Fabric Horse is one of Philadelphia’s best handmade shops. Our South Philly retail location also houses our workshop where we specialize in vegan utilitarian accessories and urban gear for cyclists and anyone else who needs a functional bag in their life.
Founded by Carrie Collins in Cincinnati, Ohio in 2003, FH began as a name for the things she created in her spare time while studying Industrial Design at the University of Cincinnati. Since then, FH has relocated to Philadelphia where it has grown into one of the city’s most vibrant small businesses, hand sewing utility belts, fancy fannies, spats, bags, costumes and everything in between including product design, prototypes and samples for other companies.
We believe our work dares people to expand their imaginations socially, creatively and philosophically. Cyclists are not the only ones who find FH products useful. Stylists, new moms, costumer designers, hackers, producers, contractors, photographers, prop masters are just some of our customers. However, as a business deeply rooted in the cycling industry, we are aligned with many of the values championed by that community including the preservation of urban spaces, self-sufficiency and environmentalism.
We recycle materials harvested from thrift stores and junkyards whenever possible, together with the cast-off scraps from remnant stores and other textile manufacturers. We combine these alternative sources with new materials to ensure our products’ durability and longevity. In so doing, we believe our products will never populate any landfill and we feel good about that. Our products are sold locally in several independent shops, and we maintain inventory at a slew of other retailers across the globe. We are constantly innovating to find new uses for what we ourselves would otherwise throw away—bike tubes, small bits of vinyl and even selvage edges. Our favorite projects are those that force us to re-invent our materials and construction in order to forge something wholly original. Ultimately, we strive to lead by example and hope our success can encourage others to remain committed to sustainable principles, even in small businesses.
Along the way there have been many friends and allies helping to build Fabric Horse into what it is today. We will always be forever grateful for our amazing relationship with R.E.Load Bags and many others. Mary Casper and Alex Powell were two of the best employees a gal can ask for. Tran Nguyen and Tia Bianchini are the newest additions to the team and we couldn’t be happier with their talent and expertise.