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Thread: Thrift Store Shopping--are you picky in what you buy?

  1. #1
    Super Member Joanie2's Avatar
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    So, I am a thrift store junkie and proud of it. I have often found some really neat things. I've been reading a lot about some of the fabric finds you all are picking up and so I have a question for you --- are you particular about what fabrics you find and purchase at thrift stores or do you simply say to yourself "it's fabric! I have to have it! I don't need it for any project I'm working on but I simply can't pass it up. Surely I will find a use for it." ? I am starting to view my shopping in a different way in that I no longer purchase all the fabrics I come across just because the price is great. I look it over more carefully and ask myself if I will actually use it and I no longer buy it just because it's there. I'm getting more particular and thrifty with my thrift store shopping. How about you? Are you buying just to buy?

  2. #2
    Power Poster sewbizgirl's Avatar
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    I have to forsee some use for it... even if way down the road or for just one possibility.

  3. #3
    Power Poster sueisallaboutquilts's Avatar
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    You bring up a very good point, Joanie. I used to be like that but I've gotten a lot pickier especially since I took stock last Fall and realized I bought way too many "bargains" than I'll actually use.
    It's not a bargain if you end up never using it lol

  4. #4
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    With the prices of fabric going up, I am seeing a LOT of scrappy quilts in my future. So yes, I will not be as picky now :D:D:D

  5. #5
    Super Member featherweight's Avatar
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    If it is something I think I may use and it is cotton. I buy it. But, I must admit the last year I have been a little more picky as I am getting way to much stach...

  6. #6
    Super Member fabric_fancy's Avatar
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    i look but very rarely do i buy anything even when its for pennies.

    i find most of the fabric just isn't my taste and i wouldn't even enjoy using it in charity quilts.

    i'd rather leave it behind for the next quilter who thinks its a real score then it buy it just cause its a good deal and have it never seen the light of day.

  7. #7
    Senior Member SewMomma66's Avatar
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    I am picky. I buy what I like. I am a new to quilting so I lack a stash. Put I am still picky. If I like it someone I love will like it.

  8. #8
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    If I like the fabric and the price, then I'll get it.

  9. #9
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    I only buy 100% cotton for quilting and only Men's shirts, the larger the better, with long sleeves usually and NO stripes, nothing thin! I have found that the vast majority of shirts I buy are from Old Navy!

  10. #10
    Super Member GGinMcKinney's Avatar
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    My storage space is crammed, so really try not to buy it or even bring it home if it is free unless I plan to make it in 2011. Lots of yarn & fabric. Must complete more projects before buying more supplies. LOLs Can still go visit new fabrics and touch. Better than going to the zoo! Ha!

  11. #11
    Super Member spartan quilter's Avatar
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    I am building up my stash, but I only buy cottons, designs and colors that I like and can foresee a project with them. So, I guess that I am sort of picky. But, my stash is filling up, so now I have to get pickier.

  12. #12
    Super Member wanderingcreek's Avatar
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    I don't have that problem. I have never been able to find any fabric at our thrift shops!

  13. #13
    Super Member sewingsuz's Avatar
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    The last time I bought a little fabric at a thrift store, it was rolled up with tape and it was $2.50. I got home and it was all faded from sun when I unrolled it. I did not go back since. just said it was a donation. If it is rolled up and taped, beware, unroll it and look.

  14. #14
    Super Member SherriB's Avatar
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    I seldom find fabric at our thrift stores. And if they do have any, most often it is polyester fabric. I did luck up one time and find a good sized piece of minky for $2.00 and used it for the back of a baby quilt.

    If the fabric is 100% cotton and it appeals to me, then I will buy it. If not, I don't. No sense in buying to just be buying.

  15. #15
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    I've stopped going to the thrift shops because I need to be getting rid of stuff, not acquiring more stuff!

  16. #16
    Super Member Pickles's Avatar
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    Well as I am still building my stash I buy it all, even if it is
    polyester, for using in Utility quilts, I also buy cloths and shirts
    and sheets and table cloths, curtains and the such , so no I'm not in the least picky :-D

  17. #17
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    I am getting a little more picky now that I have a stash. Don't usually find fabric at thrift stores. I do buy pieces for dog beds that I'm not picky about. I don't think they care too much!0

  18. #18
    Super Member quilting cat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prism99
    I've stopped going to the thrift shops because I need to be getting rid of stuff, not acquiring more stuff!
    I wish I could control my addiction that easily! I'm not as picky as I should be! :(
    If it's cotton and I like it and the price is under $1 / yd, I can't resist! :lol:

  19. #19
    Power Poster earthwalker's Avatar
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    I am pretty careful, but will buy most things as long as they are sound. I can always use them for pet bedding or as backs for picnic/utility quilts. We are planning a move to the South-West in a year or so...it is much colder there, so I need lots of quilts! (Well, that's my story and I'm sticking to it!).

  20. #20
    Super Member montanajan's Avatar
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    I found a real score recently @ a thrift store. It was in a large clear bag so I saw many of the fabrics. It was taped shut to discourage buyers from picking through the fabric. I bought it & told store clerk. "I'll just re-donate what I cannot use" - works for me. Often, there is no fabric worth buying, so I didn't mind getting some pieces I will give back for them to sell.
    I should be more discriminating - my stash is getting out of hand.

  21. #21
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    I used to do that. Now I usually ask myself first if it is something I just want or need. A lot of times what I see is something I want but not really need it. It is very hard to turn my back on a beautiful fabrics especially the ones with the bright colors.

  22. #22
    pnptrapp's Avatar
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    I shop in thrift stores, but am a little bit of a fabric snob. I don't like to buy from the thrift store as I don't know how the fabric was washed, or even if they take the time to wash the fabric before I buy it.

    I do have that problem at garage/ estate sales. If I see fabric at one of those I have a very hard time NOT buying anything. I feel more comfotable buying there as usually the previous owner is there and can answer questions about what I'm buying.

  23. #23
    Super Member GrannieAnnie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joanie2
    So, I am a thrift store junkie and proud of it. I have often found some really neat things. I've been reading a lot about some of the fabric finds you all are picking up and so I have a question for you --- are you particular about what fabrics you find and purchase at thrift stores or do you simply say to yourself "it's fabric! I have to have it! I don't need it for any project I'm working on but I simply can't pass it up. Surely I will find a use for it." ? I am starting to view my shopping in a different way in that I no longer purchase all the fabrics I come across just because the price is great. I look it over more carefully and ask myself if I will actually use it and I no longer buy it just because it's there. I'm getting more particular and thrifty with my thrift store shopping. How about you? Are you buying just to buy?
    I have to have at least an inkling of what fabric might be used for------------or just totally knocked out by it. I bought about a quarter yard of some chicks on white denims-----for heavens knows what. Big expense. 25 cents.

    I passed up about 4 yards of grey/black/white herringbone wool a while back and I'm still thinking I severely screwed up leaving it in the store.

  24. #24

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    I go to St Vincents. They sell their fabric in clear bags. I stick my fingers in to feel. If there is enough peices I can use I buy it. It usually runs $2 or #3 per bag. I use what I want and I can return the rest back to the store later for someone else.
    Last week I hit the jackpot. I got 2 boxes 12x 10x 2" full of cotton 2" squares. Plus a big piece heart fabric and more I will return later. All for $2.19

  25. #25
    Super Member Aurora's Avatar
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    I only purhcase cotton or wool. Most of my cotton comes from men's shirts. But my problem is I love wearing oversized men's cotton shirts around the house or to sleep in -- so they seldom make it to the stash. Love the plaid men's shirts and their labels. In the beginnining I removed the labels, I now leave them attached and include them in my quilts.

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