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Thread: About fabric ...

  1. #1
    Super Member Butterfli19's Avatar
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    Cool About fabric ...

    Just throwing this out for consideration as we all live in our own world.

    Today, it isn't fair to make a generalization about a certain commodity carried in any store. With few exceptions, in my area anyway, there are no longer boutique stores that cater to the obliged. We live in the era of chain stores, further shackled by what they choose to buy, forcing us to either choose, make our own, or move to a nudist colony.

    Be it Walmart, JoAnn's, Kohls, JC Penney's, or Macy's, none are really as good as they were 30+ years ago, or even 10 for that matter.

    Even sadder, the phrase "you get what you pay for" is unrealistic because I have found fantastically woven fabric at WM for $3.44 a yard, and further seen this same fabric at Hobby Lobby (reasonably priced) and JoAnn's, extensively marked up. JoAnn's is not what it used to be and will never be as good as SoFro - now closed, but made mucho dinero off me in its heyday. Walmart does have more quality fabric than not. Hobby Lobby is consistently quality and selection and my local Ben Franklin shines in that department, changing their stock seasonally with fabrics from some of the best. LQS are competitive and offer beyond the standard and their prices reflect that, so I'm not even sure they're about fabric as much as status, but that's another topic.

    My point is, the name of the brick and mortar doesn't matter any more. I've found some pretty cheap stuff everywhere, whether it be fabric or clothing, and will not allow myself to be pigeon-holed into a name. Macy's does not represent the commercials of the past and Kohls carries clothes I've seen at the mall. Even Marshall's carries the WM Levis Signature series jeans, so it all ends up in the "basement" stores, just disguised under non-basement store names.

    So fellow fabric lovers and purchasers of all the same things, buy what you can and make (and wear and cook) what you love. Quality trumps price but you determine what both of those are.

    Peace. And be happy. Enjoy your world. And sew forth.
    Nancy

    Just keep sewing!

  2. #2
    Super Member DebraK's Avatar
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    okay. Feel better now? ;-)
    I have chosen to be happy because it is good for my health - Voltaire

  3. #3
    Super Member Luv Quilts and Cats's Avatar
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    And those of you withing driving distance of Raymond, NH. Saturday, Sept. 7th Ben Franklins in Raymond, NH is having the their truckload fabric sale. It's fun to go to but expect a crowd and bring you sense of humor and patience as we will all be waiting in line to get fabric cut. That being said, it's a great time, with fabric bolts literally hopping from one basket in the cutting lines to another cart because that person wants some yardage off the bolt. It's crazy but lots of fun!!! I heard the sale goes on for 10 days or 2 weeks, but it's best to get there earlier rather than later as fabric does run out. The fabric I have bought is very good quality and lots of colors and styles to choose from. I can't remember the price but it might be on sale for $5 or $6 per yard. I just realized I have to work that morning til noon, so I will have to go after lunch. Please save some fabric for me ladies!
    Luv Quilts and Cats
    Never underestimate the healing effects of beauty. - Florence Nightingale

  4. #4
    Super Member Treasureit's Avatar
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    I believe you are correct...but I remember my mother telling me as a young girl to feel the fabric...both sewing fabric and clothing. She had certain things she checked...never the brand or the store name.

    Not a clothing story, but once she bought a lamp at Woolworths or some 5 & Dime store and made me promise to not tell anyone, because she was embarrassed. I remember people complimenting her on that lamp over the years!

  5. #5
    Super Member Butterfli19's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DebraK View Post
    okay. Feel better now? ;-)
    Yes, thank you! lol

    Luv Quilts: the lines are crazy long but the people are cheery and funny. They usually set up more tables and people buy the bolt-load. It's crazy. The last few years they've had some great fabric but you're right, you have to go early. Bring coffee and use the bathroom before you get in line.
    Nancy

    Just keep sewing!

  6. #6
    Super Member auntpiggylpn's Avatar
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    Joann's bought out So-Fro fabrics. . .
    No one has ever become poor by giving. - Anne Frank
    Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. - Martin Luther King, Jr.

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  7. #7
    Super Member Neesie's Avatar
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    Amen, Nancy! I've been sewing long enough to recognize quality, regardless of where I find it.
    Neesie


    By all means let's be open-minded, but not so open-minded that our brains drop out.
    ~Richard Dawkins

  8. #8
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    All I can say is "y'all have fun and think of us too far away to get there "

  9. #9
    Super Member klgls's Avatar
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    I agree - need to see and touch!!

  10. #10
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    After reading a thread about WM fabric recently, I decided to go to my local store and see/touch for myself. Some was thin, not well woven etc, but some was good quality, similar to what I purchase at various LQS's. The difference was that it might cost 10-13$ yard at the quilt shop, but only 2-5$ at WM. I also recently visited my local HL and had the same experience, so given my recent experiences I've decided to keep an open mind to any and all fabrics.

  11. #11
    Super Member quiltsRfun's Avatar
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    Well said. I agree.

  12. #12
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    As long as I like the fabric and can get it at a price I like, I will purchase it. It doesn't have to be a big name brand. Our GGGGRANDMOTHERS used flour and grain sacks and created some of the most beautiful quilts and clothing for their families. I can tell you I've purchased material from the big names and they was no better than the others. do it your way. I do it my way. I don't buy every template either. often make my own.

  13. #13
    Super Member ghostrider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Butterfli19 View Post
    With few exceptions, in my area anyway, there are no longer boutique stores that cater to the obliged. We live in the era of chain stores, further shackled by what they choose to buy, forcing us to either choose, make our own, or move to a nudist colony.
    Well, there are plenty of boutiques, independent businesses, small shops, mom and pop operations, and other wonderful non-chain stores of all types up here in the central reaches of New Hampshire that do not cater to "the obliged" (noblesse oblige?) at all. Indeed, they cater to any and all of us 'just plain regular folk' who cross their threshholds to explore the wonders held within, be it fabric, clothes, prescriptions, or bread, offered at very reasonable prices.

    I agree, choose where and what you buy based on your personal circumstances and preferences, but for me, I will always choose the little local guy over the mega-giant. Always. But then, I'm lucky enough to live in a Hallmark movie kind of place.
    The Earth without art is just "Eh".

  14. #14
    Super Member peaceandjoy's Avatar
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    I miss So-Fro!

    Locally, our WM's still do not carry decent fabric. Some of what is at JoAnn's is better. Over-priced without a coupon, which is of course, the plan.

    I think the variations in what WM carries depends on local competition. We have a LOT of stores in the Finger Lakes/Central/Western NY area. Not really close to each other, but in any given direction, I could be at a store in under an hour. Plus a couple of Mennonite stores, not fancy, not decorated, but prices can't be beat for LQS name brands. So it isn't to WM's benefit to offer much.

    Regardless, why judge? I don't care what somebody else uses. I know what I want to use, and what I can afford, so that's what I get to decide on.

  15. #15
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    Butterfli you are quite right. I found this truth out a number of years ago when I was shopping for rugs. I went to Kohls and found one that I really liked but the price was way too much (even on "sale") so I went to Walmart. I found the exact same rug for less than Kohl's inflated "sale" price.

  16. #16
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    If I like how a fabric looks and feels and the cost is within my budget, I'm a happy camper.
    Fabric is like money, no matter how much you have it's never enough.

  17. #17
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    I miss So Fro, that was my favorite. JoAnn's bought So Fro and Micheal's bought Lee Wards and I miss them both.

  18. #18
    Super Member SherriB's Avatar
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    I loved our Sew Fro store and missed it when it left. And I wish our Ben Franklin would have a sale like that one! I would take off work just to go to it. LOL!!!
    Sherri

  19. #19
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    I do not have a Ben Franklins' anymore but did find one on line. They are not on-line shops but did send an embroidery kit to me. I bought fabric from Ben's on Oahu and it is some of my best fabric. I made a beautiful quilt for my grand daughter from this fabric. I will ask her to take a photo as she is now 22.
    I am in Ben's original territory - near Philadelphia. You are lucky to have a five and dime near you.
    Quilter 68 who is now 69/and now 70

  20. #20
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    A soul sister! I totally agree.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nilla View Post
    After reading a thread about WM fabric recently, I decided to go to my local store and see/touch for myself. Some was thin, not well woven etc, but some was good quality, similar to what I purchase at various LQS's. The difference was that it might cost 10-13$ yard at the quilt shop, but only 2-5$ at WM. I also recently visited my local HL and had the same experience, so given my recent experiences I've decided to keep an open mind to any and all fabrics.
    Probably a good attitude for many things!

  22. #22
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    And your point is??????? In this day and age we are ALL looking to save $$$$$, Unfortunately it take s time and gas to " shop " for the best deals. I often do not drive all over to save $.50. Also value is in the eyes of the beholder!
    "In the crazy quilt of life, I'm glad you are in my block of friends."

  23. #23
    Super Member Jeanette Frantz's Avatar
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    About Fabric

    Quote Originally Posted by bigsister63 View Post
    And your point is??????? In this day and age we are ALL looking to save $$$$$, Unfortunately it take s time and gas to " shop " for the best deals. I often do not drive all over to save $.50. Also value is in the eyes of the beholder!
    I have purchased a substantial amount of fabric at the local Wal-Mart. I check out the fabric -- does it feel nice, is it tightly woven, are there flaws in the fabric? Those are the things I look for, as well as other quality features. I have purchased one particular fabric at Wal-Mart for $5.44-$5.97 a yard, gone to JoAnn's, where the exact fabric was priced at $9.99 (or higher). Guess where I'm purchasing! I don't consider myself poverty stricken, but neither do I pay more than I have to, quality being equal.

    Even George Younce, gospel base singer of the Cathedral Quartet, said "I live at Wal-Mart"! LOL

    Jeanette Frantz

  24. #24
    Super Member Wanabee Quiltin's Avatar
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    I agree with everything you said. I am currently making a quilt out of vintage Cranston fabric bought at walmart, I am calling it a Walmart Christmas. Feel the fabric and buy the best you can afford.

  25. #25
    Super Member Neesie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigsister63 View Post
    And your point is??????? In this day and age we are ALL looking to save $$$$$, Unfortunately it take s time and gas to " shop " for the best deals. I often do not drive all over to save $.50. Also value is in the eyes of the beholder!
    I had no trouble, understanding her point. You're right, in that "value is in the eyes of the beholder" . . . so if a person feels better about him/herself by paying more for the same fabric, then that choice should be respected.
    Neesie


    By all means let's be open-minded, but not so open-minded that our brains drop out.
    ~Richard Dawkins

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