It’s been a while, but it took me some time to get around to this – showing off my “haul” from the latest Grandmother’s Fabric Sale in Calgary.
My favourite score was this 100% silk herringbone fabric – enough to definitely make an apron dress… possibly enough to make an underdress or overgarment as well! I’ll need to plan that out to see.
This year, I took off work early to go on the Friday afternoon, and anticipated getting there an hour early.
Unfortunately, an hour wasn’t enough to get me close to the doors on Friday. The line up was pretty long, but the people organizing the sale are pretty efficient at getting people into the sale quickly, so it didn’t take too long after the doors opened to get on in.
Like previous years, the different areas were organized into different themes – craft stuff in one room, knitting in another area, home dec fabrics in another, and quilting in a fourth. I didn’t even make it into the quilting or knitting rooms, and didn’t go upstairs for patterns and books at all either. I really was pretty set on just looking for fabrics that would be suitable for SCA sewing – costumes and accessories.
My first stop was the ‘fancies’ room – this is the room with lots of silks, brocades, velvets, and other fancy fabrics. While most of these aren’t necessarily the right fiber content for historical costuming, some of the “look” is right for what I’m going for.
The fabrics I got here included:
- A “Chinese brocade” with a black background and a multi-coloured phoenix print
- A “Chinese brocade” in red and gold with a ‘travel’ kind of theme
- A tan and brown herringbone silk
- A black and white silk gingham (not a lot on this one, probably only a meter)
- A black, grey, and white plaid (also not a lot here, less than a meter)
- A pale blue/grey/silver silk dupioni
- Two pieces of burgundy cotton velvet – each 5 meters
- A synthetic fabric which looks/feels/drapes like silk charmeuse in orange
- A teal synthetic silk-like fabric
Next, I went to the area with 3-4+ meters. Three meters is enough for an apron dress, with four enough for an underdress. Four or five is enough for an overgarment, with 5+ being great for a gown…
Here I picked up
- A tiny piece of grey/white fun fur – obviously not from the 3-4 meter area, it was right next to it though.
- A navy wool with blue/yellow pinstripe
- A purple/black/white plaid
- A light grey wool coating
- An entire ROLL of cherry red stretch velvet (15+ meters!)
- Hot pink wool suiting
- Charcoal wool suiting
- Red and black herringbone wool-look (I had to do a burn test to find out this wasn’t wool)
- Blue/green/red/yellow plaid tartan wool look (ditto, I thought this was wool originally)
The final place I popped into was the home decor room. Here I bought:
- Two lengths of white cotton canvas – I’ll use this for interlinings on bodices most likely
- A gold on navy blue fabric with a lozenge and vaguely fluer-des-lis design
- A chenille with a black background and a large multi-colour floral print. I’m not sure what I’ll use this for but it’s gorgeous…
I DID however leave behind a HUGE (25 meters at least) roll of black cotton/poly blend velveteen – mostly because I wouldn’t be able to carry it!
Since I have recently chatted with some friends who were looking for sewing machines, I also took a quick photo of some of the sewing machines for sale to share on my Instagram/ Twitter thread so folks who were looking could come on down and check them out too.