I’ve found the marking definitely overtaking the making since the new term began. I’m working later, darkness is falling faster and the majority of my energy is directed at school followed by a dog walk in the evenings. I’m counterbalancing this by indulging in some research before bedtimes; centred around finding the perfect fabric for my upcoming dressmaking class. A few weeks ago I ordered two patterns which both look like the sort of dress I typically wear:

The patterns were £5-£6 each from Amazon, I’m yet to locate a favourite pattern provider and would welcome suggestions.
The patterns both say I need 2.5-3metres of fabric, and because I’m hoping whichever dress I make will turn out ok (due to being supervised in class) I am keen to choose a fabric I love in the hope I can wear the finished article. This is where the big decision comes in. When I invested in several different single metres in Mansfield, I saw a lovely dark red fabric covered in kind of smudged spots. It was new in for winter, it was very ‘me’ and it was £14 per metre. Yikes. It’s stayed in the back of my mind because I do love it, but £42 just seems too much to spend on a first dress project.
The trouble I’m finding is that all of the better quality, more unusual and appealing fabric is AT LEAST £12 per metre, so far as I can find. It’s cheaper in America, a lot, but shipping costs pretty much erase the savings. I’ve finally found a fabric I like, by Dashwood Studio and from their Wildwood Collection. It’s dark red and covered in quite a small toadstool print. It’s unusual but not obscure. I’m looking at £36 for three metres, which I think is ok as long as I don’t make any irreparable mistakes. I am also hoping I would have a decent amount left over, for use on future projects.

What do you think? Where do you buy quality dressmaking fabric in the UK?