Goldhawk Lane aside, London’s fabric shops are the city’s best-kept secret, so when you find a good one, it’s like striking gold. Here, we list the best places to shop for everything from simple cotton, interfacing and toile fabrications to luxe silks and Liberty prints at a fraction of the price found at the historical store itself.
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Positioned on Berwick Street in Soho, Cloth House is about as central as fabric stores come, and as a result, it’s a little more premium (and a little more pricey) than you might find elsewhere. It does, however, stock a mixture of vintage and contemporary designs, and you can rest assured that you’ll find a new addition with every visit. Everything in store is either recycled or recyclable, and the buyers offer luxury suede and leather alternatives to fit the eco-friendly theme.
Cloth House, 47 Berwick Street London, +44 20 7437 5155
Established over 25 years ago and still run by the original owner, Paul Johnston, Fabrics Galore in Battersea prides itself on stocking Liberty fabrications as well as its signature Clarke & Clarke oil cloths for affordable price points. Expect to find not only a wide variety of cottons, wools and silks, but additional finishing touches – ribbons, haberdashery and trims that will offset your creations beautifully.
A destination as opposed to a specific store, Goldhawk Road is perhaps the most famous London spot for sourcing fabrics, and if you make a special trip, you’ll soon understand why. Flanked with around 15 independent stores, each of which boasts something unique and stocks product slightly different to the next, there’s ample treasures to be found. Some only accept cash, so there’s risk of feeling like you’re in a bit of a time warp, but that only adds to the street’s charm. If you’re serious about finding something special or specific, you’ll be in the right place.
Macculoch & Wallis
Positioned just off of Oxford Street and spanning three floors, there’s no hidden gem quite like Macculoch & Wallis, where you’ll find what seems like every fabric ever made, plus all the linings, interfacing and trimmings you’ll need to go with it. Set aside a serious amount of time for browsing this one, as the offering means you’ll be spoiled for choice. We defy anyone with a passion for sewing to come away empty-handed.
Maculoch & Wallis, 25-26 Poland Street, London, +44 20 7629 0311
There’s a focus on a Middle Eastern clientele within West Brompton-based Shaukat, and it specialises in fabrics used to make men’s head shawls and suiting. That’s not all that’s on offer, however; it stocks the city’s largest selection of Liberty prints outside of the iconic store itself and unusually, you’ll also find trunks and suitcases behind its doors – perhaps because you’ll need something to transport your textile finds all the way home in? Definitely one that’s worth a visit whether you’re in the market to purchase or not. You may plan to leave empty-handed, but you won’t leave uninspired.
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