A very old friend is over from Australia, so today I travelled into central London despite the staggering heat here. (You really don’t want to sit on a London tube in these temperatures.)

My friend lives in Darwin, Australia and is dipping a tentative toe into sewing. She asked about good fabric suppliers in her part of the world. I have to confess, I wasn’t much help. Ebay? Etsy? Tessuti? Charity shops? My recommendations crumbled from thereon in.

I feel confident that some of my readers can make other suggestions. If you lived in Darwin, Australia – where would you buy your fabric?

Oh. And apparently some guy’s just won Wimbledon…

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22 Responses to Scorchio!

  1. Amanda says:

    Try linnyjcreations blog?

  2. You are an incredibly dedicated friend/mad to go on the tub in this heat! :O

  3. elsew says:

    I assure you, no one wants to be on a NY subway this summer either. Yuk. !

  4. sewbusylizzy says:

    Funnily enough I had a blog question from someone in remote NT.
    I buy a lot of my fabrics at Spotlight. Yes it’s not a fancy store but they sell loads of beautiful cottons, voiles & lawns which would be great for Darwin. They also sell lots of Japanese lawn which is beautiful.
    Tessuti have a great online store but are quite $$ but do send samples. The Fabric Store is fabulous but not a great online option. I’ve heard Rathdownes in Melbourne is very helpful for online & phone help when buying fabric.

  5. how hot is hot? hey, I thought you were looking for some sunshine and warm temps. just joking, public transport is never fun in the heat. OK I m off to swim now 🙂
    PS your lemon cambie looks cool!

  6. I can beat that – I sat on an open top tour bus all day yesterday (yes, I’m sunburned) for a friend…well, actually it was a cousin’s daughter, so family. Nonetheless, it was hotter than you-know-what. Not complaining though – I love getting me some time in London. Back in Brussels now watching Wimbledon highlights…x

  7. There’s a shop in Darwin called Dragonfly Fabrics which sells dress fabrics and patchwork fabrics – could be a place for your friend to start. There’s also – though I loathe to mention it – a spotlight store too. But for mail order try Kelani Fabrics or Addicted to Fabric – both fabulous!!

  8. Amanda says:

    Spotlight for sure- it’s cheap and cheerful but there are some gems. Lincraft is good for muslin fabric but for garment fabric I have not found much. Online wise, Tessuti and The Fabric Store is great (though pricey). Also, I agree with Lizzy that Rathdownes is fantastic- their phone service is super helpful. I also use a bit- they will swatch for you which is great. Hope she enjoys her London trip! 😀

  9. Stephanie says:

    Love the shoes with the Cambie!! 🙂

  10. HelenH says:

    As has been mentioned, Spotlight is a good place to start. They are fairly cheap, especially when on one of their very frequent sales. Lawns, voiles, linen and linen blends, Lisette fabrics, and they even have swimwear lycras, and a small range of silks. Once she knows about fabrics, ordering from tends to be cheaper and has a greater range.

  11. Giggles in the Sun says:

    Spotlight (a chain store that has great sales) and as their shipping is reasonable 🙂

  12. I’d add my voice to those suggesting Spotlight, since it seems there is a store in Darwin. I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea but their fabrics are generally reasonably priced and they have a reasonable range of fabrics. Otherwise, I think mail order is likely to be the best option and in that case, the world is surely your oyster and cost your only constraint.

  13. sewbusylizzy says:

    And buy all indie patterns from Sew Squirrel in Austria. Postage is free

  14. I also agree, Spotlight is especially good for those starting out as the prices are super affordable and their choices are pretty good. One tip, watch the cutting as sometimes there are flaws.
    Also sewbusylizzy meant to say Sew Squirrel is in Australia not Austria – and she is great!!

  15. Hey at least your friend who is used to the incredibly hot temperatures of Darwin wouldn’t have been phased by the heat! 🙂

  16. Lucy says:

    Yes probably doesn’t need saying again but I would definitely go to Spotlight. Its got a great selection of basics. If such a store existed in the UK I might have refound my sewing mojo a few years earlier before I moved out here! Once she’s got more experience she can try the more expensive mail order ones (which do of course have lovely fabric). As you say the op shop is not to be underestimated. I scored 1.5m of black stretch cotton/linen blend last week. Perfect for a pair of trousers (or a dress I can’t decide).

  17. Kbenco says:

    Personally, I would only send a new sewist to Spotlight with assistance. It is really easy to get complete rubbish at this sort of shop, so you need some help to find the rare gems – recommending fabric types might be more helpful, eg, the Japanese lawns are generally good. This lady blogs in Darwin, and there are some fabric hunting stories

  18. lore says:

    Online shopping at The Remnant Warehouse – Australia’s largest online fabric store:
    Much better than spotto. Thoroughly recommend.

  19. stephkendall says:

    Thanks so much everyone – your suggestions were great and I’ll follow them up on my return to the NT. (The local Spotlight in Darwin was quite helpful although they didn’t have much time for a newbie asking just about every question she could think of…) It was a comfort to have a nice warm summer’s day over here by the way, I was missing my sunshine and 34 degrees. Karen, you certainly didn’t look as if you were melting – maybe that lovely dress helped – it stood out from the crowds for all the right reasons.

  20. Julie says:

    How cute are the cons and floral dress together!!! Go fabric stores in Australia are hard to find. You either get Spotlight or then a lot of the speciality stores are aimed at Bridal type fabrics.

  21. Julie says:

    Good, not go fabric stores. opps

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