Who's to blame for this transformation of two otherwise rational, professional women (with acknowledged weaknesses for textiles)? That would be Sultan.
Do you know Sultan's Fine Fabrics?
If not, then OH MY GOODNESS are you in for a treat! He does mail order, but after a transcendental fabric shopping experience there yesterday I have to recommend -- nay, URGE you to visit in the flesh if you are in the Toronto area.
Melinda and I recently joined Gertie's coat sewalong -- we're still waiting for our copies of the pattern (Butterick 5824) to arrive so we can catch up and work on our fitting muslins -- and were inspired by Karyn's glowing report on Sultan's Fine Fabrics to visit the shop ourselves.
Once upon a time, you would have expected to find this shop down around Queen and Portland, in the "fashion district" (before it was called the fashion district...and when it really was a garment district, through and through). But Sultan's is in the north-west part of Toronto, in a semi-industrial area -- but honestly it's not really much of a journey from downtown (and of course quite readily accessible from the 401), and totally, completely worthwhile.
|view of one section of fine shirting fabric|
|view from one section of wool coating fabric|
As soon as we walked in I recognized Sultan: I had bought a couple of exquisite yards of Italian shirting fabric from him at the Creativ Festival two years ago! (Which reminds me that I owe my hubby a shirt...that's a topic for another post!).
But Sultan's shop is another experience altogether, an enormous space filled with wool, silk, cotton and other natural fibre fabrics -- so much more than I saw at Creativ Festival, and of a quality that (intellectually) I knew existed but which I had never EVER been able to experience firsthand. This was like being transported to another planet.
The fact that Melinda and I were looking for relatively inexpensive wool coating didn't stop Sultan from showing us the full range of goods he carries, and for this I am so grateful. He has a true passion for fine fabric and recognized in us an extremely appreciative audience. The fact that we clearly don't have the means to purchase cashmere and vicuna wasn't reflected in the customer service he offered -- which was truly amazing!
We took two sweet hours to select our coating and lining fabrics and after oohhing and ahhhing over all sorts of tweeds and plaids and houndstooth and herringbone, we both ended up with bright solid colours -- anticipating that our coats will be ready by late winter/spring, when a splash of brightness will be appreciated.
|a very patient Sultan and Melinda (like me, she was drunk on fabric)|
|Melinda's goodies on the left and mine on the right|
Finally, a little Stash Love sidenote: I haven't bought any quilting fabric, not a bit, and I'm sticking to that. But garment fabric? Well, that's something else.
If you do go to Sultan's, please say hello from Melinda and me!