NYC Garment District Fabric Shopping Haul

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Hey Peeps,

Bit of a picture heavy post today sharing my fabric haul from the Garment District in New York. Where to start?

Well, as a Brit who has never been fabric shopping in that particular part of the world before, I was concerned that it might be a little….overwhelming. But I needn’t have worried. Rather than start with a biggie (like Mood), I started with the smaller shops first and actually did a round of all the shops I wanted to first before comitting to buying anything.

Backing up. We were staying in a hotel on West 44th Street in NYC so it took me like 10 minutes to walk to the Garment District on the day I went shopping. Phil and Kezia headed off to catch a glimpse of the Statue of Liberty on the Staten Island Ferry that day (Kezia’s choice), so I was left to my own devices, although they came and met me later in the day.

First stop was Paron Fabrics (West 39th Street) (not the best of photographs; my camera lens needed cleaning I think!):

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Paron Fabrics

Fabrics were well organised by type (lots of choice) and they had lots of high end European imported stuff (Italian), which I avoided…because I was basically trying really hard to buy things which are hard to get here in the UK. I can’t remember the name of the older guy who served me but he was lovely (and gave me a discount – there was a sale on at the time too), and I could easily have spent a lot of money here.

This is what I bought here – top to bottom: top: a heavy weight waterproof fabric which has been bonded on the reverse side to what looks like a knit interfacing (i.e. it’s needle ready – love!), middle: medium/ heavy weight weight cotton flannel plaid and bottom: heavy weight satin lining (for the waterproof jacket).

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Paron Fabrics
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Paron Fabrics
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Paron Fabrics

Next I went across the road to Gray Line Linens (West 39th Street). Again, fabrics were well organised but prices were not marked and you had to ask them. There were lots of lovely metallic linens but I resisted. I figured linen is something you can get here. There were a few rolls of eyelet cotton but I held out and got some from Metro Textiles for a better price (see below):

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Gray Line Linens
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Gray Line Linens

After that I called into Daytona Trims (West 39th Street). Now here I did feel overwhelmed and didn’t purchase anything. I guess I am just someone who likes to buy notions and trims on a “by project” basis, so it was hard for me to buy something without a specific project in mind. However, if I had a trim shop like this near me, it would be heaven!

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Daytona Trims
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Daytona Trims
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Daytona Trims

Next was the much advocated Chic Fabrics (West 39th Street) (despite some confusion on Instagram it does still exist).

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Chic Fabrics
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Chic Fabrics

This place had some wonderful silks and cottons but I walked away with just one piece which is incredibly hard to capture the true colour of. In real life this amazing washed stretch silk is an olive green colour, but here it is photographing more brown. Utility shirt dress with lots of gold hardware methinks.

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Chic Fabrics

I walked over to West 37th Street after that (because I was meeting Philip and Kezia there) and called into Metro Textiles where I met the famous Kashi!

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With Kashi of Metro Textiles

The charming Kashi, of course, was open to a bit of bargaining, and he had a smaller selection of good quality fabrics of all kinds. I ended up purchasing two pieces from him: (top) a piece of red cotton eyelet (very hard to get in the UK) and (bottom) some printed silk crepe de chine which appears to have gone off grain so I am going to have to do something about that.

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Metro Textiles
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Metro Textiles
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Metro Textiles

By this time Philip and Kezia had arrived and Carolyn from Diary of a Sewing Fanatic also joined us for a quick foray into Mood Fabrics. Can I just say it was wonderful to meet Carolyn and it felt as if we had been friends forever, instead of meeting for the first time for a quick shopping trip.It’s a shame we didn’t have more time.

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With Carolyn of Diary of Sewing Fanatic in Mood Fabrics, NYC

I pretty much had only one thing in mind to buy from Mood…silk jersey. Finding silk jersey in the UK is like finding hens teeth. Anyway, this is what I walked away with: a panel printed silk jersey (I took 2 panels) and a half yard of plain orange silk jersey for accents. This was the most pricey purchase of the day and I hope that, when it eventually happens, I can do justice to this piece. I don’t need to write much about Mood as so much has already been written about shopping here. It is definitely a fabric shoppers paradise, but I found I prefered the scale and pace of the smaller shops.

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Mood Fabrics
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Mood Fabrics

The last place I hit was Spandex House (West 38th Street). Now I am not a huge knit wearer (in case you hadn’t noticed). Nor I am a huge lover of novelty prints. But if those things are your bag then this is the place for you.

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Spandex House
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Spandex House
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Spandex House

Here I bought three pieces of supplex (again very hard if not impossible to buy here in the UK) to make workout tops for myself.

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Spandex House

And finally, for Kezia I bought two pieces of glittery printed lycra (spandex) to make gymnastics leotards/ shorts, in her requested colours. These photos (all of them in this post in fact) were taken post washing and the glitter hasn’t come away which is encouraging. Again, Spandex House gave me a decent discount (your man Jean was the star here) and that’s always nice.

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Spandex House

I left my hotel at 10am and was back by 4pm, exhausted but very pleased with my purchases (I haven’t had by credit card bill yet, haha). All the fabrics came home safely and I am looking forward to sewing them up. I tried hard to buy fairly classic pieces – nothing too outlandish or unusual – just because that’s me. I know when I eventually wear an item made from these pieces I will cherish the memories of our great holiday.

See you soon!

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With Swatch at Mood Fabrics NYC

 

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Posted by

By day I work in the exciting world of pharmaceutical regulatory affairs, registering medicines (!), but by night I turn in to a sewing diva, making all manner of clothes in my beautiful sewing space (which you can tour using the link at the top of this blog). I love how sewing and sewing clothes that fit my curvy body continually challenges me. I enjoy working with all different types of fabric, and whilst I don't like to put restrictions on myself and say I won't buy RTW, the truth is that I probably rarely do buy it, preferring the fit of my own me-made clothes. I love to use natural fibres where ever possible and colourful coats are an obsession of mine! Sewing is both my addiction and my therapy. You can contact me at sewmanju@yahoo.co.uk

36 thoughts on “NYC Garment District Fabric Shopping Haul

  1. Looks like you had a great time! I’ve been to the Mood store in NYC. It’s overwhelming, and I found it hard to decide what to get. I’m glad you found just what you wanted. I would have liked to explore more of the garment district, but I was traveling with a non-sewing friend. You’re lucky to have met up with your sewing friends for a wonderful time.

  2. Lovely post, Manju – thank you for taking us along! It’s good to know there’s more than 1 fabric store (Mood) in the City, as I’d probably feel as you did – feel more comfortable in smaller venues. Very interesting to discover what’s difficult to get on your side of the pond. It will be grand to see how you use these, particularly the waterproof fabric!

  3. I’m so glad I’ve found your blog (thanks to Cashmerette’s newsletter). I’m going to NYC for a very short day tomorrow. I’m going to follow your steps in the fashion district.

  4. Oh you got some great fabrics. I take it the flannel plaid is the one you mentioned on my blog post? If so, I think it would be perfect.

  5. It was so great to meet you and I was sad that I had to run too! I told everyone at dinner a couple days later how cool you were and how I felt like I’d known you forever! I do hope we get to meet again and spend more time together. Enjoy your purchases and I’m sure you will make amazing pieces from them!

  6. You got some great fabrics ! I’ve been to Mood several times as well as Paron & Metro ( love Kashi) . Must add Chic next time -but need to sew fabric from my May trip first 😜
    Looking forward to seeing all you make

  7. So glad to read of your amazing trip to NYC. Will be traveling there in October with a similar goal in mind. Thanks for sharing!

  8. that sounds like a fun day and you got such nice things, I especially like the printed silks. have fun sewing them up!

  9. Loved, loved, loved your NYC shopping post. I have been to New York twice and hit the garment twice and left overwhelmed both times. However, your survey is most promising. Look forward to another trip. Can’t wait to see some of the garment you sew from your purchases. Fun blog.

  10. The “off grain” silk you bought is also available online at Gorgeous Fabrics and there they note that it is printed on the diagonal – it isn’t off grain. Just thought you might like to know.

  11. Without being rude, you jammy tart. I would have thought I’d died and gone to heaven for a chance of that visit.

  12. Very jealous. I have actually bought mood silk jersey over the Internet but the postage was high and then the customs charge made it really expensive. I just don’t understand why we can’t buy it here in the uk.

    1. I believe you can buy it from Joel and Sons (London), but they only seem to have it in one colour (red) and it is very pricey. I have looked at ordering from Mood website (but haven’t). If I was going to, there is an option to pre-pay the customs duty which I would do before ordering so you don’t get any nasty surprises!

  13. YAY! Great purchases. I was the same when I went, hunting for cotton eyelet. Why is it so hard to get here?! I then took my coral eyelet to Daytona Trims for the perfect matching concealed zipper. The corduroy bias binding was fun there though. Silk jersey is a good call. I love your choices. And your daughter is going to love those glittery mermaid scales!!

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