Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Garment District Visit

Start spreading the news, New York garment district is fabulous! My little town blues won't ever melt away now that I've seen the greatness of the the NYC garment district!

I spend some time trying to locate 4 ply silk in Montréal and never succeed... But as soon as I set foot in my first stop on 40th street, I hit a wall of it! Too bad I was way too intimidated to take a picture of the Great Wall! Wow! 4 ply silk is indeed gorgeous, has a great drape and feels soft ; but I fell in love with pure silk charmeuse big time!

Thanks to Meg's (aka Lindsay T Sews) awesome and very user friendly printable guided tour and suggested itineraries, I've seen all that I wanted in my brief journey! I was lucky enough that my husband had a client to meet in NYC on Wednesday AND my mother could keep the kids overnight AND the mega storm Irene didn't canceled any of those plans! Too bad I went a few days prior my favorites bloggers were meeting there!

Those who know me would be surprised that I actually bought fabrics for myself! The 6 hours drive with my husband convincing me to spend half the money his company would give us because he drove down instead of flying might have do the trick...

It was really exciting to go with my love. We arrived quite late Tuesday night and went to a pub in Brooklyn. With a good friend and a ton of wheat beer on the menu - we had a blast! We spend the night in an hotel on 49th Street, and had a lovely late (by frantic-morning-with-the-kids standard!) breakfast together, chatting... I walked him to his client office and then I had a WHOLE DAY ALL BY MYSELF! No kids, no master degree class, no working from home, no errands, nothing...

Loosing no time, Meg's itinerary in hand, I went down to the garment district! I had written a list of things to look for to go with my Fall Palette 2011, I will blog about this Fall challenge later on... But I was looking for silk to make some tops and nightgowns and for interesting linings for skirts and dresses.

Fall Palette 2011

Paron: I found out I was quite intimidated to be in NYC, shopping for fabrics. My whole body language screaming I'M A BEGINNER AND HAVE NO CLUE! I saw my Great Wall of 4 ply silk there. Touching fabrics gave me a sense of quality and drape for fabrics I only knew by names! I bought Bemberg twill lining in a perfect grey (on sale) for my projects and the latest Threads magazine to break the ice...

Lace Star: I found silk prints that I really loved! But I wasn't sure about prices and quality yet, so I left with my "coup de coeur" list in my notebook. I should have come back for the floral one... ;) 

B&J: Just WOW! I loved it! They offer fabrics of quality. The fabric is really well labelled and they display about a yard of each fabric on nice little hangers. They even have mirrors so you can see fabrics on you! I had to get some, but went to lunch and went to the discount stores before building the nerve to spurge on it! I chose a marvelous silk sueded charmeuse (washed) in rust pink ; I bought only 2,5 yard of it and shove the receipt way down my purse without a glance! I'm planning to sleep like a queen in my Colette's cinnamon or parade in town in a retro top...  They even had velvet silk ; it's SO soft!

And a few discount stores on 39th Street : Chic Fabrics, Fabrics For Less and G&R Fabrics. They were crowded with bolts and seems to be own by the same peoples as I've been helped by the same lady in 2 of them... I bought 3 yards of silk charmeuse in an intense grey with a hint of blue. I LOVE it! I'm planning Colette's Cinnamon for it! I quite loved a silk chiffon in turquoise but it's too fragile for a dress from my little princess turning 3 year old and I have too many projects to sew a summer dress now... (Colette's Chantilly maybe?!) 

Weaver’s: They had great wool selections, but I hadn't any project in my queue for them and their silks were way to high for me to touch... So little time, so much to see ; I left!

Daytona Braids & Trims: It is HUGE! About 3 time the size of the trims store I know in Montréal... I was overwhelmed and starting to think about embellishments for my little girl so I left before spending my ME time on planning project for my kids. So selfish ; it felt good! ;)

Steinlauf & Stoller: It is small but seems to have it all. I just bought a tailor ham and french curves ruler at home the week before so I didn't knew what I needed more...

Mood: The famous store! Strangely enough, I like to sew to get unique piece and a good fit, but I'm not that interested by fashion... nor television... So I haven't seen Project Runway! But I liked the store, It is HUGE, but I stayed on the first floor going all over the silks. Too many choices, time passing too fast and I still needed to go back to B&J to buy the rust pink washed silk charmeuse ; so I left! I didn't want to leave empty handed so I bought some pretty pink pattern weights, bee wax and a gift for my little girl ; a big blue ostrich feather! 

NY Elegant Fabrics: I came back on 40th Street for some silk print at Lace Star and saw that I missed it! I loved this shop, one of my favorites. Fabrics sections are well labelled. They had a lot of interesting lining ; I bought 4 yards of fuchsia with printed leaf silhouettes and 2 yards of pink Bemberg Twill. They had a few modern and floral silk prints that I loved! But my alarm clock went off and I promised my husband to spend my whole budget before meeting him back at the hotel... So I  bought poly stretch Charmeuse in a color I loved (teal), but I should have indulge in less yardage in a silk print instead...

Piouf! I was exhausted but really happy of my trip to the garment district! It's really impressive and have fabrics of quality that I could never found in my hometown... I hope my little story inspires you to go fabric shopping in NYC if you get the chance!

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