I went on a trip - came back with some fabric!
I just came back from a trip with my husband to Kyrgyzstan
It is not China, but borders China. The people look Asian - not European except for the under 20% Russians who live there.
My husband had already been there a couple of times.
Our last couple of days of being there we were simply tourists on our own - stayed in a hotel and not a home and were on our own for meals and filling our days. I had heard that that they had a textile bazaar in the city and was eager to go and see what they had and at what prices.
I wanted to bring home some truly local fabrics as I have been asked to come back and teach the ladies how to make patchwork from their own materials. They would like to be able to learn how to sew the patchwork AND quilt on their own machines. They really want a way to try to make some money while at home.
Wow. Such a request. I found it interesting as they do seem to know how to do at least some patchwork. In fact, sometimes they use hard-to-work with fabrics like velour! I’ll show you later!
Most of them don’t speak English.
I am considering what to do.
In the meantime, I was determined to bring home some of their fabrics - the things they can afford and work with - I needed to bring here to Poland make something with as samples.
So, we went to the textile bazaar on Monday. We had another couple of people with us who helped us out.
Thankfully my translator talked with the dealers - I just made decisions and bought. They aren’t a culture that hikes up the price 2x or 3x what it should be, however. I noticed they seemed to have set prices. I appreciated that. In other words, I didn’t get told one price and a national a cheaper price.
I did learn that most of the fabric is NOT cotton. I had suspected as much as it felt more slippery than most cottons - not as nice.
I was disappointed, of course, but I straightened my spine and told myself, “Becky, you want to work with what THEY have to work with, so just ‘get over it’”… and I did.
I bought quite a bit of their fabrics. and am eager to give it a go!
After all, it is “what they have to work with” without getting into a huge business and costing a lot of money - none of which they have. Thankfully it is a woven fabric, however! I believe it is a mix of poly/cotton. I tried to get the ones that felt like mostly cotton - but I really don’t know when it boils down to it. Some of it feels pretty “polyester-ish”.
Then I found some that WAS all cotton - not as fine as our cottons or fabrics you will find on our site - but cottons in the same style as the others - I bought the brightest and wildest I could find! I just kept trying to think of Kaffe Fasset fabrics when I looked at what I had to choose from:
Then I found some that seemed just like the Polish cotton. It had the same texture and feel - problem was that it wasn’t their colors. It was very pastely and such. But I liked it, so I picked up a bit as well.
Please be aware as you look at these that NONE OF THIS IS FOR sale at our site. So please don’t write us at customer service and ask. My sis has literally tens of thousands of yards of beautiful fabrics from which you can choose!
I ended up buying about 85 yards of fabric in total! The prices ranged from $1.43/meter (39”) to $2.29/meter with the solid burgundy costing the most at $2.57/meter. Most of the non all-cotton was $1.43 or $1.71 a yard and the cotton wild prints were $2.14/meter that I paid.
I saw that they have both cotton and poly batting available locally so that won’t be a problem.
The polyester batting was $1.00/meter I believe it was about 60” wide. I thought I got a picture but I didn’t. I looked just like poly batting - a medium thickness.
The cotton batting was $1.28/meter for about 62” wide batting. Before I saw it on a roll I bought a few pieces that were smaller as I thought I might have to sew them together to use— 5 pieces at $0.57 each. It was after I bought the pieces that I saw it on the bolt. I didn’t buy MORE as I didn’t want to fill up my suitcase with batting - but knowing it is there is helpful. (And not expensive). I don’t know the quality but I am willing to make up a quilt and use it. I will wash it - measuring the quilt first before I wash it and then afterwards. I suspect I will need to quilt closely.
I’ll let you know what happens.
I did find a couple of dealers that deal with all cotton - including solids - my only problem with them was that it all looked just like what I can get here in Poland at the local places - nothing looked particularly “Central Asian”..
When I saw that I could get pretty much any solid, however, that helped me as I realized that they could get any solid they need to go with their prints. That meant that I didn’t actually have to buy all the solids from there - I was free to add solids as needed from among the Polish ones I can find.
I cropped some of the pictures of my fabrics and am showing them here. Can you understand why I liked them? Wild? yes!
Beautiful!! One thing about it - they are not afraid of COLOR!
So now you know…I’m off on another adventure. I’ll be trying to use up these 80+ meters in the next few months. but once again - I won’t cut them up tiny - at least not until they get to be the leftover pieces - then I will. I will want to use up everything just like they do when they eat a sheep! They use it ALL.
Have a great day wherever you are reading this!
Be sure to check out what my sis has for you in the store!