Saturday, 12 December 2009

My lovely list of UK online fabric shops


A couple of posts ago I talked about the ever-growing list of UK online fabric shops that I had in my email drafts folder and promised to share it with you. Well the time has come: part of me wants to keep it to myself in case you stampede them and buy up all the fabric loveliness leaving none of it for me...but my better self (yes, it was a battle, but she won out! Hurrah!) wants to celebrate the fact that we no longer need to wait, noses pressed up against the letter box for over a month, for a package to clear customs or to find that we unexpectedly have £20 of tax to pay on our little package of scrumptiousness, before we can get our paws on it. But most of all, I know what it is to have a fledgling business and feel desperate that now all these lovely shops have finally started opening we must support them wholeheartedly by buying vast bales of fabric so that they can buy more deliciousness on our behalf and have ever-more jaw-dropping pages of fabric on their sites.


UK online fabric loveliness:
Plush Addict
Dragonfly Fabrics
The Eclectic Maker
Backstitch
Frumble
The Village Haberdashery
Elephant in my Handbag
Blonde Design
Fabric HQ
M is for Make... - stocks Thangles, amongst other good things
Sew and Quilt
Stitch, Craft, Create
Hulu Crafts
Curtains Made Simple - upholstery weight fabric and Ikea fabrics
Oakshott Fabrics - maker of the fabrics used in my wall hangings
Eternal Maker - vast & wonderful selection of fabrics (inc. Essex yarn dyed linen)
Patch Fabrics - stocks Sewline glue pens for English paper piecing
U-Handbag - all the supplies you might need for bag making
Shaukat - vast selection of Liberty prints
Cotton Patch - amazing selection of quilting supplies, but postage can be slow
Tikki London - fantastic selection of colourful 1930s fabrics
The Running Chicken - a UK supplier of Quiltmania books
Kaleidoscope - stockist of virtually every sewing related book you could wish for
Seamstar
Simply Solids
Ray-stitch
Puddleduck Quilts
Fabric Rehab
Sew and Quilt
Celtic Fusion Fabrics
Timeless Fabrics
Sew Me Happy
GaGa Fabrics
Gone to Earth
Clothkits
Beyond Fabrics
Emma Garry Fabrics
Lucy Loves Fabric
Millie Moon
Dots 'n Stripes
The Fabric Loft
Ecoearth Fabrics - all the fabrics you could want for making nappies and practical baby accessories
Donna Flower - beautiful vintage fabrics
Doughty's Online
The Quilt Room
Linen Fabrics - for inexpensive linen


Design your own fabric
Woven Monkey - upload your own artwork and have it printed onto fabric in England and delivered to your door within a week (also delivers within the EU).


Fabric shops in London
Fabrics Galore  - a treasure trove of a shop with a huge selection of Liberty prints at £12 per metre)
The Cloth House  - a wonderful (but expensive) selection of dressmaking fabrics
Kleins (not open Saturdays)
McCulloch & Wallis - two floors of dressmaking fabrics and habdash
Liberty of London - if you go to one place make it here. The setting makes the fabr
Shaukat  - stockist of new and discontinued Liberty fabrics in London
Goldhawk Road - near Shepherd's Bush, Goldhawk Road is awash with fabric shops, selling a huge array of dressmaking fabrics.

Learn to sew here
:
Just Sew - I haven't been myself, but the window alone is enough to convince me that this must be the most amazing environment in which to learn to sew.
Prescott & Mackay - the place to go for short courses in shoe-making (can you imagine the wonderfulness?), millinery and bag-making.
The Make Lounge

Find what's going on locally to you:
The Sewing Directory


This is not a definitive list of every UK online fabric shop...rather a cherry-picked one of those selling the fabrics that I really want to sew with myself. I've put notes next to the ones that specialise in certain things or need more explanation as to their inclusion on my list.


I should also say that I haven't shopped in every single one of the shops mentioned and so can't attest to the level of customer service they might provide, but those that I (or my husband, for he is responsible for snuffling out my of the above-listed shops in the quest for my birthday and Christmas presents) have shopped with have been loveliness itself: packages have arrived speedily and wrapped in beautiful tissue and ribbon, the fabric perfectly cut and smelling just as new fabric should (yes, it does have a smell and I breath it in like an antiquarian might nose books...it's a scent of perfect happiness that is now bottled within my fabric drawers...if only there was a spray-on form of it so that I too could smell of new fabric...instead I smell of Laura Mercier's Creme Brulee which is almost as goo!).

Anyway, despite the fact that UK fabric stockists are meant to be the sole focus of this post, it feels all wrong to list so much goodness without mentioning a couple of my most favourite overseas purveyors of fine fabrics, who are irreplaceable no matter how much loveliness we have on our English shores:

Holland Fabric House - fabrics that you won't find elsewhere

Well, lordy, I do hope I haven't left anyone out of that list (please let me know if I have). Wishing you partial restraint and a happily lighter wallet.

Florence x

27 comments:

  1. I can't begin to tell you how grateful I am for that list! Thank you so much Florence. Some years ago when I was sewing a lot it was easy - I had a wonderful department store 10 mins down the road and purchasing fabric was a joy - lots of standing around gazing into space as I imagined what I was going to do with my stuff. Now that shop has gone. I do have a local shop but it is very stressful - packed (which I know is good in one way) but horrendus to find anything and quite frankly all the delicious fabrics I see on-line are just not there. The staff are also often rude and impatient - not what's needed really. I enjoy on-line shopping because I can take my time and dither away! My google attempts have been very hit and miss. It can be ridiculously expensive to order from abroad. I am going to have a lovely time perusing these shops. If only money was no object!! Thank you so much for sharing all your secrets with us - it's very much appreciated.
    Siobhan

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  2. This is an astonishingly useful list - thank you so much. Mant I already know buit there are some new gems there that I shall thoroughly enjoy browsing through!

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  3. I just wish I could type more accurately - "Many", not "Mant", and "but" not "buit". Sorry!

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  4. Dottycookie - typing about new fabric suppliers can make my fingers a little feverish too!

    I'm so pleased that it will be helpful. x

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  5. What a super, useful list, thank you. Could I just mention Creative Quilting www.creativequilting.co.uk, the only place I know that does lovely snuggly patterned flannel/brushed cotton/flanelette (depending on where you were brought up).

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  6. I love Ray Stitch as they sell Colette patterns and organic fabrics. The Make Lounge is so much fun, who can resist an evening with other sewing souls and learning something too! I have also been on a Prescott and Mackay weekend course run by Magdalen Jebb, just fabulous. Great list of contacts, thanks.

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  7. Thank you for the list,I have nowhere locally where I can buy fabric so I shall certainly be spending some time browsing all the loveliness.

    Sue

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  8. Thank you so much for this list! I'm so pleased your "good self" won :)

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  9. I am going to put that list on my bookmark toolbar! Another good place to learn to sew is the London College of Fashion - they do lots of short courses, as well as weekend and evening classes.

    Thank you for giving us your list (or perhaps I shouldn't thank you for putting temptation in my way!).

    Pomona x

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  10. Ooh Thank you so much for this list! It's so useful as I can never seem to find the fabics I want in the UK! x

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  11. Thank you so much for sharing your list! There are some new ones for me there that I'm off to have a look round!
    I can recommend Pink Chalk Fabrics in the US too...and Cia's Palette!
    Oh yes, I spend far too many hours fabric shopping online...

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  12. Wow, this is fantastic Florence. Thank you for sharing with us all x

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  13. Thank you for the list of temptation....I mean suppliers! There's always room in the stash for more yummy fabric!

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  14. Thank you so much for that list, you star! I am lucky though as I live near the Eternal Maker. :)

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  15. I'll be opening Backstitch in the new year, which will be at www.backstitch.co.uk (not live yet). I'll be stocking fabrics (that I love!) and patterns.
    Should be live by beginning Feb.

    exciting stuff.

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  16. Gosh Two Hippos, you've done it all - I'm so envious - Presscott & Mackay are still on my dream list of things to do.

    Gosh Jane, you're right - their brushed flanelette is gorgeous and is making me think of making pyjamas for my small ones - thank you so much for the link.

    Linda, you lucky thing - we went for a short break near West Wittering a little while ago - those beaches AND the Eternal Maker - what more could a girl want for?

    Fancy Elastic - that's such exciting news - please do let me know as soon as you're officially open (such a lot to do - you're pregnant too, no?!)

    So pleased you are loving the links. x

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  17. Thanks Sweet Pea!

    Fabulously useful list and saved in my delicious.

    Really loving how you coloured the list too :)

    OX

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  18. Oh Florence I so agree with you about the smell of new fabric. Every single time I walk into work I am hit by the wonderfulness of it. It just makes me so very happy and it's such a lovely stress reliever too. I do feel quite blessed to get paid to play with so much gorgeousness every week!

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  19. Wow! That list is fab. Always lovely to browse the fabric shops. Thanks Florence.

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  20. florence your list has been a god send for the business but wondered if you could help , coming to london to find fabric and trimming could you send me right direction already written down the listed ones but do you now anymore more i buy very funky fabrics i.e fabric rehab and seamstar stuff thankyou for all your wonderful info and help its apreciated

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  21. Daniele - Blogger hasn't given me your email address, so I can't reply directly. However, I would head straight to Fabrics Galore in Lavender Hill (quite near Clapham Junction) where they have end rolls of Liberty Lawn and Boden fabrics. In central London I would go to The Cloth Store in Soho (they have two branches one at each end of the road), Liberty, which is just a few minutes from The Cloth Store and then Kleins or McCulloch & Wallis for trimmings and haberdashery. John Lewis on Oxford Street also has a fabric department on the fourth floor - sometimes this is well stocked, but other times it is really quite poor. I hope that helps!

    Florence x

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  22. Thank you so much for this list! I really struggle to find a good range of reasonably priced fabrics and have been struggling to find online stores with a decent range... You've really helped! I loved the first one I clicked on and think Mr AMEX will be funding my habit for some time to come now......

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  23. Thank you so much for this list.
    I've been eager to start sewing again after many many years, (I've even bought a new sewing machine as an incentive) BUT where do you buy fabric, patterns, bits and bobs from these days, the only shops I can find are all 'fuddy duddy' with nothing in stock I would consider buying.

    The internet is a fantastic tool, I've come across plenty of American sites but have struggled to find good UK sites. Therefore your list will be invaluable and you've just gained yourself another blog reader.
    Sarah

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  24. Fabrics Galore is amazing - they are the best fabric shop I know, and very good value. Plus the staff are lovely.

    Shaukut is good - but I find that Liberty fabrics are advertised at £11 on the web site (plus VAT and postage) so I figured I'd go in to save on postage ... and they cost £16 ...

    Fancy Moon I would avoid like the plague. It's far more expensive than shipping the same fabrics from the US, and I wouldn't mind paying for the convenience but ... 4 x 1/2 a meter arrived as 180 cm, and all the fabrics were short. I returned them and they refunded £14.07 out of an original payment of over £50.

    Fabrics Galore has many of the same fabrics as Fancy Moon but cheaper - and you don't have to deal with unpleasant people! They do not sell through the web site, but you can order over the telephone.

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  25. Hi Florence, thank you SO much for your list!!! Even huger thanks as in the list is a fabric shop I never knew existed and its only 6 miles away (Eternal Maker) from me! Now I can go and actually touch the fabrics i'm buying!! Heaven! This could be dangerous for the bank balance though ;) THANKS again from Anna (new mummy to a baby Florence!)

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  26. Ive just found your blog today and I think I could be here all night!..........where have you been hiding?? Thankyou so much for this list I will be checking all of these suppliers out. Thankyou also for the tuorials and patterns you are an inspiration!! Incidentally my mother used to sew, and taught me when I was very young, her name was Florence and she was called Flossie by her siblings. I am now 68 and became a grandmother two years ago, i made some bunting, one thing led to another and I am now addicted to sewing and ll that goes with it

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Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a message - it's always really lovely to hear from people.

I now tend to reply within the comments section, so please do check back if you've asked a question or wish to chat.

Florence x