June 10, 2012

On hobby shopping

My youngest brother wisely pointed out to me recently that one of the fun things about getting really into a hobby is that wherever you go in the world, you can search out great local hobby shopping opportunities which make your trip even more enjoyable. Last time we did this together, it was him finding a tiny synthesizer shop in the Harajuku area of Toyko (I drank coffee in a rooftop conservatory while he spent literally hours playing with buttons and keys) – and this time it was me and fabric shopping on the Goldhawk Road in London.

I found out about this strip of shops from Alana at LazyStitching.com (highly recommended for her wide range of FBA tutorials) – and ironically it turned out to be located one road over from a good friend’s house, so I had unwittingly been in the presence of amazingness on many an occasion. Granted, the Goldhawk Road has few charms – if you didn’t know there was a string of about 20 fabric shops you would never guess: 
But there are (almost literal) Aladdin’s caves there: room upon room of mostly apparel fabric, of all sorts imaginable.

I had a few designs in mind, so I set off looking for printed jerseys (which, as predicted, proved elusive), nice light cottons for summer dresses, a soft silk for a new wrap dress pattern, and some silk organza…

 And I found them all! For remarkably low prices as well – I think I’m so used to the limited and overpriced Boston apparel fabric market that I’ve lost all sense of proportion, but getting enough good-quality fabric to make a dress for GBP 6 ($10) was unbelievable to me!

So here’s the new stash:

Black and navy blue gingham for summer dresses (I couldn’t decide between them, but after reminding myself they were only GBP 2.50 / metre, I just went for both….)

A nice turquoise and black wool knit (which unfortunately didn’t come out very well on this photo… it’s much nicer than it looks) – destined for a wrap dress this autumn, methinks…

A navy blue and cream polka dot jersey – sadly the only printed jersey I found that was half decent. This one will become a short-sleeved summer wrap dress shortly:

A cheap-as-chips bird-printed chiffon for a mere GBP 3.00! Perhaps a floaty top?

And two lovely pieces of stonewashed silk in charcoal and turquoise (again the colours haven’t really come out very well here….) to make my new wrap dress pattern:

In addition, there were several lengths of silk organza for underlining, and some cream jersey for t-shirts. Quite a haul!

So that’s it: no more fabric shopping for a while until I get through this, and the rest of my stash….

Let me know what you think!