Sunday, October 15, 2006

Trip to New York - Fabric Shopping with Ann and Carolyn

Took the day off on Friday. Caught the NJ Transit train from Trenton to Penn Station. $11.50 each way - can't beat that price!

Ann and Stacey drove in from Boston, and Carolyn, who works in NYC, were all to meet at "The Needle" on 7th Avenue (at 37th - I think that's the cross street, but I could be a block or two off. anyway, what I do is come out of Penn Station, walk north on 7th, until I get to the "Needle", which is the Fabric District Information Booth.

Stacey, Ann, and Carolyn,
gamely posing for me
near Metro Textile (Kashi's).

After stopping into a Starbucks to get my lowfat Vanilla Latte, I stood at the "Needle", drinking my coffee, anticipating the arrival of my friends at 10:30. The weather was clear and brisk - a typical October day. I watched the parade. Guys dressed in sweatshirts, wheeling cartloads of fabric - probably destined for some designer's review and approval. People wheeling trolley suitcases, either headed for Penn Station and places remote, or filled with fabric and clothing samples, I couldn't tell which. Guys wearing yarmulkes and beautiful alpaca coats. Tres chic women - of all ages. Mostly thin, wearing practical and sleek clothes, glossy haired and purposeful.

My cell phone is famous for not ringing, or alerting me to the fact that I have a message.

As a result, I didn't know that Ann had run into some major problems on the Merritt Parkway. Carolyn, who was finishing up a job, where she'd spent 7 years was still working. I called Ann, and Carolyn called me. We agreed that Carolyn and I would meet at B & J fabrics, around 11:15, on 36th and 7th, and then, we'd all meet up at Kashi's.

I went to B & J, and lavished myself in well organized Super 100s, japanese cottons, cotton voiles, lavish silks, and novelty cottons. Carolyn arrived, smiling. It was like we've known each other for years! We left for Kashi's, only about a 5 minute walk away from B & J.

Kashi was, as always, welcoming and charming. Carolyn and I dove right in. Cotton eyelets! Silk velvets! Novelty rayons and polys! We dug, and Kashi showed, and quickly, our piles of 'maybes' started growing.
In walked Ann and Stacey! Old friends already! We continued to dig, shop, dig, and consult. Ann, good friend that she is, used her cell to call several of her "Diva" friends, and after describing the goods, took their orders and relayed them to Kashi. Kashi whizzed from customer to customer, cutting, piling, writing, quoting prices. He never lost track of any of us, always ensuring we saw what he knows what we like.

Kashi cut. And cut and cut. We went on for hours. After over two hourse, it was time to eat! Kashi bagged up our fabric, and promised to hold it for us, so we could explore the rest of the district unencumbered. He told us he'd be there until 6 - just come back and get the stuff whenever we're ready. Then he directed us to "Mr Broadway", a Glatt Kosher place only a few blocks away. This place is for real. You sit down. They bring coleslaw and a dish of pickles. REAL pickles. Kosher Dills, and another type of 'fresher' tasting pickle, also with a dill flavor. OK, it's a Kosher Deli. So two of us got Corned Beef on Rye. The other two got Pastrami. Great food. And clean bathrooms.

Ann takes a phone
'order' from fellow sewing diva Gigi.

Onward we went, fueled by real NYC food. Junk jewelry stores were next. They're meccas for fun stuff, good for purse trimmings, which interested Stacey, as she's launching a purse making business. This was followed by M & J Trims. That's where we helped Ann pick out some buttons for a fabulous jacket she'd completed and brought with her. She ended up picking two buttons - a larger one, and then a smaller one, that would be mounted on top of the larger one. Ann's coat was admired profusely by some of our fellow shoppers.

Ann and Carolyn select buttons.

Back to Kashi's, by now it was 4:45 PM. We got our bags. Carolyn had Kashi cut more fabric. Ann had Kashi cut more fabric. Kashi hugged us, wished us well, and sent us on our way. Carolyn went back to her job, where they were throwing a going away party for her. Ann and Stacey went their way, and I, with my two 20 pound plastic bags of fabric, walked to Penn Station.

In luck! I got to the station just in time to catch an express back to Trenton. Picked up my car, drove home. Lavished in my fabric, caressed each piece, and am already thinking, "Ok, when can I get to New York again?" Oh, and, "OK, which fabulous piece of "Kashi" fabric am I going to sew up first?"


Gorgeous Things said...

That was such a wonderful day, and what fun pictures! It was a blast meeting up in NYC, and I hope we can do it again soon.

Gigi said...

Thank you for sharing! I almost feel as if I'd been there with you - and next time I hope I will be!

Leslie in Austin said...

*Sooooooo* envious! Sounds like such a fun trip. Guess I must have missed your calls to take my Kashi order.... ;-)

Lisette M said...

I am so envious of your trip! I used to live in NJ, my parents worked in NYC. Back then I was in high school and learning english fast and although I did not sew, my mom did. I loved our fabric shopping trips to NYC for that special dress she would make me for a dance. I dream of going back but leaving in MD and having two young boys makes it a little hard. I will however call Kashi and put in an order and in the mean time I truly enjoyed your trip! Would you post pictures of your finds?

Linda said...

Wow, sounds like a great time was had by all.

I wish I was still living in Lehigh Valley, PA would have loved to gone shopping with you all!!!

I went to NYC once while living in PA and loved it. I still have some wool fabric I have not yet made up.

Gorgeous Things said...

Barbara, I just discovered there is a mistake in the web address for Mr Broadway.


You needn't bother to publish this comment, I just wanted to let you know. -Ann

Lisa Laree said...

Oh, it sounds like such fun!!!

I got tickled at Diva Ann as Diva Gigi's Personal Shopper...

Thanks for sharing the day with us!

Mary Beth said...

Fabulous pictures! What a lovely time.

cmarie12 said...

Wow! Does not begin to describe the day and Metro Textiles! I would encourage you to make a trip if you are anywhere in the area. Kashi is a dream!

Gigi said...

Next time, I am going to fly in for the day and join you!