Earlier this week I weaved my way across London to visit the lovely, shiny new Ray Stitch shop.
After reading two great reviews of the shop here and here, I was desperate for a visit, so on the tube I hopped. Straight away, I realised to my horror that I'd forgotten my book, so resorted to reading the instructions from a sewing pattern I just happened to have in my bag (Vogue 8409 if you're interested). This is not an unusual occurrence for me as I love reading sewing patterns. What was interesting though was the reaction of the two women sitting opposite me. They stopped their conversation and watched me greedily as I worked my way through the instruction sheet. Within minutes, we'd all started chatting and were soon swapping notes on fabric (of course), sewing machines and their respective feet, and the trials and errors of sewing on the bias. We even managed to swing the conversation round to who we thought would win Strictly Come Dancing (Jason Donovan for me, Harry from McFly for my new pals). When it was time for them to disembark, I bid them a cheery goodbye, along with detailed directions on how to get to the Goldhawk Road.
Now, I've lived in London since 1994 and not once, in all that time, have I ever had a conversation with a stranger on a tube before. It could be any number of reasons but I like to think it was a mutual liking for sewing which brought about this happy exchange. I've always found it pretty easy to chat to people, but I've noticed that having a passion for a hobby has made me even more likely to witter on. By and large people seem to enjoy hearing about it too - if you're passionate about your subject, it makes for a more interesting conversation. How about you? Has your love of sewing opened up new friendships. Is sewing like dog walking, in that it allows you to start up conversations with complete strangers? I'd love to hear your views.
And what of Ray Stitch? Well, after a quick coffee with Karen, who'd very generously used up her lunch hour to come and meet me, my purchases were remarkably restrained. In a nutshell, Ray Stitch is a fine little hidden gem and I'll definitely be visiting again. This is what I restricted myself to:
Pins for fine fabric, pricey but worth it to avoid unsightly holes on occasion.
A sewing gauge - I've wanted one of these for ages.
Colette patterns Peony. How could I resist with so many gorgeous versions doing the rounds?
And a metre of this lovely print which I have plans for.....
Have a great weekend everybody. x