A holiday would not be complete without a thorough investigation of the local fabric establishments.
I had done my research before arriving in Kota Kinabalu so I knew there were several fabric shops in the city. When I spied the 'Textile Emporium' I was pretty excited.
Well, I can now sum up my fabric shopping experience in Kota Kinabalu in two words:
'dead' and 'loss'
'don't' and 'bother'.
There were several similar shops throughout the city and I went in them all. There were headscarves, kaftans and traditional Muslim clothes in every colour of the rainbow, but where was the fabric?
There was no fabric in the Textile Emporium.
I'll just let that sink in.
From my conversation with one of the assistants there, I gathered that they did have fabric, but were not able to sell it during Ramadan, so it was all hidden away for the month. She did dig behind a rack of clothes for me so I could glimpse a few rolls and I convinced her to let me buy the paisley print you see above. Not bad but not what I was hoping for at all.
So, I am not able to provide any insights into the beautiful array of amazing but cheap fabrics I was hoping to buy. All I can say is that Ramadan is not the time for sewing enthusiasts to visit this city in the hope of spending up big in Textile Emporium.
The dates for Ramadan vary each year, but it is usually around mid to late June for a month. The bonus is that tourists can join in the nightly feast at sundown and many hotels put on fabulous buffets. Small compensation for the lack of fabric!