Some years ago I blogged about Walthamstow market and its fabulous fabric shops and it remains a very popular post! Of course things have changed around here but I’m happy to report only for the better for fabric shops and general shopping! We’ve gone all hipster doncha know and now have micro breweries and sourdough pizza places and vegan eateries coming out of our ears haha. Sadly having coeliac disease none of these are any good to me but luckily fabric doesn’t contain gluten 😜.
Last week I visited the ever wonderful Saeeds Fabric which is one of the largest and longest established shops on the market. They really know their stuff, are honest and reliable and super lovely. They have an amazing selection of fabric, pretty much anything you may need from sturdy canvas, wool, curtain fabrics, fun cotton prints and disco fabrics as well as a nice selection of cheap fun fabrics.
There’s many other stalls selling amazing denim for £5/m, wool for suiting etc for under £10/m, lots of fly by night shops and stalls selling fabric for £1 or £2/meter, and shops selling zips and ribbons and cheap yarn and lace and buttons. With the cheap shops you won’t know what you’re getting in terms of fabric content, it’s unlikely to be cotton but saying that sometimes they sell linen for next to nothing. But you’ll have to go by feel and learn how different fabrics feel when you stroke them, as the sellers generally don’t know or care much. And you see something you like, buy it, it will definitely be gone by the tome you come back a week later. There’s many places selling astonishing African prints for as little as £6 a bundle which can be as much as 6m long. Some of it definitely isn’t cotton but it’s all great for dressmaking and furnishings and the cheapest I’ve found in the UK!
There’s a few cool places for coffee and food, I’ll just mention Rico’s with the gold and velvet furniture and traditional Turkish flat breads from Yilderim around the corner towards St James Street station as well as St J eatery and all the groovy places in Crate right next to the station. Don’t forget about Oxfam And Sue Ryder and the International supermarket as well as all the places for cheap hair dye and coconut butter and all the other shops and stalls selling fruit and veg in a “poundabowl” as well as Lidl and Wilco’s and Waterstones and TK Maxx and really you’ve got it all covered. And I’m sure I’ve missed out tons!
More shops selling fabric and trimmings have opened up, and despite having had to shut for a lot of the lockdowns Saeed’s is flourishing again and better stocked than ever (stunning printed velvets from £15/ m!). Fabric 2 sells amazing velvets and woollens imported from Europe at astonishing prices, let’s hope she stays open! The whole area has smartened up tons and now we have the wonderful Crate near St James’ street station with cute shops selling clothes, plants, Vietnamese food etc as well as new eateries and some lovely plant shops near the bottom of the market too