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11  CLOTHING / Sewing Pattern Reviews / Re: Super duper high pattern prices! on: August 24, 2005 11:25:26 PM
Thanks so much. You've inspired me to look further and I found this:


A collection of online fabric stores!    I might post this in a new thread so more people will see it.

I was also thinking about somewhere where people could sell their remnants. I guess e-bay is probably it though.
12  CLOTHING / Sewing Pattern Reviews / Re: Super duper high pattern prices! on: August 24, 2005 04:07:10 PM
I think it depends on where you shop in the first place. If you value your time it is impossible to make things cheaper than outlets that are sourcing their goods from third world countries where they are paying bottom dollar wages. On the other hand if you like boutique stuff I think you can save a huge deal: you can make a polycotton shirtdress for $15-20 rather $60-150; skirts for as $10 rather than $65+.

The main reasons I sew & make patterns are because I enjoy it as a hobby, I like to have things that are different and I often want things that aren't available in the shops.   

On the other hand I find it very hard to get quality materials (If anybody knows of good places to buy fabric on the net please let me know - I already know about reprodepot though).  The fabric in most chain dressmaking stores is limited in range, generally not of a high standard, being thin, rough, not-colourfast, prone to pilling etc etc. 

On top of that I find the colours & prints & textures are woeful - honestly, who wears that much dusky pink?  The same goes for notions. Why am I forced to buy a crappy zips & buttons that scream 'homemade' when it is obvious there are better professional products around?

Sadly I'm resigned to the fact that despite spending large amounts of money there regularly, those stores are Kmart/Walmart and I want an "indie" shop with loads of different short run stuff.   

I am going to Japan & Thailand soon - if anyone has advice on places to buy fabric in Tokyo or Bangkok it would be much appreciated.

13  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Get Product and Website Opinions / Re: Free sewing patterns for clothes - download here on: August 16, 2005 09:35:43 PM
Not at all. Thanks for fixing my typo!
14  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Get Product and Website Opinions / Re: What to put on my Front/Home Page??? on: August 08, 2005 07:11:35 PM
Maybe just make it an element rather than the whole page?  I'm fairly certain Google can't pick up any words written in Flash.
15  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Get Product and Website Opinions / Re: What to put on my Front/Home Page??? on: August 08, 2005 04:05:07 PM
I would make sure that you clearly state what it is you are selling and what your site is about as the very first thing ie. "groovy retail jewellery"  or "craft trinkets for wholesale" etc.  This way, if it is done in text rather than images, when Google displays your listing people can quickly see if your site is right for them. 

If you are going to have a flash/splash page make sure you have a 'skip intro' button as most people are impatient and don't want to watch a slide show before going in to a site.
16  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Re: Gluten Free Recipe Ideas or Suggestions on: July 17, 2005 05:42:52 PM
Oh, and the Kroger store brand of soy sauce is GF (tho I don't know if their factory is... blah blah, check for yourself to be sure...but I've never had a problem, and I am crazy sensitive) and a lot cheaper than Tree of Life & the others in my healthfood store.

I found Fountain soy on the supermarket shelves (Coles) the other day and it claims to be gluten free.  I've used it and no problems so far.

For grilled cheese & pizza bases I use white corn tortillas.  It's almost the same, if not better, than a Pizza Hut thin'n'crispy which is not a great recommendation but it helps when I'm craving junk food.  For the toasted sandwich, I wrap a tortilla around some cheese, ham & tomato or cheese, chicken, sweet chilli sauce and baby spinach and then squish it in a sandwich press with a bit of butter.
17  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Re: Gluten Free Recipe Ideas or Suggestions on: July 12, 2005 07:51:26 PM
Thai food is good but we need to be careful of soy sauce as it is often thickened with wheat flour!  I've managed to by wheatfree soy, sometimes called Tamari but be careful because Tamari is not always wheat free either.

Eating out is normally a nightmare but if you in New York check this out:

and if you're not - there's a tonne of smart foodie ideas in there.

Icing sugar and sometimes drinking chocolate I have found uses wheat as some sort of anti-caking agent.  Any commercially made product with thickeners 1400-1450 are also a no-no. 

I have found San Remo pasta in Australia though and it is awesome.  Lasagne is back!
18  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Re: Sewing Denim on: June 28, 2005 03:51:03 PM
It really depends on the weight of your denim and how many layers you are sewing through.  The denim skirt on the Fitz site is made from a lightweight denim and I used a medium sharp (11-12) for it.  I used ordinary guiterman thread for the construction but top stitching thread for the decorative stitching on the pocket & hem.  It helps to have a slightly larger needle for that as the thread is quite thick. I also only use it only on the top - that is, I use ordinary thread in my bobbin.  You may need to adjust the tension on your sewing machine to cope with this. If you show the weight of the fabric to a store assistant they should be able to suggest the right size needle.

If you are going for a heavier weight, maybe try a 14-16. There are mixed packets available so maybe just try out different ones until the machine feels right and you stop breaking needles! The right needle should happily punch through 4 layers of denim.
19  REUSING/RECYCLING/RECRAFTING / What the heck can I do with THIS? / Re: WAAAY too many fleece remnants & strips! on: June 27, 2005 04:15:45 PM
You could make a rag rug like this

20  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Crafty Business Discussion / Re: books & reads on: June 23, 2005 12:58:19 AM
I found Kathleen Fasanella's "The Entrepreneur's Guide to sewn product manufacturing" a great guide for anybody considering designing stuff to sell and having other people make it up. It's a great introduction to the commercial world of sewn products.

Perhaps check out her website first to get an idea of what it is like http://www.fashion-incubator.com/mt/  - there's also some really great advice on how best to sew things.
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