Thursday, April 14, 2016

A Trip to Britex & How to Butterfly Wrap Ribbon

Britex Fabrics is one of America's premiere fabric stores, catering to professionals, costumers and bespoke tailors but open for all to browse and shop.  It is four stories of fabrics, upholstery, trims, buttons, and specialties located in San Francisco just steps off Union Square and nestled among other luxury boutiques such as Chanel and Jimmy Choo.

A quick overview:
The first floor comprises luxury silks and fine suiting.  The second floor is liberty lawns and other prints, knit fabrics, and upholsteries and draperies.  The third floor is notions and trims.  The fourth floor are specialty items, such as leather, remnants, and tulle.

I adore the Liberty section.  Yes, that is 3 stacks, floor to ceiling. Lots to choose from here.  There is also a huge selection of other fine apparel and quilting fabrics on this floor, including a giant selection of white fabrics for just that perfect weight and shade required for the perfect complement. 

And there is an entire floor of trims! Ribbons, buttons, lace, both vintage and new.  These photos are just a partial selection of their collection of silk ribbons. 

I spend as much time here as I spend shopping for fabric.  Ahhh, the silks... there is nothing like silk ribbon.  On this trip I sagged some hand-dyed silk velvet ribbon and some really special vintage variegated silk ribbon, among others.

 So after you spend all that time collecting your special finds into tidy piles, how do you keep those treasures so tidy?  To keep them from deteriorating into messy tangles, try butterfly wrapping those special ribbons.  Here is a demonstration on butterfly wrapping from one of the pros at Britex.  Note that she starts with the end of the ribbon grasped between her pinky and fourth (or ring) finger.

So here it is, my score for the day!  The top fabric does not represent nearly as well in the photo: all those flowers outlined in pink are actually "burn outs" of sheer fabric.  Complete with inspiration included, and matching ribbons of course.  And the perfect coordinating button for the focal point of a hat band. 

You can check out Britex's web site here.  Look for their blog for updates and tutorials.  And they even have free store tours every other Saturday at 11 am.  Sign up for a tour here.    
And there's even a tour the Saturday before BlytheCon San Francisco!



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