I had such a great time in Hong Kong with AllisonC! As soon as I arrived I hopped onto the ferry and met her and her husband for an amazing dinner at Watermark, a lovely restaurant on a pier with a view over the water. It was a lovely dinner and I really enjoyed relaxing after my long travels. Allison is just as charming as she seems from her blog and of course has an excellent sense of style! She was wearing her 02-2009-124 dress and it looked great on her! The color is perfect in person.
I think I had my camera but I was too topsy-turvy to remember to take any pictures. I headed back to my hotel exhausted but happy, and very excited about our fabric shopping the next day!
On Friday we met up in the lobby and headed over to Sham Shui Po. Hong Kong has a good metro system--comparable in size and ease of navigation to DC's--as well as excellent buses so we had an easy time getting everywhere. Sham Shui Po is the general shopping area, where you can buy anything from food to toilets.
There is a sewing section in the area, although it was more about notions and supplies than fabrics. Here is Allison demonstrating a shop window for a button seller. Many of the sellers are wholesale only, so they just have sample cards and you place your large order. There was an amazing variety of buttons! We stopped into a store that sold jewels and I bought a couple different kinds of sew-on jewels. Not that I've used the ones I bought in NYC, but it never hurts to have a supply, right? Right?
After browsing through all the trims, notions, and supplies in the area we were ready for the fabric! We headed to the "Hawker Bazaar," which is a mishmash of little stands under a rigged up tarp situation. It was hot, the aisles were narrow, and we were in fabric heaven! If you've visited Kashi at Metro Textiles in the New York garment district, picture that times about 20 stands. It was amazing. There was so much fabric. It mostly seemed to be mill ends, just as with Kashi and the other jobbers in NYC, so much of it was fashionable and current, straight out of ready-to-wear.
We threaded through all the aisles, making mental notes of which pieces we might want. Allison speaks enough Cantonese that once we had made our selections we had no trouble finding out the price and saying how much we wanted. Prices were insane! All the fabrics I got, including the silks, were under $3/yd. Alas, I was limited by how much room was available in my suitcase (not much) and knowing that I needed to pace myself, as I still had Malaysia and Tokyo to come. We left the Hawker Bazaar sufficiently loaded down!
Here's my haul:
The stretch silk charmeuse on the left has HUGE red, white, and blue flowers. The scale of the print is suited to a maxi dress, but I'm not sure that's what I want. I have in mind a pattern that I swear is Simplicity but I can't find it anywhere (and can I mention that I don't love Simplicity's website redesign? Especially that they changed their link format so all the links I've made to their patterns over the years are now dead). It's a kimono/Duro style, with the front bodice crossed over in a surplice style rather than joined by binding in the Duro style (though there is optional binding along the edges), a separate midriff, full-ish skirt, and fabulous cape sleeves. It's in my stash, so even if it's OOP I'm covered. This would be an awesome 4th of July dress.
The turquoise knit is a good quality, and feels like rayon (haven't burned it yet). It's my favorite color and I love knits, so I'm not worried about it going to waste.
The black cotton batiste is to underline the sheer silk print. I hemmed and hawed over this one for quite a while. I don't like working with sheers; they *have* to be underlined and I find that annoying. But the colors are totally my colors and I eventually decided I had to have it. I love the sleeve from the 08-2009-118B blouse, but bitter experience has taught me that the sacky look in blouses is not for me, so I don't know. I'll find something, though. I'm thinking a flowy blouse tucked into a high waisted black pencil skirt, or even a shirtdress of that nature.
The gray snowflake print cotton is so soft and I just love the graphic print. There are a couple dresses in Burda's recent issues, 06-2009-128 and 05-2009-122, that I'm considering.
I bought the floral print for vintage 40s shirtdress the Myra sent me. However, later in the trip I found an even better fabric for that project so now I have this floral just waiting the next time I want a vintage-y sundress.
All my photos are here! There are more touristy photos to come, but rather than wait to edit everything I figured you all might want to share in my adventure sooner rather than later.
From before and for later
12 minutes ago