Shhhh… don’t tell, but last night I played hooky. I skipped out on a conference function (with some 3000 delegates, I’m hoping no one noticed.) The Selfish Seamstress gets tired of smiling at colleagues all day, because she was born without the smiling reflex and therefore has to contort her facial muscles into a simulated smile-like positon for the sake of maintaining social norms while interacting with people. Instead I met up with a dear old friend, and we went for a casual belated birthday dinner (his birthday, not mine), but perhaps of more interest to you, we made a little side trip to the fantastic fabric shop, Whipstitch.

It’s a good thing that Whipstitch wasn’t around back when I lived in Atlanta because I’m sure I’d have been spending too much of my meager student salary there and making up for it by not eating. Whipstitch is nothing short of a fabric candy store:

The store is full of lovely multi-purpose fabrics from design masters like Amy Butler, Michael Miller, and Joel Dewberry. And as you know, I am somewhat print-challenged, but I very much wanted to grab up two yards of everything and pack it into my little roll-aboard suitcase. If there’s one thing I’ve learned about prints though, it’s that I shouldn’t buy them unless I can envision myself in a garment made from them. And so I picked out this dainty black and white floral from Sharon Evans Yenter which looks so wonderfully wearable:

I know, leave it to me to ferret out the black in a rainbow of a shop! It’s 100% cotton, I think, but has a very silky hand and lovely drape. Dainty florals aren’t usually my thing but this one is so soft and pretty, and I can see this made up in a lot of ways- I’m currently pondering it for a slim blouse, or perhaps as the top or bottom of Simplicity 2724 with a contrast fabric:

I may have picked up another adorable fabric too, but I can’t tell you about that one yet. Soon though. I have my reasons. Do not question the Selfish Seamstress.

Whipstitch itself is a charming, independently operated store (don’t you just want to cheer for wonderful, local, independent small businesses?)  in a neat little area of Atlanta, and they just moved into their lofty new space two weeks ago from their previous, smaller digs. They’ve already got a selection that will have you drooling and trying to restrain yourself, but there’s more on the way to fill out their lovely open space. Can you imagine what a paradise it will be when they’ve got this filled?

It won’t get too crowded though, as they’ve got a great open area in the back where they hold sewing classes. I really don’t remember the last time I saw such a pleasant fabric store. Hancock and Jo-Ann fill a need but offer little in terms of ambiance. I love the cramped and crowded offerings of the NYC garment district, or the massive emporia like Vogue, but none of them have comfy armchairs that make you want to sit down and soak up the fabric-y serenity. Whipstitch does, and looks like a studio, loft, shop, and classroom in one.

The business is co-owned by Deborah and Chrissy- unfortunately I missed Deborah and the time of my visit, but got to chat with the delightful and sweet Chrissy:

As you can see, she loves her some fabric:

Swing by on your next trip to Atlanta (I know I will), and these ladies can hook you up with more pretty than will fit in the overhead compartment.

Oh, and for those of you who have no immediate plans to head to the deep south, you can feed your addictions at Whipstitch’s Etsy shop!