CONTRIBUTED BY EMILY SMITH
When my spouse informed me that Turkey was our next destination, I thought for sure my sewing and crafting days were indefinitely postponed. Then I heard through the grapevine that there was a “fabric district!” But let’s be real – It’s not a fabric district; it’s a fabric metropolis! Or even a fabric heaven! I do not think I have ever been overwhelmed with the amount of fabric that this one street in Old Adana holds.
The fabric district of Adana is located in the “Old Adana” area on Abidin Pasa Caddesi. If you know where the Roman Bridge is, the fabric district will be an easy find! Abidin Pasa Caddesi is a one way street heading west, away from the Roman Bridge (See Map). There are dozens of fabric stores lining both sides of this very busy street. You can find fabric of all types including fabric for clothing, upholstery, curtains, menswear, and even fleece.
Be sure to walk as much of the street as possible and go in as many shops as your time allows. Many of the most unassuming shops have the best finds! Some of the shops have sewing notions, but print-out a photo or take what you’re looking for, and you can usually be pointed in the right direction fairly easily (I do know where a sewing notions store is, however I need to verify my coordinates and directions. Once I do this, I will post it below in the Comments Section).
Unlike a JoAnn’s Fabric or a Hobby Lobby, the fabric is very spread out on the street according to type. For example, one store, or line of stores, will be all women’s clothing fabric and another store will have only fleece fabric, while another store will have only Turkish curtain fabric. I do miss having a one-stop-shop store like JoAnn’s, but I really wouldn’t trade the selection or the cheap prices for anything!
Fabric prices range from 4 – 10TL ($2-5) per meter. Some shops charge by the kilo which can work out to be a great deal. These shops generally charge about 10TL ($5) per kilo. This can be an excellent way to get a good deal on fabric! With lightweight fabric, you can get about 2-3 meters for ½ kilo!
I have taken my small children (10mo & 2yr) with me several times, but it is hard to get a stroller in and out of some of the smaller stores. I prefer to leave them at home so I don’t have to worry about getting them in and out of the car on a busy street, and then in and out of stores with a stroller. But it is do-able! The street is very, very busy at times and due to crossing the street to get to some of the stores, I have to keep the kids in the stroller, or maintain a tight grip on their hands. I do love taking my children on days when I have lots of time because many of the shop owners love to visit with them. When I do not bring them, I am always asked where my children are!
Since I go down to the Fabric District so often, I’ve developed several acquaintances with many shop owners. Many of them will offer çay to drink. Please do not turn them down if you have a few minutes to spare. It is a great opportunity to practice your Turkish and to learn about the Turkish culture.
If you love to hoard fabric like I do, this is your street in Adana!
GPS Coordinates: 36.986172, 35.332034
Directions: map (See Orange and Blue lines on Map – the Yellow line is where my favorite shops are located!) The drive will take you about 20-30 minutes depending on traffic. Follow the D400 west into Adana. After you pass the Mosque, take your first left (I believe it is called Fuzili Cd). You will cross over the D400. Look for the really tall Christmas tree which leads you into a round-a-bout. Take the 2nd exit off of the roundabout (the road heading along the river). Start looking for the Roman Bridge and once you see it, prepare to turn right. Where the “Pedestrian Only” Roman Bridge ends, this is where Abidin Pasa Caddesi begins. Depending on the time of day, traffic could be very hectic. Once you turn onto Abidin Pasa Cad, start looking for a place to park on the right side of the street. You can parallel park anywhere on this street where you find a spot – there is not a charge.
Directions back to Incirlik AB: (See Purple Line on Map) Drive down the fabric street and take a right at the first light. (It is sometimes hard to see due to all the traffic, but I like to drive slow and stay in the right lane until I see it.) Take a right on Cemel Gursel Cd. Follow this until it runs into Iononu Cd. Take a right and look for the really tall Christmas tree again. This time, go around the tree and head towards the D400/Mosque. I’m not going to sugar coat this – It’s a bit hectic sometimes in this roundabout, so be a brave and defensive driver.
EDITOR’S NOTE: As of February 2016, this post has been re-published on our Overseas Yes network site, Germany Ja. We are in the process of transferring all the content of this site over there, and will be shutting Turkey Tamam down once that process is complete. Comments have been closed on this post here, but if you’ve got something to add we’d love to continue the conversation. Please visit this post in its new home on Germany Ja and leave your comment there.