Komolka – Fabric Shopping in Vienna

As promised, I’m sharing pictures from my fabric shopping adventure in Vienna.  We found the fabric store via the internet and I was hopeful that we would be able to fit this into our schedule.  However, we encountered a few challenges!  We arrived in Vienna on Saturday, late afternoon – too late to shop, not to mention that it was pouring.  Sunday, we discovered that all the stores were closed, so we used that as our day to visit the tourist sites – no problem, there’s always Monday, right?  Wrong!  Monday was a national holiday and all the stores were closed for that as well!!!  Ack!  Our train back to Prague was Tuesday at 1pm.  What to do…..

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We got up Tuesday morning and double checked the directions, etc. to get to the store.  The map said that it was about a 25 minute walk from our hotel.  No problem – we’d been walking all week and 25 minutes was nothing.  Well, that was until we decided that we would walk there, I would shop, then we would walk to the train station – a 40 min. walk from the fabric store – all while pulling our carry on bag and with our backpacks.

Not deterred by this additional weight to pull, I gleefully set out with hubby to find the store.  Thank goodness for his iPhone map to navigate the streets!  Did I mention that all the streets and sidewalks are cobblestone?  Try pulling luggage on that for a few miles.  LOL!  We got there a couple of minutes before opening, and we didn’t encounter pouring rain during the walk, just drizzle, so I counted it as a win!

My husband was a great sport.  There’s a chair near the front of the store (for gentlemen to patiently wait) and he sat there with the luggage while I drooled shopped for a couple special pieces of fabric.  He also was my camera man and took plenty of pictures for me.  🙂  I can’t thank him enough for all these great pictures!

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Stepping into the store was like stepping into fabric heaven!!!  You can see me sporting my backpack.  LOL!  There was fabrics EVERYWHERE, along with gorgeous trims, ribbons, buttons, etc.  And, unlike the US fabric stores, not a piece of fleece in sight!  Yep – pretty much fabric heaven!  Also missing was copious quantities of quilting cottons.  Another win as far as I’m concerned.  This store was for someone who wanted to sew clothing!!!

The building was an older building and had many twists and turns as well as several floors/levels and every area was well-organized by fabric content as well as color.  These were fabrics for women – everything from twill to tweeds to linen and everything in between.  Of course, I couldn’t read the signs, so I went by feel as well as by the words on the bolt ends – many are similar to English words.

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The wall on the back side is all men’s suiting type of fabrics.

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The beautifully color groupings in the picture below are the linings.  What a selection.

 

 

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The selection of knit fabrics and jerseys was exceptional!

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I just loved the aqua tween on the mannequin and went back to this piece several times before deciding that I probably would not make myself a jacket, so to spend the money on that would be foolish.  It sure was beautiful!  They had the tweeds that you see in the Chanel type jackets in every color combination you could imagine, priced at the equivalent of $39 – $69/yd. and higher.  Each piece was as beautiful as the next!

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I think that this may have been the bargain area, though I cannot be sure.  The prices on these fabrics were lower than most of the rest in the store, but they were all quite nice, so not cheap remnant stuff that our chain stores seem to get in quite regularly for their “specials”.

 

 

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Up the set of half a flight of stairs (seen on the second fabric picture) was the children’s area, which was the only area where I saw any quilting type of cottons, and quite a few of those were from the US, though there was a lot of beautiful piques as well as heirloom fabrics.  No bargains to be had there.  I didn’t get a picture of that area.  However, up from that small section was the bridal, formal wear fabrics – oh my, there’s hardly words for that floor!  These are the rows of solid colored satins, silks, and such on the right.  There were so many beautiful print, silk chiffon.

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Then there was the laces…..every color you could imagine and what a selection of the white bridal laces.  Of course, there were beautiful beaded trims to match every color.

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But, the show stopper for me was the Liberty fabrics!!!  The table had so many beautiful Liberty prints!!!  I’ve never seen so many in one place!  Stop  my beating heart!  I petted many of them, pulled several out trying to decide which one to buy, but with 3 granddaughters, yikes!  The sticker shock with the yardage needed to make 3 dresses stopped me short.  So, I gazed for a while and then slowly walked away.  Actually, I think that the prices in the US are a bit better for Liberty than they were in Vienna – we just don’t have quite the selection.

Just prior to leaving the shop, I asked to use the lady’s room – necessity before another 40 minute walk.  That was in another corner of the shop on a different floor.  Imagine my surprise when I found just as many Liberty fabrics in that back room that was tucked away near the lady’s room – and all were different prints than what were on this table.  I think that was the section of the store for decorating a baby nursery.  Unclear why they would separate the Liberty like that, but I guess it works for them.  Lots of beautiful fabrics in that room as well.

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Then there was the buttons, threads, trims and such – quite a selection.  Look at all those buttons on the wall!!!  The trims and ribbons were on the table.

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Threads…

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I didn’t venture down to the basement level, which I was told had mostly home dec. as well as outdoor fabrics.

It was a delightful shopping experience.  I left with 4 pieces of fabric.  I was limited by what we could still fit into our suitcases (which, by the way, were carry on size – for a 10 day trip!!!).  That was perfectly fine with me – I own enough fabric that I cannot possibly sew it up in what remains in my lifetime.

If you’re ever in Vienna, you just need to stop at this shop – it’s well worth it.  And you may even want to leave room in your luggage as well as a hefty chunk of spending money for the adventure!

I’ve been sewing since we got back home.  I’ll share those things next.  Until then, keep on stitching……

Kathy

16 thoughts on “Komolka – Fabric Shopping in Vienna

  1. Bunny

    This is utterly fabulous and my desk is now drenched with drool! I saw Missoni knits, fabulous border prints peeking out here and there as well. A store for fabric for just garment making! What a concept! I can’t believe you were able to get through the store and purchase fabric and still make your train. I’m jealous.

    Reply
  2. Teresa Moffitt

    Kathy, your trip sounds fabulous! Happy Anniversary and thank you for sharing with us!
    We were in both Prague and Vienna last summer while on a wonderful European River Cruise celebrating our 45th anniversary. As with all cruises, Vienna was just a stop and while we had a great venue while there it certainly didn’t allow for time to visit a fabric store, especially one this large!
    I was really in love with Vienna…I think the idea of pastries and coffee every afternoon could definitely be addicting…. And I told my husband that this would be a great city to just spend a week in, touring the city and countryside. And since we have been there now, I reasoned, we could “just” fly to Vienna as easily as any other city, as if we fly to any cities, and spend a glorious few days. He of course thought I had lost it, and I even wondered myself if I had, but now… seeing this fabric store….. I think I might have been on to something! It is almost worth a trip! One would only need empty suitcases and a full wallet!

    Reply
  3. Judi

    Thank you for sharing your trip to the fabric store!!! I had fun just looking at the pictures…seriously…made my day!!!!

    Reply
  4. Barb Littlejohn

    I belong to the Desert Rows Smocking Guild in Phoenix and we are in the process of looking for a teacher to come in the Spring, 2016 for say a two-day class. We were wondering if you would be interested and what choices you have for classes.

    Thanks for your consideration.

    Barb

    Reply
    1. Kathy Post author

      Hi Barb – I am always honored to be considered to come and tach for a guild. I will send you my current class offerings. Thank you!

      Reply
  5. Linda

    Kathy,
    I just found your blog and it is wonderful.. I was a member of the Dogwood Chapter in the 80’s and have recently gotten back into smocking. Your trip to the fabric store looks like heaven, can’t wait to see your newest creations.

    Reply
    1. Kathy Post author

      Hi Linda – how wonderful that you’ve gotten back into smocking! The guild is growing (24 members) and is very active – we’d love to have you join us again! You can see what we’ve been up to on our blog. We have a workshop with Gail Doane this week – lots happening. I think you’d get plenty of inspiration from the group!

      http://charlottesmockingguild.blogspot.com

      Reply
  6. Linda from IA

    Hello, dear friend, just a reminder, I am still dripping drool, and probably won’t stop til you show us your prizes from Vienna! ;-))

    Reply
  7. Melanie

    Thanks for such detail! I am taking my family to Vienna for Christmas and can’t resist looking for fabric, especially if I can find some traditional Austrian stoff or anything I can’t get in the US. When I lived in Vienna 15 years ago, I wasn’t really sewing, it not being a travel hobby. I can’t wait to add this stop to our list!

    Reply
  8. Maya

    Hello,

    Love your blog, thank you for sharing!

    Have you found any burda store in Vieena like the one in Budapest? past magazines etc.?

    Thx,
    Maya

    Reply
  9. Cathy

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience . I was reading this to my husband as we are in Vienna for a few days. I have a great passion for sewing so I love nice fabric. I heard Vienna is the place of the most gorgeous fabric. Your description was captivating. Both my husband and I had a good chuckle for there were so many similarities for you and I – I have a lot of fabric so much my husband says I will not use in my lifetime, he does not like walking around so the chair for sitting was perfect and the best is my name is Cathy. We laugh so much after. I said to him he must take me there tomorrow. We return to London on Friday. Keep sewing, it’s fun when you enjoy it!

    Reply
    1. Kathy Post author

      That’s too funny Cathy!!! I do hope you have a fabulous visit to Komolka and are able to purchase some wonderful fabrics! 😀

      Reply

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