Fabric shopping - Vietnam and Cambodia

Yes, it's been a while...
Since the last instalment I've:
  1. Made another muslin for a dress to wear to my school reunion, Vogue 8805.
  2. Gotten sick with a knock-me-down, drag-me-out flu. Days in bed. I can't remember spending days in bed for illness, ever. And then about two weeks of feeling less than great.
  3. Failed to make Vogue 8805 for the school reunion, on account of item (2) above. I did go to the reunion, despite fighting off the flu, and I wore my black Peony dress instead (funnily I estimate about 50% of attendees went the little black dress route too!)
  4. Prepared to go on holiday. For some strange reason, around here this means not only packing, stopping mail, last minute arrangements etc but doing odd jobs and garden chores, that have been put off like, forever.
  5. Went on holiday to Vietnam and Cambodia. We had a more-than-excellent time.
  6. In amongst the items above, I got a bit of sewing done, but because of all the above, haven't got around to photographing and blogging them. Will do this soon.

In the meanwhile, let's spend some time on the sewist's favourite diversion...fabric shopping!

Leith on Sew Brunswick recently went to the US and shared with us her fabric shopping haul. Since becoming a sewist about 4 years ago now, "holiday" now  means "fabric shopping opportunity" to me too.

Ho Chi Minh City yielded some cotton lawn for super-cheap at the Ben Thanh Market. It looks and feels wonderful. There was fabric on offer, but  always seemed to be associated with tailors, so there was a lot of mens suiting and shirtings on offer. Not for me.

The Russian Market in Phnom Penh had a section of fabric stores:

Due to severe luggage restrictions due to travelling on low-cost airline, and a family that placed fabric low on the list of their shopping priorities, I limited myself to 4 metres of this fine red silk, to make the double-layer dress from June Burda.

So much silk, so many yummy colours.

Although a bit hard to make out, this was a row of seamstresses making one-offs and doing alterations, all in the sweltering confines of the market.
After Phnom Penh, I didn't see too much else in the way of fabric. A little more silk in Siem Reap, our last stop, but by that time, our bags were at the limit.


  1. When I saw this post in my blog reader I thought that first photo was the fabric you bought home with you! And then I read on and saw you actually restrained yourself quite a lot. When I travelled through Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam I picked up a few bits of fabric squeezed in my back pack, but when I got to Bangkok I threw out most of my clothes in my backpack and bought home loads and loads of fabric. Which I haven't used yet of course! Oh and fingers crossed it's many more years before you get another flu that bad

  2. Heh, bringing home all that fabric would have been quite a feat. I packed clothes very frugally with the thought of buying fabric, so I didn't have that much to toss. Unfortunately, the baggage allowance was largely sacrificed to the centipedes, aka my family, who bought home 10 pairs of mostly running shoes between them. The sacrifices mothers make! But I am pretty happy with the little I bought.

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