Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Some birthday shoppin'...Fabricana and Ikea

Ok, last post about the birthday shopping excursion. I promise. I'm just so giddy with glee at having some new materials to work with, I just can't help but to share!

Next on the itinerary: Fabricana in Richmond. I'm not trying to bad mouth Fabricland, but there's been numerous times where I've been disappointed with the selection and most importantly, the quality. If you ever have the chance to go to Fabricana, you'll see what I mean. Fabricana and Fabricland are night and day. Yes, the latter may have really good sales a few times a year with their buy 1 metre get 2 metres free deals, but I find the quality just isn't there. Not unless it's a company I already know, like Michael Miller or Alexander Henry. But that's where the selection ends. At Fabricana I am always guaranteed great quality fabric in a wide range of designers...from Heather Bailey to Robert Kaufman. And yes, they have my Kona cotton solids there!!! Hallelujah!!! Another major difference? Customer service. I always feel like I'm bothering the girls of Fabricland, who always appear bored, bitchy, and like having to cut something for you is a major inconvenience to them. They really seem to hate their job and are really not at all helpful. The past few times when I couldn't find something and had to ask a sales associate, they either had no idea if they had what I was looking for or they just pointed to a general area of the store and told me to look there. At Fabricana, the customer service is phenomenal! I've always had ├╝ber nice ladies who obviously love what they do and where they work, and most importantly, know what they are talking about. I don't think a single one of the sales ladies there don't sew, which is very reassuring when you've got questions that need to be answered. Also, when I needed help finding something, an associate always went with me to make sure I found what I was looking for. All these reasons, aside from the fabric, are why I keep going back there.

I forgot to take any photos of the actual store itself, so I got the one above and these 2 from their website:
Fashion fabrics on one side of the store

Quilting fabrics on the other side.

Again, I had to put myself on a very strict budget here, as I can seriously go nuts here. I was like a kid in a candy one point I had to remind myself to breathe, collect myself, and come up with a game plan to make sure I saw everything the store had to offer. I never noticed before but the prices here are either the same or slightly cheaper than Fabricland, but like I said, much better in quality. To top it all off, I saw a few fabrics that the one other store that I have frequented a few times in Victoria had, but were at least $5 cheaper at Fabricana!! Brett thinks maybe it had to do with freight charges to get stuff onto the island, but I think it's due to the fact that there aren't a lot of options in Victoria so that means stores here can over charge and know people will pay for it.

Anyhoo, here's my loot:

Heather Ross fabric from her Mendocino line...except for the one on the right, that's an Alexander Henry print

Yummy Amy Butler and Heather Bailey fabric

I've been wanting some of Heather Bailey's Pop Garden fabric for so long! But couldn't justify spending $20/m for it

A mix of fabrics...from Alexander Henry to Michael Miller

I also got some wool felt and other goodies, but got too lazy to take photos of them after taking these ones. Now that I'm home I haven't been able to forget about this one fabric that I saw there, that I'm now thinking I should have just bought. It's a beautiful brownish-gold herringbone made from a blend of bamboo and cotton. It had a gorgeous sheen to it, a lovely hand, and I could picture myself making a sheath dress from it. Maybe with a cute Peter Pan collar, or with a piped trompe l'oeil version. If I'm still thinking about this fabric next month, I just might have to make a stop en route to the concert to get some. Just hope that it's still there!!

Fabricana Imports
4591 Garden City Road
Richmond, B.C.
or their Coquitlam location at: 1348 United Boulevard
Coquitlam B.C.

On our way to the ferry we figured we had enough time to stop by Ikea. We picked up a few household items and this cute playmat for the munchkin!
Of course, I also checked out their textiles section and walked away with a few metres of nice, heavy, cotton canvas that I plan on making some bags out of. The best part was that the fabric was $7 a metre AND has some sweet Scandinavian prints on it!

On our way out, Brett spotted this and my jaw dropped and I almost died laughing. Only the Swedes could get away with this!! I think it's pure brilliance!
Ikea's version of a vending machine: a vending machine for spare parts!!

A little blurry, but you get the picture.

I think the workers nearby probably thought I was crazy for taking so many pictures of the vending machine. Oh well, who cares?

Then it was time to head home...for Brett and the little one to pass out in bed, and for me to sit back and admire my new things...and to plan...

I leave you with the beautiful sunset view that we saw on the ferry on the way back home:

Happy sewing everybody!


  1. I am so jealous! I miss living in Vancouver just for the shopping! I agree with you on fabricland 100%, those ladies all have serious attitude problems and it's very intimating for a new sewer like me when I need help quite often. I almost cried in there once....not good, not good. I started shopping online more, but I miss seeing the fabrics and feeling them. Time to plan a trip to Van.

  2. I had always thought it was just me that those Fabricland ladies treated like crap, but after a while I realized they treated everyone like that. I can't believe that you almost cried!
    I've been preferring online shopping too cause of this, but yeah, I like to see and feel the fabric in person. I've had a few misses cause I had a different perception about the print/color of some of the fabrics I got. *sigh* Just wish we didn't have to deal with a ferry to get to Vancouver!!


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