Tuesday, February 1, 2011

A Fresh Look: Rosen & Chadick Fabrics

Rosen & Chadick Fabrics
Address: 561 Seventh Avenue (west side of 7th, enter on 40th), 2nd floor and 3rd floor, New York, NYC
Phone: 212-869-0142
Hours: Monday - Friday 8:30 am - 5:45 pm; Saturday 9:00 am - 4:30 pm
Online store: n/a
Best for: the personalized service

I'll be honest with you, Rosen & Chadick frustrates me. On the one hand, the owners are pleasant and helpful and the fabrics are top quality, so I sincerely hope this store continues to survive and thrive in NYC's Garment District. On the other hand, it never makes my list of must-visit stores when I'm asked for recommendations. So I went to Rosen & Chadick last week—in between snow storms—to give this store a fresh look. Here are my 2011 impressions:
  • It looks the same as it did on my last visit in 2009; still lots of beautiful fabrics
  • Ellen Rosen and David Chadick are still two of the nicest and most helpful people in the Garment District
  • Rosen & Chadick does not feel like a retail fabric store and is therefore a little  unapproachable? off-putting? for the average home sewist shopping in the Garment District
What I mean by that last remark is that the store feels like there should be a sign on the front door: To the trade only. Missing are the usual retail indications, like signage or visible price tags. There is another floor filled with the most beautiful wools, but you'd completely miss it unless Ellen or David told you it was there.

Ellen explained to me that much of Rosen & Chadick's business comes from the entertainment industry—costuming for theater, film and TV. For example, the cast of the upcoming Broadway show "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying," starring Daniel Radcliffe of Harry Potter fame, will be wearing costumes made from Rosen & Chadick fabrics. "We stock a lot of basic fabrics, the majority of which are reorderable," said Ellen. While there I saw scrumptious wool tweeds and bouclés, hard-to-find 54"-wide custom silks, silk twills for ties and handbag linings, fine laces, and better quilting cottons. Prices are similar to B&J Fabrics, though Ellen admitted they are accommodating when it comes to pricing.

Bottom line for 2011: Despite my reservations about it feeling like a to-the-trade-only store, I like this store a lot, I really do. If you aren't pressed for time, or are on a very specific fabric hunt, patronize Rosen & Chadick Fabrics. Comment here or email me and let me know your thoughts on Rosen & Chadick.

My review of Rosen & Chadick from 2008. 

Ellen Rosen, one of the friendly and helpful owners of Rosen & Chadick

Cotton prints along the store windows

Silk twills for ties and fancy handbag linings.

Beautiful tweeds.


  1. I agree with you 100%. Something about how organized and orderly it is makes me feel like I should speak in a hushed voice. But it's a great store, and there have been times when I've been looking for something specific and, after not finding it in all my usual places, found it there.

  2. Man oh man! When I get to New York, I going to spend a lot of cash on fabric. Tee Hee.

  3. A trip to NY could do serious damage to my wallet and airline weight allowance.

  4. There's a second floor? I was actually there with a PR group and I don't remember another floor. I used to go into this store before it moved and while it wasn't as hushed feeling I've never bought anything from them and I certainly have no trouble spending money on fabric!

  5. I don't know that I have ever been in this store, but perhaps I should swing by... the photo of those gorgeous tweeds is mouth-watering!

  6. That's good to know! Just in case I ever go, where are the prices marked? I hate being in a situation where you have to ask for the prices (antique shows!). It makes me feel like the salespeople are sizing me up, trying to figure out the max I would be willing to pay. Thanks!

  7. I'm ashamed to say that I've missed stopping in at Rosen & Chadwick during my previous trips. I think I've seen it, but it looks a lot like B&J from the outside (same side of street, also on a corner, also an upper floor, also an arch on the building). Budget-wise, I felt like a fish out of water at B&J, so that's probably why I mentally skipped R&C, too. But I'll stop in next time. Look at those cottons! If you're a quilter, you're always on the lookout for those in the GD. (Hope that window has UV protection, tho...)

    I know what you mean about prices not being marked. In some little NYC stores, I've asked, said that's more than I wanted to spend, and started to walk out. The price usually drops on the spot! Either that, or they'll decide they can sell me only a half yard after all.

  8. Doris, they're written on the bolts. Definitely hard to find.

  9. At first I felt a little intimidated but I quickly got over it once I saw how helpful the staff is and Ellen is so nice. I happened to wear a blouse made with fabric purchased from there and she was so kind to compliment it. The prices are a little high, or very high but the quality is outstanding. Case in point of good customer service: I purchased 1 yard of this to die for red silk wool which was pricey and then they gave me the remaining 1/2 yard to 3/4 yard FREE!

  10. i was here yesterday, and I thought the staff was really helpful and nice. sure, the prices are VERY high, but the quality is a world away from what they stock at MOOD. as a frequent garment district shopper, I am continually frusterated buy Mood staff's lack of knowledge. the fabrics are overpriced for what they are; you can find the same bolts at smaller shops along lower 7th ave and 39th street for half the price. if you are going to spend time making something nice, rosen and chadwick is a good place to purchase your yardage.

  11. Best customer service, hands down but after I made my very expensive purchase, I found the same fabric on line for les than half the price. They are much too pricey for the garment district.


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