Tuesday, 11 February 2014

A Liberty package to lift the spirits

From bottom to top: Strawberry Thief, Isabel Susan and Jess and Jean

In a moment of madness a couple of weeks ago I placed an order with Shaukat for some new Liberty tana lawn… and it arrived last night. Yippee. I don’t have to explain the childish joy of opening a parcel – I had that childish indecision: to rip the package open, spilling the contents haphazardly on the floor, or to delicately open the package to reveal the beauty within. I went with a controlled ripping option! As long as there was no scissors involved, what harm could a few crinkles be? The fabric would need pre-washing and ironing anyway! J
So here’s what I bought. I stuck with 1.5m of each as I knew that I had recently sewn a Papercut Sigma dress out of 1.3m, so even if I was to sew a longer sleeved dress, or a long sleeved blouse, 1.5m should (realistically) do. And if not, I will be wiser with the next order. I justified the purchase as the Liberty tana lawn was only £14/m which when converted to AUD is approximately $25… half the price of the same fabric at my local fabric store. So, even with the cost of postage, it was definitely worth it. And if I was going to post 1.5m of fabric, I might as well get my money worth and purchase 4.5m for the same postage cost. Check out that justification!
Now, if you were my accountant, you would say something along the lines of ‘but did you really NEED 4.5m of fabric?’ or you would state something like ‘it is only cost effective buying more of a product if you actually require it’. Wise words. I will take that into consideration when Coles makes me buy 2 boxes of cereal when really I only need 1, or when I am forced to buy 2 chocolate bars even though my stomach only really wants 1 (why is it that I can buy 2 chocolate bars for $2, or 1 for $1.80? Coles, it is YOUR fault Australia is getting fat). But, when it comes to fabric, these wise words are nothing but gibberish! The more fabric, the bigger my smile… and I will make something with it eventually… I promise. Besides, fabric doesn’t have a used by date.
Anyway, back to my actual purchases:
Strawberry Thief
This is one of liberty’s classic prints, originally designed by William Morris in 1883 and reproduced by Liberty in 1979, first as a furnishing fabric, and then on tana lawn. I intend to make a dress out of this one. Possibly a Deer and Doe Belladone, or possibly a ¾ sleeved Sigma.
Isabel Susan
This fabric design references 1900 style and the Arts and Crafts movement. It was designed to represent the 4th floor of the Liberty department store, the interior decoration area. I'm not sure about this fabric - it would make a lovely blouse, or a summer dress. It's a little more on the lilac side than I had hoped. I'll have to leave it in my stock pile until I come across the perfect pattern for it.
Jess and Jean
This fabric design pays homage to Beauty Hall, which is located on the ground floor of the Liberty department store. It is based on an archival furnishing design and was drawn using make-up by Nars, Shu Uemura and Laura Mercier. I hope this will become a Tilly and the Buttons Matilde blouse.

I can’t wait to share with you the final makes for each. Oh, and here’s a little sneak preview of what is currently on my sewing table: a self-drafted Peter Pan collar. Hmm, let’s hope I can pull this next project off.


  1. I also just put in an order at Shaukat. It is just so reasonably priced. I should have got Jess and Jean because it really is a great design. Strawberry thief... one of my all time favourites! !

    1. The only thing I don't like about Shaukat is that the colours online seem a bit off. I always have to jump back and forth to the Liberty site to work out which fabric I actually want to order. But the prices are awesome and makes the hassle of switching between sites definitely worth it. Looking forward to seeing what you ordered.

  2. Swoon, I have resisted Shaukat so far, but is if futile? The fabric is lovely and I can't wait to see your creations!

    1. Hi Jillian. Yes, it is definitely futile. I say, join me in Liberty procurements! Fingers crossed I can get some me time soon to sew (this weekend is already out as I am chaperoning kids to Sydney for a gym comp). I can't wait to sew this fabric up.