Yep, I was in Portland last week to go with the YM to doctor appointment. While I was there I saw friends and family, went hiking, bought a pincushion, saw some artists, ate a lot of good gluten free food and visited a few quilt and fabric shops.
The Mill End store is an all purpose sewing store. It is the size of grocery store, not small and cosy. There are two Mill End shops in Portland and we went to the one near Beaverton. It was big and focused mostly on fabrics for people making garments and household decor, I think. They had a big quiltmaking section, but the fabrics were not like the ones at quilt shops. Lots of novelty prints and not many familiar lines. Still, if you need Mickey Mouse or Spiderman fabric for a quilt, they had some. The people were very friendly and the atmosphere seemed to be good.
There was quite a bit of non-quilt fabric. We all have to make some things with other fabrics (Halloween costumes, anyone?) and Mill End store has all sorts of garment and costume fabrics as well as upholstery fabrics and some scary looking machines that I assume cut upholstery. I was interested to see a cork grocery bag sample along with several different types of cork on bolts. I have only heard about cork from people who make Sew Sweetness bags. I have never actually seen bolts of cork in person. I didn’t buy any (have you seen my project list?), but I was sorely tempted.
There was a huge wall of notions, but nothing really special. I’d like to see a really nice display of zippers – lots of colors and sizes all in one place and organized. This shop had a lot of zippers, but I found them hard to access and gave up.
The cashier area was large and well decorated for Halloween. I was there the few days after Halloween, but the decorations were still lingering. I did not feel crowded in this store.
Attached to the Mill End store was a Monte Villa Sewing Center. This is part of chain, Amanda explained to me, where they sell sewing machines, accessories, embroidery thread and, in this case, Accuquilt accessories. I assume they sold the machines, too, but I didn’t see any. I bought a new mat for my 2.5 inch die as well as a pick to get the threads out from between the blades. I also picked up some bobbins.
Mill End Store
4955 S.W. Western Ave.
Beaverton, Oregon 97005
OPEN 7 DAYS • Mon-Fri 10-5:30
Sat 9:30-5:30 • Sun 12-5:00