Summer Ticking and Canvas

It may well be raining at this very moment, but we got our deckchairs out yesterday. Yes, one of them did almost blow off down Essex Road, but the thought is there. The imagined warmth on our faces as we sit reading a new book in the garden, the sound of sausages sizzing on the barbeque and the kids playing water fight... that moment will come back soon. And we need to be prepared really; the next Bank Holiday is coming up!

Ray Stitch May 2015


Last week we had the arrival of a bundle of ticking from Moda's Fiesta collection. This is a smooth-to-the-touch cotton with a tight twill weave meaning that it's a good strong fabric for all sorts of applications. Historically, ticking was a utility fabric, being used to cover mattresses and pillows as the weave prevented down feathers from poking out. Now, ticking is produced with quirky bright stripes and used for the things we don't necessarily wish to hide such as Regency sofas (apparently) - but how about deckchairs, cushions, throws and clothing too.


Moda ticking at Ray Stitch


Our deckchairs have been a welcome sight on Essex Road , even stopping people driving past (of course we mean to brag). The lightweight canvases we stock from Birch Fabrics, Cloud 9 Fabrics and Kokka et al from Japan are the perfect balance of contemporary design and functionality. Backed in a strong lining (we use curtain blackout), you can make deckchair slings that are strong, durable and easily washed - so they look good top and bottom. At the moment we have Smile and Wave from Rashida Coleman-Hale for Cloud 9 on our chairs, but in the past we have enjoyed the bold abstract illustrations of Charley Harper, and this year we reckon we'll be going for our Japanese linen cotton Bars and Stripes á la Sonia Delaunay.


Ray Stitch

Ray Stitch


Along with the vivid prints, it's also nice when the fabric itself has that natural feel, and so, similar to the softness and natural-coloured base of the ticking we also stock a range of classic striped cotton towelling. Made up to the traditional width of deckchair slings with a rolled hem, you barely need to do any work! Of course, you could also use them to make cushions, table runners, placemats...


Deckchair towelling at Ray Stitch


Whilst you're on with making stuff for your garden parties and conservatories, you really could use the same fabrics for clothing. Preppy shorts, tailored blazer, fisherman-inspired smock... or, pyjamas! We've already championed our lightweight canvases in clothing, such as our orange-onion print Papercut Sigma dress, Water Window Grey Top 64, Herringbone Nani Iro Camber dress and By Hand London Elisalex dress (all found under 'canvas weight prints' on our site, except that Nani Iro as that's an oldie!). For garments that can handle a bit of stiffness, the canvases help the shape stay how it should be, yet the hand feel is soft enough to be comfortable and the weave open enough to be breathable (they are linen and cotton after all).


Ray Stitch canvas makes


Moda 100% cotton ticking 110cm wide £14/m / Deckchair towelling 100% cotton around 40cm wide £8/m / Japanese and Organic canvases 110cm wide £18-22/m

The oak deckchairs with sling are available for £120 each, or if you would like a bespoke sling, give us a call or pop in and we'll see what we can do!


Words by Steph.