Small Bobbins – an online boutique for high-quality lingerie-making supplies, is officially open!
I have been talking about opening this shop for… a long time. I’ve whispered it quietly to my husband. I mentioned it to friends as a hypothetical, “Wouldn’t it be cool if I…?”. I quit my office job last October and stumbled through trying to explain the concept to coworkers. I pitched it to my accountant, my banker, the people at the business center who helped me get all the proper paperwork sorted.
I teased it on social media, while I quietly worked on this idea. And I’ve been purposely vague. Why? Well, I’m totally freaked out to admit my big plans. But now I’m here to spell them out for you.
Small Bobbins launches today, July 19, 2019. You’ll be able to find it here, on smallbobbins.com. I’m selling a range of materials for making beautiful lingerie. Underwires, fabrics, linings, hardware, notions, elastics of ALL kinds and colors, plus (eventually!) kits and patterns! The goal is to be able to offer sewists and lingerie designers everything they would need to create their own handmade lingerie.
I’ve been busy (for months) sourcing materials. Belgium, you may or may not know, is a wonderful hub of fashion and creativity, and I’ve been able to find some gorgeous and unique materials that were sitting in designers’ ateliers from past seasons. I feel like a material matchmaker, finding these special pieces and now having the opportunity to offer them to you. For the rest of the shop, I’ve been finding sources and working on building an inventory that reflects a comprehensive range of colors and sizes to allow anybody to sew modern and joyful lingerie. I’ll also have a particular focus on finding ways for you to sneak some frosting into your everyday undergarments.
So where did the idea come from? On the most basic level, I love sewing lingerie and I’ve struggled to find a truly exceptional source of materials in Europe. Big selection, easy-to-navigate website, clear descriptions of what the materials are, etc. While I’m certainly not claiming that my shop already achieves this at the moment, that’s my overall vision for the business.
On a deeper level, paying more attention to my undergarments, the fit, feel, and look of them, has been part of a personal journey I’ve been on for the past few years. (Ouf, gonna get a bit sappy here.) I don’t think I’m alone in admitting that becoming a mother had a huge impact on me, but I felt like Kirstin got lost when I turned into Mama. Now my babies are 6 and 3 years old, and sewing my own lingerie has given me a way to reclaim some of myself again. I can create something beautiful, that fits me well, that makes me feel gorgeous and sexy, and is just for me. Wearing pretty undergarments, and making them myself, is my form of self-care and my opportunity to practice a skill for the sake of my own enjoyment, and produce a garment for my eyes only.
(yeah yeah, I suppose my husband gets to see it too, but I wholeheartedly believe that lingerie is first and foremost for the person wearing it.)
And it’s that idea, that sewing your own lingerie can be empowering and soothing, that drove me to create the Small Bobbins shop. I want to spread those good vibes and give that opportunity to as many people as possible. In addition to selling materials, patterns, and kits, I also plan on organizing workshops and filming video tutorials. You can sew lingerie, I know you can! It’s all about practice, building your confidence with working with the materials, and getting in touch with your unique and lovely shape. I can’t wait to give you all the resources and pep talks that you might need to get you pumped about sewing your own lingerie!
Some practical notes about the shop opening!
Not yet! The shop is very much a work in progress, but the plan is to continue expanding the stock and eventually become your favorite one-stop shop for lingerie-making supplies. If there’s a particular product you’re searching for, always feel free to send me an email with a suggestion, to email@example.com!
For now, Small Bobbins will ship to most of Europe. I’m based in Belgium, and for now, shipping is also available to Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Isle of Man, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, and United Kingdom.
Kits! Video tutorials! Continuing to improve the website! Sorting out cheaper shipping! PDF patterns! Monthly lingerie inspiration newsletters! Workshops! More and more and more products! Small Bobbins Studio! Take over the world!!!
But really, organizing and listing some kits is absolutely the first thing on my To Do list, so if you want to hear when those are ready, be sure to sign up for my newsletter or follow me on Instagram!
Besides that I love you all dearly and I would not have been able to do any of this without the support and encouragement from friends, family, and the sewing community, I do have to mention that I’m opening the shop and almost immediately going on vacation, ouch! Last orders will be shipped on Thursday, August 1, and any orders placed after 12pm on August 1 will be shipped on Monday, August 12.