Mar 042011

Classic textiles, 44 Goldhawk Road

Recently, Shepherd’s Bush has become known for the imposing mall that is Westfield, and it’s vibrant market surrounded by local shops with good service has been largely overlooked.

Take the Hammersmith & City line to Goldhawk Road station, descend onto the street, and in front of you, running up to Shepherd’s Bush Green is a clutch of fabric shops running along Goldhawk Road. There is a comprehensive list on Couture DIY, but I will share my observations too.  It is not unusual to find the same fabrics at 3 or 4 times the price in the West End, so don’t hesitate to make the trip.

On the left you have A-one fabrics, which has a good range of dupion silks, tailoring cloth and printed cottons.   The next notable shop is Classic Textiles, my favourite.  You will find Liberty lawns, £16/m last time I was in there, denim and drill, and if you’re really lucky, designer remnants from the likes of Vivienne Westwood upstairs – all at reasonable prices.  Don’t overlook the basement, where all manner of good cloth resides.  Further along is a shop (whose name escapes me – sorry) which specialises in fancy, printed fabrics; often silks, and a couple of stores which are stocked with African cloths.

A-Z. Toni, Fabricworld and UK Textiles are all on the other side of the road, and offer various dresmaking fabrics, with some tailoring in A-Z and Fabricworld, which also has a lovely range of heavy, raw silks.  UK Textiles has fine silks and a reliable range of silk satins, crêpe de chine and other fancy fabrics.

Further along the road towards Shepherds Bush Green you will some hit-and-miss cloth shops and a few which specialise in African laces and prings.

In the market you will find several purveyors of furnishing fabrics in railway arches, although the stock is unreliable.  Further into the market, as it branches to the left you will find more stalls of fabrics, some aimed at the East African market.  Off – topic, I have always found great hats and thermal underwear down here too.  And the best falafel in London, from Mr Falafel or the stall at the entrance to the new market.

The downside to this as an sourcing area is that you rarely find the same fabric in a shop twice which can make it difficult to sample and go back.  There is a very basic haby stall in the market, and a girl with a haberdashery department upstairs in A1 Fabrics,  but annoyingly a  trip elsewhere for zips, interfacing, threads and trimmings can be necessary.