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Thread: Need Tips on Low-to-No Cost Fabs for Charity Quilts

  1. #1
    Super Member Iamquilter's Avatar
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    Do any of you make charity quilts and where do you get the fabric. Do fabric stores in your area donate material when they know you use it for charity quilts. I have been making charity quilts with my stash of fabric but need backings and fillers.

  2. #2
    Super Member janRN's Avatar
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    I never thought to ask fabric stores for donations. That may be a good idea. I make a lot of donated quilts but always used my own materials. That does get expensive but I thought that was part of the "giving". I only make what I can afford to do; wish it was more but it's 2 yrs now that DH has been unemployed. I hope you find some help for your projects.

  3. #3
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iamquilter
    I have been making charity quilts with my stash of fabric but need backings and fillers.
    make pieced backing from the leftovers.

    muslin, which usually costs less than prints, is great for backing quilts.

    many of us use sheets, too.

  4. #4
    bkb
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    check out local thrift shops for fabric and check for cotton clothing. sometimes ours has a bag day if it fits in the bag the whole bag $1

  5. #5
    Super Member Fabaddict's Avatar
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    I make lots of quilts for charity. There are a couple of online shops that offer very reasonable prices http://www.thousandsofbolts.com http://www.marshalldrygoods.com

  6. #6
    Super Member Iamquilter's Avatar
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    Thanks for your replies. I use my scraps for the tops and I get donation from our local Christian Womens group for the thread.
    Will use your ideas.

  7. #7
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I don't think the LQS or fabric stores will donate for charity quilts. Contact the manufacturer of the products not the stores.

  8. #8
    community benefactor
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    If you found a good condition used blanket then it could be back and batting. For children's quilts I recommend just using fleece as both batting and backing. It has such a nice snuggling-up quality.

  9. #9
    bkb
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    Wonder if you asked your local charity if they could donate fabric or cotton clothing for you to make into quilts for them?

  10. #10
    Power Poster CarrieAnne's Avatar
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    Maybe you could put an ad on Freecycle or Craigslist asking for donations?

  11. #11
    Super Member ptquilts's Avatar
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    isn't there one charity that supplies the fabric to make the quilt? thought I read about it here on the board.

  12. #12
    Super Member fabric whisperer's Avatar
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    QFK (Quilts for Kids) will send you a kit, its the top fabrics & back ~ you supply the batting, binding & labor. They do ask that you send a 2nd quilt from your stash's fabrics to help defray the cost of them sending you fabrics & shipping it to you.

    You can also get the kits thru your local chairperson. Then you delivery finished quilts back to that chair, vs. mailing back to PA if they mail you the kit.

  13. #13
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    you can forget most retail stores, only the actual corp. can make those donations and they don't!
    Lqs are barely making it now, so doubt there would be any help there...

    Like others have said, FREECYCLE.org for your local area is a good place to try.

    I also go to my thrift stores on Tues at one and Fri at the other, they have a sale area and I buy the 100% cotton mens shirts for $.25! Do you know how much fabric you can get out of a 3xl long sleeve shirt???? and for that kind of money I stay well stocked on charity fabrics! Skip the womens shirts, too many seams, darts etc and they are never 100% cotton, they always have poly or spandex in them!

  14. #14
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    I have always just used my own stash when making charity quilts. Definitely post on freecycle and craigslist. I have donated to people on freecycle before.

  15. #15
    Super Member Iamquilter's Avatar
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    Yes there is, but I do not want to machine quilt and they require it to be machine quilted because of the heavy use it gets.

  16. #16
    community benefactor
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    Who do you donate the quilts to? I know that all the Children's Hospitals require donated quilts to be entirely 100 % cotton, prewashed, and machine quilted. They have strict size requirements also so I hear. But I've heard that they accept pillowcases with similar structure requirements. Someone told me they were making wheelchair lap quilts for the VA and that these had to be so very flexible and warm that they used a lot of fleece and only quilted with Stitch in the Ditch. For all of you who quilt for charity, THANK YOU!!!!, and please pass along the requirements. Maybe more of us will start.

  17. #17
    Super Member grann of 6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptquilts
    isn't there one charity that supplies the fabric to make the quilt? thought I read about it here on the board.
    Yes, quiltsforkids.org. But you have to supply the batting. They like you to also make quilts from your stash, but they want new fabric.

  18. #18
    Power Poster CarrieAnne's Avatar
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    I would think there would be lots of places you could donate that wouldnt care so much about size and type of fabric. Battered womens shelters, places that take foster kids, nursing homes, animl shelters, for the not so perfect ones.........

  19. #19
    Power Poster CarrieAnne's Avatar
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    I would think there would be lots of places you could donate that wouldnt care so much about size and type of fabric. Battered womens shelters, places that take foster kids, nursing homes, animl shelters, for the not so perfect ones.........

  20. #20
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    I am in charge of the quilt project at our church, we get fabric from people who quit quilting, estates and I haunt the clearance tables at the stores that sell fabric. I choose the better kind, if I can see through it,I don't buy it. We have used drapery samples for tops and discarded bed sheets from a local motel for backings. We don't use polyester any more, I refuse to sew with it, too hard on the hands and sewing machine. We tie all our quilts and they are taken to Milwaukee to several churches and places where the poor and homeless can come for food and comfort. Word gets around if you mention you can use fabric for quilts at the cutting counter. If I see marked down fabric I buy the whole piece and people always ask, what are you going to make? Our group was mentioned in a synod mission newsletter and we received boxes of fabric from out of state. A 95 year old lady cuts our squares, another lady sews tops, 8 of us tie and two of us hem the outsides. I keep track of everything and call the man who takes the finished quilts to the charities. If there is a fire in town, we donate quilts to the victims or if we hear of someone in need, they get one or two. We sell some now and then and the money is used to buy batts with coupons, another way to save money. We also make baby quilts for the Right to Life Groups in our area. Out of the scraps from cutting squares, I make strip quilt tops so we use it all up. You can do alot with strips two inches wide.
    Some places have requirements and the quilts have to be machine or hand stitched, we don't do that. There is another church here that handquilts so we send people to them.

    Carol J.

  21. #21
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    Dirt Cheap stores have $2.00 blankets that can be used for filler a/o back. Dollar General stores have $5.00 ones which will make 4 lap size quilts. Can't beat that except free!

  22. #22
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    I buy fabric at a place in Fayetteville, Tn. I live close enough to drive, but have ordered on line also. The prices are very reasonable. The website is Sirsfabric.com. Take a look. I think you'll be very surprised at the low prices.

  23. #23
    Super Member Iamquilter's Avatar
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    I have donated quilts, lap blankets to nursing homes, Childrens homes, Anne Marie shelter, Place of Hope etc. I checked into the Gifts for Kids but don't want to quilt them by mahine. Thanks for all your suggestions and I will check out the places suggested.
    Bea

  24. #24
    kacy's Avatar
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    I make quilts for Project Linus. The store where I buy my fabric donates three fat quarters per quilt. Does'nt sound like much, but it sure adds up. Over the past two years I've made about one hundred lap quilts. Of course I have to buy batting that they sell for less than $3 a yard.[56ins wide].Really love to do this.It keeps me busy,my husband is handicapped and we are retired so I have plenty of time. can't sit idle. this store is a discount store but they have top quality fabric.

  25. #25
    Super Member MaggieLou's Avatar
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    You can also go to the ReStore stores. They're run by Habitat for Humanity and are like Goodwill and Salvation Army stores.

    My guild makes charity quilts and we just use flannel for front and back with no batting.

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