Crafty Sew&So is a gorgeous sewing and haberdashery shop that recently opened in Leicester. It’s full of beautiful fabrics, kits, haberdashery, sewing machines, patterns, gifts and a whole range of crafty workshops! It was set up by the wonderful duo that is, Sarah and Freya. Today we have great pleasure in finding out a bit more about Sarah and her passion for sewing.
Hello there, can you tell our lovely blog readers a bit about yourself?
Hi, I’m Sarah, founder and partner of Leicester based sewing and workshops business Crafty Sew&So. After studying Fashion design in London I worked in the fashion design industry for over 8 years. A lot of the design process in the fashion industry is computer based and I missed the making stuff with my hands! I set up the business over 2 years ago, launching with a swap shop and craft fair event and have been teaching sewing and craft workshops since then.
To begin with I taught classes in local village halls and community centres and then in January 2014 I moved into a small studio. I taught from there and completed commissions including dance costumes and a wedding dress. Earlier this year I began selling a small range of haberdashery, some fabrics and trims. I realised the potential of selling items to complement the classes and I started looking at expanding into larger premises to do this. When I met my business partner Freya, who also had a long term dream to own and run a haberdashery, we joined forces, found a perfect retail premises in a central location and opened our lovely shop in September 2015.
When did you start sewing?
I started sewing when I was 10 with the help of my very patient mum! When my poor Mum was unable to translate my wild design ideas into reality, I started dressmaking myself and the first garment I remember making was a silver PVC mini skirt! Oh dear!
What do you love about sewing?
The total creativity! I love that I can translate what is in my mind into an actual wearable garment – usually! As I improve my skills and discover new techniques I love that I can make garments that will last the test of time unlike a lot of clothes available.
Can you share any top sewing tips with our Simple Stylish Makers?
Don’t look at the needle when sewing! Pick a stop on the foot or a mark on the plate to line up the fabric with and follow that like a hawk. And try independent dressmaking patterns – you’ll never look back!
We love Tilly and the Buttons’ patterns, which come with a full colour booklet of instructions and photos. They make interesting garments easy to make, even for beginners. We’re looking forward to using the patterns in our workshop next year.
When you’re not sewing, what do you like to do?
Um, now that’s a tough one as I do love sewing so much! But I also love spending time with my very supportive boyfriend, Matt! A perfect day would be taking a walk down to town through the park, stopping off at our local museum to check out the latest art exhibition and then a long lunch at our favourite little Italian. We might check out some of the lovely independent shops in Leicester and pop into the Deli on the Square, near to the Crafty Sew&So shop, to pick up some delicious cheese or the indoor market for fish, so Matt can make his famous spinach and salmon lasagne! As a small business we try to support our fellow independents as much a possible! Then we’d go home for cuddles with our new cat, Ollie, in front of the fire. Bliss!