Lovely YKK zippers in the garment district #nyc #sewing #imakeawesome

I’ve said it many times, but I’ll say it again: I love my job.  And not just because I go to New York on a regular basis and can sometimes squeeze in some shopping in the Garment District, but because I feel like I’m contributing to something tangible and I can see the results in my efforts.  Not all jobs are like that (I would know!), but it’s pretty gratifying to know you’re shaking things up and trying to get things to change.  I’ve never felt healthier or happier, mentally and physically.

So luck would have it that I was in NYC for most of last week, during some pretty shitty weather mind you, and managed to sneak in some fabric scavenging.  I think this was the most diligent and efficient I’ve been: I hit three stores total in one hour, and checked everything I needed off my list.  And it was snowing, too!


This is a new favorite store of mine that I stumbled into after I found some swimsuit fabric at Spandex House.  The aisles of zippers, oh my!  That’s where I took the first photo at the top of this post: every kind of zipper you can imagine, organized by color and length.  And they’re all YKK!!  I should have grabbed some, but I was so overwhelmed and there were so many goodies and notions to see in this store.  I ended up finding some high-quality swim cups for the bikini and Bombshell V.2 I plan on making this year and snagged some wooly nylon for stitching both.  When I have more time, I’m definitely going to linger longer and explore what else they stock.

Let's do this, palm tree spandex fabric #sewing #bikini

This is the print I’m using for my bikini for my trip to Florida in three weeks.  The fabric is great: it’s yarn dyed, so when you stretch the fabric, it doesn’t turn “white” like some fabrics do when the design is printed on top.  I also got some yardage of a turquoise/purple peacock feather print for a halter Bombshell swimsuit.

And I have plans to make a coordinating navy blue cover-up with Tahari Resort fabric I spotted at Fabric Place Basement

Thinking spring with last week's NYC fabric haul: rayon challis prints for some dresses (Lonsdale?), stretch cotton for a @byhandlondon Georgia

And a trip to the Garment District would not be complete without a stop at my most favorite fabric store in NYC, Metro Textile!  It’s hard for me to get there since the hours are M-F, 9-5ish, but it’s so worth it every time because I always walk out with exactly what I came in for.  Above, I bought two rayon challis prints (bottom left and top) – I think the paisly one will become a Lonsdale dress for the Florida trip; not sure about the other one, but it was too pretty to pass up.  The floral on the right is a stretch cotton that I’m making into a strappy mini Georgia dress, again for the Florida trip.

Funny story: Kashi, the owner of Metro Textiles who is nothing but helpful and quite the saavy salesman, told me that if I don’t get engaged wearing this dress, to come back to NY and he’ll marry me.  Hah!!  Chris: you’re on notice 😉

Hotel room #yoga antics #dancerspose

Aaaand I managed to get to a yoga class in the Upper East Side a few hours later (this was actually work-related).  Talk about a productive afternoon in New York!

Hanging out in my hotel in my @tarastiles @reebok_usa #cloudpants post yoga class at Exhale UES #nyc



I was lucky enough to go fabric shopping for my birthday a few weeks back in NYC!  Let me show you what my favorite stores are and the haul I picked up (some of which you’ve already seen on the blog).

First stop: Mood Fabrics


(I really could have taken a better picture but I felt like such a dork taking one in the store.  This was taken from the entrance where no one could see me snap a quick pic.)

What is there to say about Mood that hasn’t been said already?  They were crowded when we got there around noon and even a tour group was making their way in when we were leaving.  I always try to hit up Mood first before any of the other stores in the garment district since they have everything you’d need for a project in one place.  Plus, if you can’t find it at Mood, it probably doesn’t exist!  I love perusing their cottons and wools as well as the designer fabric.

mood fabric

I found two fabrics: a navy blue and white twill fabric that I just unfortunately used for this dress and a multi-colored striped cotton that I’m planning on using for a McCall’s 6554 sundress.

Since it’s right down the street from Mood, we then went to Metro Textile.

metro textile

So it doesn’t look like much from the outside, but let me tell you: this store is fantastic.  It’s a hidden gem, way up on the 9th floor on 37th street, and I never walk out with empty hands (more like empty pockets!). Kashi, the owner, is incredibly helpful and doesn’t leave your side when you’re looking through fabrics.  It helps to know ahead of time what exactly it is that you’re looking for since he can dig and pull out from the shelves exactly the kind of fabric you need.  I went in with the idea that I was looking for knits (his selection is awesome, I go their specifically for that) and I walked out with a ton of knit fabric as well as a cotton.  His prices are incredibly reasonable for the quality of the fabric he sells, too – I was amazed at what I got for what I spent.  Plus, he can even ship your fabric to you if you don’t want to carry it around.  I can’t recommend this place highly enough

metro textile fabric

Look at all of that!!  They’re all beautiful knit fabrics, except for the blue and green floral at the top which is a  woven cotton.  I’ve got plans for maxi dresses, wrap dresses, summer skirts, and knit tops out of that lot.  It should keep me busy for a good chunk of the summer I should think!
(Psst: a lot of this fabric is sold on Gorgeous Fabrics)

The last place we went to was a place my mom wanted to go to: The City Quilter

city quilter 1

I’ve never been, but after this trip, this store is on my “must-go” list.  It’s such a comprehensive and beautiful quilt shop and has a quilt gallery located next door.  Their website says that they stock around 4,000 bolts of fabric, and I definitely believe that.

city quilter 2

This is just one section of the store, btw.

I wish I had a project in mind when we were there because the selection and assortment of fabrics was amazing.  You name it, they carry it.  I loved their section of Japanese fabrics from Echino, Kokka, and Yuwa – most of those fabrics I’ve only seen online, and it was neat to see and feel them in person.

city quilter goodies

Since they’re also a Bernina dealer, I took a look at the feet they had and picked up a rolled hem foot for my 1005.  I haven’t tried it out yet, but it’s one of those feet that I’ve been meaning to get.  They also had a great selection of books, many of which made me really want to start quilting, but I decided to get Sue Kim’s Bags book.

So those are some of my favorite places to shop in the Garment District in NYC!  It looks like I need to go to New Jersey for work in two weeks, so it would give me a good excuse to swing by and get some more fabric…

225 W. 37th Street, 3rd floor
New York, NY 10018
265 W. 37th Street, Suite 908
New York, NY 10018
133 W. 25th Street
New York, NY 10001