A slightly delayed message from me. I had planned to do a post over the weekend but was a bit poorly (not Covid) and since Monday is still a public holiday here in the UK I am sending you all my best wishes for 2022. I do hope you’ve all had an enjoyable time, a restful break and have hopefully been able to spend time with loved ones.
2021 was without doubt a challenging year for Missy Mop Fabrics. Covid played havoc in not being able to easily travel to source fabrics, fairs got cancelled and I couldn’t secure a pop-up premises. So face to face opportunities for you to see, touch and feel my fabrics have, unfortunately been sparse.
On the upside my website is now well and truly established and I have new lovely online customers as well as my ever loyal and encouraging customers in Hastings and St Leonards. I now need to find new ways of promoting the website as the ever changing Instagram algorithm has been very hard on my posts. So this will be a priority for 2022. Thank you all so much for spreading the word about Missy Mop Fabrics to your friends and fellow sewists. Website visits have steadily climbed and I think much of this has been through your recommendations.
During 2021, the reality of Brexit kicked in. It has been horrendously hard for small businesses both in the UK and Europe. I had to make the incredibly difficult decision to stop sending to Europe. I am a one woman business and it was just proving too hard. I am really sorry to my European customers and this is something I will continue to review. Brexit has also had a big impact on supply. I generally source direct or through 3rd party suppliers and I have increasingly relied on the latter during Covid. I have some excellent suppliers who specialise in sourcing dead stock within Europe particularly Ireland for wools & linens and Spain, France, Italy and Portugal for luxury fabrics and prints. As a consequence of Brexit, these suppliers have had their costs increased, sometimes up to 3x and also had to make difficult decisions. This then in turn has had an impact on my business. For example its been really hard to get Irish linen & wools. It’s also been difficult to find quality ‘mid priced’ prints especially vintage inspired designs, which I specialise in. I have always tried to be discerning in selecting prints and although one can still source viscose and satins. In the last year I am now often disappointed with the quality that I find whether it be the quality of the print or the composition and I don’t want to compromise. Although Missy Mop Fabrics is still a relatively new business I have built a reputation for quality prints and I don’t want to jeopardise that reputation. I would rather continue looking until I find the right stock.
In lieu of quality contemporary dead stock, I have started to source quality, unused vintage fabrics (often on the original bolts) and I have been incredibly lucky to source some truly stunning stock. Most of my vintage stock is sourced from businesses that have closed. The fabrics have been carefully stored over the years, and are pristine. If you have ever bought any of my vintage wools you will know the quality is exceptional and the majority of my vintage wools are British. Most of the time you wouldn’t know the fabrics are vintage but for their unusual designs and colour combinations, which you don’t typically see in contemporary fabrics. And as meterage is limited, it allows for that extra bit of individuality for your makes.
My plans for 2022 are to continue to source beautiful, inspiring, sustainable dead stock and vintage fabrics for you. I have an amazing array of unusual fabrics, not everything is on the website (why is it so hard to photograph plain fabrics??🤪). And remember if you are ever looking for something and can’t find it, do get in touch. I may have something not listed that I can share with you via video.
Other plans for 2022…..I am also thinking of doing a BIG Missy Mop Fabrics pop up event so I can share ALL my fabrics F2F in a big space and you can touch and feel them. To date, I have only been in small venues but this time I am thinking BIG! Not sure when yet, it’s all subject to Covid but perhaps on a quarterly basis. Let me know your thoughts on this and if you’d hop on a train to Hastings for it. And for those of you that came to the Hastings & St Leonards Haberdashery Fair last year, it was such fun, there will be another one in 2022!😉. Watch this space.
So thank you again for all for your continued support, kindness and encouragement and hopefully we get to see more of each other this year.