Southern NSW fabric store Sew Fab has stepped in this year to provide a Bernina sewing machine and overlocker to the Henty Natural Fibre Fashion Award winners.
Sew Fab, of Narrandera, and Bernina will provide a Bernina 325, valued at $1599, for the supreme garment winner and a Bernina Overlocker L450, valued at $1099, for the student encouragement award.
A first time exhibitor in Country Lifestyle at Henty, Sew Fab will have a full complement of machines, including the Bernina Q20, Bernina accessories, bag supplies and pre-cut fabric.
Sew Fab will also have John Deere and Case quilting panels on offer at the field days, plus show specials on the Bernina range.
Bernina Australia NSW/ACT area manager Bree Ledingham will be giving sewing demonstrations across the three days at Henty.
Sew Fab is located in an historic bank building in the town’s main street and features the old counter from the former Bashir’s haberdashery store.
Originally from Holbrook, Sew Fab owner Leanne Ivanoff has been sewing since the age of seven and was taught by her grandmother.
A clinical coder by trade, she studied dressmaking at school and increased her sewing skills through TAFE before opening a fabric business from her back shed in 2013.
“The business grew quickly and had overtaken my house so we opened the retail shop two years ago,” Mrs Ivanoff said.
“It was the best thing I ever did as the business continues to grow.”
Sewing and dressmaking classes are held most days a week, along with the Creative Stitches Club, Sewing Creative and Bernina Club.
“We run Sit and Sew classes each Tuesday and Friday, formal classes three days a week, as well as bags, quilts, get-to-know your machine series and classes with our dressmaker Michelle Adams, of Coleambally,” Mrs Ivanoff said.
“At the moment, bag making is one of the more popular classes and we are seeing a resurgence back into quilts.
“We offer children’s classes in the school holidays but our shop strives to create a fun and inspiring creative space for sewers of all ages and levels of experience.”
Mrs Ivanoff said the resurgence of do-it-yourself interior decoration had been a windfall for the business with the younger generation purchasing machines and learning to sew.
“A few of the machines we have sold of late have been to young mums wanting to learn.’’
Mrs Ivanoff is passionate about fabric and loves bright, quirky, contemporary and fun quality fabrics.
Sew Fab has a large fabric collection specialising in contemporary-modern with some traditional prints.
“I offer a small 1930s vintage collection with the clear colours fitting well with the contemporary look,” Mrs Ivanoff said.
Five years ago she branched into stocking Bernina sewing machines and accessories.
“I started out small with a couple of machines in the shed and initially I thought if I sold five machines a year, I would be happy but have far exceeded that,” Mrs Ivanoff said.
“People travel from Griffith, Wagga Wagga, West Wyalong, Deniliquin, Cootamundra, Junee, Boree Creek and Temora to buy machines and accessories.
“We have a full complement of machines from the base level to the Bernina Q longarm quilting machine.
“The team from Bernina are supportive and great to work with.
“Our Bernina Club meets once a month with participants trying different feet without having to purchase them, and we complete a small project within the day.”
Sew Fab exhibits at Craft Alive in Wagga and Wodonga, and the Boree Creek and Deniliquin quilt shows, and was a sponsor at the Sydney Quilt Show.
In the past Mrs Ivanoff has enjoyed visits to the Henty field days with her family.
“I’m very excited to be going to Henty and don’t know what to expect but will wait and see.”