Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The Fabric Place – Pittsburgh


Rolling hilly back neighborhoods with houses distinctly Pennsylvanian, reminding me of the decade I spent in Chambersburg raising my children, opened onto a main street with parking meters lining the curb. I had forgotten about parking meters. Mine would not take my quarters as there was a bent one stuck in the slot. I figured it was a freebie for me and took the spot rather than seek out another because the frigid wind was whipping and I’d found a relatively slush-free spot directly across from my destination.

I slung the dog-carrier across my shoulder (couldn’t leave the poor Chiweenie in the car to freeze) with hopes that he’d be mistaken for an oversized purse. His whining spoiled that effect as soon as we entered the shop. So much for incognito. But not to worry, the ladies (I found out one was the owner, Tami) were not at all put out by his incessant whining from the confines of his new “bed.”


I am here on business. Well, my husband is here on business, I am here on a shopping spree. Er – to help share the driving and keep him company this week. Ikea is a mile away  (have not been to one in 3 decades!) as is DSW shoes, which I heard recommended recently.


But my first stop had to be The Fabric Place. I needed lining and I was told they have Bemberg. They do. In oodles of colors. I stocked up on several. And I asked about other silk linings and was shown several which were on sale and less costly than the Bemberg (which is $8.50/yard).


Here are the silks:

 Swirl Silk

blue lavendar silk BW luxurious silk

I hope to turn the bold black and white into a scarf as one of the sales ladies had done. It is just lovely. Luxurious.


I then mentioned an event I plan to attend this spring or summer in DC and my intention to make an outfit. I was shown several options but settled on this jewel-toned knit – it has sparkles which are not apparent in the photo. Just a wee bit of bling. I’ll make a simple shell with it.


I’ll top it with a simple cardigan, 3/4 sleeve length made with this purple summer weight wool. The drape on this wool is so delicious!


The black will be the skirt – an 800 weight suiting wool that is a remnant large enough to be a skirt with a wee flounce.


This is quite a bit more colorful than I normally wear, but the jewel tones are definitely my colors and the bling of the shell will be muted by the solid cardigan and black skirt. I’ll need to find earrings – or bracelets. Bracelets sound right, I think.

I highly recommend this shop if you ever find yourself in Pittsburgh. In winter. The morning after a snow. With a dog in tow. Tami is kind and helpful and is happy to send swatches. She has unique and fine things. This ain’t no Joann’s! She is generous with her cuts and tears fabric on grain. She took her time and held up fabric to my face before a mirror to convince me that my pale off-white and beige selections were truly not in my best interests. There is lace and trimmings and a button wall – not as extensive as G Street, but quite unique and sufficient. Such a treasure is this shop.


Zebra print shoes?  DSW, here I come!


Ruthie said...

Sounds like a great store! Enjoy your trip.

Anonymous said...

I'm amazed and saddened - though I live in CT now, my hometown is a few hours north of Pittsburgh, and I went to college in the city. I'm quite familiar with the city (I can tell you're staying near Robinson township - IKEA and DSW!) but have never heard of this store. I come back to the city a few times a year, so I will make a beeline for the store the next time I'm in town.

Isn't Pittsburgh a fabulous city? I didn't appreciate it until I left. The houses clinging to hillsides, the steps, the curvy hilly roads, the skyline dotted by Eastern European-esque church steeples, the bridges, the quaint if not somewhat gritty neighborhoods. I miss it all. Enjoy your time there.

Remnant said...

Thanks, Ruthie. I love to explore new places even if I'm on my own during the day.

Hi Sewn Wardrobe - thanks for the comment. I plan to tour the city from my car today (still quite cool and breezy outdoors - wind chill hovering near 0 degrees F). At least the sun is shining. My hope is to stumble across a bagel shop. :) When you come back for a visit - The Fabric Place is definitely worth a trip. There are treasures to be mined. A spring order is on the way - wish I could be back in a month or so to see what she has found to stock.

Huskerbabe said...

Sounds like a neat store...the stores around here cater to quilters so they carry about 90% cottons. They're beautiful, but...

Please post zebra shoes when you find them. :)

Remnant said...

Haha Kris, will do! I did find some - but they were totally flat and I'd like at least a bit of a heel. So I still have hope!