On buying fabric… and a secret project


I spent almost half an hour this morning in one of my favorite hobbies – buying fabric. I am a fabric hoarder – that’s one of the side effects of knowing how to sew and embroider. One always thinks one can find some fabric to use for some craft project and buys it, then promptly forgets about it and finds it again later with much glee 🙂 Today was a bit different…I went material shopping armed with a purpose!

Pantheon Road in Egmore is one of my go-to destinations for cotton fabric…you may have heard of the same road being referred to as Cotton Street- the piles of fabric neatly lined up along one side of this road is what gives it that name. Someday I will take some photos and post it here so that you can see for yourself…the colors, designs and prints available there have to be seen to be believed! I studied in a ladies college quite nearby, and so I can claim the honor of having shopped there for over 9 years – yes that makes me quite old sounding – but I assure you that I am only 27 🙂

When you want to buy fabric from Pantheon Road…there are some insider hints you need to know first 🙂
1) Never buy fabric from the seller right at the beginning of the road – he counts on your reluctance to walk till the end of the road and therefore prices it a good 30 to 50 rupees higher than the other shops.
2) The sellers always quote higher than the actual price of the material so do bargain 🙂
3) Walk till the end of the road and scout out all the different types of fabric available in each shop first…then go to a shop and ask for the price of a fabric and then hop over to the next shop and ask for the price of the same thing or something similar…there maybe a slight variation in price…better that you ask first 🙂
4) Materials with 60″ width are usually priced at 75 to 150 rs…If the pattern can be rotated then one metre is more than enough to make simple items like cushion covers, dish cloths, bandanas or narrow curtains.
5) Any material that they claim is raw silk is defnitely NOT raw silk 🙂
6) The sellers usually have the same kinds of fabric or prints so you can always find what you are looking for in one of the shops on the road.

I hope my tips were useful – you can find all kinds of material there from cotton, shot cotton,Flannel, synthetics, machine made lace, velvet, brocade / jaquard, polka dots, stripes and prints, batik, ikat and block prints and also broderie anglaise/ hakoba material.

I now come to my secret project – I’m planning to get back to my sewing machine after a gap of over a year! Egad! I have a few simple projects in mind – I love giving things I have sewn as gifts so that’s what this project will be 🙂

Here’s a sneak peek at two of the cotton fabrics I got today…Can you guess what they’re going to be when finished??

Yes those are bananas 🙂 I fell in love with this print as soon as I saw it…


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