craft shops · travels

Crafty Bruges

Har har har this trip happened about 2 months ago, I need to get better at this!

Before we went to Bruges I asked on Trip Advisor if there were any craft shops in Bruges, and I was told there are 4; 2 of a chain called Veritas, one needle work shop and one sewing shop.

On the first day we went past a Veritas but looking inside I could only see women’s RTW clothing.

We found the needlework store by chance, it had a huge range of cross stitch and tapestry kits along with all the equipment and supplies you could need.

FYI, in Bruges at least (maybe all of Belgium?), you can take a million photos of peoples houses but take a photo in a shop and people freak out! So in all the shops I visited I wasn’t able to take any photos, but I did manage to take some photos of their window displays (when I was feeling daring!).

We went to the sewing shop one morning (it was open 9:30-12:15 3 days a week!) which was called  ‘t Naaimandeke or ‘The little sewing basket’ (super cute name!). When we got there the shop front was all about tights and underwear for the more mature ladies, seriously it was weird. We ventured in and the front of the shop was mostly underwear etc but at the back they had a large amount of New Look patterns but sadly this shop only had some aida and some lining fabrics.

By this point I was really losing the will, I’d really loved the idea of getting me some fabric in Bruges but it looked like it wasn’t going to happen.

In an act of desperation we returned to Veritas & asked a lady there if they did anything for sewing and she sent us upstairs, we went through the clothes and tights (I kid you not) then upstairs where I suddenly found my very own Belgian crafty Mecca.

One of the first things I saw was a great display of a mannequin wearing a handmade dress, she was sitting at a sewing table. It was so cute!! In front of this table was Tillys book in Dutch. I promptly asked the mister to take a photo of me with it but we were promptly told off & it was not to be!!

As I couldn’t take any photos myself I found some on the interwebs of the Bruges store.

One of the displays

They do classes too!!

Other than the photo debacle the staff proved to be super friendly & quite knowledgeable.
The variety of notions on offer was great. Most of the brands on offer was Prymm but they also had their own brand.
There was around 40-50 fabrics on offer, mostly woven cottons but also some knits,courdroys and lighter fabrics like rayons.
I was really tempted by some Rowan polka dot cotton, it was Green with navy polka dots but the mister was not keen on more polka dots in the wardrobe. I eventually picked up a super cute parrot fabric, I even got an extra half a metre for free as it was the end of the roll (is there anything better than when that happens??)

I’ve decided to make a shirt dress with the fabric, New Look 6180, although I think I will test the pattern with my green striped seersucker first as the parrot fabric is officially super precious now!

On our last day in Bruges I managed to convince the other half that we should visit the lace museum. The museum is outside of the town centre down a cute lane (ok all the lanes there are cute!) and whilst it’s located in quite a large building the museum itself is pretty small. 

This was a room full of lots of vintage lace making pillows. 

The room after has a video to watch all about the known history of lace, how it’s made and some cultural aspects too. There are some beautiful old pieces of lace and even a computer programme where you can try out lace making. In the last room there was a video about the two legends of how lace was first created, they are both insane myths but the videos were made using wonderful stop motion animation which I loved.

I went into the museum not really caring about or that interested in lace and left feeling inspired and kind of in awe of what is an amazing craft, possibly one of the oldest crafts and that is now dying out rapidly.

On our way back into town i spotted a window display that made me squee with delight as there were some beautiful crochet decorations using Attic 24s designs. I sent her these photos on Facebook and she said “WOWsers, that is wonderful and has given me a bit of an emotional feeling, thank you xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx” Which made me feel ridiculously happy inside!

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