I have an old Pinnock and need help on how to use it /how to thread it/ an instruction manual. Can you help?
The short answer? Probably not. My Pinnock is an Exclusiv Plus from around 1989 and I am cannot help people looking for information on older models. However, my About page seems to have become a bit of a focal point for people looking for help with old Pinnocks – please go there and read all the comments and see if someone there can help you! I have scanned my manual into a massive pdf file which I can email to you as long as you have broadband and are very patient when waiting for it to download.
Where do you get your “thornberry” labels?
Mine were ordered online from R. Draper & Co. - they are a standard woven name label. Try some google searches on “woven name labels” for other suppliers, or give etsy a go.
Where do you buy your fabrics online?
The fabrics I buy online are primarily quilting cottons and home decor fabrics, and are almost all bought from the US. Some of the shops I buy from include:
Sew, Mama, Sew!
Above All Fabric
Z & S Fabrics
Pink Chalk Fabrics
Where you do get boutique patterns in Australia?
I have bought my Jalie, Hot Patterns, Ottobre, Collette, Anna Maria Horner and other boutique patterns through Crafty Mamas. Many of these patterns are also available through Pattern Review, which is a website that every dressmaker should know about!
Where do you get your bag patterns and supplies?
Where do you buy fabrics and supplies in Melbourne?
Darn Cheap Fabrics - fantastic variety of fabric for dressmaking (and some for quilting) and huge choice of notions and trims. Staff are helpful and know what they are talking about.
GJ’s Discount Fabrics - dress and evening fabrics on the ground floor, remnants and dance/stretch fabrics in the back room, then upstairs to quilting cotton heaven. Edited to add - they’ve recently renovated and moved all the departments around – I haven’t been in yet to see what is where, but I’m sure it will all be good! These ladies know their stuff. No online presence – word of mouth seems to keep them extremely successful.
Clegs - beautiful range of dress and evening fabrics and Liberty prints. The city store also has quilting fabrics and yarn. The Brunswick store is much smaller but still has a good range. Once again, the staff know their stuff.
Tessuti - great fabrics for clothing and extremely nice and knowledgeable staff.
The Cloth Shop - I’ve only just been here and cannot believe that it has taken me so long to find and visit such an excellent fabric shop close to my home. Beautiful wovens and stretch fabrics, not cheap, but special and so so nice. Terrific service too from women who are happy to share their knowledge of sewing and their product. I’ll be back again and again and again…
Rathdowne Fabrics and Remnants - wide range, lots of stretch fabrics, and where Project Runway Australia go for their fabric.
Kimono House has beautiful traditional Japanese fabrics and sashiko supplies, and runs a number of workshops.
Amitie have an excellent range of quilting fabrics that are also terrific for children’s clothing and bags. Their service is excellent too.
And yes, Lincraft and Spotlight when need be. The biggest problem with both these stores is that their staff don’t usually have a clue about the products being sold, and often the one thing I’m looking for (eg a red 30cm zip) will be the one thing that is completely sold out. They’re craft supermarkets. Convenient at times, but not terribly satisfying.
There are many other Melbourne fabric stores that I haven’t listed, mainly because I haven’t been there – yet!
Kelani Fabric is an online source of a wide range of fabrics and patterns, including prints by Australian designers such as Ink & Spindle, Kristen Doran, Aunty Cookie, Pippijoe and others.
Where do you get your yarn?
Bendigo Woollen Mills have excellent yarn at good prices in nice big 200g balls. They sell by mail order and online and will post you swatch cards so you can get a better idea of yarn colour and composition. They post all over the world. I particularly like their 8 ply cotton.
Yarn Barn sell online and from the factory in Coburg. You can often find them at craft fairs and they sell at Camberwell market too. They have a huge range of yarns and will often spin to order.
Melbourne also has some terrific specialist yarn stores such as Sunspun, Wondoflex, CCCK and Wool Baa. I tend to stick to a budget when it comes to yarn so haven’t bought many of the imported yarns such as Rowan, Noro, Debbie Bliss, Colinette etc. I suppose that you could describe what I buy as mid range. I don’t particularly like working with acrylics.
I’m also planning a visit to Lara Downs to get some felting supplies at some point during 2010. They sell a range of natural fibre yarns, including merino, mohair, silk, cashmere, alpaca, baby camel, bunny blend and organic cotton.
Spotlight and Lincraft can be a good source of yarn, especially when they have sales. I tend to stash yarn a little rather than buy it for a specific project, so often buy up big at the end of season clearances. K-Mart and Big W can also be a source of bargain yarn.