Street Style Wales

Knitting, stitching, thrifting, crocheting


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Crafting ideas: Where to buy fabric

Any newbie crafters out there might be surprised when they find out that the price of fabric from department stores can often be quite pricey. I know I once was. But there are cheaper ways to source your fabric, so for anyone looking for a bargain, here’s my pick of the best places to buy fabric.

1. Number one: Jumble sales/vintage fairs

I’ve often found a great bargain at one of these fairs and, if you look hard enough, so will you. The key is not to go to a fair specifically to buy fabric, but when going along anyway, have a look and you might just be surprised. They may not be a great length, but these kinds of fabrics (offcuts, usually) will do for making homemade bunting and to jazz up existing clothes. Once I even managed to pick up enough fabric offcuts to make a skirt.

The offcuts of a fabric I once found at a vintage fair

2. Number two: Charity shops

Fabric from charity shops isn’t usually dressed up as fabric, so here’s where you can get creative. Any charity shop will do, as most of them sell some ok-ish stuff in the forms of old curtains, bedsheets and pillowcases. Don’t look at them like curtains, sheets or pillowcases, but as potential fabric. For example, an old curtain will make an ideal winter skirt or dress (the extra weight will keep you warm in winter), a sheet gives you enough fabric to make a summer dress and a pillowcase can easily make an A-line skirt.

Incidentally, charity shops are also an ideal place to pick up extras, such as buttons, either on their own (just ask if you don’t see any), or on old, affordable granny cardigans and the like. Seriously, £1.49 for a cardi with some amazing buttons is a bargain!

3. Number three: Ebay

This was where I first ventured when looking for cheaper fabrics and I still manage to find some great bargains now. When I first discovered Cath Kidston and Laura Ashley fabrics, for example, I scoured Ebay for them and found some older stuff for a lot less than in the shops. Ebay shops offer the best selection and one of my absolute favourites (and one I’ve been using for years) is this one. One thing to remember is that if you’re planning on using a lot of fabric, then it might be worthwhile buying a roll. Although it can be expensive, in the long run it actually works out a lot cheaper per metre and you can get some great quality fabric if you look in the right places. For example, I once bought a roll of old Liberty fabric for a steal!

A roll of Liberty fabric I once bought on Ebay


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New projects

Since moving home at the end of June, I’ve had a long list of things that I’m planning to make. This is what I do when I have no other plans. I form lists of things to make and store them in my head.

Right now I’m dreaming of summer dresses, elastic skirts, book bags and bunting. So I thought I’d change this blog’s direction a bit. Although I want it to keep its fashion and vintage elements, it’ll now focus on craft a bit more and making things yourself. Hopefully, I’ll be able to include some easy DIYs to get you, the readers, started on your crafty journeys.

Street Style Wales has always been a slightly crafty blog- remember this, this and this– though I didn’t intend it to be when I started it. But I suppose that’s what happens when a little part of you seeps into your blog and, to be honest, I like it this way. It feels more like me.

So, here’s to new beginnings and the first of many DIYs starting tomorrow- the easy to make book bag.


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Independent fashion shops in Cardiff

As the Christmas break has sadly finished and we’re all eager to spend our leftover cash in the sales, I thought I would give you a list of the independent fashion shops in Cardiff.

During my few months in the city, I’ve discovered quite a selection of great shops for those of us who don’t always want to buy from the high street.  Individuality is rife in Cardiff and sometimes there is no better way to dress than by following your own style.  After all, what is style?  It doesn’t have to be about following the crowd, but is about wearing something completely unique and suited to yourself.

1. Barker Cardiff, Castle Arcade

One of the oldest fashion retailers in Cardiff, Barker caters for both men and women

2. I Claudius, Castle Arcade

Often thought of as just a fancy dress shop, I Claudius sells retro items at a very low cost.

3. @Fab, Wellfield Road

@Fab caters for women of all ages.

4. Hobos, High Street Arcade

A vintage shop which specialises in clothing of the 60s, 70s and 80s.

5. Prefab Clothing, Albany Road

Prefab is a charity which reconditions old clothes to give them a new life.

6. A Vintage Affair, Morgan Arcade

Another vintage shop in the heart of the city, with an array of accessories and even a few vintage patterns.

7. Oxfam Boutique, St Mary’s Street

A charity shop with a difference, the Oxfam Boutique offers designer clothes at a low price.

8. The Pumping Station, Penarth Road

This was once a Victorian pumping station, but it now houses a variety of items, including antique clothes and jewellery.