Top 5 retail fabric store in Chicago, Tampa Bay Area and online

Hello friends,

Since I have worked a few years as a custom order designer, I have sourced fabrics from different places depending on the project. Many of you are asking me, which stores carry good quality fabric to prepare for that custom order or for your own sewing projects. 

Here is the compilation of my personal favorites:

1.Pennie Fabrics (Sarasota, FL) - I’ve known this gem since 2016 when I used to live in Sarasota and was happy to find it nearby. The owner Nasir carries high quality fabrics both natural and synthetic, including leather pieces which come from designer brands. The origin of the fabrics include Italy, Switzerland, Korea and other mills. This is definitely a must see if you are in the area. You can also reach out to them in their Facebook group with an inquiry of a particular fabric and maybe they will have exactly what they are looking for. 


2. Vogue Fabrics (Evanston, IL) - close to Chicago and has a wide range of different fabrics, notions and even sewing machines. There is a room for upholstery fabrics, special occasion / higher quality fabrics like wool and silks and more budget friendly options as well. They have a separate sections with remnants in the back and sometimes they do a great deals too. If you are in the sewing business, they can put you in their registry for a 10% discount which is a nice touch too.


3. Fishman’s Fabrics (Chicago, IL) - located near downtown Chicago, but close to the highway and has convenient parking space. The store has versatile luxury and high quality fabrics both for fashion and for upholstery as well. The price point is higher than others, but it’s definitely worth checking out, especially if you are looking for European textiles.


4. Textile Discount Outlet (Chicago, IL) - located close to downtown Chicago as well and has street / allocated parking. The store is huge and usually very busy, it is quite easy to get lost. There are three levels with different staircases which sometimes are not connected, so make sure you are prepared and know what you are looking for prior to getting inside because it is easy to get carried away with the variety of rolls and rooms. There are options of both synthetic and natural fibers, but I would say that synthetic fabrics prevail. I was however lucky to have found there great deals on costume wools, you just need to look.


5. - online store with great selection and free domestic shipping over $100. They have all types of fabrics, including branded and Italian fabrics. They can also send you swatches if you are not 100% sure about the feel of the fabric yet before you place a bigger order.


There are my top 5 for retail fabric stores for custom fashion projects. I do shop in Jo-Ann as well, but mostly for zippers and sewing notions. Jo-Ann would be great if you work on quilting and decorating though. At least, that is my personal opinion. 

Let me know, if you know any other great fabric stores - online or in your city, I will be happy to add them to my list!



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