Monday, August 20, 2007

LA Fashion District

My name is Pattie Donham, and I am a fabric-holic. Yes, it’s true. I can’t get enough of that luscious, creamy, silky, textured, graphic, luxurious, kitschy, fabulous FABRIC! And to feed my addiction, my friend and design partner Susan Levin invited me to go for a bus ride with fellow fashion design students to Michael Levine’s and other shops in the Los Angeles Fashion District today. The 90-block district offers the largest concentration of fashion-related businesses in the Western United States.

Going to downtown LA reminded me of one of my trips to Hong Kong, with no air conditioners and shopping out of cardboard boxes. One of the first places we went to, had an upstairs floor filled with fabric for $2 a pound! Of course I went spastic, and before I knew it, I had my arms full of scraps. I only spent $12 there, and got this HUGE bag of fab stuff. I found big buckles for 25 cents each... just begging to be decoupaged! And a bolt, yes a bolt of beaded fringe for 3 bucks. Yowza.

Susan went nuts over the wool and natural fabrics. These places aren’t fancy, but we were box diving and giggling like we were about to get caught doing something naughty.

Where’s Susan??? Another place was all about suit fabrics. It was like a sea of wool and oxford cloth. I found 5 bolts of taffeta to line purses and tote bags in crazy prints like green and black zebra and polka dots. Yummy!

I felt like I was back in Costa Rica when I saw all of the fabric on the street for as far as you can see. My gosh, it was impossible to see it all, but I did get some sweet cotton covered with bright red cherries right off the street.

We walked past the flower market, and the floral smells were wonderful. It made me wish I was working in a fresh flower shop again. The last place we went was an outlet where designers dump seconds and samples. I freaked out on crocheted pieces and trims. Susan found more wool and beautiful plaid pieces. Then it was back on the bus for a ride home with the belly of the bus filled with monstrous bags of amazing textiles and notions, and a bunch of crazy fabric-holics just like me.

I can’t wait to start sewing. I am working on designs for a top secret gig, that I will be revealing soon. Then I can share with you about all the projects for my fabric stash.


Anonymous said...

Isn't the LA Fashion District the best place on earth?!!! I love going to Michael Levine's...kinda overwhelming but in a good way. Right next to ML's is a fabulous clothing store called Morrie''s all brand-new designer clothing but the store is like a thrift store in that there are just tons of racks of clothes all sorted by brand. You must go next time!!

Little Things said...

Where did you find the $2/lb place? I just went to Michael Levine's for the second time in my life there, I gotta say, I'm in love for sure!

Pattie Donham said...

The $2/lb place is at:

919 S. maple

Their website it:

Have fun!

Little Things said...

Wonderful! I'll be sure to look for it next time I go there next time! Thanks. :0)