A few months ago, before the snowfalls and weeks of below-zero temperatures, I ordered some block-printed cotton fabric from Fibers To Fabric on Etsy. There were so many stunning prints that it was hard for me not to order all of them, but I figured, hey, it’s October, I could use some autumnal colours in my wardrobe!
So I ordered this lovely fabric, and then the Canada Post postal strike struck (hehe). My fabric didn’t get in for 6 weeks. By then, winter was just starting to settle in here in Toronto and all I could do was admire how lovely and soft (and lightweight! Brrr) my new fabric was and hope for warmer weather.
Well, it isn’t warmer. We had 15cm of snow drop just the other day. But March is closer to Spring than November is. I couldn’t wait any longer and decided that my autumnal dress would instead have to be my winter-to-spring transition dress.
I usually go for very illustrative, multi-coloured floral prints, but I absolutely loved the simplicity of a block print in earthy colours. I wanted to showcase the fabric by going with a simple, tried-and-true pattern that I know fits me fantastically, so I went with the Emery Dress by Christine Haynes.
The fabric was lovely to work with – lightweight and easy to sew, like cotton lawn (which is my go-to substrate for printed fabrics) but with less of a sheen. It’s also opaque (surprising since it’s so lightweight!) so it didn’t need lining (though I lined the bodice because I like the extra layer of protection).
It appears that the print is done using batik, which, if I remember correctly, involves dipping the printing block in hot wax and stamping the wax on before dyeing it. The wax creates a resist and then is melted away after the fabric is painted or dyed. But if you’re curious to know more about the process, Fibers to Fabric frequently posts Instagram stories on how their fabrics are produced. I always like to learn these sorts of things, and I think it’s really exciting to know where my fabric is coming from and how it was made. What I really loved, though, were the imperfections that are signs of a hand-printed textile. Tiny spots where the wax splattered, slightly skew patterns – all show the hand of an artisan – which is the charm of hand-printed textiles!
Typically I’m apprehensive about ordering fabric from overseas, since usually shipping costs are exorbitant. I’m not going to order fabric if it costs me $30-40 just to ship it. Fibers to Fabrics has very affordable shipping (cheaper even than ordering within Canada!) and with all those gorgeous prints to choose from, I am definitely tempted to order again soon! (I already have my eye on a few prints that may or may not find their way into my shopping basket…)
This is a sponsored post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.