(Photo cred: David Sucsy, Getty Images)
Austin fabric lovers, here we come! Next stop on the sewist's city tour? AUSTIN!
The residents of Austin, Texas always proudly encourage everyone to “Keep Austin Weird.” Well I have to tell you, if Austin is weird, then I wanna be weird. I want everything to be weird. Because Austin is full of creativity, vibrance, and breakfast tacos.
With the highest annual bookstore sales in the U.S., and their very own “Cathedral of Junk” (made entirely from clocks, signs and other random knick knacks), Austin definitely has its own unique feel. Make sure your long weekend in Austin hits some of the best spots in the city, including amazing restaurants, theaters, and OF COURSE quilting shops. Weird is the new awesome.
(Photo cred: dahlgrenb.com)
Where to Eat in Austin
(Photo cred: roadfood.com)
This Austin barbecue spot may not seem like much, but it's a legendary place. Any restaurant that fashions its daily hours around when they run out of food has to be seriously special.
Franklin Barbecue is only open for lunch, and you’ll want to come equipped with a good conversationalist or a portable quilting project, because you WILL be standing in line. The menu is pretty simple, consisting of meaty sandwiches and simple sides, but the food here is anything but bare-bones (well, I guess… in a way…)
People say it’s the best brisket in Austin (and maybe the world). Here’s a hint: the lines are the shortest on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Otherwise, good luck!
Location: 900 E 11th St., Austin, TX 78702
Hours: Tue - Sun: 11:00am - SOLD OUT
(Photo cred: travelandleisure.com)
Welcome to Austin’s coolest, ranchiest, minimalist beer garden: Contigo. The restaurant, along with the menu, was actually inspired by the surrounding ranches.
Contigo embodies everything that is great about Austin: it’s a high-quality eatery without the formal feel. Enjoy hand-crafted cocktails, creative charcuterie, and fresh desserts, all in a charming, outdoorsy atmosphere. If you’re showing up for lunch, just drop by! But locals recommend getting a reservation if you’re looking for a dinner date.
Location: 2027 Anchor Ln., Austin, TX 78723
Hours: Mon - Fri Lunch: 11:00am - 2:00pm, Mon - Sat Dinner: 5:00pm - 11:00pm,Sun Brunch: 10:00am - 2:00pm
Épicerie is a lovely French/New Orleans-inspired cafe and boutique grocery store. From the in-house cured meats to the powdered sugar coated beignets, Épicerie is your perfect destination for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner.
Located only a mile away from our first Austin fabric shop, Épicerie will charm you with its beautiful interior and outdoor patio. After a productive morning of fabric shopping, order a cheese plate and a bottle of wine and dream about all of the beautiful quilts soon to be made!
Location: 2307 Hancock Dr., Austin, TX 78756
Hours: Sun 10:30am - 3:00pm, Mon - Tue 10:30 - 9:30pm, Wed - Thu 8:00am - 9:30pm, Fri - Sat 8:00am - 10:30pm
I wish I didn’t have to stop writing about food, but the amazing fabric shops of Austin are calling out my name! And they deserve some recognition.
The Best Austin Fabric Shops
The Cloth Pocket will make you want to jump for joy! Everyone from fabric snobs to people looking for material for a cape for their dog (Scrappy LOVES hers) recommends The Cloth Pocket, one of Austin’s best stops for fabric awesomeness. This shop features high-quality, modern fabrics, sold by an extra-friendly staff.
Though they don’t have the largest selection, The Cloth Pocket’s inventory is very well curated with unique prints and solids – every aisle is lined with gorgeous fabric, so you feel like every bolt is the long lost material you’ve been searching for. And check out that selection of solids! Major swoon!
The Cloth Pocket is drool-worthy, super tidy, and a great way to spend an hour or two… er… or four? I don’t judge. Check out their website to start drooling early over some new arrivals.
Location: 5501 North Lamar Blvd #102, Austin, TX 78751
Hours: Mon - Fri 10:00am - 7:00pm, Sat - Sun 11:00am - 5:00pm
When “Quilter” is in a shop name, you know it’s going to have some great, specialized gear for the quilting crowd. A Quilter’s Folly is an Austin go-to for everything from sewing machines and embroidery kits, to classes for both kids and adults.
Customers call it the “unsung hero” of South Austin, and they have a very loyal customer base, as well as an awesome staff. A Quilter’s Folly is your connection to a network of quilters on all different levels, even if it’s just for a weekend.
Location: 8213 Brodie Ln Ste 100, Austin, TX 78745
Hours: Mon - Fri 10:00am - 6:00pm, Sat 10:00 - 4:00pm
(Photo cred: tribeza)
Walker Hall Design is a fabric and boutique gift store started by two friends who met in textile design school. This quaint little shop blends fabric, home furnishings, textiles and handmade gifts eclectically under one roof.
The owners of this shop pride themselves on offering a modern and attainable approach to creative living. Conveniently located in Downtown Austin, you should definitely swoop in for a visit – if not for the wide selection of organic cotton or Japanese prints, then for the adorable handmade baby gifts. Seriously, so cute!
Location: 904-D W 12th St., Austin, TX 78701
Hours: Tue - Fri 11:00am - 6:00pm, Sat 10:00am - 5:00pm
(Photo cred: Patrick McAdams)
Honey Bee Quilt Store sells a range of tradition fabrics with some modern prints sprinkled in for fun. Stop by the store to browse a great selection of books, kits, and perfectly cut fat quarters. Whether you’re a big-time quilter or a beginning sewist, Honey Bee has a very sweet staff that is willing to help you find the perfect fabric, or answer all of the questions you are afraid to ask your experienced quilting friends.
Get ready to be inspired by the atmosphere of one of Austin’s hardest-working quilting stores!
Location: 9308 Anderson Mil Rd. #300, Austin, TX 78729
Hours: Mon - Sat 9:00am - 5:00pm, Tue 9:00am - 7:00pm, Sun 1:00pm - 5:00pm
Austin Creative Reuse may fit under a broader bracket than “fabric shops,” but if you’re in the Austin area and like crafting even a little bit you have to stop in. The store is a thrift-style art supply store that accepts donated supplies, and sells them at prices that are garage-sale low.
If you’re looking to try something new and don’t want to drop a lot of cash on supplies, Austin Creative Reuse is the perfect place to browse a ton of supplies, and walk out with a bagful without paying an arm and a leg.
Because items are donated, the supply stock is widely varied, but not overwhelming in size. It’s a perfect place to bring the entire family! (Also, keep an eye out for some vintage treasures!)
Location: 6406 N IH35, Suite 1801, Austin, TX 78752
Hours: Wed - Thu 10:00am - 8:00pm, Fri - Sat 10:00am - 6:00pm
Amazing Places in Austin that Aren’t Fabric Shops
(Photo cred: angiedeptula.wordpress.com)
Top off your perfect trip to Austin with a stroll through Umlauf Sculpture Garden on the south side of the city! This spot is an oasis of art and nature located near some of Austin’s busiest streets. Admission is only $5 and grants you entry to the garden as well as the Umlauf Museum.
The Umlauf Sculpture Garden is a beautiful place for quiet introspection, and a chance to view sculptures spanning the spectrum of renaissance to contemporary to grotesque to macabre to exquisite to simplistic… did I cover everything? This is a great spot to rest and digest some great food. Did I mention it's across the street from a park FULL of food trucks? (Also one of those food trucks sells only cupcakes. Need I say more?)
Location: 605 Robert E Lee Rd. Austin, TX 78704
Hours: Tue - Fri 10:00am - 4:00pm, Sat - Sun noon - 4:00pm
(Photo cred: austintexas.org)
If you’re looking for a gorgeous natural attraction just 10 miles west of the city, you have to check out Hamilton Pool Preserve. Thousands of years ago, the collapse of an underground river resulted in a natural swimming pool. It’s like a normal pool, except it’s surrounded by waterfalls, rocky cliffs, and smells like trees instead of chlorine.
To keep the crowds to a minimum, Hamilton Pool takes reservations! Visit this website for details!
If staying inside the Austin city limits is a must, you can still see a beautiful natural pool. Barton Springs Pool is a recreational outdoor swimming pool fill entirely with water from nearby natural springs.
Location: 24300 Hamilton Pool Rd. Dripping Springs, TX 78620
(Photo cred: austintexas.org)
Get your two-step on! The Broken Spoke is an authentic Texas dancehall just 10 minutes from Downtown Austin. Owners James and Annette White have been operating this legendary hotspot since 1964 and its reputation for great live music and good 'ol fashion Texas cook'n is world famous!
"The Spoke" is a favorite hangout for most of Austin's "real" country musicians. There's live music every night AND line dancing lessons every Wednesday - Saturday night from 8:30pm - 9:30pm!Show up by 8:00pm to sign up.
To quote Mr. White, "We ain't fancy, but we're damn sure country."
Location: 3201 S Lamar Blvd., Austin, TX 78704
Hours: Tue 11:00am - 11:30pm, Wed - Thu 11:00am - midnight, Fri - Sat 11:00am - 1:30am
Austin may be eclectic, unique, and weird, but it’s in the very best way. Let me know your favorite, weirdest Austin spots. And get excited for next week cause the Big Apple is next on our fabric tour!