Spring ’22 Mood Board | Dreamland Collection by Pigeonwishes Buttons

By Megan Valero

Hello Stitchers!

It’s almost time for our new button collection,  The Dreamland Collection. In this post (like our last button mood board) I won’t be revealing the buttons but I will be sharing some inspiration we’ve had for the creation of this collection. Each collection pivots around a central idea. It’s now March and while Spring is the overarching theme; the colours, the vibe and the general tone is a little more specific. Florals for Spring is always a classic, however I wanted to go with a different twist. Keeping Spring’s colourfulness and sense of renewal, the collection is meant to have a dreamy haze.

I am so excited for this new collection, it’s been MONTHS since we’ve released anything new under our own brand, the last collection was October ‘21! Winter has come and gone, and I think we are all eager for the sun to bless this cold Island with some warmth!

Now here’s a taste of what’s to come…….

Fanciful Button  

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Fondant Fancy? Or just Fanciful.

These buttons remind me of the two best flavours of fondant fancies. Pink and lemon. One of the few times Chocolate flavour is just lacking! Heading towards Spring and (dare we say) picnics and general alfresco eating, this desert is best enjoyed amongst the flowers. We are colour enthusiasts and the rise of pink and yellow together is a joy inducing dynamic. 

Neverland Buttons 

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Colours that make you either want to take flight into a magical twilight sky or go into the depths of a lagoon filled with mermaids. Seems like there will always be at least one blue and green button in our collection!!! I actually cannot help myself! The next button in this colour combo saga is the Neverland button. 

Surrealist Buttons

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Unfazed by a collision and colour. We love the art movement that wanted to take a glimpse into the human mind. This button is the most ‘Spring’ like but also the most brash.

Daydream Buttons

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Always a believer. 

These buttons remind me of a dreamscape colour palette. Somewhere between sunset and the surreal. Blue and pink are our brand colours and have a special place in my heart. The colours together always seem a bit unexpected but they just work so, so well. These buttons are not an understatement! Meant for the dreamers.

Lucid Buttons

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The galaxy is deep, beautiful and inexorable. It runs forever. Looking up at the colour and patterns gives people infinite reverie. From ancient times to the present, purple and dark blue always represented dreams and mysteries.

I hope this has made you a bit intrigued! Happy stitching!

Meg

Pigeon wishes x Pauline

By Emma (@SewDoItEmma)

You will never know how long I procrastinated cutting into the  beautiful fabric provided by Megan at Pigeon Wishes … let’s say it was painful.

Why you ask? Well, I was scared, to be honest. Scared of making a mistake but that’s ok, isn’t it? Sometimes I tend to overthink and then my mind goes into overdrive about what could go wrong and then common sense usually taps me on the shoulder (thank goodness!), tells me to chill the heck out and “you’ve got this”. It indeed happens to the best of us but sometimes we gotta cut into that beautiful fabric!

This collaboration has been on the back burner for a while, Megan and I have been quietly chatting via DMs on Instagram about how and when we could work together. It’s been such a lovely time getting to know her and talking about our plans.

I’ve caught glimpses of the fabric that is stocked at Pigeon Wishes HQ via Instagram stories (one of these days I’ll pop in, if I can and stay forever!) let me tell you it’s a feast for the eyes and that’s only in the 2 dimensional form … I’m imagining me stroking all the fabrics in real life.

My love of the buttons, which apparently was only meant to be a side burner for Megan – yes I hear you (what!?!) has only grown stronger … I try and reason with myself every button launch but the prettiness takes over and before I know it I’ve order maybe two or three packs/cards or buttons. Let me be honest here, if I could get one of every packet or button card – I’d do that in a heart beat!

Let’s talk about the chosen pattern, like the title suggests it is the Pauline Dress by Closet Core Patterns. When it first came out, I have to be honest here – it was like a “marmite moment” but slowly after the release I was seeing beautiful versions that were teasing me. For me, this is usually a good sign that a. I’m going to like the result and b. I’m going to enjoy the sewing process. I don’t know how I know, it’s just my good old intuition.

The Pauline Dress has really cute features in it’s design like the knife pleats, square neck line and a key-opening at the back. For this collab, I’ve chosen to go with the version b, which shouldn’t really come as too much of a surprise if you’ve been following me for a while! I’m a lover of puffy and billowy sleeves and gathers so version b just sung to me. I think both versions have so many options when it comes down to choosing the fabric, whether you’d like a more structured look with a cotton or chambray or a softer look with a viscose or tencel, the Pauline could be seen differently in so many fabric options.

Before I give away what fabric I went for, I’m going to say the Pauline is quite advanced, especially with the bodice. Getting the knife pleats in the right position and direction was no easy task. The square neck line needed precision to get the straight lines. Sure, the instructions were there every step of the way but I had to keep focused.

Lately, I’ve been loving the soft feel and look of drapey fabrics but choosing from Pigeon Wishes Shop was no easy task when it came to the crunch.

So, After much deliberating I opted for this gorgeous dark green Bemberg cupro bark crepe satin which is real life is so silky but it’s not silk. It’s absolutely gorgeous. A really nice drape and handle. The bark jacquard on it is simply stunning, subtle but strikingly beautiful.

I’d say the Bemberg Cupro is the same weight as standard viscoses and I feel it’s more slippery which helped put the fear into before I cut into it. I was literally dancing back and forth with the rotary cutter in my living room at the table, just full of jitters thinking if this goes wrong, what the heck I’m I going to do?

Fortunately it didn’t. Are you relieved? I am, once I finished the dress I let it hang for a minute, whilst I stared at it in disbelief that I made it. Why, you ask? Well, sometimes there’s that element of self doubt (yes, I get it – believe you me).

I’m chuffed with myself, the finished dress fits perfectly but the weather hasn’t been playing fair for cool photos in amongst Scots pines. That vision will just have to wait until the wind and rain dies down. In the meantime, I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing the dress and details with that beige wall behind me and hearing about my thoughts on the fabric and the pattern.

Although the fit is bang on there was a slight mis alignment after I put in the invisible zipper in. The seam ripper had to come out so I could align the back seams, fortunately it was only one side that was wonky (I’ve got an idea how I did it and the fabric was fairly shifty) and it was easy to fix. I think I may have to go in again as I noticed that the fabric at the bottom of the zip in bumpy, perhaps it’s the overlocker stitches that are causing the bumps? But other than that, I have to say it was fairly straightforward and not stressful.

I’m taking something from this, actually quite a few things. I have a good skill set now and my head needs to remember that.

Ok, I need an occasion to wear this or do I?

Pigeon Wishes | 2021 Year In Review

By Megan Valero

It was the best of times…it was the worst of times. I think a lot of small businesses have this quote in their mind every time a year ends! 2021 has definitely been filled with serious highs and the corresponding lows. We’ve had amazing opportunities and customers come our way and have really felt our business grow. However, the lingering effects of Covid has shaped our year in ways we didn’t expect (or want lol) and will do so even into 2022. 

Last year really feels like a game of two halves. I was certain at the beginning of 2021 that everything would be back to ‘normal’ again. It was just about having faith and waiting it out. Half way through the year I think we all had to come to terms with Coronavirus being a continued presence and the new normal.

Here’s a rundown of some major highlights of 2021. We couldn’t include everything but hope you enjoy the insight and the behind the scenes of the business.

Pigeon Wishes Buttons

What started as a tiny offshoot, to earn ‘pocket money’ for myself and Olimi has turned into one of the cornerstones of our business. 2021 was our first, full year of releasing our buttons. We had our classic buttons, which are the buttons that have been around since the beginning, plus released four independent collections (Think Pink, Spring Fling, Beaches and Halloween) and two collaboration collections (with Paige Joanna and Cut One Pair).

The response has been overwhelmingly amazing and I cannot imagine our business without our buttons now! Each collection has been such a joy to produce and put out into the world. A massive highlight this year was having a competition to help create and name a new button! The Aberystwyth button (thank you for the inspiration @JenJen.Bollands). It’s a massive pleasure and privilege that Pigeon Wishes can be a part of so many of your makes.

Images 1 The Rag Shop Display | Image 2 Aberystwyth button| Image 3 Cherry Bomb Button| Image 4 Our Buttons

Paige Joanna X Pigeonwishes

Our first button collaboration! I am beyond thankful that Paige said yes to collaborating. Reaching out is always scary, the fear of rejection is real! However, as you can feel through her instagram, Paige is incredibly lovely, kind and open. It was a joy to work with her and I am so happy with our first collection together. Keep your eyes peeled for our next collaboration collection coming Spring 2022. 

Images 1 Pic ‘n’ Mix Buttons | Image 2 Buttercup Buttons| Image 3 Ice Cream Sorbet Buttons| Image 4 The Whole Collection

Best Sellers

Pink and red forever it seems! By FAR our best selling fabric was our pink and red cotton seersucker. The pink and red combo shows no signs of abating and this colour combo is looking to still be incredibly popular into 2022. We have a new pink and red fabric ready to bring out for 2022 we are pretty sure you’ll love! Our cotton ginghams also proved to be popular. Gingham is always a classic but its popularity exploded last year. We were able to source some gingham in fun, unusual colourways, I especially loved the battenberg-esque gingham.

When it comes to our buttons, Painterly tops the charts continuously. Painterly is such a versatile button and there’s not much it doesn’t pair beautifully with. Our surprise hit was our Nightshade buttons, I thought it was a bit of a gamble bringing out a black button but it’s such a lovely twist to a basic we did anyway. It was a good call!

Images 1 Painterly Buttons| Image 2 Battenberg Gingham| Image 3 Nightshade Buttons| Image 4 Pink and Red Seersucker

Opening a Fabric Retail Shop

As I’ve said Covid has really changed our business model. On a personal note, not being able to go back to China and see family has been incredibly difficult for Yuhao. On a business one that meant sourcing fabric has pretty much completely halted and the escalating shipping costs means our wholesale plans have to change due to the increased price point. In our original business plan we were ideally meant to visit China twice a year on sourcing trips. We wanted a business that allowed Yuhao (and Olimi) a chance to spend more time around family and flexibility when it came to taking long, frequent breaks. Which at the time was a pretty good plan! Now, not so much.

We still want to be closer to family and right now that means something completely different. We have a warehouse full and access to amazing fabric so retail is a part of the business we opened last year and this year will really lean into. This year we are also welcoming my mum to the team and while what’s happening next is for another blog, we are really hopeful and excited.

Images 1 Front Page| Image 2 Fabric Section| Image 3 Me (Megan) at the K&S Show| Image 4 YuHao at Studio

The Knitting and Stitching Show

What a massive highlight of the year!!! Exhibiting at The Knitting and Stitching show was not even remotely in our plans. Not just for this year but ever. Since the beginning of the year we had been anticipating attending the CHSI Stitches trade show. Originally scheduled for February, the date kept being pushed further and further back until it was cancelled for the year entirely in September. Around that time we were seeing more advertising for the K&S show and thought we might as well participate since we wanted to take part in a show this year. I cannot say how wonderful it was to meet customers, talk to makers again and just to spend whole days surrounded by other small craft businesses! Becoming an exhibitor was one of our best decisions ever and I really hope to participate in more shows in the future.

Cut One Pair X Pigeon Wishes

Our second collaboration of the year and our second ever. I have long admired Jenny and Louise’s style and creativity. They have such a distinct point of view and I knew that would translate beautifully into buttons. I wasn’t wrong. It was wonderful seeing them open their shop and doing an instagram challenge with them. And yes! There is plans for another collection!

Image 1 Cut One Pair Buttons| Image 2 Product Backing design| Image 3 Hearteyes Button| Image 4 Stardust Button

Yuhao Working for the Business Full Time

By the end of 2020 we realised that it was time to make the leap. Yuhao was working full time and working on Pigeon Wishes whenever he could and I was spending the majority of my time looking after Olimi and working on Pigeon Wishes whenever I could. It was chaotic, sometimes unproductive but necessary when starting a small, bootstrap business. Luckily we were doing well enough that the situation was completely unsustainable and the only way to grow the business further was to have a full time worker. YuHao handed in his notice in October 2020 and by January 2021 we had to rely on Pigeon Wishes to be our sole source of income! Scary! I handle our social media so people mostly know me (Megan) however Yuhao is the true backbone of the business. The business wouldn’t be possible without him and I’m so thankful we can be part of this together. He’s camera shy and a bit conscious of his English (since it’s his second language) but I’m working on getting him to show his face on the socials more.

We Are Still Here!!!!

We are beyond grateful to still be open and running. Every single purchase, recommendation, mention and word of encouragement is greatly appreciated and keeps us running. Being able to add to our team has also been a highlight and blessing! Having Marie (Marie_StitchedUp) write our monthly newsletter, keep blog posts steadily come out when I’m busy and just having someone to bounce ideas off has helped shape what we’ve offered this year. No business can survive and expand without continuous support so a big thank you to everyone who has extended theirs.

The Future 

That’s still a little up in the air! We’re still a relatively new business and even now every month comes with uncertainty. Ultimately we want to create products people love, use and inspire them to sew. 2022 holds new products, new button collections, new fabric and new collaborations! 

Happy New Year and best wishes!

Megan

Lilac Outfit Palette

Written By Megan Valero

 

Hello Party People!

Week Two prompt for the Lilac Lovers Party is colour pairing. Diving into lilac means diving into colour! Lilac, at first glance, looks like a colour which can be a bit tricky to pair with others. Not the case and this blog post (here) by One Cut Pair will have you combining lilac with an assortment of colours.

The Cut One Pair duo (Jenny and Louise) are committed to the lilac life. They made sure all their brand colours matched with lilac. This got me thinking about the Pigeon Wishes brand colours and how our colours work with lilac. Turns out lilac is much more versatile than even I imagined.

Lilac and black

Because who doesn’t have black in their wardrobe? Expanding a wardrobe doesn’t have to mean an all new outfit. Working with what you got is just as fun. Plus, it turns out lilac and black is more than a bit rockin’. Black toughens up lilac and adds an edge that is casual and cool. A dark plum lipstick seems to pull everything together and you are one lilac loving rockstar.


Images sourced from Pinterest credits 1/2/3

Lilac and Dark Blue

There is something so striking about this colour combination. Especially an Ultramarine blue with a lilac. I see this as a wonderful way to add lilac to an Autumn/Winter outfit without reaching for traditional colours. The seriousness of a dark blue seems too tame the lilac slightly and make it slightly Autumnal.


Images sourced from Pinterest credits 1/2/3

Lilac and Light blue

Get those faded blue jeans on, grab your lilac top, we’re going to Brunch! That’s the kinda feeling I get when I see this combo. Light blue and lilac together give off a dreamy, carefree aura. I hear a Sophia Coppola soundtrack in my head and think of hazy, lazy days. This colour combination does give off a playful energy, which can be embraced by all.


Images sourced from Pinterest credits 1/2/3

Lilac and Red

Not the first two colours that come to mind right! Already mentioned in the Cut One Pair blog post, the packaging from our upcoming button collection made us all see how shockingly good these colours are together. It’s bold but brilliant and I think this is what they mean by power dressing.

Images sourced from Pinterest credits 1/2/3

Our aim for these prompts is to not only look at lilac but also to become more aware of colours in general. What colours you are already drawn to and what colours you think will add a bit more pop to your life!

Now get to your wardrobe and start planning.

Happy stitching,

Meg

Lilac Lovers Party

Hello Lilac Lovers (and soon to be converted Lilac Lovers)!

Winter is here! We are waking up in darkness and leaving work in darkness. The urge to hibernate and retreat to the darker side to the colour spectrum has never been stronger!!!! But we are dreaming of a Lilac Christmas over her at Pigeon Wishes HQ and together with Cut One Pair, we think it might just happen!

The Party

On the 4th December we will be hosting a virtual party, wearing lilac is your ticket in. 

Yes! A Christmas party that involves staying at home, crafting and dressing up in lilac. Possibly the dream?

Inspiration

Lilac has been steadily gaining traction as THE shade of purple to be seen in. Royal purple is no longer the ambition! Lilac is a colour that has been in the public consciousness, not always for trend leading reasons! Lockdown and coronavirus in general has people looking at colour and their day to day lives in a more introspective way. Finding joy in where you live, the colours you dress in and the little choices you make each day.

Each week for the month of November we will be giving a prompt to dig deeper into lilac and how you see yourself with and in it!

For now we will leave you with our Pinterest board. Click here to look further. 

 Da rules

We’re pretty loose with this party. Use the tag #LilacLoversParty throughout the month and be in with a chance to win a prize. 

We do want to inspire a new lilac make but understand time constraints and snail seamstress tendencies! December 4th is the day to share your party outfit. Be it a new make or old make, as long as it’s lilac, we welcome you to the Lilac Lovers Party.

Prizes

Yes! Prizes!!! We will be announcing the prizes throughout the month. You do need to have a public account to be in with a chance of winning a prize.

Winners will be chosen at random.

If you are a business that would like to be involved please contact us.

Finally

We encourage a day full of frivolousness, fun and as much lilac as you can fit in!

“Colour can change how we feel, change how we view the world, reinvent the bland, provide spectacle and help us tell powerful stories. Colou can seduce us” (Franklin Till Studio, Editor’s Letter. The Power of Colour)

We hope you enjoy the party and everything leading up to it!

Thank you and see you there!

Tencel Linen fabric

Pigeon Wishes Linen / Tencel Mix

Written by Marie Lawlor

Linen has had a makeover!

For ultimate comfort and style, you don’t have to look much further than linen as your fabric choice.  I generally prefer a blend to make it slightly more drapey, but a new to me blend is Tencel-Linen. Can you think of a better partnership?

 

The lowdown

This specific blend from Pigeon Wishes is 70% Tencel and 30% Linen. If you have sewn with and worn Tencel, you will know that it has a gorgeous fluid movement and a cool hand. But, this has so much more going for than superficial good looks and a cool touch!

Sewing something in this blend will provide you with a durable garment, suitable for many occasions. Most of us do not live a hand wash or dry clean lifestyle, and this fabric has a lower dust absorption as well as a higher abrasion resistance; so you don’t have to keep your me mades for best. The strength and durability of linen/tencel will withstand some rough and tumble.

Linen creates an excellent UV protection while the the blend will offer superior temperature regulation, so you can cover up without heating up.  This will make an excellent choice for making children and baby clothes, to protect their delicate skin.

 

Inspiration

Tencel/Linen offers great versatility in terms of garment choice.  It will press and hold pleats well, and give volume to gathers without being too bulky. It has enough weight to to be used as trousers, skirts and jumpsuits as well as tops and dresses. 

There are some lovely colours available, with more to be added soon! Sometimes it is hard to resist the lure of all the new printed fabrics on offer.  However, I have been sewing a lot more in plain fabrics recently. Having some plain options in your wardrobe makes choosing daily outfits and packing for weekends away so much easier.  

Here are some patterns we think would provide the perfect base to show this beautiful fabric at its best, giving you the ultimate summer wardrobe.

 

By Hand London Hannah wrap dress/top sizes UK 6-24 and 16-34 (up to a 63.25” hip). 

 

Sewhouse seven Free range slacks UK 6-22 and 20-38 (up to 65” hip)

 

Friday Pattern Company Hughes Dress XS-7X (up to 63”)

 

Halfmoon Atelier Strand Dress and top UK 6-38 (up to 67” hip)

 

Amy Nicole Patti Pocket Skirt UK 6-32 (up to 61” hip)

 

I can’t wait to get my hands on some and try it for myself.  Available at Pigeon Wishes Shops.

 

Folklore buttons

Button Mood Board | Pigeon Wishes, Halloween 2021

Written by Megan Valero

 

Hello Stitchers,

It’s almost the most magical time of the year! SO, I thought it might be nice to do something a bit different when it comes to our newest, most magical, button collection. Our Halloween collection will be available to buy on the 1st October and here’s a bit of a sneak peek.

I usually only show the finished button but recently I’ve really enjoyed seeing the behind the scenes of other indie businesses like the new Selkie Patterns Video and Charlotte Emma Patterns videos. We wanted to show our inspiration and who doesn’t love a mood board? You’ll get to know exactly where each name inspiration comes from and get a feel for the overall look.

Mystic Meg

Most people from the UK, from a certain *ahem* generation will recognise the inspiration for this button.

I loved Mystic Meg as a child and yes, having the same name helped, however it was mostly because of her style, presence and apparent attunement with the otherworld. She gave me my first glimpse into that subculture, there was no internet after all and all the 90’s Witch films hadn’t been released yet. Mystic Meg appeared during the lottery and it was family tradition to watch the lottery every week to check our ticket. Sadly we never did win the lottery! But I did get my first taste of astrology, not exactly a million pounds but……..something? lol

 

Nightshade

Black doesn’t always have to be basic and every forest/hedge witch knows Deadly Nightshade is a pantry essential.

The main inspiration for this button actually comes from The Nightmare Before Christmas. When the character Sally picks some of the plant to slip into her creators/enslavers soup, to comatose him for a while so she can slip out and escape. The whole scene of her going to collect the plant, knowing its properties and brewing a soup is mesmerising. I personally would love to know more about botanical herbs (not to poison people lol) and have heard amazing reviews about the book Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer.


 

Folklore

Dried flowers seem to have exploded over the past few years, not complaining! I prefer a dried flower bouquet that seemingly stays good forever than looking at fresh flowers slowly, and sometimes not so slowly, wilting and dying. Dried flowers are a Witch’s kitchen staple and, sans having children on the menu, a witches kitchen is a place filled with strange plants and herbs ready to produce and bottle potions. 

 

Wicked 

I wept real tears when I saw Wicked in the theatre. No spoilers but I went into the musical knowing a few of the songs and left needing a warm drink and a few hours to process my emotions. Elphaba is the ultimate Witch, finding her power and voice and using it to be true to herself. YAS WITCH. Cue me listening to the Wicked Soundtrack and badly singing along to Defying Gravity until the end of October.

 

This is definitely the most sombre collection we have ever released, we wanted something different in terms of colour palette and feeling. In comparison to our Halloween collection from last year, this moodier and broodier collection come together really naturally and as a bit of a surprise since I’m usually the first person to drift towards a bright and bold colour! 

There’s only one button from last year’s collection that is being re released and that’s Witches Brew. Pink and green forever!

This collection marks a year of us releasing our buttons in collections and officially launching our button business. It’s been wonderful! Everyone says this but it’s still true, I never thought our button business would grow into what it is today and I’m truly grateful for all our consumers, the reception, the makes, the reviews. Thank you!

Happy stitching and happy soon-to-be spooky season,

Meg