Yesterday was a good day for me! I met some sewing friends, had lunch at The Bryant Park Grill, went to M&J Trims on Sixth Avenue and then over to Metro Textiles for some serious fabric shopping.
But first I have to apologize because the only picture I have is the one I took when I came home. As usual I was rushing yesterday morning and I forgot to put my digital camera in my handbag. So even though several of my friends had cameras, they are from out of town and won't be back home until the beginning of next week - so no pics until then!
The fiberly women joining me were Diane E. (she wrote the article, Top Ten Patterns for Beginners on PatternReview), Mardel who authors the blog, Sew Distracted and my good friend, Joanna who has no web presence but has the most amazing fabric sense!
The weather in NYC was perfect yesterday...a slight breeze, a beautiful temperature, blue skies, it was perfect for a girls lunch in a fabulous place and then strolling down the bustling streets of Manhattan. First stop on the stroll was M&J Trims. Joanna hadn't been to M&J Trims in years, since it was a tiny little store and as Diane said when you walk in, the new and improved M&J can be quite overwhelming. But it is such a fun place to shop and if you take a breathe, walk slowly and look at things piece by piece it is not sooooo overwhelming! *smile*
We looked at buttons and trims and I found the trim for my next inspirational project, The St. John's dress. We spent time picking out and thinking of ideas for interesting pieces of trim and then we went in search of the perfect button for a handbag that Joanna is knitting. Once our purchases were paid for and a quick call made to Kashi, we headed over to Metro Textiles.
I have got to put in an unabashed plug here for Kashi. If you get the chance to come to NYC to fabric shop, you have got to stop by Metro Textiles. I know there are several other well-known fabric stores in NYC and I am not saying not to patronize them because every fabric shop in the garment district now needs your patronage! But what I am saying is that Metro Textiles is so special because of the pieces that Kashi has and Kashi himself!
I am so used to arriving at Kashi's later in the evening, that I was actually surprised that there were customers there ~ silly me! But there was one particular customer there that it was so nice to meet in person, Trina who is known as "Nicegirl" on PR and who blogs as The Slapdash Sewist. And Cidell, I know a secret! *smile* She was picking out some fabric before heading out to The Mermaid Parade in Coney Island! It was so much fun to meet someone else from Pattern Review and blogland!
From my opening shot, you can see that I purchased just one piece of fabric in trying to keep with the spirit of my fabric moratorium, but Diane, Joanna and Mardel picked out some amazing pieces. I especially loved Joanna who just dug behind bolts to find the most beautiful treasures. I took the only seat in the store and watched them shop. Fabrics in breathtaking hues - silk charmeuses in deep jewel colors, an awesome royal navy blue sheer silk chiffon, a taupe lace with pearls encrusted on it, a beautiful muted pastel print knit, rayon knits in a multitude of colors, velours in stunning jeweled tones of red and purple and several different fabrications in all shades of green were oohhed and ahhhed over and CUT!
I have been to Kashi's many times but the pieces these women were digging for, finding and placing in their piles were a fabricaholic's dream! At one point Joanna pulled a piece of lace out and Kashi backed it with this striking olive green silk charmeuse and all of our mouths just dropped open! The combination was that gorgeous! There was some serious fabric shopping going on here folks! And I got to be there!
The fun soon ended as everyone had other appointments that they had to go to in the city with their families and I headed back home to NJ. The one sad note was that as I was walking down 40th Street to Port Authority, one of the last remaining fabric stores on 40th Street, Fikret Fabrics is closing. They have big signs up in the window that the store will close on July 14th. Everything is of course, deeply discounted. So if you work or live nearby, or you're visiting the city before then, please go by and purchase something. Their rent has been raised because they are directly across the street from the NY Times new office building and they are not moving...just folding up and going home!
So I entered the Port Authority on a sad note...the 40th Street that I have shopped for beautiful fabrics for the last 25 years is gone. Only a few fabric stores remain closer to Seventh Avenue but most of those wonderful treasures have gone away and now all I have are my memories.
However, it was an extraordinary day and I will treasure the new memory I have of fabric shopping on a beautiful summer day with some amazing fiberly women!