Episode 56. Vacation Fabric Hauls & A Podcast Update

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Sewing for Good with Sue-Ching Lascelles (@suechinglascelles) The Asian Sewist Collective Podcast

In this month's episode, we're chatting with Sue-Ching Lascelles (@suechinglascelles), multidisciplinary artist and founder of the Close to My Heart Project. Follow the pod at @AsianSewistCollective on Instagram. For show notes and a transcript of this episode, please see: https://asiansewistcollective.com/episode-60-sewing-for-good-with-sue-ching-lascelles-suechinglascelles/ 

Links 

Patterns & Designers mentioned

Zero Waste Patterns by Birgitta Helmersson 

Fabric Stores mentioned

Britex, San Francisco

Nippori Fabric Town, Tokyo, Japan 

Tomato, Tokyo, Japan

Lincraft, Australia

Spotlights, Australia

Morris and Sons, Australia

Drapers Fabrics, Australia & New Zealand

Darn Cheap Fabrics, Australia

Fabric Lab, Australia

Nerida Hansen, Australia

Resources

Episode 3 – Pattern Testing with Nandia @divinedita

Episode 12 – Natural Dyeing with Ella @handmademillennial

Photos from Ada’s trip:

Transcript

Ada   

Pushing the button but it’s not doing anything.

Welcome to the Asian Sewist collective podcast the Asian Sewist Collective is a group of Asian people from around the world brought together by our shared appreciation for fiber and textile arts, and our desire to see more Asian representation in the sewing community. 

Nicole  

In this podcast, we explore the intersection of our identities and our shared sewing practice as we create a space for Asian sewists and our allies. 

Ada   

I’m your co host, Ada Chen, and I’m recording from Denver, Colorado, Denver is the traditional territory of the US, Cheyenne and Arapaho peoples. I’m a Taiwanese American marketer turned entrepreneur and these days you’ll find me running my own natural skincare brand. Most importantly, for this podcast, you can find my sewing @i.hope.sew on Instagram. 

Nicole  

And I’m your co host, Nicole, I’m recording from outside of Chicago, Illinois, the original homelands of the Council of the three fires, the Ojibwe, the Potawatomi, and the Odawa people. I’m a Philippine American lawyer who loves to sew and you can find me on Instagram at @NicoleAngelineSews. 

Ada   

Okay, Nicole, it’s been quite a bit of time since we actually recorded our last episode in Season Five. I know what  have you been sewing what’s on your sewing table? 

Nicole  

So today, literally today, I am feeling powerful with my staple gun. 

Ada   

Oh, yeah, not where I expected this to go. 

Nicole  

It’s never is Ada, it never is.

A while back, and I can’t remember if I talked about this on the podcast previously, I do remember swearing about ironing boards, freestanding ironing boards.

At some point later last year, like last year, my best friend and I were just out together doing errands, nothing special. But always it’s always special with your friends. But I think we went to Goodwill. And I found an A homemade ironing board that sits at like it’s a tabletop ironing board. So it’s a solid piece of wood. I don’t know what kind of wood it is, please don’t ask I don’t know. And then someone you know, made it an ironing board shaped like an elongated trapezoid type I think, I don’t know geometry anyway.

And then with four dowels, like installed underneath, and today, I cut up an old towel and staple gunned it to the to the underside of the ironing board.

Ada   

Ohh.

Nicole  

I’d laid the towel, fuzzy side down so the old print was on top and then I put the ironing board face down with the little peg legs up. And then I cut around it and stapled it. So it’s sort of like a permanent padding. And my next step is going to be making a cover. So, let me get your thoughts on this. The towel is a base. It’s 100% cotton. You know, it’s just it’s going to be like the nice fluffy base. I know I’d read a lot about people you know, using cotton batting. Would you put another layer of something on it before putting your cotton cover which is I’m going to pick a cotton from somewhere we could talk about that but or would you just leave it with the towel because people just iron with towel? Even without air? 

Ada   

Yeah, right. I mean, I used iron with just a towel sometimes in a hotel room. I’ll do that too. 

Nicole  

Yeah.

Ada   

My question is How thick is the towel and did you take off the original batting?

Nicole  

It was you so the first to answer your first question is that the towel was not that thick. Okay. And the original batting it was homemade so it was just not capable.

Ada   

Okay, yeah. Yeah, I would if it was a thinner towel probably add another layer just in case because you don’t want to accidentally scorch to your cover and the towel and then have to replace that because you stapled gunned there and that’s a whole deal. But that’s that’s me being like I like a plush ironing surface.  

Nicole  

I mean that makes a lot of sense. I was I was thinking Is it another towel that I upcycle or I do have from you know you’ve heard me many times on this podcast say I bought something because I’m going to do this and it just doesn’t happen. I was gonna make like iron or iron oven mitts. So I have that fill that’s like reflective on one side. And I could maybe use that with the quilting cotton on the cover to make it like another layer and is heat reflective as well. So I have that already. And sounds like that’s a that’s a good thing to to get Give it another layer. That staple gun though. I don’t think I’ve used a staple gun in many years and it was so loud that my mostly deaf 15 year old dog was like bye! He’s fine. He can’t really hear it. But, but he did leave the room. I was like, Oh, man. But yeah, so that’s what I’m working on. And I think what I will use, which is somewhat related to what we’re going to talk about later is a fabric that I purchased from Japan. I was not in Japan. But there’s such they make such cute stuff. And I know you’ll be talking about it. So I will probably use some of my Bichan fabric so I can iron and look at adorable little dogs while I’m ironing. And that’s what I’m working on. Are you staple gunning anything in your current sewing practice? 

Ada   

Well, we don’t own a staple gun.

Nicole  

Had to buy one. 

Ada   

Yeah. Oh, good. Good call. I have been making a lot of zero waste pants which we will also talk about some of the fabrics I’ve been using for that. It’s from the Brigitta Helmersonn Zero Waste sewing book. And I think if you’ve listened to this podcast you know the how much I love the Clyde pants. They’re like, a wider fit trouser with some big pockets. And I really just wanted some wearable trousers over the holiday so banged out two of those brought one pair on vacation, came back had bought a piece of fabric that we’ll talk about and was like these need to be these pants. These need to be pants. Like first of all, I was what I thought when I saw the fabric. But yeah, that’s what I’ve been doing. I’ve I’ve made three and probably the span of maybe two months. So quickly becoming a TNT made my own adjustments on the crotch curve very happy with all of it so far have some other fabrics lined up to use for the pattern as well. So yeah, I think I was not really consciously looking for more of zero waste pants. But it just so happened that I think it’s been a few years of making the Clyde pants as a TNT like tried and true pattern. And I’ve busted through the crotch seams of two of them. And I’ve also given yeah, I’ve given away some pairs to friends and my sister if they were toiles or mess them up. Listeners longtime listeners might remember my two front crotch curve pair that went to my other friend. She has now busted as well. So we’ve talked about mending that one. But yeah, I like I still love that pattern. I think they did a few updates. I just wanted something that I knew wouldn’t wear as much in terms of like similar fabric choice and like style, and where I’m kind of going with my own personal style. So yeah, that’s what I’ve been working on.

Nicole  

Why do you think the crotch curve like wears out on the Clyde more?

Ada   

I think it’s because for me personally, I didn’t adjust the crotch curve at all front or back on the pattern as I’ve been making it and I think there was actually enough there’s enough ease in it for me to wear. But over time, maybe like a My body’s changed a little and B I think I just am a crotch curve buster. Like, that’s where I got a lot of, get most of the wear out of my jeans, to be honest, like pre sewing. That’s where every single one of my pairs of jeans got busted first. And I know a lot of people with like larger thighs who have that issue. I don’t have the issue of like, thigh rubbing in most of my Clyde pants or now as perhaps as much as I have in the past. But yeah, I think I’ve also been putting them to the test like wearing them a lot to events to work. I network I climb on top of like, stools, I’m reaching for things I’m bending down, I’m doing a lot. A lot of the time I am wearing like, we’re being really honest. But when I want to look cute and where someone and I’m wearing my Clyde pants, so it’s totally expected I have mended them. But I’ve even busted through some of the mending on some of the lighter linen so yeah, it was time to investigate some other options. I do think I’ll still continue to make that pattern just you know, sometimes you need a break and then you go to something and you come back.

Nicole  

Well, I don’t have TNTs as we were talking I think when you made your last pair of ZW pants, I just off on Instagram off pod of course. And maybe we should do an episode on TNTs because I desperately want TNTs if you can see behind me, like just this shelf is all patterns and I don’t use it Any of them and I’m like at that point where I’m like, Okay, where can I responsibly get rid of them? I don’t want to like put them a for offer online because I don’t want to ship. So I mean, I’m looking at a few 100 or not a few 100 maybe 100 or so just like, you know, big four paper patterns. And I’m like ready to get rid of because I just, I just want to find my TNT anyway, listeners, let us know if you want us to do a TNT episode. a tried and true episode Ada, I can share hers. And maybe when we get around to it, I will we can talk about my exploration for TNT pieces. Anyway. All that sounds good.

Ada   

Yeah, I mean, I would love to do a TNT episode, which kind of lends us to talking about the next big thing on our agenda for today’s episode, which is, we’re doing a bit of change around here for the podcast. And this felt like the best way to let you our lovely listeners know. So you know, we’ve been around for just shy of three years, I will celebrate three years in March. We ran five seasons in that time, which puts us at 55 episodes and almost 50,000 downloads. And we have listeners in 40 countries. And there’s some that, you know, our podcast analytics tell us is unknown. So I’m sure there’s more than that.

Nicole  

People on cruise ships or something? 

Ada   

Yeah. Wherever you can get the internet. 

Nicole  

Yeah, wow. When you lay all that out, we’ve done so much in the last less than three years. So pat ourselves on the back, you me and the rest of the wonderful collective. And as we got together after the end of season five, Ada, and I started to take a look at you know what, what is working for us now? And what might we need to adjust. And given the way that our non pod life’s lives have been going? We think that the short the sprint season model where we give you 10 episodes weekly, just no longer works in the wider context of our current lives.

Ada   

Right. So for me, I’ll give you a little explainer as much as I can. And I’m sure you’ll figure out more but I’m working on some big changes for my brand. And for my company expecting and hoping to grow this year and planting all those seeds. We’ll it’s been a behind the scenes work that has been going on for the better part of almost a year. And it’s so close to being ready to share with you all I hate pulling that line that YouTubers call. They’re like, I’m working on something secret. And I can’t show you but I’ll tell you, like I’m basically telling you that right now, like I can’t tell you, but I can tell you, it’s coming soon. And I promise you will see it. And I hope you love it. And I hope that it means great things for what I can do both inside the sewing community and kind of getting more people into sewing and all that but also in terms of like, my own work and growing that and hopefully like building a team at some point in the near future. So yeah, my personal or my personal life is also busy. You know, I hate to be that Colorado person, but it’s also ski season. All of the collective knows from the past three years, generally from January to March, my schedule goes work Monday to Friday, and then usually we’re outdoors, one or two days on the weekends. And we’re very privileged to be able to do that. But it is something I like to prioritize in my life and something that’s coming a little bit ahead of the pod in the immediate near future. But, you know, it’s, I’ve been trying to figure out like what that healthy balance of what my therapist likes call “lifestyle medicine” is in terms of like, exercise and outdoor time and all the things that keep me fulfilled and happy outside of work and relationships and whatnot. And part of that is like, you know, prioritizing those things in my life. So those are the other things going on in my life. And it’s just been a little bit hectic. You know, Nicole, it’s like, similar but different for you.

Nicole  

It is and I just want to back up and remind listeners that I don’t if you’ve been with us since the beginning, Ada has been running her skincare brand since pretty much the beginning of the podcast and started really tiny, tiny operation and that’s when I met Ada. And that’s when we started the podcast and so to see where you are now and to know where you’re going is like really incredible for the past three years, less than three years for less than three years. So you know I’m so proud of you and the growth and that you know that growth comes with change and it impacts you know what you I love lifestyle medicine. Wow, I love that. Like you know what it impacts what you’re able to prioritize and put energy to and you’re getting to the stage in your business where you You know, you, you have to put more front end energy to continue to build. And so you told me, I just remember when you had gotten your own space, it was, it was a big deal. I was like, wow, this is amazing. And that happened on the podcast. And so much has happened with your business. And it’s, it’s so cool. I would like to I don’t know if I could ever run a business. But if I ever decided to you would be a wonderful role model for something like that. 

Ada   

Thanks.

Nicole  

And, yeah, you’re welcome. I mean, it’s just true. Like, you know, not trying to pump you up or anything just thems facts, you know. So for me, life is lifin’ and you all know that I am an attorney by day work in primarily the immigration law space. And as Ada and I were reflecting on like, what’s going on in our lives, what’s going on in the next three months that could impact what we’re going to do, like what we can do with the podcast. And I realized that I just cannot predict that far in the future. The nature of the work that I do during the day is, is responsive to crises often. So I do practice in a limited capacity, what I what my, my actual job is, is to create programs that bring in volunteer attorneys to support the immigration attorney staff. So yes, I have my own cases, but then I also have to figure out okay, well, this crisis is happening, how can I meet the need for legal services by bringing in in training and supervising volunteers? And like I said the immigration space, it’s crisis responsive? And I’ve you know, I’ve been in this space for what year is it? 2024. So maybe seven years now. And it’s just there’s no such thing as a boring day. And every, so it’s hard for me to say, What am I going to what’s my schedule gonna be like in March and truly, it’s energy, right? You know, lifestyle medicine, it’s like, well, I know that I might, I’m not planning any clinics, but I would like to save time to ski. I don’t ski I’m, that’s Ada as me as Ada. But like, you know, I don’t know what my energy levels like, maybe I’m just gonna want to sit and read, maybe I’m gonna want to, you know, cook, maybe I’m gonna want to do a getaway I, I don’t know what that would look like. And more often than not, it’s resting, just resting. And it’s tough to plan for the pod if I can’t see or have a reasonable idea of what my schedule is going to look like. And, you know, that’s just Ada and I, you all know that there are other folks on the podcast, who work behind the scenes whose voices you don’t hear audibly, but come through in the work that we do. And you know, all of them are crucial to each episode. And, you know, lots of things in their lives have changed as well.

Ada   

Yeah. And if I think about where we were, in the beginning, reflecting back to us, well, you are in a very different spot workwise. And you went through a transition, me like kind of witnessing it. And I think you’ve done such a good job of advocating for yourself and what you need, professionally and with the pod. And so I hold you as a role model for kind of doing their own self advocacy, and also, understanding the impact that your day to day like day job has, I’m like, wow, we should, we should definitely commend Nicole for what she does outside of the pod. And so I’m just proud to be your friend. And yeah, like you handle crises, way more gracefully than myself for many of the people I’ve ever worked with in the past. And so much respect for those skills. And also for the folks who have put together the pod over the last three years, we’ve had almost 20 People kind of joined the team at different varying times, take breaks from the team, depending on where they are personally, professionally, sewing wise, all that. And we would not be here without all of those folks. But again, we kind of took a survey of where everyone was at. And instead of putting ourselves through, you know, more stress to recruit new folks onward them and run myself and Nicole into the ground, we’ve decided to kind of shift to a new model. We don’t know full disclosure, if this is a permanent shift or not. Or if this is something we’re just going to test for this year. But basically, our new format is going to be that we’re going to release one episode a month ish. Don’t hold us to every four weeks you will see it on your Instagram and hopefully in your podcast feed since you’re subscribed when we have a new episode, but that’s our goal, one episode a month. We do have a few of them planned out and ready to go so you will be getting new content. Don’t worry at Anything else that we can release on our feed will just be a nice extra surprise. We’ve already done that a few weeks ago with Nicole’s brand new to her vintage Bernette machine. And if you want to check that out, that is on our Instagram, we did a live IG TV. Do they still call it an IG TV TV?

I don’t know. No, it’s all Reels, I think. 

Right. So the best way to keep up with the latest updates is definitely our Instagram. And by subscribing to the pod, we will obviously be active on Instagram, it’s going to be mostly me and Nicole and some of the team chiming in when they are free. And if you have more content that you would like us to share, or repost, that you think fits with, you know the ethos of the podcast, which is to elevate and amplify Asian voices within the sewing community. Definitely send those to us if I will just disclaim, again, we just said we both have two very full time jobs. So if it’s a story, and we don’t see it within 24 hours, we apologize, but if it is a post, or if it’s just a note that we can reshare definitely do that, we will most likely come back to you and ask if you haven’t already explicitly told us that we have permission to reshare if we can have permission to reshare. But yeah, that’s what you can expect from us both in this podcast feed and on Instagram.

Nicole  

So thank you, thank you, everyone, for coming on this journey with us. And sticking on this journey with us. We are so grateful for your listenership and your community. And we still have our Ko-fi page and we are still selling our labels. And you know, we do need to raise funds for things like editing and transcription software and to keep our website up to date. So you can check us out on Kofi, K-O-dash, f-i.com/asiansewistcollective, and um, you can become a member or you can do one off donations or pay what you want for our labels. So thank you again for your understanding your patience and your continued support. 

Do you love this podcast? Do you like personalizing your sewing projects with sewing labels? Do you know someone who loves personalizing their projects with these labels? Or do you know someone who just loves sewing? If the answer is yes to any of those questions, please check out the Asian Sewist Collective sewing label collection. New for this season is a sustainability set. Our very own producer and artists Mariko Abe designed these just for you with sayings like lovingly rescued fibers. And I’m thrifty and I know it. These labels will be a perfect gift for your sewing friends and family. And of course for you. We also have our original collection of labels up on our Kofi page to purchase please go to Ko-fi.com/asiansewistcollective, your purchase goes towards helping this all volunteer podcast keep going by helping with things like editing transcripts and publishing. Your support is greatly appreciated.

All right. Well, one of the things I should have started out with was saying Happy New Year to everyone it is 2024. And Ada and I were fortunate enough to go on a little holiday for the both of us. Not together. Sorry, I should make that clear. Although I would love that.

Ada   

Dream.

Nicole  

That’s the dream. We you know, we we both recently went on vacation and we’ll we’ll tell you all about it because we’re here to talk about what we saw what we bought. And I thought you know, you’d like to see so this video will be on YouTube for you to look at. But of course we’ll do our best to be descriptive. And, you know, Ada, let’s, let’s start with you. Where did you go?

Ada   

I thought you’re gonna start that intro with like, Happy New Year also, it’s about to be the Lunar New Year. So Happy New Year for everyone else who’s celebrating? No, you don’t. But it’s me.

Nicole  

I was almost I was gonna say happy like Gregorian New Year and I was like, Wow, what a nerdy way to introduce the podcast. I was like, maybe I’ll just go back. You can hear that hesitation in my voice. I was like, oh, it’s almost have waited. Yeah.

Ada   

Where did I go? I was really lucky to go to Japan and Taiwan. First trip back to anywhere in Asia since the pandemic. So we started out in we flew into Tokyo, from the East Coast. So first we went back to visit some family. We went to Tokyo for a day flew up to Sapporo, which is on the island of Hokkaido in Japan so very far north very snowy and cold. We did the city of Sapporo for a few days, which was really nice. Didn’t get to do any fabric shopping there. Then we went in the opposite direction. We went all the way south to Taiwan, my friend from college, who is also Taiwanese, she decided to do her wedding and her wedding banquet in Taiwan. And that was actually really nice because her now husband’s family is all on that side of the Pacific. So they were able to come. And a whole bunch of people from college who I haven’t seen in a really long time were there. And he also went to the same college as us. And I forgot that we had overlapping friends. So talk about a reunion all the way across the world. That was really nice. We were actually only in Taiwan for we were in Taipei for two nights, so about 30-36 hours and did not really, really want to to try to get to shopping. Raquel who is I think Raquel in Asia on Instagram is actually retired there. And we’ve chatted a bit about where to go fabric shopping. And I was so annoyed, I didn’t have time to reach out to her. And I didn’t have time to go shopping. I was literally just there for my friend’s wedding. And hopefully we’ll have more time on the next trip to hang out visit more people. But flew back to Sapporo went skiing, which, if you have ever done a sport in your country, and then go see it done in a different country highly recommend because the etiquette is usually the same, but a little different is definitely interesting there. And then we ended our trip with one last night and half day in Tokyo, which is when I got to squeeze in some sewing because we had a little more time in Tokyo, we had a few more hours, and we thought we actually did so I was able to convince my lovely partner to accompany me. 

Nicole  

Wow, that sounds like a lot of like movement within within a small area. So how long were you overseas?

Ada   

I was overseas for about a week and a half. So but my whole trip was actually about two weeks because we went back to the East Coast first and then we went straight there. So I think I spent four or five days on the East Coast. One day bookending each part of the trip and Tokyo three or four days in Sapporo three or four days up in Niseko, which is where you were. We went skiing and 2- 3- 2- days ish in Taiwan. So yeah, about a week and a half.

Nicole  

That sounds like a very fast week and a half. 

Ada   

Yeah, it was a lot of back and forth. And you know, we had planned some of the luggage we did have to buy a duffel bag to bring some stuff home because I didn’t plan on buying that much stuff. And then I got along.

Nicole  

I mean, while you’re over there, right? And you might as well,

Ada   

I was trying to be good. It’s trying to be

Nicole  

fair, fair. So just a backup. Raquel is she she’s in Taiwan. 

Ada   

Yeah, she’s in town. I believe she lives either in Taipei or near Taipei. Because the places we have discussed are in the city. 

Nicole  

Okay. Next time. I’ve only been in Taipei airport. And it was really nice.

Ada   

It’s gotten a lot nicer.

Nicole  

Okay, I was like, Wow, this might actually be the nicest airport I’ve ever been to while we were laying over on the way to the Philippines and 2018. It was good stuff. But yeah, so you got to go out for just for a little bit for fabric or first for sewing stuff. So what did you end up seeing?

Ada   

So, listeners probably have heard this on other podcasts or blog posts. There is a neighborhood I don’t know if it’s technically in Tokyo or just outside of but it’s called Nippori fabric town N-I-P-P-O-R-I. And it’s just a street full of fabric and notions haberdashery shops. It’s kind of like a sewing paradise. Because you get off of the subway, the metro. And you see arrows immediately. Like the exits point you they’re like Nippori fabric town this way. You walk over like two blocks. And it’s just the street and I think quite a few folks have actually gone and shown it off on Instagram and YouTube. So I’m definitely not the first nor will I be the last to go there. I had about an hour and a half to get in and get out before we had to kind of head back to our hotel to pick up our stuff and go to the airport. So we were on a time crunch and I explicitly told my partner like we’re on a time crunch. I’m You are my timekeeper. Because you’re not really looking at the fabrics here. So you’re on that and I didn’t realize I was going to have that time until the night before so I did some quick research and decided that the best use of my time in that limited time would be To hit up one of the biggest shops there, which is Tomato. And Tomato is I don’t know if they’re technically a chain, but they have multiple locations within Nippori fabric town. And so they have like, I think, four or five stores along that street on different blocks, and they’re on both sides of the street. It’s really you can’t miss it because the big awning says Tomato, and then there’s a drawing of a tomato. I decided to go to the main building because it was the biggest one and it felt like where I could see the most stuff that would be unique. And this kind of applies to all of the souvenirs in my kind of general shopping while traveling philosophy. I am not that person who wants to buy something that I could buy at home unless replacing something I need it’s it’s stuff I can’t get anywhere else or would be more difficult now with the internet and you know, shipping nowadays, it’s that’s definitely changed what it what I bring back, right? Because in the olden days right before BB creams were a thing here, I would have to buy a BB cream and Asian on the back of my suitcase. Now I can buy that online, like Yeah, so it’s definitely shifted what I can buy and what I want to buy there. So I was prioritizing fabrics that I couldn’t necessarily source here, or wouldn’t get as much of a selection of here. So the tomato main store has five floors, I believe. And you’re supposed to actually. So it’s a little different from some of the fabric stores here where you would like shop at all and then tally it up at the end. You shop by floor and checkout on each floor, which is really fun because each floor has a different theme. They have really helpful guides next to the very tiny elevator and the stairs. And we were there it was a Friday, kind of mid morning. And it was busy.

Nicole  

Really? 

Ada   

Yeah, not just with tourists. Definitely there were a few tourists. And there were lots of people just shopping so they could make their own things for their own homes. It seemed like somewhere local somewhere definitely fashion students. Because the fashion, there are some fashion schools nearby. as well. I think I think places that you can take sewing and fashion classes. So it’s a great place to get your supplies. So at first when we stepped in, I was like looking at the markdowns on the first floor because they have some not like seconds. Basically they have like a second section on the first floor. They also have like a discount section. And then they have remnants, and they have pre cuts and they have a whole bunch of stuff. Then I realized that there were four more floors. And since I had to checkout on every floor, I should really walk from the top down.

Nicole  

Yes, that’s what I would have done right. 

Ada   

And actually, we took the elevator all the way to the top floor and worked our way down. I think I didn’t purchase on every floor because not every floor had things I really wanted to bring back and I had at that point calculated how much luggage space. So I had about a full backpack that I could bring back. So we went top down knowing what kind of Sanrio characters that you were into and what kind of characters I’m into and all that stuff. So first, we went to the characters floor.

Nicole  

The whole floor is character? 

Ada   

Not the whole floor. 

Nicole  

Oh. 

Ada   

Yeah, like a half of the floor of characters. 

Nicole  

Wow. 

Ada   

Yeah. You get a lot of Sanrio. You get the Pokeman Gundam you get a lot of Disney. And it was it was all sorts of like really cute stuff. A lot of it being like Canvas cotton quilting, pre quilted, as well. And then you had like other cool patterns that weren’t necessarily like branded characters but like cute cats and dogs and like illustrations of things. So I spent a lot of time on that floor and I ended up picking up a Sanrio print for you and a Sanrio printed for me. And a few I think two other prints that I thought that were really cool that were very Japan for lack of a better word. One of them was definitely like a mountain motif but kind of done geometrically and I thought it would be a nice textured cotton. It’s the single gauze textured cotton single gauze for like T shirt or not t shirt but like you know, woven shirt. 

Yeah. Boxtop for the summer. So that was really nice. And then the other one was like ooh, geometric pants pants for the summer, I guess indictment on that zero waste kick. And that was lovely and the one that I actually already made into zero waste pants. Was this floral corduroy I that I found it was actually really light corduroy. And it was I think, high wale count like a 21 wale. Maybe it was…

Nicole  

What does that mean? 

Ada   

So wales are the number in a quarter or you like the number of little columns that you have? And I believe when you per inch Yeah, I believe when you refer to the number, it’s like per inch. So it was like really lightweight and really small wales. And I just loved the idea of having a floral corduroy, right? Because that’s something you don’t see as much. 

Nicole  

Nope

Ada   

Right. And corduroy is like a fabric I could probably wear here. If not half of the year, a good like, quarter of the year. Right winter. And you can layer it if it’s light. So I’ve been wearing it on colder days with my Merino base layer I wear for skiing. And if I’ve gotten a lot of compliments on it, so yeah, we’re gonna love the corduroy. And that was the characters and prints floor. I can also tell you what I didn’t buy on that floor. Is that I don’t know if that’s interesting to people.

Nicole  

Well, yeah, it’s interesting. It’s interesting to me, because I just kind of want to know what’s there, whether you bought it.

Ada   

So I one of the first fabrics I gravitated towards on the floor, but then didn’t end up getting was this cute strawberry print, where it was a solid, you had the option, anything between white or light pink background, and then these like illustrated strawberries, and I just thought they were really cute. But the fabric substrate itself, right, was a thicker, heavier weight. twill cotton, I’m pretty sure it’s 100% cotton. And I just couldn’t see myself making it into anything I was actually going to use or wear. It just felt like if I got it, it would end up being an accessory. And it wouldn’t be something I was like excited about. So I held on to it and made my rounds and then found a few of the other things that I ended up buying. And I was like, Okay, I’m gonna put this back. But I was holding on to that. And I think the mountain print. And they’re both bolts. And the lovely gentleman helping on that floor came over and was like, here’s a cart. And so they give you a big, it’s kind of a tall, maybe three foot tall, almost like a laundry basket cart on four wheels that you can roll around and put your bolts in. Oh, yeah. And so they asked you to use that to take it around. And then you take it up to the cutting table, which is next to the checkout. And when I was getting my fabrics cut on that floor, there was another woman being helped who had brought her pattern pieces, actually and was laying them out to see how much yardage or meterage was needed.

Nicole  

Interesting.

Ada   

Hmm.

Nicole  

I like that because I mean, I will often go by the envelope or the the printed pattern, you know, and I’ll just say this is what I need. But if you bring it with you, and I would assume that people are cool with that, you can do your placement of the pieces and figure out like, do I really need two and a half? Or can I get away with doing a quarter that type of thing? That’s cool.

Ada   

Yeah, so that was really fun. And we headed downstairs, I think we went through a fancy fabrics section, which I was like, I don’t have any really fancy events coming up that I know of in the next year. So I’m good. I also have plenty of fancy dresses that I’ve made at this point that you all have heard about. And I would love to rewear and I did actually rewear one of my dresses to my friend’s wedding, which was nice. And then I think we got to a knits section where I would have loved I would have loved some Merino like 100% Merino, but there was all acrylic ones and kind of scratchy things and some cotton and Terry that I wasn’t really feeling and then the cheap poly stuff and so I was like okay, we can we can move on. I have a lot of this at home where I don’t need it. And we kept going and there were some colorful faux fur. That was worth a mention. 

Nicole  

Mob wife aesthetic.

Ada   

Mob wife aesthetic but like neon mob wife, mob wife, Barbie mob wife goes to a rave.

Nicole  

Yeah, I mean, a mob wife wouldn’t do that. But leave up at the rave at the top, in the balcony with their own table,

Ada   

Right supervising. And yeah, so eventually we made it back to the first floor. And there had been some character prints that I’d seen in the discount section that I went back to. And some of them I think were there was a Bichon and then there was actually one that was really funny. It was illustrations of different bowls of food, Japanese food, labeled with the hiragana and katakana spellings of the food. So that’s like the alphabet kind of letters versus the kanji like characters that are more similar to Chinese. And I can read a little bit. So I was reading some of animals like shrimp rock like tempura. And then like ramen, it was really funny. And I was like, I found this really cute. I just, again, have no use for this. And I was like, yeah, if I could come up with a use, or I knew somebody that I could make like this, I would be all over this. And I decided to put it back. And then I hopefully found some more American tourists want this one woman was asking her husband, can you read this? And looking at the fabric being like, it’s all food? I think I should get this. It’s cute. And their adult daughter was like, looking at them. Like, do you really get I wanted to be like, she does, though. On behalf of the person who right now who’s exercising a lot of self restraint. She does. Yeah, for sure. So that was that floor. And then in the back of that floor, they had some really nice double gauzes that were 100% Cotton, some are made in Japan, some are made in China. And then they had linen, and then linen, hemp blends, and linen cotton blends. It was like a woven paradise, which, you know, from knowing me and my sewing is my jam. 

Nicole  

Yes. 

Ada   

So that’s probably where I spent the majority of the rest of my time.

Nicole  

Yeah.

Ada   

And I was able to find, I ended up getting smaller because of these because they were a bit pricier. Like, the other fabrics I had gotten range between like 600 to 1600 yen, per meter, which with the exchange rate right now is anywhere from a little over $5 to like $10 ish plus, per meter. The fancy, nice wovens in the back started, I think around like the 2500 to 3000 maybe 4000 yen per meter. So like up there, right? Like You’re Nice there, the nice quality wovens that we all love to look at, and touch. So those I got a couple colors. And the brand, I guess of one of them was Aradaki Some. So A-R-A-D-A-K-I space S-O-M-E. I hope I’m pronouncing it correctly, because all of the tags were in Japanese. And then I was like plugging it into Google Translate. But basically from what I can tell it’s a special like dyed linen from Toyama. And basically, like, it’s a very, like, it’s a very craft men, quote unquote, fancy fabric. So it’s like dyed in a special slow process in a smaller batch than like what you would normally see what you think explains some of the price. But the textile is like, kneeded and worked almost like bread. And it’s gotten the dye. Yeah, I think in the dye vat and it’s like got this really soft texture like even before I washed pre wash them. They just felt really silky, almost buttery smooth for a linen. And it had like a really nice, you know how some linens even when you wash them they got that like crispy. Like wrinkle?

Nicole  

Yeah, yeah.

Ada   

This was not a crispy wrinkle. This was like a soft, like nice, natural kind of wrinkle. And so the also each batch is like done on its own. So no batch is the same. So I’ve got some nice greens and pinks, too. Which I’m sure listeners will see on my feed at some point very soon because I as soon as I got home, they went right in for pre washing and right on to my rack for drying. And yeah, that was basically about it. I once I checked out on that floor, I had to stuff it all in my backpack, make sure it actually so it would fit on the way home. They actually have a packing table on the side, which is really funny because I started packing on the floor because I have no shame. Hashtag Americans.

Nicole  

Do what you gotta do.

Ada   

Do what you gotta do. But then I saw they had a packing table and there were a few people over there like, repacking their bags and fitting everything in. So yeah, in total, I think I spent just shy of like $120 on fabric, which is actually really impressive considering the amount that I got, but the exchange rate right now is in our favor. And once we were done with that I had a fairly heavy backpack to walk back to our hotel with so yeah,

Nicole  

It sounds like you made the most of your hour and a half.

Ada   

I did, and then we passed quite a few, you know, notions haberdashery shops and I had to really resist the urge.

Nicole  

Oh, I also, yeah, when we

Ada   

left that shop, I realized that the Tomato is known for having a discount store, like one of their locations. There’s a discount store where they have like 100 yen wall. Oh, right. So 100 yen per meter, which right now is under $1, which is wild. And I ended up seeing that like realizing it was really close. We just popped into like, look, I totally understand the appeal. I love a good bargain. Value shopper, but I saw a lot of those fabrics when I was like, oh, poly chiffon. Yeah, I don’t need poly chiffon in my life or Ooh, it’s like a poly knit. Yeah, not know what I need in my life right now. And so there were tons of people in there as well shopping. I did see quite a few more of like the folks who look like fashion students in there as well. Definitely looking for materials for projects. But yeah, that was also quite a large selection and large variety on the wall. So if you are going to Japan and you’re going to be in Tokyo and you have time to go to Nippori fabric town, you definitely need at least an hour and a half for one store. Choose wisely. But also, there’s a lot to see and touch and oh my gosh, I would definitely highly recommend.

Nicole  

I would probably plan for, like half a day. And

Ada   

I was gonna say, a day.

Nicole  

Full day. Fine, full day. You don’t have to tell me twice. I have for the ones that you got me here. So if folks want to see. So for those who who don’t know like what is what is Sanrio? We didn’t say the most like the most popular character in Sanrio. But like what is Sanrio?

Ada   

Okay, Sanrio is a company, Japanese company with a lot of branded characters. If you’ve ever heard of Hello Kitty. That’s probably Sandra’s biggest most famous character. She is a fictional British kitty girl who has now been around for was it 30 years 50 years there was some anniversary celebration going on

Nicole  

It has to be longer than 30 because I’m older than that and I remember it around for much longer.

Ada   

And I remember growing up that it was really hard to get anything Sanrio granted here like it was also expensive so like everything that I had. That was Hello Kitty like a Hello Kitty binder. I can very clearly picture it right now and use that thing to death in high school and brought it to college. No shame I had a Kerropi which is this little like frog character, compact mirror with a brush. Everything I had from Sanrio. I was like I treasured which you think yeah, similar, right?

Nicole  

Yeah, same we growing up. My sister and I were like obsessed and we were you were children of the early 90s. So you know we’re we loved all that stuff. And you could only find it at like one store called Zany Brainy which was like, it was one kiosk at Zany Brainy.

Ada   

I remember Zany Brainy!

Nicole  

And then the there’s just one kiosk that had Sanrio and like they they have the prices on each item. And it was two it was like it was a lot for what it was and like we would only be allowed to get like one small thing. But But Pochacco is the character that’s like my character. My sister’s was Kerropi. So yes, Hello Kitty. Very popular.

Ada   

I’m a Stan.

Nicole  

You are? okay. Yeah, no, me too. Love. Love her. And I have more Sanrio now as an adult because I have income. And I have good friends that think of me when they’re in Japan. So you got me this cotton Pochacco it’s so cute. This is really for the viewers because you saw this yourself, but it’s okay. And if you ask me what I’m gonna make with it, I have no idea. No idea. But I’m like, I’m thinking like, I kind of want to make it like a zip zippered pouch set. Yeah, we’ll set I think that would be really cute. 

Ada   

Adorable. 

Nicole  

And then I have this layer Bichon looking fabric from you as well. Because

Ada   

it’s like the Bichon fabric. This one I actually like, there was the Bichon fabric similar to the ones that we both ordered online. But then I saw this one and it was a little different. Like this one might even look more like Z.

Nicole  

Yeah, I don’t I mean, like I don’t I’ve not seen this one before. So thank you for thinking of me. Something that you would you’d said when you were describing it. So when I was in Valencia last year, there was a place called who Julian Lopez, which is…

You told us about this.

Same sort of thing. It was like five stories of shops. The top floor was like $500 per meter like silks and stuff for their special festival. But just just the the experience of going through the floor is it really reminded me a lot of that. And I can’t think of anything near me or even in America that has that same experience like

Ada   

I do know.

Nicole  

We’re okay. Okay, say more.

Ada   

If you ever go to Britex fabrics in San Francisco, B-R-I-T-E-X, they’re just off of Union Square. I used to pass them all the time going to work, you know, pre sewing, but like big fashion lovers here. So I would always like stand outside the window. brocades tweeds boucles, any type of like fancy fabric they had a lot of and they have I think it’s either two or three floors. And they have like a clearance section. And and so it is kind of similar. I don’t think you have to cut every you know, cut everything on the same floor. You’re on foot. Maybe you do. I don’t know. But yeah, I think there’s like a there’s more of those in like San Francisco and not so much in New York. I think most of the fabric district stores I’ve been to New York are one floor and quite large.

Nicole  

Yeah, yes. Probably can be sprawling. Yeah. Which for whatever reason, different floors, for me sounds like it’d be more easily navigable. But I suppose it’s all the same. But so another thing you’d mentioned a few times prints and you and I love those corduroys, floral corduroys. If you asked me to describe your style prints is not really in there. Not that it’s not that you’re anti print, but something about what you’re telling me I was like, Oh, so this store brought out the like, the print lover ain Ada is did you get is like Did you get any solid colors just like the fancy fabric were that were those solid greens and pinks

Ada   

and melanins were the linens and linen blends were very, very on brand also thinking like, you know, some of them are my brand color. And I can make or wear some things that I make some things that I could wear technically for work or for, you know, a new headshot or something like that. And I’m very much like into that. So you’ll see it on the grid at some point with me and my packaging. Next to it will I think it’ll be cute. But I will say you’re right, I’m not a big prints person, normally day to day. Not even like basic checkers or you know, pretty repetitive, for instance, I’m very like solid and solid colors. And I stick within a range. And I have been trying to push myself a little bit with the branded green colors or as close as I can find. And I don’t know, it was something about that floral. I’m really particular I think when it comes to prints. 

Nicole  

Yeah.

Ada   

And so something about seeing that floral because there was enough spacing in it. And the repeats were cool. And the specific colorway was this like dark navy, almost black. That really just was something where I could say Oh, I own all these other creams and blues, blacks and grays that would actually like play off nicely off of the colors in the print. I will say I was looking for one specific type of print that is only available in Japan. The specific Liberty Hello Kitty prints were in there. No, I think I was actually a few weeks early for that release. And so I did not find it. You can definitely find it online. I thought it would be really special if I could find it there. As we’ve established I’m not a traditional Liberty kind of person. Like my previous purchases from Liberty have been prints, but they’ve been either like bigger scale like the suncatcher dress from Ella that I mean, and I wore to the Eras tour or some of the other like, solid repeats that I’ve gotten, you know, in silk to make T shirts. I think I also picked up a Liberty print from Sister Mintaka before the last time when I was in the UK. So yeah, I’m I’m a mixed print fan of hers and we’re we’re working on it. Yeah, I was I saw that pop up on my feed this week and it’s like dang it just missed it but I’m sure there will be another opportunity to find it. And you know, even if I had purchased that I think I would really struggle personally with finding make a pattern that I would want to use it for.

Nicole  

Look if I find it somewhere online did and it’s like not a lot not like a friendly shipping rates. Do you want to go in on it?

Ada   

Because talk to me when you find it.

Nicole  

Okay, okay, okay. Ooh, now I’ll see. I think I need to be a personal shopper because I love sort of The thrill of shopping which I realize is highly consumeristic and bad for the environment, but I could be like a thrift or to like a resale anyway that’s beside the point but that sounds really awesome I know that you know my husband and I I think our next big trip is gonna big like multi week trip is going to be to East and Southeast Asia. I’d like to we like he definitely wants to do Japan I don’t know if he’s knows what it would take to plan to go to Japan but and I’d like to see other parts of Asia as well being in Australia which is despite seem counterintuitive, but like being on that side of the world kind of made me really want to explore more of that. And granted Australia is in the southern hemisphere and Japan is in the northern but we were in the almost the same timezone. Which was, which was awesome. Once I realized that you were in Japan, and I was in Australia, I was like, Wait, are we in the same timezone like, and it was very, very close. So it was fun to be able to like message you during the day and everything. So spoilers. That’s where I went to Australia.

Ada   

Nice segue. You were in Australia for how long?

Nicole  

I was there for three weeks. I landed on a Friday, and I left on a Friday. But the funny thing about going that far is that I left on a Wednesday. And I got there on Friday. And it still Yes, I got the day back on the way back. But like, I just didn’t have a Thursday. Like it just wasn’t there. And we decided we were gonna go. It is our 10 year wedding anniversary this year. And we just happened a couple of days ago. And we said let’s do we as in me, I said let’s do something big. And we I have a lot of family in Australia. My mom’s some of my mom’s siblings immigrated there, she came to America. And so I’ve got lots of family there. And so we decided to spend Christmas and New Year there. But Michael and I were just the two of us for the first week. Like I’m glad we built that time in just, you know, just to the two of us. And we spent a few days in Melbourne City, my cousins live out in the suburbs, kind of like how I live out in the suburbs. And we’ve spent a few days in Sydney as well, just the two of us before coming back for all of the Christmas festivities. And I had the time to go to lots of places. So not an hour and a half at any one but lots of different places. But we’re going to be speedy about this because we’ve been talking for a while but I think it’ll it’s a I of course I went out of course I went so when shopping multiple days different times. I did so big box spot. Okay. A lot of our listeners I think will be familiar with Spotlight. It’s often I’ve heard it often compared to at least their fabric selection. Joann here in the United States. Have you been to Spotlight?

Ada   

I have not. I actually don’t think I I don’t think I hit up any sewing shops in Australia while I was working because I wasn’t actually like sewing yet.

Nicole  

Yeah. So spotlight is it’s kind of like Joann but I feel like it has more housewares. So it’s like Bed Bath and Beyond with the sewing section in I don’t know, at least

Ada   

Oh, housewares like finished housewares like curtains, you can buy

Nicole  

Yup and bedding. And I think there were maybe like some appliances. Like I can’t remember I was very jet lagged for like that. There were a lot of naps. So that’s the Spotlight. They’re everywhere. You can find them everywhere. And the big thing that I got there so knowing that it’s like kind of like the bargain, you know, store and not not like small boutique type of store. I was like okay, well I know I’m not I know what I’m going to look for here. But when I got we went there. I think if it wasn’t the first day I was like, it was basically like keep Nicole awake to fight jetlag will drag her to Spotlight and that by then their Christmas cotton like quilting cotton’s were 70% off. So I got a lot of like single yards of Christmas themed fabric with marsupial’s.

Ada   

Oh my god. Yes.

Nicole  

I unlike you. I didn’t I didn’t stop myself and say what am I going to do with this? Because I don’t know.

Ada   

Yeah, but I had way less luggage space makes sense. 

Nicole  

I had a lot. We so we did the whole we did all four. We only did three on the way there but we really only had to buy the fourth luggage or bring the fourth luggage which we just asked our cousin who has an extra one and it turns out they bought it in America the last time they were there. So it’s made its way home

Ada   

Nicole’s family luggage. It’s like yeah, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. Family, sister, family. To travel.

Nicole  

This always, this always happens. And so I’m grateful that we’re able to actually, you know, I didn’t have to buy new luggage or anything like that. But it was mostly gifts for family, like, all the family there wanted us to ferry gifts here, which was, I’m happy to do that. Like it’s a lot of fun. So none of that Christmas fabric is here is even.

Ada   

So you’re saying you bought enough that it did not fit?

Nicole  

Correct. Here’s the thing. My cousin is getting married in August, and some are already coming from Australia. So someone in that caravan of people that is coming will stick it in their luggage, and it’s Christmas themed, like you know, yeah, what am I going to do with a wallaby with those Santa hat? I can’t I I still don’t know what I’m gonna do. But I’m like, I think I would love to make just like gift bags, or tea towels. That would be so cute. And but yeah, they were like 70% off maybe even 80 I can’t remember but I was like, well buying this. And then in the day, we stay downtown in the city proper and I just happen to walk by a place called Lincraft which is also like Spotlight but I think cheaper in my opinion. It seemed like less expensive. I bought some yardage just because I thought I was gonna do some hand sewing on the plane of like a polysatin. I can show you I have visuals Ada just because I thought it’d be fun to like hand sew something with this.

Ada   

Ohhh.

Nicole  

But then I didn’t because jetlag. Most of my time awake. If I wasn’t exploring or eating, I was sleeping. Which is fine. But yeah, I picked that up. And so those are the big box stores. And then I’m going to start with what I skipped.

Ada   

Oh, hot take

Nicole  

one was by choice one was just a failure of scheduling. So I did not go to Tessuti. Have you heard of Tessuti?

Ada   

Yep. I think Tessuti might be the most well known of the ones you’ve mentioned so far.

Nicole  

Yeah, so Tessuti like, when I was looking at I was down the down the block from my hotel when I was staying downtown. I stayed with family, those those latter two weeks. And it looked at the website and it said, you know, like, finest European imports. I was like nah. I’m not gonna, I’m not gonna go to Australia and buy European imports. I’m just gonna go ahead and skip it like I would like if I have time. I’ll check it out. Jetlag so no. 

Okay. 

And then what I ended up skipping and I didn’t mean to skip it, and it’s okay that it happened. The Fabric Store and yeah, so it’s, it’s, from what I understand very popular in the sewing community. It’s also known for its a lot of it’s New Zealand and Australian source wools and I have almost ordered from there before and the shipping is fine, it’s reasonable. But I’m like, You know what, I’m going to be in Australia. I’m gonna go to the store. And, and my cousin and I planned a day to go fabric shopping. And it was it was well past I think it was like January 3 or something when most of the places like open up again, you know, it’s past the New Year holiday. And there’s a neighborhood in Melbourne called Fitzroy which I would describe as like a hipsterish kind of neighborhood, which is great. It’s actually it’s it is really nice. But there are multiple stores there and we were planning on like hitting them up, you know, just on foot. We got to the we got to the fabric store and they were still closed for the holiday and I was like fine, I was like looking through the window. Oh, okay. Well, wasn’t meant to be. And that’s the only store that they have in Melbourne but they have different locations like throughout Australia and of course in New Zealand. So I just wanted to touch what they had.

Ada   

But if it makes you feel better, I have ordered their marina in the past, like 100% Merino. I’ve sewn it up into Nikko tops, Nikko dresses, tank tops. I think you know, the Whalen tank I’ve done. It just you know, base layers. I’ve used scraps of it to make glove liners, which is really fun. But I would actually say the fabric that you got me, which I’m sure you’ll get to in a minute, was also a Merino, and that one was nicer.

Nicole  

Oh, good to know, good to know.

Ada   

That’s my hot take. You actually found some nicer Merino. And I was like, what, like I already knew, I think I’ve chatted about the fabrics are Merino quality and regular like this fabrics, recovery and care instructions for it with quite a few folks in the sewing community on Instagram and Up. While it is definitely an affordable option, it’s not necessarily everybody’s favorite option.

Nicole  

Okay, good to know. It was fortuitous, I suppose, and that I missed out on that. So, yeah, sad, but certainly not to some. All right, no worries. There was a place in downtown Melbourne called Morris and Sons. And it is actually traditionally a needle works shop. So it’s known for knitting and crocheting, like that kind of stuff. But when I looked online, and this was down down the street from where I was staying downtown, they said they also have like, fabric. So alright, let’s check it out. It was really cute. I went to the the it was just rolls of fabric, like the big ones that are leaned up against the wall, and I was looking at it and said, Oh, fabric, I don’t know, 60% off or whatever. And I spoke to one of the people that work there. And she said, Oh, these are all actually even further discounted because the owner of this location thought that we were going to turn into like a dress making store, but it didn’t really take off. So you know that I mean, they’re their people are knitted knitters and sewers. So I got a couple of really nice cuts of fabric. And they’re in true Ada fashion solid colors, huh? Where are they? They are knits. And one is I pulled up the tag. It is in Italian designer knit. And it’s 90% viscose and 10% cashmere. 

Ada   

Ooh, so soft.

Nicole  

It’s very soft, super soft. And it has is but it’s only it has like four way stretch. And it’s really it’s you can see you can see the light through it. So it’s like tissue weight but it would make a really nice like long sleeve, you know, simple long sleeve or even like a mock neck I think, or T shirt. But I was like oh cashmere Hello. I couldn’t tell you how much anything was honestly, because I was sort of operating on the whole like, American discount which is with the exchange rate everything was like 40% off so it was like 10 Australian dollars. It was like six American dollars. And then I got this mustard let me pull up what I had to like, take a picture of the tags of course. This is a silk viscose 30% Silk 70% viscose. It’s like it’s also thin, you know, but nice and light.

Nice drape.

Yeah, that’s beautiful. So that came from Morris and Sons. So hot tip if you’re in Melbourne.  Morris and Sons has also has fabric so that was one and then in the Fitzroy area, there’s a place called Draper’s it’s it’s a really small store and that’s where I got the merino wool that I sent you. And I got a few other things but what I ended up doing was just buying remnants because they had like a remnant you know, they had different remnant areas and yes, they were rolls you know, of stuff, of course, but it’s kind of like well, I’m not going to be buying big pieces anyway. So I picked up that merino wool it’s a you know, a gray marbled Merino, which I have to make into a base layer probably just a mock neck, right. It’s really nice and it’s it’s not a so it’s kind of two way stretch though. So that’s not that big a concern right like

Ada   

I think as long as you’re not making it into like baselayer leggings or pants, right like that. You want some four way stretch to you know, not bust seams. 

Nicole  

Yeah, yeah, I’m not interested in busting any seams Thank you very much. So I got that a Draper’s. And then I also got this cotton seersucker.

Ada   

 Ooh, Stripes.

Nicole  

It’s really cute. Yeah, it’s like railroad stripes and seersucker is not something I’ve worked with. So I think it was one of the things where it was affordable. And it’s about a meter and a half, but super wide. It’s a dark gray and white stripe. And I was just kind of draping it over myself. And I kind of think I don’t think it could work with pants because my thighs or my thighs would have conversations that would bust the inside pretty quickly. But I think like it would be a super cute shirt or even Are you familiar with the Sewing Mason Atlas wrapped dress? Oh, yeah, yeah. I feel like that would be kind of cute to play with the stripes and stuff.

Ada   

That would be cool.

Nicole  

But yeah, Draper’s I, you know, I highly recommend I think it’s like a really cute store. And the person that was there was just one person working in the shop and she was so she was really sweet. And then there’s a place called Darn Cheap Fabrics and sounds like alright, let me check it out. I’m managing my expectations here. Maybe it’s like the, like 100 yen

Ada   

Hey, credit for knowing what to name their shop so that you can find it on the interwebs.

 Exactly, exactly. SEO for the win right and I was there I went there. So you know, it worked on me. But I was like, you know a lot of it was poly chiffon like polyester. But I did find this really nice linen cotton blend. That is also mustard. It has a really nice weight. And I do like linen, but I like when it’s blended as well, because then it doesn’t wrinkle as much. And this is I think, I think this is suitable enough for a bottom weight. So I was thinking okay, culotte pants or something. But yeah, those were like my in store purchases. Because one of the things that I did was order a lot of Nerida. Hanson in advance and have it shipped to my cousin’s house.

Honestly, great plan.

Nicole  

Yeah. I mean, why not? She didn’t she didn’t know at first. And she’s like, Is this yours? And like, of course it is. Of course, of course it is. Or have you sewn with Nerida Hanson? Are you familiar? 

Ada   

No yeah, I’ve seen it. And definitely interesting to me, have not sewn with it.

Nicole  

So the everything is patterned, and colorful. And you know, I really love the print. So I did actually you know what was some solids, you saw my solids? Like, let’s, let’s let’s do do change it up a little bit. But I did place like four different orders because I was like, Oh, this is cute. And I buy something. And then like this started in May of last year. So this was like, and I wasn’t there until December. So she’s just hanging on to all of it. But I’ve heard really good things about the quality of the fabric. And that’s why because like I can’t feel it right. So this is there like a cotton sateen. Who It’s so soft. None of it’s been pre washed yet washed yet. But like, come on now. 

Ada   

Like a basket weave print kind of print.

Nicole  

It is. It’s when my brother my kid, my brother was a kid he used to say when something made him Dizzy that it made him busy. So makes you busy. I still say it everyone in our family still says it. Nerida Hansen also collaborates with Indigenous artists. And so they do have some some prints and this is their this is their linen. So this is an indigenous print. I don’t know what the symbols mean. But I was wanted to support Indigenous artists in Australia. So I envision you know, shirts made out of that.And then this is just like so cute. We just got colors.

Is that Is it floral?

Yeah, I think it’s like a leaf thing. I don’t know.

Ada   

It’s if you’re only listening and not on YouTube. There’s like a rainbow and leaves. And it kind of looks like a radish. Yeah. And if I looked at it screams Nicole would buy this and not.

Nicole  

Yeah, absolutely. This is very me. What am I going to make with it? Oh, no, it’s currently raining. And it had been snowing and freezing. And so this really just you know, warms the heart. Here’s like another cotton sateen that is more subdued than what it’s a like a, like a darker green or navy. With Yeah, like, taupe orange florals are really like beautiful pattern. But the, the quality of the fabric is so nice. I am glad that I purchased it. You know, because I can order it. But like, it’s just there’s not a lot of places that you can order it. And then like, if you buy directly from her and shipped to Australia or the from the designer, it was cheaper or less expensive. So you know, I went with that. So that’s, that’s what I got. I got a lot and I’m in this. I’m in that mode now where I’m like, I don’t want anything else. Like, I don’t want to buy anything else. I don’t need anything else. Because I had such a successful trip. And I’m really excited to start working with these new fabrics and to see how I can work them into my style.

Ada   

yeah, I mean, we always say sew the good fabric, right? And that’s a lot of good fabric that you can sell.

Nicole  

It is I’m not afraid to mess up. I’ll still wear it as long as it

Ada   

Oh I’ve been cutting toiles.

Nicole  

Oh, you have been? You’re like yeah, yeah, I know. I’m not I’m like it’s fine. Like I mean, I will oversize it and then tweak if I need to, but I haven’t like besides the ironing board. I haven’t really done anything yet because I’ve been kind of sick. I’ve been jetlag slash sick since I got back. So hopefully I can get started soon and then look forward to when the weather warms up in the northern hemisphere

Ada   

That kind of wraps up our haul episode. I think we both got a lot of fabric. Listeners, I hope you’re not too jealous. But if you have ever gone traveling and brought back fabric, definitely let us know we’ve had quite a few of our past guests mentioned that before so Nandita on I think episode two talked about it. We’re talking about bringing some makes to travel and always posts those on her grid, which is great. I think Ella also at Handmade Millennial told us about her own purchases while traveling. So definitely tell us about your travel purchases, whether it’s fabric or notions, or maybe like Why or why not, and where you got that fabric and what you’re gonna make with it. But we look forward to seeing you in our next episode.

Nicole  

Happy traveling.

Ada   

Thank you so much for joining us for this episode of the Asian Sewist Collective podcast. If you like our show, please consider supporting us on coffee by becoming a one time or monthly supporter or by buying or selling labels. Your financial support helps us with our overhead expenses. The link to our coffee page is ko-fi.com/asiansewistcollective and you can find the link in our show notes on our website and on our Instagram account. Check us out on Instagram at @AsianSewistCollective That’s one word AsianSewistCollective. You can also help us out by spreading the word and telling your friends. We would also appreciate it if you could rate review and subscribe to this podcast on Apple podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.

Nicole  

All of the links and resources mentioned in today’s episode will be in the show notes on our website. That’s AsianSewistCollective.com And we’d love to hear from you. Email us with your questions, comments or even voice messages if you want to be featured on future episodes at AsianSewistCollective@gmail.com. Thank you so much to the other members of our collective who made this episode a reality. This is the Asian Sewist Collective podcast and we’ll see you next time.

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