New York

So y’know you can win a return trip for two to New York in this year’s Tessuti Awards? I’ve recently returned to a very diminutive feeling Melbourne after a couple of weeks there and am completely smitten, head over heels in love with that city. And sew so I know this is a sewing blog, but can I just take a moment to make a few sewing and un-sewing related observations/tips?

Century 21 is great if you’re seeking that big label bargain. But man how it broke my heart to see those (yes) heavily discounted designer garments crammed onto those racks in a shopping environment that can only be described as most unpleasant. I lasted 15 minutes before I left empty handed.

Camper shoes are really bloody cheap in the US compared to Australia.

Purl Soho is quite possibly one of the prettiest stores I’ve ever had the pleasure of being in.

I’m stating the bleeding obvious, I know, but Mood Fabrics is a must-visit. There were a lot of unpriced, unlabeled fabrics and the sheer volume makes it hard to browse (staff advise you to ‘step down’ from the stools if you try to look at higher shelves) so allow plenty of time. And if you’re travelling by air and purchase 2.5m of a heavy double-faced, felted wool, know that it will contribute significantly to your luggage weight allowance being well over the allocated limit.

A Bloody Mary at lunch time can really sustain you quite well for a solid afternoon of shopping.

In the flesh, Ryan Gosling is just as cute as he is on screen. But shorter.

Sibella Court’s A Stylist’s Guide to NYC is my top travel book recommendation if you want to find some Manhattan retail gems (not to mention that elusive good coffee).


The Empire State Building took only 14 months to build. And the view from the top is mind-blowing and well worth a trip to get your NYC bearings. Oh, and if you pre-purchase your tickets for the observation deck you’ll save yourself a helluva queue (the City Pass is exceptional value).

Even if you don’t have a high appreciation of fashion and happen to be in New York between now and August 7, go see Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty at The Met. The couture-ambivalent fella joined me and was as mesmerised with it as I was. It’s dark and beautiful and melancholy and inspiring and tragic and crowded, but totally worth it.

Alexander Wang – I love (but can’t quite afford) you.

Stella Dallas Living (281 N 6th St, Williamsburg) offers an overwhelmingly fabulous selection of vintage quilts and fabric remnants that are off the beaten track.


If the weather’s conducive, walk as much as you can. The things you will see…

This Barbie foosball table was strangely appealing. The US $24,999 price tag? Not so much.

What’s not to love about Spandex World?

Khloe and Lamar is (are) really rather tedious. God knows, in my jetlagged state I watched more episodes than I probably needed to.

There are an awful lot of French Bulldogs living in NYC.

Central Park is awesome. And very, very big.