I thought I’d share a couple of my favourite London sewing-related retailers, starting with my South London favourite.
There is a very special place in my heart for The Wimbledon Sewing Centre. Don’t be fooled, it’s not actually in Wimbledon, it’s right near Tooting Bec Station.
It’s a proper old school fabric and haberdasher’s with knowledgeable staff. They stock pretty much everything; patterns, notions, fabric, wool, embroider’s thread, beads, machine supplies, fabric dye and paint, cake decorating and scrap-booking supplies. The first floor has more elaborate evening, bridal and curtain fabric.
I can’t really comment on the scrap-booking or cake-decorating stock but for everything else, it’s never really let me down. There’s a extensive range of fabrics at reasonable prices- Jersey is around £6 a metre, polyester £3, corduroy £ 7, printed cotton £3. They stock all the big pattern brands, Vogue, Simplicity, Style, Butterick etc and they usually have a discount on one pattern brand or another. If you do buy a pattern, ask to start a pattern club card, your fifth pattern is free.
They’re home to the London Sewing Museum too. All these years and I’ve never been! They also run courses, but I’ve never joined so can’t vouch for them. All in all, it’s a great store but my only criticism is that the service can be a little patchy. Not rude or terrible but nothing happens quickly in the store so be prepared to wait for someone to come and cut your fabric or find you a pattern. And if you’re in there around closing time, you’ll be hustled out the door. Maybe that’s part of its charm?
The Rummage Room may have disappeared but the wacky front displays remain and they are a thing of kitschy beauty.
Check out some of my favourite WSC purchases in the second row, pretty pleased with that lot. This leopard print and abstract animal print both from WSC as well as the blue and red fabric pictured above for this dress. More fabric over here in case you haven;t had enough!
300 Balham High Road, London. SW17 7AA.
Nearest tube station Tooting Bec. Bus 155 (and others)
Closed on Sundays
Right next door to Wimsew for repairs and machines. Never used them so can’t comment.
Diy couture does a fantastic round-up of London fabric stores but this doesn’t cover South London. Yet.