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Thread: yard sale fabric

  1. #1
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    yard sale fabric

    I have seen very little fabric at yard sales. Out of ten stops today, I saw three pieces at one stop.

    Of about 30 stops a coupleof weeks ago, I saw fabric at only one stop for fabric of any kind.

    So - I can not recommend yard sales as a reliable source for fabric.

    I think men's dress shirts are the best source of - what I would consider for using for quilts - fabrics at yard sales.

    It still bothers me to cut up a garment that shows no signs of wear, though.

    I

  2. #2
    Super Member justflyingin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bearisgray View Post
    It still bothers me to cut up a garment that shows no signs of wear, though.

    I
    But if it were your only source of cotton fabric, you wouldn't feel that way, I'll bet.

  3. #3
    Super Member willferg's Avatar
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    I do a search on Craigslist under yard sales for fabric, so I only go to yard sales that say they have fabric. Of course, sometimes it isn't for quilting. If I see an ad on Craigslist for fabric, I sometimes email and ask if it's 100% cotton. I don't always get a response, but sometimes I do, which is great because it saves me time if it's not the right stuff.
    People who start projects and never finish them are cooler
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  4. #4
    Super Member justflyingin's Avatar
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    Thrift stores are also unreliable, but I still checked every time I went into one. It only takes one "jackpot" to make it all worth it. One time I spent about $100 but I bought BAGS of quilt shop quality fabric.

  5. #5
    Super Member #1piecemaker's Avatar
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    I think that there is a shortage of people who sew. All of the older ladies that made their own clothes have either passed away or have quit. Quilting is a dying art. We have to keep it going!!
    A finished quilt excites me!! Whether is it mine or yours!

  6. #6
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    I usually find poor quality out there so that I am careful where I buy.
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  7. #7
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    Ya I have noticed that too, I will come up on some stuff but not very much fabric unless Its a known quilter that is weeding out there stash. Otherwise I try to get fabric online.

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    Wow. That's why I go to yard, garage, estate and thrift stores. Rarely do I see actual pieces of fabric. But a men's shirt and women's blouses go along way with fabric. I walked away from a yard sale with 5-6 XXL shirts and same fo women's and couple large cotton house dresses and summer sun dresses. $15.00. The dresses had full skirts. That is a lot of yardage. They don't always donate these clothes because they need the money to help offset other costs. You can get some really nice cottons from kids clothes. Baby blankets are great for the flannel. little girls dresses are great too. Went to the SA near my house on a Saturday, everything 50% off of ticket price. Came across some large men's corduroy pants. Great with denim. Makes a heavy quilt but up north in the winter works great! You're passing up a lot of deals if you pass on the clothes. When I debone the shirts and dresses after washing them, I leave the button and zipper strips intact, but leave an 1-1/2 " on each side so you have something to work with if you want to use the strips on totes. They're already in place with the button holes. Same with cuffs on sleeves and pockets.

  9. #9
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    I had a garage sale a week ago and had tons of fabric for sale and I did sell some and the other I took to a Goodwill. I did put in the craigslist that there was fabric for sale. It does help a little. I think that some people are using fabric out of their stash because of the cost of good fabric. I really have to need the fabric if I pay $11 - $13 a yard. This is just my personal opinion. I love to quilt but I have so much fabric that I know I can't use it all up even if I live to be 100 yo.
    I would love to know how to put pictures on the QB of nice fabric for sale but I don't have the knowledge.

  10. #10
    Super Member ptquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bearisgray View Post
    I have seen very little fabric at yard sales. Out of ten stops today, I saw three pieces at one stop.

    Of about 30 stops a coupleof weeks ago, I saw fabric at only one stop for fabric of any kind.

    So - I can not recommend yard sales as a reliable source for fabric.

    I think men's dress shirts are the best source of - what I would consider for using for quilts - fabrics at yard sales.

    It still bothers me to cut up a garment that shows no signs of wear, though.
    Please don't feel that way - there is SO much extra clothing in this country, ask any thrift shop. Not like good usable clothing is scarce. And all those "Planet Aid" yellow boxes that collect used clothing - most of that gets recycled, not used by other people.

    I have done better at thrift shops than at garage sales.

  11. #11
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    Peacemaker..I think that depends on what part of the country u are in..in Iowa it very much alive..even in the very small rural towns..my town is maybe 1300..and i can name maybe 50 people just in the small town who quilt..we drive for all our supply..most small towns even have a quilt club..May have only 10 members..but they enjoy..

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    Garage sales and thrift stores are just like any place else, have you never gone to buy something and nothing caught your eye? Different times of the year in different areas you will find fabric coming out of your ears, other times you are unable to find any. I find that the summer garage sales have more, because people are wanting to get rid of stuff to go on vacation or have come back from vacation and need the space for the new stuff they have gotten. I also find that just before and just after school starts you can get a lot of fabric and cloths. People are finding out what doesn't fit any more or isn't needed any more. I have found that garage saling and thrift shopping is an art just like quilting. You just have to look outside of the box .

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptquilts View Post
    Please don't feel that way - there is SO much extra clothing in this country, ask any thrift shop. Not like good usable clothing is scarce. And all those "Planet Aid" yellow boxes that collect used clothing - most of that gets recycled, not used by other people.

    I have done better at thrift shops than at garage sales.
    I can and have cut up garments - but it is so much easier if there is a tear or stain on them!

  14. #14
    Super Member JenniePenny's Avatar
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    Quilting is not dying. It is a $3B a year industry.
    If there is a shortage of quilting fabrics at yard sales, I interpret that to mean that quilters are using their stashes right now, and they don't want to sell several hundred dollars' worth of fabric for $20. My opinion only.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JenniePenny View Post
    Quilting is not dying. It is a $3B a year industry.
    If there is a shortage of quilting fabrics at yard sales, I interpret that to mean that quilters are using their stashes right now, and they don't want to sell several hundred dollars' worth of fabric for $20. My opinion only.
    I agree. I just wonder where/when those that say "you can get fabric inexpensively at yard sales" have.

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    I got 3 bags of batting the other day. DH stopped by garage sale and spotted it on his way to work. Gave them $10.00 for all 3 bags. Hobbs 80/20 all queen size. they wanted everything to go fast since it was only going to be open til noon that day. He didn't have time for anything else.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by #1piecemaker View Post
    I think that there is a shortage of people who sew. All of the older ladies that made their own clothes have either passed away or have quit. Quilting is a dying art. We have to keep it going!!
    you are right about the fact that there are less and less people who sew. i always ask new people i meet if they sew and so far it's been a big fat zero -- i am shocked that they don't have a machine OR even know how to darn a sock!
    "variety is the spice of life"

  18. #18
    Super Member just_the_scraps_m'am's Avatar
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    there was a thrift shop near me that had a dollar rack and at the end of every saturday they removed what didn't sell and replaced it with new dollar items. i was curious and asked what they did with it and they said they send it overseas to religious entities to help clothe the poor....so if you feel bad cutting up shirts that aren't worn -- don't -- they're just recycling them in a different way.....there is a massive over abundance of clothing in the world.....
    "variety is the spice of life"

  19. #19
    Super Member Emma S's Avatar
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    I think of garage sale season as being from April through October. I probably hit a true bonanza three or four times in that period. To me the hunt is almost as much fun as the purchase. Saddest story I ever heard was about a quilter that was well known in the community and her relatives commissioned an estate sale. When asked the person managing it admitted to dumping a huge amount of cotton fabric because she figured no one would be interested in it.

  20. #20
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    Friday morning, I was at a yard sale and picked up approximately 123 yards of quilting cottons for $72 and a bunch of quilting books for $10, went back the next day and got 12 large binders, all full of quilting magazines. The only problem is, WHERE do I put them all? LOL

  21. #21
    Super Member madamekelly's Avatar
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    I was at a garage sale yesterday where they were getting rid of all their fabric for $2 per yard. Everything from fat quarters, to 6 yard cuts. All of it was LQS quality. As a courtesy to any locals out there, it is being held today also at the east end of Oak street in Lebanon, OR, watch for the colorful signs.
    If you always do, what you have always done, The results never change. Change is the wings you give yourself.

  22. #22
    Super Member rosiewell's Avatar
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    there is sale at my local Hancock Fabric for Memorial Day, quilter's cottons for $2.49 a yard. I always find a sale for the holidays, I buy yards for backing, because I do not want to use my favorite stash fabric for it (and I am too lazy to piece it)

  23. #23
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    Yesterday my quilting cousin (it'sjustjanet on this board) and I went to a quilter's flea market in Point Pleasant, NJ. Was it worth leaving at the crack of dawn and driving for 90 minutes through blinding rain? Heck yes. Tons of good quality fabric, from scraps to yardage; notions; skeins of wool; some hand-made items; books and magazines. I've been saving singles so I'd be the customer that wouldn't need to take their small bills. We had a great time, bought lots of treasures, and celebrated afterwards with a walk on the boardwalk and our traditional quilt outing hot dog and a frozen custard for dessert. And the sun was out for the drive home. I always feel a twinge of jealousy when I read about QB members finding wonderful bargains at yard sales, Goodwill, etc. I'm happy for those of you who find these bargains but wish it would be me. Well this time it was our turn! If anyone that was involved in the sale happens to be reading this, thanks for a great day and we hope to attend next year.

  24. #24
    Super Member wendiq's Avatar
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    I am one of the older ladies that is no longer buying much fabric....just using up what I have. Amazing how far the scraps go!!!! However, I now do only charity quilts and I find the younger generation really would rather have the cheaper ones that they can replace when they want to re-decorate.....kind of disappoints me, but I'm trying to accept it.....will never understand it. But there is little regard for "heirlooms" and absolutely no care for older furniture or knick knacks. I dread the day I will have to move into a much smaller place as most of the things I have will get either trashed or given to the Goodwill......Years ago, I invested in having some of my older pieces of furniture refinished/restored to pass down to my kids and grandkids.....was a waste of time and money.....they'd rather get stuff from Ikea, etc. Oh well.......so it is.....at least in my family and in that of most of my friend's. Sorry for the venting.....it is just frustrating. Cotton fabric is so darn expensive now.....a good garage sale find is a treasure!

  25. #25
    Super Member lovequilts's Avatar
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    I find a LOT of fabric at my Goodwill and Value Village stores. I also use fabric from clothing. ALSO not knowing you or your age, ask if you get a discount. At VV I get 20% off....Senior Discount. And I also look at drapery/curtains. I make a lot of tote bags and this fabric is perfect. Its fun to do the fabric hunt. Some days nothing....Yesterday at a Goodwill I got over 15 yards of Flannel for approx. 23.00.....Lots of 1/2 price tags....also look for local church/groups rummage sales. 3 weeks ago I got a Janome sewing machine for 9.99 less 30%. It was cleaner than my current machine. Run's perfect, had attachement feet and manual. Retailed for about 599.00.....I love the adventure and the hunt for these treasures

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