Melbourne – Fabric Mecca for the Curious Kiwi

So as I previously mentioned I was lucky enough to go to Melbourne for a work event called Saturday in Design and while I was there I snuck in an extra couple of days to hit the fabric shop pavements and I was far from  disappointed.

(click any images for larger view)

First up on Friday I hit the Nicholas building since it was right near my hotel. Buttonmania came first, then Lucciello.  Buttonmania is a very small store stuffed full of fabulous buttons and belt buckles and I came away with some really beautiful finds, I would have gotten more but I had trouble seeing what I wanted and I felt a little rushed , plus I wasn’t allowed behind the counter for a closer look which was disappointing. Luccello is another amazing store, hard to explain but great for vintage lovers. Check out this Tessuti blog post for some great pictures. They have some super cute buttons on vintage reproduction cards and sewing supplies as well as neat little sewing gift packs perfect for presents. I grabbed some cute fat quarters and left it at that, pacing myself for some serious fabric splurging.

Buttonmania
Level 2 – The Nicholas Building
37 Swanston Street, Melbourne
(03) 9650 3627
kate.boulton@internode.on.net
http://www.buttonmania.com.au/
MON-FRI 9am-5pm & SAT 10am-3pm

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Luccello
Level 2 – The Nicholas Building
205/37 Swanston Street
Melbourne
(03) 9639 0088
info@luccello.com.au
http://www.luccello.blogspot.com/
Thursday & Friday 10 – 6
Saturday 10 – 4

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Later in the day I shifted into super organised mode, grabbed my little google map in hand and marched straight to Tessuti’s first because after my visits to two of their Sydney shops last year I had to see their newest addition and I was also hoping to be able to say hi to Nichola in person (which I did, “hi” again).

Tessuti Melbourne
Upper Ground Floor,
141 Flinders Lane, Melbourne
(03) 9654 4566
fabrics@tessuti.com.au
http://www.tessuti.com.au/
Monday – Friday: 10.00am – 5.30pm
Saturday: 10.00am – 5.00pm
Sunday: Closed

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This was my warm up, it always takes me a bit to get into fabric shopping, especially when I am purely stash shopping with no particular pattern in mind but I knew I would find something great at Tessuti’s. So I came away with two beautiful Japanese cotton prints, both quite similar in print but completely different colours. I love the big flowers and I got 2 meters since they are both only 100/112cm wide, I had in mind skirts but now I think I might possibly even be able to squeeze a dress out of one of them.

Next I marched my way up Brunswick street (because I couldn’t work out how to catch a tram) it didn’t seem far at the time while snapped my head back and forth observing all the amazing buildings. The walk back however was a different story and my little toes screamed for a rest but I had an appointment with a Brunetti’s hot chocolate so on I went with my big bags full of fabric…it was a heavy burden but I was prepared to carry it. Actually let me rephrase that, I know how to catch a tram and I am far from allergic to public transport, I just wasn’t sure how to pay (I worked it out later on) but that wasn’t going to stop me from getting to my next destination, The Fabric Store. What’s that on the window? A sale sign? 30% & 50% off? I walked inside with the biggest smile I must have looked like a woman possessed. They had a great selection of wools and beautiful suiting, well worth the walk.

The Fabric Store
184 Brunswick Street
Fitzroy, Melbourne
(03) 9416 4455
melbourne@thefabricstore.com.au
http://www.thefabricstore.com.au/
Monday – Friday: 10am – 6pm
Saturday – Sunday: 10am – 4pm

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First up the black 100% wool (you might not be able to see it the photo) it’s quite a chunky knit with little pulls that add texture, this fabric was purchased with a pattern in mind, the Lady Grey coat by Colette Patterns, and it was 50% off. The striped suiting will either become a blazer jacket or a work-style dress, I almost went back for more because I couldn’t decide what to make with it, this I will meditate on. The other two fabrics are 100% NZ merino and since I have never seen that before in a fabric store in Perth I grabbed them. The black is solid in colour while the grey has really nice shots of lighter grey and white through it, lovely.

My final stop was unintended but I am so glad I went there anyway. I had Clegs on my list but read on a random sewing forum that it wasn’t really worth the visit. On Saturday afternoon, with feet screaming from all the walking I had done I was on my way back to the hotel when my work colleague rang me and told me there was a fabric store right around the corner with 20% off sale signs in the window. So I walked on past the hotel entrance with it’s comfy couches beckoning and around the corner to what turned out to be Clegs. The window display was enough to encourage me inside and I found some more amazing fabrics at great prices however unable to think through the pain I left and returned on the Sunday (ahh Sunday shopping, I love thee). With three bolts in my arms I was served by a wonderful young lady with green and black hair who carried my fabric to a spare counter to cut while we had a wonderful random conversation about all sorts of crazy topics. Cleg’s fabric range was great and the service was excellent. I didn’t have to carry my bolts, my fabric was cut very carefully and folded inside out into perfectly equal sized rectangles and I got myself a nice Clegs bag for free, I had the best Sunday 🙂

Clegs
60 Elizabeth Street, Melbourne
(03) 9654 7677
clegs@clegs.com.au
http://clegs.clegs.com.au/index.htm
Monday-Thursday 8:30am – 6:00pm, Friday 8:30am – 8:00pm
Saturday 10:00am – 5:00pm, Sunday 11:00am – 5:00pm

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This new season linen is perfect from spring and feels so nice plus I love the print, it will probably become a Colette dress but I am not sure which one yet. The black and white swirly print is a nice knit jersey, it has a good stretch and weight. And finally the silk Georgette print with silk contrast in peach will most likely become this Patrones blouse pattern.

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Obviously my store choices were limited to in the CBD but I am sure there are many other great fabric stores in the outer suburbs, please feel free comment and suggest any other great stores you have visited.

I always try to buy atleast one piece of fabric when I travel, I think fabric makes a great souvenir and I  remember each trip fondly when I wear the items I have made.

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3 thoughts on “Melbourne – Fabric Mecca for the Curious Kiwi

  1. Great post Mel. I’m going to Melbourne in October so will be using this info. I still need to book accommodation so will have to find the geographic centre to maximise fabric shopping time! Vanessa (BSC Perth)

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