FIDM Scholarship Store

If you ever find yourself in downtown Los Angeles near the FIDM campus, take the time to stop in their Scholarship Store at the corner of S. Grand Avenue & W. 9th Street. Store hours are Monday – Friday 10 to 6 and Saturdays 10 to 4.

This gem of a retail store offers everything from fabric to clothing to jewelry to trims to notions. All the items in the store were donated from some area of the fashion industry.   Their selection is ever changing so if I lived in the area, trust me; it would be one of my monthly shopping trips. Proceeds from sales helps to fund their student scholarship program, so it’s a win-win situation for everyone.

Did I mention that their prices are below wholesale? Did I mention that their prices are cheap ?

The recent American Sewing Guild Sew Much Fun LA Tour visited the campus of FIDM (Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandizing). The Scholarship Store was the last stop on the tour and what an unexpected surprise it was! Imagine turning 20 fashion fanatics loose in a shop filled with designer fabrics, trims and notions. Our leader, Judy Kessinger, quickly latched onto a whole roll of ITY printed knit fabric. She bought the whole bolt for only $5.00!   It soon became the center of a design challenge for the tour group.  More on that in a future blog.

The store is one of those shops that you need to take some time to look things over because there are hidden gems everywhere. The day we were there, we found the above mentioned bins of fabric, baskets of fashion jewelry for $1.00, walls of trims and notions for under $1.00.  We shopped clothing that could be worn or maybe used as “fabric” to repurpose for under $5.00. We saw designer shoes for cheap! We saw notions like threads and zippers. They offered men’s ties and seasonal items.  It was just plain fun ! The store also provides jobs to FIDM students, giving them a “student helping student” view of retail. The success of the store depends on the generous donations from corporate sponsorships. The store has been featured in many Los Angeles bargain hunter guides. It’s a no-brainer. 

An added bonus for us was we had arrived via our chartered mini bus, so that meant we had plenty of room to transport our finds back to the retreat hotel. Yippee Skippy! As a bargain hunter as well as a fashion sewist, I appreciate the time and effort the school puts into this endeavor. It works!  By the way, is it just me or do you cringe when typing the word “sewist”? I know we don’t want to be known as sewers, they smell . . . but really?  Maybe we could be design opportunists  . . .  Anyhow, check it out; let me know what you think.