teaching sewing confidence, tip by tip

I get many requests from readers for information about shopping in Manhattan, so putting a list of my favourites together in one place is a good idea.

People are sometimes surprised at having to be buzzed into Manhattan stores and that only some have storefronts on the street. Don't let this put you off visiting any store; some of the best are tucked away inside buildings, so don't hesitate to visit, or you might just miss a neighbourhood gem. Where this is the case, I've included some notes below to help you find your way. 

Fabric Stores
There are many fabric stores throughout the Garment/Fashion District between 5th & 9th Ave/34th & 42nd St; too many to list, but here are my favourite fabric stores across Manhattan. Addresses and opening hours are included in each post, but I recommend checking for up-to-date info on each store's website before visiting.

Candy's Quilting closed on Saturday, 26 January 2019

From December 2023, Gotham Quilts will be online only
From 17 October 2017, Gotham is moving to 40B W 37th St, Midtown
40 W 37th St, Suite 603, Midtown (close to Macy's - max 6-minute walk if you're slow!)
Co-owned by my friends Andrea and Ivete, the studio has all the latest fabric collections for you to drool over. Read about the Gotham Quilts studio here and hereClasses available here - I sometimes teach courses at Gotham Quilts - listed by my 'real' name Chris Dodsley.

NB: Gotham Quilts IS MOVING - from Tuesday, 17 October 2017, you'll find them in the same building as before - but now they have a street storefront. They're to the right of  Exquisite Gems & Jewelry on street level. You can't see the studio from the street; the building is next door to Exquisite Gems & Jewelry and Dunkin' Donuts. I took the pics below from the road outside so you can see exactly where the door is - go through the glass doors under the number 40 and take the lift up to the 6th floor, door 603, where one of the girls will buzz you in.

has moved from the Flatiron District to 97 Wooster St., Soho District (between Spring and Prince St.)
I love the fabric designs, but I baulk at the prices!!! Still, if it's your thing, it's a great store! Read about my first visit to the Flatiron district store here.

225 W 37th St - 3rd Floor, Garment/Fashion District (between 7th & 8th Ave)
Large store over several floors - vast selection of dressmaking weight fabrics and dressmaking supplies - a 'must visit' for Project Runway fans - you might even get to meet Swatch, the dog! Classes are available here. You can read about one of my visits here.
NB: You can't see the store from the street - look up to the windows to see the sign and then enter through doors to the right and go up in the lift. Bags will be searched, and large bags must be left at the entrance.
My daughter, Flicky, with Swatch @Mood

You can read about one of my visits here and their new look here.
August 2018 - Pins & Needles has now closed.
1045 Lexington Ave, Upper East Side (between 74th & 75th St - take the 6 train to 77th St)
The selection of fabrics is mainly quilting weight, craft supplies, notions, and books. Classes are available here. NB: You can't see the store from the street - the store is above Joe Coffee; ring the bell, and you'll be buzzed in.

Purl Soho is now online only
459 Broome St, Soho (between Mercer & Greene St)
Selling wool and a selection of notions and fabric (including Liberty). Classes are available here, and Purl has a fab website/blogRead about my first-ever visit here and my 'Exploring' series visit here and here.

133 W 25th St, Chelsea (between 6th & 7th Ave)

The City Quilter and The ArtQuilt Gallery are now closed.  

I taught classes at The City Quilter - listed by my 'real' name Chris Dodsley. This is where I learnt to quilt; you can read more about the store here.

4,000+ bolts of quilting weight 100% cotton, Japanese fabrics, and some cotton/linen blends, felts and flannels, quilting supplies, notions, quilting books & magazines, felting and craft supplies and embroidery/sashiko supplies.   Classes available here

Victoria Findlay Wolfe is now online only
325 West 38th St, Suite 803 (moved 24 August 2018 from 811, across the hall), New York, NY 10018

VFW fabric collections, books, acrylic templates, patterns & Aurifil threads. Sissix machines & dies... and more!
Check the website for opening hours.

Slightly further afield but fab, if you're based in Brooklyn or looking for a reason to take a trip out, is

Brooklyn General Store
128 Union Street, Brooklyn, NY 11231
There is a range of fabric types and weights, yarns, notions, and books - they do classes here. The only downside is the time it takes to get out here - approx 33 minutes from Macy's, Herald Square (22 mins on the subway and 11 min walk). You can read about my visit to the store here.

Notions and Trims
251 W 39th St (between 7th & 8th Ave)
1008 6th Ave, Garment/Fashion District (between 37th & 38th St)

Pacific Trimming
220 West 38th Street (between 7th & 8th Ave)

SIL Threads
257 West 38th Street (between 7th & 8th Ave)

Points Of Interest
555 Seventh Avenue (between 39th & 40th St)

555 Seventh Avenue (between 39th & 40th St)

Wool Stores
208 W 79th St, Upper West Side (between Broadway and Amsterdam Ave)
Classes are available here.

Purl Soho - see details in the Fabric Stores section above.

The Lion Brand store is now closed - the company is still selling online
34 W 15th St (between 5th & 6th Ave)
This is my favourite wool store; the staff are super friendly and helpful, and it's an absolute delight. Read about my first visit here, with another visit and a pic of my 'the yarnit'!!! :D  Classes are available here.

Great Places To Visit
47-29 32nd Place (between 47th and 48th Avenues), Long Island City, NY 11101
Subway: 7 train to 33rStreetet

Individuals and groups can only access the museum's Collections by 'behind the scenes' appointment.
You can read about my visit to the Collection + Education Centre here.

If you can't make it out to Long Island City, then the primary Museum's Lincoln Square location is another great visit
2 Lincoln Square (Columbus Avenue between 65th and 66th Streets) NY NY 1002You
You can read about one of my visits to the Lincoln Square AFAM here.

Enjoy your visit :D

For details of other fabric, yarn, trim and notion stores that I've used online and 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 on my sidebar :D


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This page is for informational purposes only; no payment or commission is received on click-throughs, and opinions are my own.

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