Sunday, March 7, 2010

Beijing's Fabric Market is Fab!

Some of my clients have been to Beijing several times and so want to go somewhere different, away from the must-see sights full of tour groups. I wrote about Badachu (8 Great Temples) last August and shopping at my local market last July. Well, this time I want to tell you about a huge market, the so-called fabric market. There, you can fit yourself out with a complete new wardrobe, tailor-made if you want, choose soft furnishings for your whole house, and lots more!
I took a friend to this off-the-beaten track market recently and he raved about the unique fabrics available. It doesn't look promising from the outside, a series of dull warehouse buildings on a dusty, crowded road, but inside, well a whole new world of weird and wonderful goods: not just fabrics, such as linens, cashmere, silks, cottons, printed, woven, cut to any size or length you need, but also accessories, cosmetics, bags, wallets, belts, jewelry, clocks and watches, .....if you like markets, if you like hunting for something unusual, if you want a unique souvenir from China, then this is a fun place I can take you to! 

Of course if you are a Harrods, John Lewis, Macy's or Nordstrom customer (or perhaps in these days of recession a Wal-Mart customer), you won't want to go near this market. Silk Alley, Friendship Store, Yashow or any of Beijing's new shopping malls will be enough of a downgrade for you. Similarly if you are on a 10-day-see-all-of-China tour then you won't have time to go off the beaten track for some adventure. Not only is the market a 40 min drive to the edge of town, it's also laid out in a random way.
However, if like my friend, you want to explore places where the locals go and get an unbeatable opportunity to pick up a bargain, then this is the place for you. The service can be a bit, well, minimalist, but I can help you deal with that. And although everything is very cheap, I can help to negotiate the price down even further for you.

You can be creative, mix and match, choose your material and accessories and then take them to a tailor to make something to your own design....or make a copy of your favourite Armani shirt or whatever. Just let your imagination go! How about new curtains, or sofa covers or duvet cover? How about making a new suit or shirt? Silk underwear? Leather trousers? A new party frock?

I couldn't resist getting something. I picked out a cotton print with a colourful flowery pattern, just like a Paul Smith design, and will take it to my favourite tailor, the one who made the winter coat I showed you in January's blog, to make into a new shirt for the Spring. I'll show it to you - and the market - next time you come!


  1. I like this post and lots of valuable content here. Thank you.

  2. My friend and me will be visting beijing in December and are looking for information regarding textile markets. Can you give us the name and address of this market?

    Many thanks

  3. Muxiyuan Fabric Market (木樨园纺织品市场)

  4. Hi I luv this info! I'm looking for unusual accessories and fabrics to make hats is this the market I
    Need to find or are there others to better suit my needs?. Thk u

  5. I think this would be the best one to start with.

  6. Aug. 12/13/14 Beijing looking for winter corduroy for trousers. Could you possibly assist me? Great post and witty layout.

  7. Do you know anywhere in Beijing that sells sewing machines for a reasonable price?

  8. Muxuyuan Market above has second hand machines, you could try there.