building sewing confidence, tip by tip

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Exploring Australia - Material Obsession, Sydney

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

Have you heard of Kathy Doughty?  An American living in Sydney, Australia, Kathy is a quilter, pattern designer, fabric designer, book author, teacher and Sydney fabric store owner.  I highly suspect that many of you reading this have made at least one quilt designed by her. 

Over the years, I've lost count of how many students have brought along quilts to work on at my support classes that are designed by Kathy, instantly recognisable, playing with the use of colour, scale and print - I LOVE THEM.  When I worked at The City Quilter, I also had the pleasure of meeting Kathy several times at her trunk shows or when she was teaching at the store.  Here's a pic from one such meeting back in 2014 (click here to read the original blog post).

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

When I headed out to Australia in March this year, guess what was top of my one day only Sydney sightseeing list?  

Sydney Harbour Bridge?  Sydney Opera House?

No, obviously it was to visit Kathy's fabric store, Material Obsession - though the other two were 2nd and 3rd on my list and I did get to see them too as you can see in the pic below.

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

I took a cab out to the store early on my first morning.

The Entrance

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

Climbing the steps, even the entrance is inviting and while I was visiting the girls hung out a newly made quilt sample at the door - can you spot it below?  It's NYC Metro Modern Quilters Guild founder Victoria Findlay Wolfe's Star Storm quilt. I have that pattern and I'm excited to make it myself.

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

The store is actually a traditional Australian house with numerous rooms where the fabrics are displayed.

And, yay, Kathy was in the store so we got to catch up again #quiltyfriendsarethebest

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

The Back Room
We'll start at the back of the store in the room - the balcony has a fabulous lacework balustrade.

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

So much fabric.  All your fave designers' collections alongside more unusual prints that aren't as well-known, I was incredibly impressed with how well the fabric is curated.

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

This back room is where I pulled most of the bolts I purchased from.  I worked by eye, based on colour and print, lining my chosen bolts along one wall.  When I finished I discovered many of the fabrics I'd pulled are Kathy's own designs which pleased me no end, and super generously Kathy gifted me the yellow colourway of her Folk Art Revolution Wedding Ring which makes up into this fabulous whole cloth quilt top perfect for experimenting with hand quilting and stitching.

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

The Corridor
This is a great display area for large quilts and there's more fabric lining the wall.

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

Inspiration and aspiration!

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

Classroom
The classroom is downstairs, Kathy took me down and introduced me to everyone but I didn't take any pics as there was a class going on.

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

Always wanted to try applique?  There are samples to drool over and ready-made kits at every turn.

Middle Room

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com 
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com 

Front Room/Entrance

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

Kaffe Fassett ribbon and Sue Spargo Eleganza #8 Perle embroidery thread.

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.comMaterial Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

Such a fun and welcoming store and staff.  There's so much to look at and colour everywhere, I kept walking through the rooms seeing something new each time.  It would be incredibly easy to lose a few hours here.

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com
Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

Lol, I accidentally took a pic of Kathy's skirt but sharing it as it really is such a great skirt 😍

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

What Did I Buy?
My purchases are, fabric yardage, a pack of Sue Spargo Eleganza Perle #8 embroidery cotton.
I asked Kathy what I could buy at the store that I can't get hold of in the States and she suggested a Bonwick 14" quilting hoop (from Emu Plains).  We also had a chat about wearing thimbles when hand quilting - Kathy does and I don't so I picked up her recommended thimble to see if I can become a convert.  I do use a rubber grip to pull my needle and Kathy gave me a great tip to use a banker's finger turned inside-out which I've bought back at home and LOVE.

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

And here's the usual social media and contact info for Material Obsession:

Material Obsession
72 Roseby Street
Drummoyne NSW 2047 (Sydney)
Tel: +61 (0)2 9819 6455

Hours:
Mon-Sat: 9.30 am - 4.30 pm
Sun: Closed 


GETTING THERE
Material Obsession is approx an 11-minute cab ride from Sydney Town Hall.  Alternately you can take a 25-minute Paramatta River ferry ride (F3) from Sydney Harbour Circular Quay, under the Sydney Harbour Bridge to Drummoyne Wharf and then a 20-minute walk to the store.  Tip: you can't buy ferry tickets at Drummoyne Wharf you have to use an Opal card - here is the link for more info.  There's also a bus service that takes around 16 minutes from Sydney Town Hall, I didn't use the bus so not 100% certain but I think you'll need an Opal card for that also.  Full transport and trip planner details are available here on the details are available on the NSW transport website.

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

If you do take the ferry, above is the view from Drummoyne Wharf over to Sydney Harbour (far left).

Material Obsession, Sydney, Aus review by www.madebyChrissieD.com

Disclaimer: 
All photos were taken with permission from a member of staff.  This post is for informational purposes only, no payment or commission is received on click-throughs to links shared.

 Note: I'm an Amazon affiliate and will receive a small commission, at no additional cost to you, on any purchase made by following an Amazon link.

Don't have plans to visit Australia anytime soon?
No problem, here are Amazon links to some of my purchases, and links to some books and stuff by Kathy.


For details of other fabric, yarn, trim and notion stores that I've visited around the world along with the NYC stores I love, exhibitions and events I've attended and wonderful people I've been lucky to meet click the links below or in my sidebar :D

  

Clicking on an image will take you to a new page of crafty goodness :)


Disclosure: 
This post contains Amazon and Craftsy affiliate links for which I am paid commission on click-through purchases (at no additional cost to you). Otherwise, no payment or commission is received for click-throughs to shared links; the post is for informational purposes only and all opinions are my own.  

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Linky Parties This post may be linked to some great Linky Parties, always a great source of inspiration too. If you click through to my 'Fave Linky Parties' page you can see where I like to share my work.

Online Quilting Class

12 comments:

  1. What a great virtual trip to this lovely shop. So many projects, fabrics, ideas I haven't seen in local shops here in Florida. I can see where it would be easy to spend hours here. Thanks.

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    1. That's how I felt Sam, lots of choice and everything a bit different to the usual you see. Where are you in Florida? I moved down to Boca at the end of July, still finding my way around :D

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  2. One of my favourite quilting stores! About an hour and a half drive away, I don't get in there often, but make the most of it when I do.

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    1. I thought about you when I was there Pam - I remember you blogged about taking a class there several years ago. Wish I was closer, it's an absolute gem :D

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  3. I love your virtual store tours and since this is one I'll never get to, it was especially delightful. I'm going to go back and 'revisit' it later to see what I've missed. Thanks.
    Pat

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    1. Hehe, you've made my day and made writing the post worthwhile. This store was right up there in my top faves :D

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  4. Thanks for the tour. I was fortunate enough to attend one of Kathy's workshops and trunk show this summer and loved every minute of it. I would love to visit her shop but that is likely not in the cards but it was wonderful to see so much of it through your lens.

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    1. Lucky, lucky you Pat. I'd love to take a class with Kathy but haven't had the opportunity - I've always been working the shop floor and cutting fabric for her students when she's been teaching in Manhattan, and not been able to be in the class taking part. I was super thrilled to get to spend time with her in her store and have her give me handquilting tips :D

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  5. Wow, what a beautiful store! I love seeing pictures of quilt shops that I'd probably never get to visit in real life. But if I was visiting a new place ... the first thing I'd try to find is a local quilt shop, too!

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    1. I spend most of the time alone when I'm travelling with my husband as he's there on business, visiting quilt stores gives me a focus, let's me see the local area from a different perspective than as a tourist and I meet such wonderful people along the way. It's always the first thing I explore as soon as we start planning a trip, quilters are the best :D

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  6. Oh wow, so many pretty pretty things - thank you for the virtual tour, it was a definite visual treat!

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    1. It's a wonderful store Carie, if you ever get the opportunity to visit, it's a must-see :D

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I love to hear from everyone, thank you for taking the time to read my blog and share your thoughts. Please leave a message to let me know you visited, it's a great way to get to know you all better too :)

Chris Dodsley