I've been reading Eileen's blog for quite a while, and she and I have corresponded a bit as well over the last several months, so she wasn't completely unknown to me before yesterday. So it was great to finally meet her in the flesh. She is a truly lovely and very interesting person, and I had a great time spending the day with her. The fact that we were indulging our inner fabric geeks was icing on the cake!
She came over to my house early and we headed off to Starbuck's first, to fortify ourselves with coffee. (Also, the fabric store wasn't open yet!) Our first stop was Fishman's Fabrics.
Now, Fishman's is my LFS* - it's so near my house that I could walk there if I wished. But I don't often shop there! I went several times when I first moved here, and while they had some lovely fabrics, it wasn't very well organized and the prices were somewhat higher than I'd hoped for. About a year later, they started a massive re-organization and things were even harder to find. So Vogue became my default fabric shop, and I really only ever went into Fishman's for buttons to put on sweaters.
Oh. My. Word. I did not know what I was missing! The shop is so well-organized and well-lit now, and they have a vast array of gorgeous fabrics - the sort I've been reading about but have never actually put my hands on. Yes, the prices are higher than Vogue, often by quite a bit. But these fabrics are something special, truly quality materials. I had expected to pop in and maybe spend a half hour before moving on, but we spent at least an hour and a half drooling and exclaiming and pawing at fabric. I also remembered to ask one of the employees to take our picture:
|Notice how we can't take our hands off the fabric.|
Of course, for the rest of the day I got so involved in chatting away with Eileen that I forgot to take any more pictures!
After we left Fishman's, we took the scenic route north to Evanston along Lake Shore Drive. Our first order of business was lunch, although we got slightly distracted by a thrift shop along the way! And as we were heading to the "big Vogue" after lunch, we found another antique shop, this one with loads of antique buttons. Eileen knows a lot more about antiques than I do, so it was fun to see what she was drawn to.
Of course, we spent a couple more hours in Vogue, and Eileen was able to find a lot of the fabrics on her list, as well as a few extras. It will be great to watch her sew these up over the next several months; Eileen is a more advanced seamstress than I am, and I learned a lot just by talking with her and watching her shop for fabric and notions. She's got several vintage patterns she's planning on working up, so if you're into vintage sewing, do check out her blog.
My one purchase for the day was a pair of applique scissors. I had just read about them in Gertie's new book, so when I saw them at Vogue for ten dollars, I snapped them up!
However, I also got a present. Look at this gorgeous hank of sock yarn Eileen brought me from the wool festival she'd been to the weekend before:
I think this is going to have to become come cable-y socks.
So, all in all a lovely day spent with a new friend. Isn't the internet grand?
*Local Fabric Shop