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Where to buy fabric and trims in Leicester- 2018 update!

I originally wrote this post in 2013 not long after starting teaching sewing classes as a result of being asked where to buy fabric locally. Recently I have been sorting and organising my blog, clearing out old posts that no longer seem relevant. This post still gets a lot of attention so I have decided to update it as fabric shopping in Leicester has changed a fair bit since I first wrote the post.

Bobbins and Buttons:

Firstly I am now among the fabric shopping options, which in 2013 was not even an idea. I stock over 600 lines of carefully selected fabrics catering for dressmakers and crafters who are looking for lovely quality fabric. Though my shop is online I am happy to arrange visits to my unit where you can see the fabrics.

I have a good range of cotton elastane jersey fabrics, I carry stock from designer brands like Art Gallery and organic from Cloud 9 as well as great quality unbranded that are all Oeko-tex certified.

Prints include fun designs that make great baby and childrens clothing through to attractive florals and stripes that make lovely dresses and tops.

I stock lots of designer craft weight cottons including ranges from Michael Miller, Alexander Henry, Licenced ranges including Peter rabbit, Avengers, My little pony and most recently Liberty’s quilters weight range.

I also stock lots of fabrics suitable for dressmaking like 100% linen, printed scuba, viscose jersey, woven viscose, boiled wool and a great selection of colours in this Robert Kaufman yarn dyed cotton and linen blend.

I have denim in a mix of weights and colours including stretch and non-stretch and these lovely printed Sevenberry chambray lightweights. New fabrics are added on a regular basis. I love to see what you have made with your fabric so please keep sharing on Instagram and Facebook.

Crafty Sew & So:

Another new arrival since my original post is Sarah and Freyas lovely shop in St. Martins.

Crafty Sew & So offer a good range of top quality dressmaking and craft fabrics. The range includes Lady McElroy cotton lawns to plush stretch babycord and coloured twills, Dashwood Studios and Sevenberry printed cottons, stretch denim perfect for jeans making, a range of quilting weight plain colour cottons ideal for accessories and linings, quality cotton and viscose jerseys and some more unusual brocades, true knits and luxurious satins and crepes. They can order in specialist bridal fabrics including lace on demand.

They also stock Prym haberdashery, independent Patterns including their own in-house designed pattern range -My Handmade Wardrobe Patterns and everything you need to complete your garments.

Material Magic:

Another new shop that wasn’t around when I first wrote my post. Material Magic is located in Odeon Arcade near the market and have been selling fabrics for over 40 years in Leicester.

They sell a good selection across the board for dressmaking and home furnishings.

They have a Large range of cottons and craft prints always in stock.

Thimbles and crafts:

An even newer arrival on the scene is Thimbles and crafts which I haven’t even had a chance to visit yet. However I am reliably informed they are very friendly and helpful and the shop is stacked with all sorts of sewing and crafting products. The shop is located next to Screw fix on Empire Industrial Estate on Ulverscroft road.

They are a family run business committed to providing a high level of professional service. They offer a free cafe and a space for groups to use.

Alongside a wide selection of fabrics they also sell knitting supplies, haberdashery and craft materials. All under one roof at affordable prices.

Montreux Fabrics:

Although Montreux have been around for a long time they have only recently opened their shop. The shop is located at The Old Shoe Factory, Bardolph Street East. Which is open Monday to Friday and the first Saturday of the month.

They stock an ever-expanding range of fashion and furnishing fabrics, their speciality being jersey, which they produce themselves here in Leicester.  The fabric selection available on their website is just a fraction of what you can find in the shop.

There is lots of unrestricted on-street parking available. You can shop in a relaxed atmosphere with comfy sofas and complimentary tea, coffee and biscuits available for shoppers.

Stuarts Fabrics on Leicester market:

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Most Leicester sewers will know about Stuarts market stall which has been in the centre of Leicester market since as long as most of us can remember. He offers a great selection of dressmaking fabrics as well as craft fabrics. Its an Aladdin’s cave worth exploring.

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He carries stock of party and bridal fabrics, a good range of crafting cottons and all the bits you need for sewing like lining, net and wadding.

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The Button Boutique:

The Button Boutique has all your haberdashery needs. Located in Malcolm Arcade near the market.

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They have a huge range of buttons, ribbons and braids.

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They have a section for knitters, they also sell fat quarter bundles, trims and beads as well as all the general sewing things like thread, zips, elastic, bias tapes etc.

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John Lewis:

The haberdashery department in John Lewis is small but well stocked with a nice variety of fabrics. Located in The Highcross shopping centre. They stock cotton prints from brands like Amy Butler and Cath Kitson alongside a selection of good quality dressmaking fabrics for day to evening wear.  They also sell patterns and trims as well as sewing machines and yarn.

Upstairs they have a large furnishing fabric department with a good selection of fabrics for curtain making and other home furnishing projects.

Direct Fabric warehouse:

This is a large shop located at Lee circle offering a huge selection of furnishing fabrics, dressmaking and bridal fabrics.

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Over half the shop is dedicated to furnishing fabrics some of which are in stock while others are ordered in. The selection covers a made to order curtain making service.

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The other half of the shop caters for dressmaking, costume making and bridalwear. Craft fabrics include fake fur, sequined fabrics and fleece. They sell fabrics for fancy dress and costumes.  There is also a good range of trims and sewing basics.

The Fabric Guild:

Since first writing this post the Fabric Guild has relocated to 54 Kenilworth Drive, Oadby. Despite the move the offering is still very much the same.

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The focus is on quilting, they sell a good variety of designer branded cotton prints and plains at low prices.

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There is a great selection of all types of batting and wadding from recycled to cotton and polyester in different weights. They sell rulers, threads, felt, buttons, books and felt squares. It is worth checking the opening times before making the journey.

Indian shops:

The Golden mile, Belgrave gate in Leicester and the Highfields area of Leicester both have a number of sari fabric shops selling beautiful Indian fabric.  I was once given a guided tour of the Highfields fabric shops by an Indian factory owner, they are fabulous places to go and worth a trip if you need sari fabric or bright and sparkly. Many are tucked away down little side streets and mainly known to locals.

Hopefully this is a comprehensive up to date list of the fabric shopping options in Leicester. Do please let me know if I have missed anyone out. The choice is better than ever, I hope it stays this way. I love to support local.

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Julia Claridge

I was about 6 or 7 years old when I had my first go on a sewing machine, it was an old hand crank machine that my mum used with her patients, she was an occupational therapist. I still vividly remember watching with amazement as the tiny perfectly formed stitches were created as I turned the handle. I Grew up in the 70’s and 80’s when buying clothes was less affordable and dressmaking was an answer to updating your wardrobe more regularly. My own mother was a talented dressmaker who made most of my clothes and my sisters clothes as well as a many for herself. I soon got involved with making my clothes, I loved the whole experience of picking out fabrics, trims and a pattern to create a new outfit, then going home to make a new garment or outfit. When it came to leaving school I visited a careers advisor who asked what I wanted to do next. My answer was ..Sew! Read more...

  1. Louise Ambrosi on September 13, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    Thank you for this comprehensive lowdown on fabric shopping in Leicester! I live in Loughborough and occasionally make my way over to John Lewis – they also stock home dec weight fabric and beautiful oilcloth fabric – and they have a remnant pile which I always rummage when I go there! The Button Boutique come over to Loughborough Market on a Saturday which always saves me a trip and I buy plain cotton drill fabric from a lovely chap called Gary at Loughborough market too. But that market stall in Leicester looks amazing so will need to make a special trip me thinks! Thanks again 🙂

    • juliaclaridge on September 13, 2013 at 1:19 pm

      Thank you Louise for your comments, great point about the furnishing fabric in John Lewis. They do have a fab furnishing fabric department.

  2. Ms Leicester on June 18, 2016 at 7:24 pm

    A massive and grateful thank you. Live here all these years never knew such beautiful place for new sewers are available
    Kisses

  3. Marion Barnes on June 27, 2016 at 9:22 am

    my daughter lives in Leicester and I often visit fabric guild and the market.
    I am looking for silk sari remnants at the mo, do you know if the shops in Belgrave Road sell remnants?
    Thanks for your blog, I haven’t visited the
    Button Boutique, it’s a must next time I go to stay!

    • Julia Claridge on June 28, 2016 at 12:01 pm

      Hi Marion, There are a lot of Indian sari shops around Belgrave gate and some in Highfields but I don’t know what they sell. Perhaps I should go and investigate and write another report! There are also now two new fabric shops since this post. Material magic near the market and Crafty Sew & so in St. Matins.

  4. Kim on October 21, 2016 at 9:56 pm

    Lots of useful information here – but you need to update your page as we now have a wonderful haberdashery and sewing studio in St Martin’s Square called “Crafty Sew and So” – brimming with ideas and resources for all sorts of sewing projects – including a wide range of Brother sewing and quilting machines – and offering workshops from beginners to advanced and even the opportunity to rent a high quality Brother sewing machine by the hour!

    • Julia Claridge on October 25, 2016 at 10:09 am

      Hi Kim, thanks for your comment. Yes this is quite an old post and indeed I know Sarah and Freya well, they had not set up at the time I wrote this post. Material Magic was not about either. What a lovely hub of sewing Leicester is becoming 🙂

  5. Fiona on June 12, 2018 at 10:03 pm

    As I’m relatively new to sewing it’s great to know where to go. So many new places to check out. Thank you. Fiona

    • Julia Claridge on June 14, 2018 at 10:22 am

      Thank you Fiona, I hope you find some nice fabrics.

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