Fabric shop review: Ultimate Craft

This used to be a bog-standard Stoke Newington pound shop, selling plastic bowls and huge packs of multi-coloured toilet roll, when one day an enticing sign appeared in the window “Craft Shop: coming soon”. Obviously this was a cause for much excitement.

Ultimate Craft shop front

Well, it definitely met my expectations when it opened. It’s a treasure-trove. The best bit about the whole shop is this:

Just LOOK at that huge haberdashery department. They have everything, much more than John Lewis or any of the other big department stores. They also have the full selection of Gutermann thread – silk, metallic, cotton, topstitching, the lot:

I didn’t get a photo of it (I took all of these somewhat sneakily) but on the other side of the store they have an aisle with elastic on rolls that you can buy by the metre, piping cords and home furnishing trims, and professional looking double-sided interfacing in about 4 different widths.

This isn’t a shop that has loads of bargains, like Walthamstow market, but what’s great about it is the massive selection, which is invaluable if you live nearby. I used to hate having to stall a project because I needed to go all the way into town to get a zip or some matching thread.

They also sell lots of fabric:

Fabric department

It’s mostly cheap and cheerful stuff under £5 a metre. They have pre-cut lengths of African wax-print, and they seem to specialise in jerseys:

Jersey fabric
They do sell some posher stuff, like these really lovely silks which were £15 a metre:

Silk fabric

They also sell fabrics with the strangest names I’ve ever seen – see below:

strangely named fabric

Don’t ask me what they do to the chiffon to make it so upset. They also had a roll of ‘Techno Twill’. I have googled extensively to try and find out what ‘American D-Kripp’ is (they also sell boring old ‘Polyester D-Kripp’) without success. It feels like a soft cotton-like polyester fabric, possibly for lining, but who knows?

I’ve only approached the staff for advice once – they never used to sell concealed zippers, so one day I asked the man behind the counter if they were going to get any invisible zips in. He looked at me blankly and said ‘Yes madam, all our zips are divisible’. I wasn’t exactly sure how to proceed with the conversation. I could have pressed my point, but I suddenly realised how insane I might look clarifying that I wanted ‘invisible’ zips (‘sorry madam, but all our zips are visible’), so I left it there.

Of course, this shop could hardly be the ULTIMATE craft shop if all they sold was haberdashery and fabric, and they do indeed have a large amount of paints, papers, card, jewellery supplies, knitting needles, wool, and strange craft projects. They even have what seems like a whole aisle of Airfix models if that’s your thing:


Every time I go in they are selling something new – last time they’d got in a stock of Olfa rotary cutters and cutting mats, plus some leather skins (!). I’m not actually sure how they fit everything into the store. It has Tardis-like properties. Definitely worth a visit if you live in the area.


14 thoughts on “Fabric shop review: Ultimate Craft

  1. EmmaB April 25, 2013 / 1:48 PM

    ah ha! I just tracked-back to this page from today’s post and I see that this shop is in Stoke Newington – my sister is about to move there, so when I visit I will definitely be calling in here!

    • yesilikethat April 25, 2013 / 2:55 PM

      Stoke Newington is awesome! Definitely go into Ultimate Craft. There is also a lovely knitting and gift shop on the High Street now which is run by my friend and definitely worth checking out (it’s called Knit With Attitude)

  2. Commission Shops Fan Page May 5, 2012 / 11:32 AM

    We’re a bunch of volunteers and starting a brand new scheme in our community. Your site offered us with valuable information to paintings on. You’ve done an impressive process and our whole community will be grateful to you.

  3. thesecretlifeofseams February 3, 2012 / 10:41 PM

    I’ve bought some hot pink d-kripp from that shop last year! I tried to ask the staff at the time what on earth it was and they didn’t manage to illuminate me. It feels gorgeous though and I made it into a Sorbetto. Have you bought any yet?

  4. prttynpnk October 10, 2011 / 10:34 PM

    I have so many thoughts about catatonic sick chiffon. I am overwhelmed!

  5. Nicole October 10, 2011 / 9:38 PM

    I agree – it’s a fab shop. So good to see new stores like this opening.

  6. didyoumakethat October 10, 2011 / 2:20 PM

    Makes me think of the four candles/fork handles conversation from The Two Ronnies.

    • yesilikethat October 10, 2011 / 2:39 PM

      There was definitely a resemblance. Luckily they’ve started selling invisible zips now anyway, so nobody else has to engage in such a surreal conversation.

  7. didyoumakethat October 10, 2011 / 2:19 PM

    Well, I am definitely going to have to pop along there! HILARIOUS conversation re zippers. Thanks for the heads up!

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s