Fabric Loft Interview and Giveaway
One of the fun things about compiling & updating the Fabric Love list of UK online fabric shops has been getting to know some of the entrepreneurs who are working hard to meet our fabric & haberdashery needs… (which means working very hard!). There are some brilliant shops out there, but like everyone, I have favourites, and The Fabric Loft is one of mine. The Fabric Loft’s founder is Lizzet Belcher, and she has very kindly agreed to answer some questions about her business and her future fabric plans – I really hope you enjoy reading the interview.
Lizzet has also offered a brilliant GIVEAWAY prize:
A voucher for £13 to spend on fabric from The Fabric Loft
A lovely book – Make Me I’m Yours – Simply Sewing
Read on to end of the interview to find out how to enter…
How long has The Fabric Loft been up and running for and how are you enjoying it so far?
The Fabric Loft went live towards the end of April 2010. It is a fairly new shop, but the response has been fantastic so far. I am truly enjoying running the shop, seeing new collections coming in, working surrounded by such gorgeous fabrics and being in contact with talented crafters is in my opinion one of the best jobs anyone can have.
What inspired you to open your own online fabric shop?
This might not be the answer people expect, but whilst on a short break in Belgium, me and my husband walked into a fabric shop (to be more accurate, I walked in dragging him with me), it was not a big shop, but it was full of fabrics from floor to ceiling and the lady working there had such a big smile and a happy aura, and that pushed me to finally turn all my dreams and ideas into a reality.
What’s your crafting story? What are your favourite things to make?
I love crafts in general, I love making things and see how a ball of yarn slowly turns into a crocheted bear or a pile of fabric scraps into a beautiful quilt. When I was a child, I always did some sort of craft, cross stitch, papier-mâché, knitting, crochet, etc. For some reason I stopped when I went to University, but came back to it a few years ago, and now I find I get frustrated if I don’t have a creative outlet.
I am really enjoying making clothes and slowly learning patchwork. I must confess it is a great moral boost when I successfully make a little something, like a small purse or a little doll. I would definitely recommend to have at hand a few small and quick projects to make on one of those days that you feel a bit under the weather, the sense of achievement when you finish something (even if it is a bit wonky) can turn a bad day into a great one, try it 🙂
Who is your favourite designer?
My favourite designer? It will be easier to pick my favourite ice cream flavour! For me it all depends in what I am making, for patchwork and quilting I am in love with Oliver+S first collection City Weekend. Anna Maria Horner’s voiles from Innocent Crush is a must have for me, I am hoping to get some early in the new year, I have lots of ideas in my mind of what to do with them (a blouse and a maxi dress are at the top of my list). I can also see Aneela Hoey turning into everybody’s favourite in 2011.
What are the fun things about running a fabric shop?
I could write a list as long as War and Peace about the best things about running a shop. The greatest thing is to see how the same fabric can be turn into a quilt, or a bag, a skirt, or even a hoody jacket; not by me of course, but by my clever customers. I also enjoy helping choosing fabrics too, and discovering how two fabrics by different designers that I would have never put together do work and complement each other as if they had been created to be used together.
What are the tough things about running your own business?
Because my business is online, one difficult thing is not to have that contact with customers than a bricks and mortar shop has. Saying that, maybe it is a good thing, because I would probably be talking about fabrics and crafts all day long and would get very little done.
Do you have future ambitions for The Fabric Loft?
Of course I do! And these are tied in with the ambitious of all the crafty people out there. The UK market is growing at an amazing rate and many people are discovering or remembering that they have a creative side too. I try to keep up to date with fabric trends and find that the feedback I get from my customers gives a great insight into what is going on in the crafting world.
Whatever the market demands, I will try to stock in my shop, and if not too busy I also use it myself to make my own things.
What’s the favourite thing you’ve got in stock right now?
Yet another tough question! City Weekend is fun and brilliant for quilting/lightweight fabric, the corduroys are ever so soft and have a beautiful shine that is hard to resist and the flannels are another must have fabric during this season, because they are not only super soft and warm, but with such fantastic designs you will want the cold winter nights to last so that you don’t have to pack them away when the weather warms up again; that is until you see the new cotton fabrics I have lined up for next year!!
**To enter please leave a comment on this Very Berry blog post telling us which fabric you would be tempted to buy from The Fabric Loft if you were the lucky winner.
**If you are a follower of The Fabric Loft on Facebook you are eligible for an additional entry – but make sure you tell us here!
**The competition is only open to people from the UK and Europe, please don’t enter if you’re outside this area.
**The giveaway will remain open until midnight on 19th December – the draw will be made and the winner announced on the 20th December.