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Fabric sources in UK

Brenn | Posted in General Discussion on

Hi  I just pulled a couple of interesting UK fabric sources from another thread on silk organza (many thanks).  I’m sort of new to this site and I havn’t found a place that lists UK fabric sources.  Is there one?  Could we pool our information here and put a useful list together? 

My favorite place to buy fabric is Abarkhan fabrics www.abakhanfabrics.co.uk in North Wales.  It’s enormous and has a regular section, bargain section, craft store, kniting and all sorts of other things including a cafe, picnic area and playground.  I’ve been on a couple of weekend expeditions there with two friends (a whole day at the store and a day or two in the mountains).  We have to take an estate car to carry back the stuff!  They have a place in Liverpool too (and maybe elsewhere).  They used to call it El Kilos as you buy the bargain fabric by weight.

Another interesting source is Croft Mill Lancs.  subscriber.scoot.co.uk/croftmill  Unless they’ve changed they don’t really use the web.  I get a monthly description of fabric from which I order a load of samples, then I buy stuff (lots).  If you wanted something specific this is not the place to look, but they have some absolute gems – at very reasonable prices.  I visited once but if you’ve been to Abakhan it’s not impressive.


  1. SewMadSue | | #1

    I've bought from Croft Mill also and found them useful and prices are good too!

    For outdoor types of fabrics http://www.pennineoutdoor.co.uk is very good and they are also knowledgeable.

    Local markets can be hit and miss but sometimes a good bargain canbe "found".


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  2. carolinecymru | | #2

    Hi Brenn - I just visited the Abakhan branch in Manchester recently - lots of nice stuff. I also found that Asian sari shops are brilliant for patterned silk - a sari length is about 6 yards plus a separate yard for a mini-blouse for about £35-40.
    Other good place in UK is
    B.L Joshi UK Ltd 214, Ealing Rd, Wembley, Middlesex HA0 4QG - they send samples...
    You're right about penninefabrics SewMadSue - they are good. But after making up a double insulated big jacket for my husband, I'm finding my machine is struggling with the fabric - I need an old treadle one I think!
    On the whole I find it pretty difficult to get consistent supplies of anything in UK - I end up either buying abroad (and get stung by customs when buying from USA), or just buy things when I see something good - resulting in an ENORMOUS stash!

    1. betsyv | | #3

      The only time I ever went fabric shopping in the UK, I was in London for week with my mother. We spent a full day at Liberty's. Coincidentally, I am in the middle of a blouse project using some of that fabric, a beautiful creamy ivory cotton broadcloth. My next project is a skirt suit using a deep navy pinstripe of superfine worsted merino wool, also purchased on that trip.

      We spent a full day at the Victoria & Albert Museum, too. Wonderful textiles collection.

      I can't travel with my mother any more - it costs too much in fabric!

      Betsy V

      Bemont, MA; near Boston

      1. user-67263 | | #4

        There are several amazing fabric shops in Soho in central London - many professionals shop there and the staff are fantastically knowledgeable. Most of them do mail order too, but its worth visiting if you can. http://www.clothhouse.com/ is just amazing, always has masses of beautiful and luxurious fabrics you never see anywhere else - and I mean this, quite incredible - both affordable and the £100 / metre variety!In the nearby streets there are 3 or 4 others which tend to specialise in silks and top-end embellished fabrics.
        Liberty is just around the corner too, so its a great day out!If anyone wants tips on fabric shopping in London, do contact me

        1. carolinecymru | | #5

          I'd confirm that Cloth house is gorgeous - I wish they'd do internet sales! Berwick Street (where they are) is brilliant for fabric - there is one shop that specialises in silk (though strangely had not silk jersey when I tried), one with lots of suiting and coat weight stuff, and a couple of other general ones...

  3. footlady | | #6

    In london the Edgware Road near the station now has new fabric shops, but the very best is Joel and son,in church street, where there are also 2 market stalls selling cheap fabric. Joel has a royal warrant and has designer fabrics,top of the range and amazing, but if you are puttting in the hours making something then I think its a pleasure to use a fantastic fabric.I have also found good stalls in Tooting market and shops in Tooting Broadway, and also in that area is wimbledon sewing center which is the nearest I have found to an american style sewing and fabric shop, they are pleasant also.a very good day out

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