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Thread: Difference between quilting fabric store material and hancocks

  1. #1
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    Difference between quilting fabric store material and hancocks

    Can you quilt store owners tell me the difference between the fabric in quilt stores
    and the fabric in other stores like Hancocks or Joanns? Have seen some of the same fabric
    in both stores and was wondering if there is a difference. Thank you for taking the time to answer my question.

  2. #2
    Super Member DebraK's Avatar
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    lol, they could tell you, but then they may have to kill you ;-)
    I have chosen to be happy because it is good for my health - Voltaire

  3. #3
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    I am not a quilt store owner but I will pass along what I have been told. The difference is if you buy fabric from a quilt store, they receive the first run of the fabric. As fabric is woven the weave becomes looser at the ends. So, when a quilt shop orders their fabric, generally they receive their portion from the best part of the run; that being the best and tightest weave. When they get to the portion where the weave is not as tight (good) then those portions are bought by Joann's, etc. I can only tell you that you have to feel the fabric and see it to know if it is first quality. I buy from all over- quilt shops, Joann's, and even on line. If I am doing something special, I head to my quilt shops. If I am doing a charity quilt, I buy the best for the money I have available. Hope some of this helps.

  4. #4
    QM
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    I'm not a quilt store owner. Sometimes the "same" fabric isn't. I bought an all over dog print for a friend who raised and showed dogs. $10 a yd. The next year I bought the same print at Walmart. $5 a yard. The print was the same, the underlying fabric was much cheaper. My friend had a business making dog products. for her, the cheaper one was more appropriate. At your LQS, you are also paying for a much greater level of expertise and service. Also, IMHO, the JoAnn's calicos are generally much flimsier than similar looking LQS products. Of course, JoAnn's is a store that buys much more than your LQS, therefore buys and can sell more cheaply. They also have a wider selection. Unfortunately, from my perspective, they also have a large quantity of petroleum based, artificially scented products which trigger my asthma. For me, it's generally LQS or on-line shopping.

  5. #5
    Junior Member Kwiltr's Avatar
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    I believe the thread counts are higher in the fabric purchased through quilt shops and therefore higher quality. They certainly feel and look different.

  6. #6
    Super Member Buckeye Rose's Avatar
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    The salespeople at LQS will give you one version of the differences, fabric reps will give different facts, and JoAnn's/WalMart will give a third version.....LQS wants you to believe that their fabric is the best and the only place you can get good fabric.....I know from shopping at all of them, that you can get good and bad fabric everywhere....you have to feel/look the fabrics to know....I cannot afford the pricing at LQS, so only shop there if I can't find what I need at a cheaper price somewhere else.....I am very satisfied with the fabrics/pricing from Connecting Threads....I get free shipping on $50 orders and who can't spend $50 when making a quilt?

  7. #7
    Super Member MartiMorga's Avatar
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    Great Information. It is difficult to put so much money into a quilt, but I do try to support my local LQS. I agree that you have to really examine the fabric and determine for yourself if it is good quality or not. I do know that as a retailer the more you buy the better the discount - a volume discount. JoAnns can afford to do that, your local LQS can't. But JoAnns can't offer you the quilting expertise.

  8. #8
    Super Member Emma S's Avatar
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    Really interesting info but for me its all in the feel. The softness, the thickness. My stash has been accumulated over many years, some good feeling, some not so much. I make a lot of scrap quilts and when I pick-up a fabric that isn't good quality its a real clunker. Don't care where I get the fabric but it has to pass the touch test.

  9. #9
    cjr
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    I buy fabric i like/need from all of the above sources. I also prewash everything, except batting.Ihave many times had more string tangleing from LQS fabrics then J or H. Almost all fade to some degree or other. Some need more pressing then others. I also use fabric softner in my dryer. Conclusion ?????? Personal choice at the time. I do buy the better grade at J & H. J cheapest grade is way to thin for me
    www.etsy.com/shop/quiltinglycaroline

  10. #10
    Super Member auntpiggylpn's Avatar
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    Sometimes if the weave is looser it will tighten up after washing it. I've had some cheaper fabric turn into a nice feeling fabric after I have laundered it. And some have remained thin enough to read a newspaper thru.
    No one has ever become poor by giving. - Anne Frank
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