Where to buy fabric?
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  1. #1
    Registered User larabelle's Avatar
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    Default Where to buy fabric?

    Hi All:
    I am getting back into sewing as the price of my work clothes has sky rocketed!! I find little at the thrift stores in my size. So where are you all finding fabric at a reasonable price?
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    Registered User Contrary Housewife's Avatar
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    For the most part making your own clothes is not going to save you money. Not if you want nice fabrics that make you look professional. You can buy much cheaper asian made clothing at the mall.

    There are many fabric stores online, including Ebay. I've even bought on Etsy. Google to see what brick and mortar stores are in your area. Joann's and Hobby Lobby are national chains. They carry some fashion fabric, but it is kind of hit or miss. They don't carry anything of really good quality.

    Cost out a home made wardrobe, then compare against rack prices at places like Target, Kohl's and Sears.
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    Honestly I got a lot for free from "older" women who were cleaning/downsizing. They were just happy it would be put to use. So I would work that angle - maybe get in touch with de-clutterers who help people downsize? Of course it will be hit-or-miss as to whether the fabric suits your needs. However my wardrobe quickly filled in by sewing with the usable pieces so now I mostly play with the rest and try to invent a use for it.

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    Super Moderator Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    I have the best luck at thrift stores and garage sales. That's hit or miss too.

    I agree it doesn't make financial sense anymore to sew clothing, unless your skills are good enough to make high-end items. In that case you might come out ahead in comparison to buying high-end clothing, even having to buy retail fabric. The trick is going to be finding good quality fabric.

    I've bought fabric on eBay but don't really like to buy online. It's hard to know if the colors will be true on a monitor, and of course there's no way to feel what the 'hand' is really like.

    Like many other things, it'll be easier to find fabrics if you're more flexible about prints and colors, even if it's not exactly your taste.

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    Registered User KathyB's Avatar
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    Altering thrift store clothes to fit may be cheaper than sewing from fabric. I suppose that depends on whether the thrift store clothes are too big or too small. Working with too small clothing is a bit trickier. You can sew an accent strip on either side of a skirt to make it bigger. I have done this and like how it looks. It it a stylistic thing though. It will probably not work if your taste in clothing is a more conservative or you are expected to wear a business suit.

    You can sometimes get good "yardage" at thrift shops from table cloths, drapes, blankets, shawls, large scarves, and pillowcases. Pillowcase skirts can be fun to make. One pillowcase for size medium or smaller. Two pillow cases for plus sized gals. I have two pillowcase skirts and one skirt I made from a tablecloth.

    You can also take a plain outfit and make it dressier by adding a bit of trim or replacing the buttons with fancy buttons.

    You could also try your hand at making vests. They do not need much material. And they can work with just plain shirts.

    You can also try wearing a scarf or removable collar to cover up the t-shirt neckline of plain t-shirt. This makes is look more like a business casual knit shirt.
    KathyB

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    Registered User larabelle's Avatar
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    Thanks all!
    Blessed and Highly Favored!!!!
    From $78K in debt to debt free and purchased a house and used car with 100% cash...God is sooo Good!!!

    Goals:
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    Just a thought....would there be a way that you could alter a thrift store/garage sale find and either add a contrasting/matching fabric to refashion the garment? My grandmother was an excellent seamstress and grew up during the depression....she'd go shopping and if she couldn't find the fabric she was looking for, she'd look in the home department at the sheets and curtains. I have to laugh because she found a pair of curtains and she said "today you are a curtain- tomorrow you will be a dress"lol. The curtains were actually cheaper than the fabric. If you are in healthcare and wear scrubs, JoAnn's is having an online sale right now on their Christmas/Halloween/Fall fabrics for 1.99 a yard.

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    Super Moderator Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    I use curtains and sheets for all sorts of projects, too. There's a lot of fabric to be had for cheap.

    Carol Burnett also understood the value of curtain fabric for making dresses.

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    Registered User larabelle's Avatar
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    THanks Spirit Deer for the video...too funny!!! I agree there is alot of fabric to be had in sheets and drapery.
    Blessed and Highly Favored!!!!
    From $78K in debt to debt free and purchased a house and used car with 100% cash...God is sooo Good!!!

    Goals:
    New to me vehicle

  11. #10
    Registered User larabelle's Avatar
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    Kathy B and Houseapes I took your ideas to heart and looked around my local thrift stores for items which could be altered to fit. I found of all things that men's shirts were my best bet. Men's shirts are made of such quality fabric and I found that I could re-purpose them into women's blouses. There were several tutorials on it on youtube and pinterest. I only need one shirt in order to make a blouse and my local thrifty had several really nice shirts for $5.00 or less. But due to my frugal gene I wait until 50% off day and don't pay more than $2.50 per shirt. I can't find a blouse with that quality of fabric for $2.50 anywhere. I do add a little of my fabric stash lace to the shirts for a feminine touch.
    Blessed and Highly Favored!!!!
    From $78K in debt to debt free and purchased a house and used car with 100% cash...God is sooo Good!!!

    Goals:
    New to me vehicle

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    Registered User many houseapes's Avatar
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    Lol Spirit Deer....as I was replying to this post and talking about what my grandmother use to do, that episode of Carol Burnett did run through my head!

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    You probably already know this but just in case.... JoAnns will take Michaels coupons and they're a dime a dozen. That's if you decide to go that route. And vice versa.
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  14. #13
    Super Moderator Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    I didn't know that, Niko. Thanks! If I'm planning to shop JA in Duluth, I could try that as there's a Michael's there, too. I wonder if they'd do that at JA in Hibbing, where I usually go, since there's no Michael's there. Might be worth a try.

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