teaching sewing confidence, tip by tip

I get lots of requests from readers for information about shopping in Manhattan so seems like a good idea to put a list of my favourites together in one place.

People are sometimes surprised at having to be buzzed into stores in Manhattan and also that not everyone has a storefront 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're my favourite fabric stores across Manhattan.  Addresses and opening hours are included in each post but I'd advise checking for up-to-date info on each store's website before visiting.

Candy's Quilting closed on Saturday, 26 January 2019

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 mins 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 here.  Classes available here - I sometimes teach classes 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 right next door to Exquisite Gems & Jewelry and Dunkin' Donuts.  I took the pics below from the street 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.

200 5th Ave, Flatiron District (between 23rd & 24th St)
I love the fabric designs but baulk at the price!!! Still, if it's your thing it's a great store! Read about my first visit to the store here.

225 W 37th St - 3rd Floor, Garment/Fashion District (between 7th & 8th Ave)
Large store over several floors - huge 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 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 read about 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)
Selection of fabrics, mainly quilting weight, craft supplies, notions, and books.  Classes 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.

459 Broome St, Soho (between Mercer & Greene St)
Selling wool and a selection of notions and fabric (including Liberty).  Classes available here and has a fab website/blog. Read 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 and 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

325 West 38th St, Suite 803 (moved 24 Aug 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 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
A range of all fabric types and weights, yarns, notions, and books - they do classes here too.  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
257 West 38th Street (between 7th & 8th Ave)

SIL Threads
218 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 available here.

Purl Soho - see details in Fabric Stores section above.

34 W 15th St (between 5th & 6th Ave)
This is so my favourite wool store, the staff are super friendly and helpful, it's an absolute delight -
read about my first ever visit here along with another visit here and a pic of my 'the yarnit'!!! :D
  Classes available here.

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

Behind the scenes appointment only visits for individuals and groups giving access to the museum's collections.  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 main Museum's Lincoln Square location is another great visit
2 Lincoln Square (Columbus Avenue between 65th and 66th Streets) NY NY 10023
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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