Monday, May 8, 2017

Quilting Shops in Singapore

I was surprised to find out that Singapore has a vibrant community of quilters. There used to be an active group that used to host shows and classes, but I read they are currently looking for the next set of leaders so they have not been active in the last few years. There are a lot of shops though that sell items you need for quilting -- from tiny knick-knacks like buttons, to bag handles, wadding, needles, thread to fabric.

Here's where I source for quilting materials in Singapore:

1. Spotlight (Plaza Singapura/Dhoby Ghaut MRT)

Spotlight is one of my favorite shops mainly because they have everything you need. They have an amazing selection of fabric. They have the best selection of fabric that geeks like me love -- Star Wars, Wonder Woman, Batman, Pokemon, Winnie the Pooh etc. (and these are licensed fabrics). Quite pricey per meter though, but you don't need a lot anyway for quilt projects. Best to become a VIP member so you could use the discounts. Items in Spotlight though are quite expensive so I usually just buy fabric there that's not available elsewhere.

Items available for quilting: fabric, quilting thread, fat quarters, rulers, cutting mat, quilt templates, buttons, bag handles. For those who like to do crochet and knitting they have a gazillion yarn selection.

2. Art Friend (Plaza Singapura/Dhoby Ghaut MRT)

Art Friend is the best friend of artists and crafters alike. Their quilting thread is cheaper than Spotlight, but not as much variety wise. I usually purchase my rulers, items I need for making templates here. They also have wood items that you can use to make a jewelry box (saving that idea for a later project). Just check out this place for knick-knacks and the wide array of art/craft items can inspire you to do other projects.

Item's available for quilting: quilting thread, rulers, knick knacks, items for making templates

3. Sing Mui Heng (People's Park Centre/Chinatown MRT)

There are several shops in Chinatown, but the one I liked best is Sing Mui Heng. Located at the ground floor of People's Park Centre (near Japan Home). They have very good selection of fabric (they also have some of the Disney stuff) and knick knacks for your quilt projects. I usually buy materials for making bags here (buckles and magnetic snaps) because it's cheaper than buying 1-2 pieces at $2 at Daiso. They also have a nice selection of inexpensive zippers and bag handles.

The most unforgettable item I bought from this shop is the tiny quilting iron. I did some research online about it and just took the chance to check if they had it on stock. Luckily they had been expecting their order to arrive so I managed to reserve one. I got it a week after I made the reservation. A small quilting iron is much easier to use than a regular iron especially when you need to make binding (bias).

Item's available: everything you need for your quilting project (much cheaper too)

4. Chinatown Fabric Area (Behind OG/Chinatown MRT)

Majority of the fabric available in this area are for clothes. They also have a very nice selection, but I'm quite picky with the type of fabric I use for quilting. I managed to buy a lot of backing fabric from Manila, but I'm sure I'll go back to the Chinatown Fabric area to purchase some when I need it. The fabric here is much cheaper compared to Spotlight. You can check out this blog post for more info about the Chinatown Fabric Area.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

My Sewing Kit

Before I left to live in Singapore my Mom gave me a basic sewing kit. She told me I might need it to repair stuff. I also have the habit of collecting tiny sewing kits from hotel rooms. When I decided to try quilting again I was hesitant to invest in new sewing items. After finishing a couple of trial quilting projects I eventually got inspired to embark on a challenge - Jet's Star Wars quilt blanket.

I survived quilting with the basic sewing kit. Aside from the fabric I just bought one white quilting thread, wadding, velcro and fabric scissors. I re-used an old plastic folder to create square templates and just borrowed my flatmate's cutting board.

Here are some basic items you need to quilt:

regular thread
quilting thread
cutter (if you're going to make templates)
tape measure

Eventually I started to collect other items I needed:

bag handle
bag knick knacks
magnetic bag/wallet button
fabric cutter
steel ruler (useful if you're going to use a fabric cutter)