I’ve just got my hands on this new batch of vintage fabrics and thought I’d share some of my tips and favourite sites for finding vintage textiles at low (ish) prices:
Charity shops: unfortunately, I’ve found that it’s increasingly hard to find good vintage stuff at charity shops, but it’s still worth a look out for the occasional bedspread/sheet or dress for the perfect “up-cycling” opportunity. Charity shops are still great for finding belts – which can be used for bag straps/handles – and scarves which can be great for bag linings.
Ebay: Most of the vintage fabric I purchase is found on ebay - including my latest haul from the picture above. My preferred option is to hunt down vintage curtains which are great for bags as curtain fabrics tend to have interesting textures (e.g. barkcloth) and be a bit more structural than dress fabric. I’ve learnt to play around with search terms – don’t just search for “vintage fabric” try other terms like “vintage material”, “vintage curtains”, “60s fabric” etc. If you have plenty of money to spend you can pick up some fantastic original Eames, Heal and Liberty prints, but these do come at a premium. It’s still worth using these as search terms though as sometimes you can find fabrics from similar eras that are “in the style of”…
Etsy: There are lots of etsy shops with vintage fabric supplies. Often they are selling remnants or smaller quantities, but the great thing about bags and purses is that you don’t need huge amounts! Some of the etsy vendors I like to check on regularly are:
Indulge Your Shelf
Online vintage stores: There are loads out there, but the ones I particularly like to browse (all UK based) are:
This list is by no means exhaustive – for example, I keep meaning to attend vintage fairs (like this one: www.vintagefair.co.uk) which I’m sure would have fantastic stalls– although I expect prices would be on the higher side.
I also keep meaning to visit local auction houses to see if they any bargains from house clearance that I could snap up! I guess I’m much too lazy though and the internet is sooo easy!
My favourite online repro-vintage shops include:
And lastly another site I love to browse for vintage fashion patterns is So Vintage Patterns
Of course, I use my vintage fabric stash for bags and purses (I'll be adding another batch to the shops soon) but, in my next post I'll be rounding up some recent tutorials for ideas of other fab ways to feature your yummy vintage finds.