The London Textile Fair
One of the most difficult aspects of being a U.K. Designer is the lack of fabric mills in the U.K. Prices of fabrics are so high at the more upmarket companies with some qualities coming in at £80 per metres. If you do find fabric that you feel you can run with, you have to get past the sales agent first. I used to wonder how these companies made a living but they do.
Today I visited a London based Textile fair in Islington north London where there was a pretty decent selection of fabrics suppliers from across Europe and as far as New York City. In my scramble to source the perfect lace, I managed to find what I was looking for but I have to say, it wasn’t easy. I would approach a stand that looked interesting and 8 out 10 times was faced with a less than friendly looking sales agent . It amazed me how many companies from Turkey would respond to me with minimum quantity order 1000 metres order minimum per style. Clearly these companies don’t value the business potential of the small designer. Luckily there were a few decent mills willing to sell with no minimums so the day was a success.