During my time abroad in Paris, one of the big adjustments was figuring out the best places to purchase art and fabric supplies. I was used to a centralized garment district in New York, so when arriving in Paris I was expecting there be something similar, but, no such luck. Luckily with help from our professors, my fellow students complied a Paris Cheat Sheet of all the shops we could possibly need to succeed during a semester or year abroad at Parsons Paris. Below I’ve edited and organized my most common, student friendly, resources so next time you’re looking to get creative in Paris you’ll know where to shop!
Here’s the scenario, you’re at school and you NEED marker paper for your next class, but you only have a 15 minute break! Luckily, right around the corner from our conveniently located Paris Campus (and the metro line 14 and 7 Pyramides stop) you’ll find Adam ET Lavrut. This Art supply store has pretty much everything you need fine arts related, and it’s only a brisk 5-minute walk from school. Don’t be confused when you walk down Rue des Petites Champs looking for it and cant find it, because this hidden gem is settled inside the Passage Choiseul! The vendors here do speak english, but they’ll always appreciate cheerful bonjour’s and aurevoir’s! (Both addresses listed below)
*SIDE NOTE* Not to make this post about food, the Passage also has many great quick lunch places if you forget to pack lunch, a student favorites include “BioBurger” and “Végitai”.
40 rue des petites champs
Lavrut (ADAM ET LAVRUT)
52 Passage Choiseul
If your fine art supply needs aren’t satisfied by LAVRUT, you might try Rougier et Plé, it’s a bit farther from school, but often they might have more variety in stock. I found that they also stocked more arts and crafts kinds of supplies. Rougier et Plé also has many locations throughout Paris, so it might be more convenient to your personal commute to school! The closest location to school is on the right bank:
Rougier & Plé
12-15 blvd des Filles du Calvaire
If you’re a fashion student, you’re probably wondering where you can find everything from your basic muslin, to very specific notions, buttons, etc.
For the quality basic supplies, nearest to school, you’ll want to hit up Socolatex. Located on the right bank, this supply shop carries everything from rulers, pins, muslin, to tailoring material, as well as high quality fabrics and lining, all available at an affordable student rate. The vendors here are very helpful in finding you exactly what you need. And If you bring them a sketch of what you’re looking to make, they’ll give you free swatches of the fabric you decide on to confer with your professors. *Note* Free swatching is very rare in Paris, so take advantage of these kinds of opportunities when you can. Only some of the vendors here speak english, but you’ll be able to find them right away. Inbetween the metro line 4 Réumur Sebastapol or Etienne Marcel stops.
12 rue du Bourg L’Abbé
If you can’t find the fabric that you need there, you might try near by Tissu Market. These fabrics can get a bit pricey, but this shop is known for having a wide variety of fashion/apparel fabrics. They also have student rates, and allow swatching for 1-2 euro per swatch. Most of the vendors here speak english, but again, they appreciate your effort in trying to practice french with them. Off the Metro line 3 Sentier Stop.
18 Rue Sentier
If you’re in need of thread or buttons to match the fabric you’ve found, head on over to Fil 2000 for all your trimming needs. This shop also sells yards of muslin and lesser quality lining fabric for last minute needs. Off the metro line 4 Réumur Sebastapol stop.
65 Rue Réaumur,
And if you want less expensive options, you can take the 4 métro up to Barbes Rochechouart stop and you’ll find the closest thing Paris has to a garment district at the bottom of sacre coeur. Going up to montmartre to go fabric shopping is quite a unique experience as many of the shops sell their fabrics not off a roll but in three meter cuttings. This amount is often perfect as a student for a small project, but can become problematic if you’re trying to build a collection. Often times excess designer fabrics are sold here, so there are some really great finds to be made if you’re willing to make the trip.
The following shops are the best finds of the area, which pretty much reside all along the same street:
4 rue d’Orse
Marché Saint Pierre
2 Rue Charles Nodier
Les Coupons de Saint Pierre
1 Place Saint- Pierre
5 Place Saint-Pierre
Other supply needs may include:
7 blvd du Temple
Pain D’epices Paris
29-33 Passage Jouffroy
Emboridery Threads & Hoops (Near school!)
Tapisserie de France
7 Rue des Moulins
And that should pretty much cover all of the bases! If you have any additional resources feel free to comment and add them below. Until then happy shopping, and don’t forget to ask about student discount!