.
They were kind enough to give us a sneaky peek of the new Mind The Maker collection that will be in stock in a few weeks. We are very excited about these gorgeous fabrics!
The lovely Nicki & Amy are still open for your orders. They are dispatching within 2-3 days of receiving your orders and posting is done twice a week.
They have a great system set up to process the order, Amy has all the stock so she is cutting and packing the orders and then Nikki collects from her doorstep and does the posting!
Initially, they switched to a courier service at the beginning of the lockdown but are now back with Royal Mail. They are still shipping Overseas.
They have kindly given us a 20% discount code to pass on to you lovely people. Use the code ‘atreatforyou‘ at the checkout to receive your discount, the discount is valid for 2 weeks.
They have lots of beautiful fabrics but we particularly like these new cotton jersey fabrics. They are such great colours we can see why they would be popular!
So as you can see, most of our favorite sewing shops are still working and doing everything they can to keep us all in our essential sewing supplies.
Remember that behind these companies are individuals and families who are trying to keep their business running, paying for rent, and staff.
Obviously, we too are still open for business. You can still buy and watch online classes. Our prices have still be reduced to help you pass the time in lockdown.
If we have missed your favorite fabric store feel free to comment below.
Nikki & Rachel