By Jen Gourley
The Fabric Nook will be packing up and moving all their fabric, ribbons, threads and yarn to a new location soon but they are not unravelling. In fact, if you drop into their shop, they’ll be happy to have a yarn to you about it!
Biloela’s own specialty fabric store will be leaving their current premises at Shop 4 & 5, Biloela Shoppingworld, 32 Callide Street, before the end of the year as the building is set to be demolished. But the Fabric Nook doesn’t have too far to go – they will be setting up business at the old newsagents building on the corner of Gladstone Rd and Callide Street.
The Fabric Nook has been a part of the Biloela business scene for 21 years, with owner and operator Lorraine Pitman first opening the store on Kariboe Street (where The Rabbit Hole Coffee Café is now), then when they outgrew that space, they moved to the old Rockmans premises (where Thai-Noi restaurant is now). From there, the Fabric Nook set up at the easily recognisable white and red building at Biloela Shoppingworld.
Over the 21 years, the Fabric Nook has grown in both size and popularity with people coming from all over Australia to visit the shop that is stocked with fabrics, patterns, balls of wool, buttons, zippers, craft items, sewing machines, knitting needles, trims, curtain rods and accessories, diamond art, and much more.
“We bring a lot of business to town,” Lorraine said. “Busloads and carloads come and people come off the beaten track just to visit our store.
“I had one person who rang and said they were coming from Western Australia. They were travelling and love our shop so they had to come. People just stand at the door and go, ‘Wow!’.”
The Fabric Nook also is busy sending parcels all over Australia with their online business providing popular.
The shop is not just a business though – it’s a place for like-minded people to sew and socialise (or sew-cialise if you like), learn new skills and work on a variety of projects together.
There’s craft and cuppa sessions for women on Wednesday from 9am until 2pm, and then there are kids classes on Mondays and Wednesdays (these are so popular there’s a waiting list). These classes are attended by primary and high school students and focus on a range of different skills.
“They learn how to use their sewing machines, hand sewing, and all different types of craft,” Lorraine said. “They make heaps of stuff – they’ve made blankets and toys and they are doing reindeers at the moment.”
Having been in the business for more than two decades, Lorraine has noticed when particular pastimes become popular again. The art of knitting is one that has really got people hooked at the moment.
“People knit all year round now,” Lorraine said. “Knitting has really taken off in the last few years. People are learning how to crochet again and following it on YouTube. They are going back to the old-fashioned crafts – crocheting, knitting, patchworking and sewing, people are making their own clothes too.”
When the friendly staff aren’t at the counter helping customers and offering tips and advice, they are busy doing alterations for weddings, formals, school uniforms and everyday wear.
While the Fabric Nook staff don’t know the exact date that they will be opening at the new premises, they have already started moving some stock and have plans to celebrate 21 years in business to coincide with a grand opening. In the meantime, there are a few bargains to grab with some discounted stock available.
To stay in the loop with the big move and the start of the Fabric Nook’s next chapter, keep an eye on their Facebook page and check out their website at www.thefabricnook.com.au