Brighton Mini Crawl Shop Profile: Brighton Sewing Centre

Our last shop profile for the upcoming Brighton Knit and Make Social is the very cheerful Brighton Sewing Centre. This sunny shop is filled with wonderful fabrics for quilting and sewing, as well as a nice range of haberdashery and a tiny bit of yarn too!. Melinda and Nicole of the Brighton Sewing Centre took the time to answer our questions below to tell you all about their lovely shop.

Tell us about the Brighton Sewing Centre. What is your shop's main specialty?
We are a modern, independent sewing shop selling a range of sewing machines, beautiful fabrics and haberdashery.

How would you describe your shop's atmosphere in three words?
Vibrant,creative and inspiring.

What is the most popular product that you carry? 
Fabric! We love it. We constantly have new fabric arriving so there's always something new to see. 

What is the one thing that a crafter MUST know about your shop if they haven't visited before?
With so much to choose from, it's worth bringing money because if you love making, there will be something you want.

What sets the Brighton Sewing Centre apart from other craft shops?
As well as fabric we stock a range of sewing machines, embroidery machines and overlockers. Customers pop in to try machines as well as getting any feet or parts they need. 

Many thanks to Melinda and Nicole for answering our questions. They can't wait to meet you on the day and will also be offering our guests 10% off on purchases in the shop on the day. Make sure you have your ticket and we look forward to seeing you all in Brighton!

Brighton Mini Crawl Shop Profile: YAK

YAK - also known as Yarn and Knitting is a shop we've profiled on the blog before, back when it opened it's bricks and mortar location in January of this year. Owner Kate has been busy since then helping to build the Brighton knitting community and filling her shelves with a tempting assortment of beautiful yarns and thoughtfully chosen tools and patterns.

Kate shares more about her shop by answering our questions below. Enjoy!

Tell us about YAK. What is your shop's main speciality?
YAK is an independent yarn shop catering to the knitters and crochets of Brighton, the south coast and to the rest of the world online. We opened our bricks and mortar shop in January and we are now the hub of Brighton’s knitting community.

We specialise in yarns from independent companies, mostly British and European. We like to champion brands who use natural fibres and are ethically minded where quality comes first.

How would you describe your shop's atmosphere in three words?
Inviting, charming and inspiring.

What is the most popular product that you carry? 
That is a tricky one to judge but I think it would be The Uncommon Thread BFL Fingering. We get quite a lot of knitting tourists in Brighton from all over the world who are looking for something unique and local which they won’t be able to get at home. I’m sure it doesn’t hurt that all of The Uncommon Thread’s yarns are drop dead gorgeous and hand dyed to perfection but the BFL is particularly popular I think because of its versatility.

What is the one thing that a crafter MUST know about your shop if they haven't visited before?
One of our main focuses as a shop is to be innovative in the products we stock. We want to make sure that we have a balance of what knitters know they want before walking through the door, tried and tested workhorse tools and yarns alongside plenty of fresh and exciting things they have may never have seen before or thought to try. I am 99% sure there will be something in the shop you will never have seen in the flesh before.

Also, there is always a killer playlist on and lots of chairs for the not so woolly minded you have with you to take a break while you make important yarn decisions!

What sets YAK apart from other craft shops? 
YAK is not just about yarn and knitting, it’s about knitters, crocheters and the fibre crafts that bring us together. We want to see our customers succeed in their knitting goals whether they’re a complete newbie or an experienced pro. We’re not here to flog you things you don’t need but to support you and your project. I think that is what sets us apart, our eagerness to see our customers flourish and pursue their craft more deeply. 

Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions Kate! Kate will also have 10% off in the shop on the day (classes excluded) for our Brighton Knit and Make Social guests and we'll do the draw for the door prizes at YAK as well.  

Brighton Mini Crawl Shop Profile: Ditto Fabrics

We're getting super excited about out upcoming trip to the coast for the Brighton Knit and Make Social in a couple of weeks. Today we're excited to tell you all about one of our stops on the mini crawl - Ditto Fabrics. We chatted with owner Gill about her shop that is full to bursting with all sorts of inspirational fabrics!

Roll on Brighton Knit and Make Social - we want at that fab fabric!

Roll on Brighton Knit and Make Social - we want at that fab fabric!

Tell us about Ditto Fabrics. What is your shop's main specialty?
Dïtto fabrics is a treasure trove of fabulous fabric nestled in the bustling and thriving district of the North Laine at the heart of Brighton. Dïtto is a paradise for anyone looking for interesting and unusual fabric.

Are you a professional, a home sewer, or a fashion student? You will find a vast array of material in a riot of colours, textures and patterns in our extensive range. Zany cotton prints, sophisticated linens, wools and silks, sumptuous end of line designer fabric from leading fashion houses in England and Italy and much more offer everyone the chance to make stunning garments, whatever your style, age or budget.

Our shop's main specialty is ex-designer, classic and fashion dressmaking fabrics.

How would you describe your shop's atmosphere in three words?
Inspiring, friendly & addictive.

What is the most popular product that you carry?
The Italian cloths and linens.

What is the one thing that a crafter MUST know about your shop if they haven't visited before?
We specialise in dressmaking fabrics but many of our fabrics are very popular with crafters.

What sets Ditto Fabrics apart from other craft shops?
Ditto has an ever changing range of one off fabrics at competitive prices that are not available elsewhere.

Thank you Gill! We can't wait to see your gorgeous fabrics on 20th June. And of course we're very excited to announce that Gill will be offering 10% off to all Brighton Knit and Make Social participants on the day (do you have your ticket yet?). Be sure to check out the Ditto Fabrics blog too, which has all kinds of great tutorials and sewing inspiration!

Brighton Shop Profile: YAK

Rachel and I were on the road down in Brighton yesterday to visit Brighton's newest (and only!) yarn shop, YAK aka Yarn and Knitting. We were so excited by what we saw that we fired up the mobile internet to bring you this post from the train on our way back to London (or rather we would have, if we could have gotten the photos to upload!).

Located just off the busy Lanes in Brighton, YAK is new to the neighbourhood (they only opened their doors for the first time yesterday!) but not new to yarn enthusiasts in the UK. They've actually been online since last summer and also had a stall at Unwind Brighton where they showed off their lovely yarns and wares.

But their bricks and mortar location - wow, what a gem! As far as new yarn shops go, YAK ticks all the boxes. It is perfectly sized, the gorgeous yarns are prettily displayed in antique cabinets and items, there's a strong selection of needles, hooks and haberdashery, and pattern books as well as knit samples provide plenty of inspiration.

Yarns on offer include local to Brighton indie dyer darling The Uncommon Thread and other UK favourites: Jamieson & Smith, Eden Cottage Yarns, Shilasdair and John Arbon. There's also the popular German hand-dyed Dye For Yarn. Rounding out the temptations are Schoppelwolle, Lang, Malabrigo, Bessie May and Studio Donegal.

A cozy nook will be the perfect spot for classes initially, and owner Kate Metherell already has plans for a larger seating area - perfect for knit nights. The shop is an easy walk from the train station and there are are a couple of pubs opposite making it perfectly situated for a day out.

In fact... we had a lovely chat with Kate about another Yarn in the City road trip this spring! Keep your diaries free in June and watch this space for more details. 

But if you can't wait that long, then why not pop along to the shop's grand opening? It's happening on Saturday, 7 February between 2 and 6pm. Congrats Kate, and we can't wait for an excuse to visit Brighton and your charming shop again!

Bath Shop Profile: Wool

Time to profile another stop on our Road Trip to the Bath Christmas Market and today we're talking about Wool


Rachel and I first stumbled upon Wool when we nipped into Bath with our friend Karen on our way to a knitting retreat last year. Stumbled is actually a slight exaggeration - I always check KnitMap when I'm going to new places! We needed a break to get out of the car and stretch our legs and the fact that there was a yarn store in the vicinity made for a win-win situation.

But oh what a win! We were delighted with Wool - from the charming cobblestone street we found it on just off the beaten path, to the warm and welcome light glowing from it's chandelier hanging in the middle of the shop, to the inviting couch where you can sit down comfortably to go through the many pattern books on offer - the shop is a little hidden treasure amongst the gems to be found in Bath's town centre.

The shop has been in Bath since 2010 and owner Laura has packed it full of as much yarn as she can! Wool features a huge selection - definitely something for everyone, and every budget. There are UK staples from Rowan, Louisa Harding, and Debbie Bliss, to Rooster, Fyberspates and Blacker yarns, as well as European faves like Bergère de France and Austermann. Araucania, Noro and Lopi can also be found on the shelves, and we even saw some yarn from Juniper Moon Farm when we popped in a few weeks ago!

If haberdashery is more your thing then rest assured, there are plenty of needles and notions to be had from Knit Pro, Addi, Clover and Pony. There's also a terrific button selection and of course, plenty of inspiration from the many books and patterns.

We're thrilled that Laura will be hosting a private Christmas party for our road trip participants starting at 5:30pm on Saturday after the shop closes. There will be mulled wine (and of course something non-alcoholic too!) and mini Christmas cupcakes with brandy butter icing. Oh yes! This is happening! And should your browsing turn to buying in the shop, Laura has goody bags worth £15 when you spend £75 or more.

Wool is our last stop on our first ever road trip. After the party and our shopping we'll have a short walk back to the coach to head home after a merry and festive day. Won't you join us? Tickets are still available, and we now have an option for you to join us if you're outside of London. Click here for tickets.