Hello, my fellow quilters!
Today I'm continuing with my best tips for saving money on fabric! Part 1 (here) is a tip that doesn't cost anything--simply organizing your fabric is the first thing you need to do before buying more fabric. It helps you see what you already have and love!
Part 2 does require a little bit of investment, but I guarantee you--this is something worth doing if you quilt on a regular or professional basis.
If you are like me, you are in a bit of a "fabric desert." We don't have a lot of quilt shops here, and most of them carry only the very biggest brands. However, my heart belongs to Art Gallery Fabrics--which not a lot of shops carry in-store. So I buy a majority of my fabrics online.
One of the best ways to save money is to be sure you are buying the right fabrics and this is especially true with solids.
In general, you will know if you like a print. But matching up solids online can be nearly impossible without a couple pro tips--which I'm going to share now!
If you are a fan of Art Gallery Fabrics Pure Solids, you can find the coordinating solids to any collection by going to www.artgalleryfabrics.com, typing in the collection name in the search box, then clicking on the collection link.
After you click on the collection link, you can scroll through the collection and as you scroll to the bottom, you will find the matching solids and blenders. (You can see an Instagram reel here for step by step instructions).
But maybe you want to do an all-solids pull.
In this case, you should consider purchasing or making color cards.
Buy or Make A Color Card
There are a few different options for color cards.
The most common way is to purchase one directly from a fabric shop.
These color cards are made by the fabric manufacturers and are sold to fabric shops. The cost will depend on which solids you prefer. An Art Gallery Fabrics color card will cost about $40.
However, considering the cost of a yard of fabric is about $13 now, it only takes about 3 wrong orders to make this cost worthwhile!
You can see a sample of the AGF color card in the photo above. The swatches are organized by color and form a trifold booklet.
The second way is to buy premade color swatches, like the little ones shown in the photo above. I purchased these online from a shop called Woven & Woolly. These are a bigger investment and cost me $88 when I purchased them a year ago.
However, I liked the ability to mix and match them quickly when I had my fabric shop and was curating bundles weekly. I would recommend these if you are making money from your quilting business since they can really save on time. (Never forget--time is money, especially when you are managing your business solo).
And as you can see in the pics above, it is easier to see the palette you are building when you can move around the swatches easily. I highly recommend them if this makes sense for your quilting business or if you want to splurge a little.
The last option is the most budget friendly--and that is to make your own over time!
All you will need is some index cards, a large key ring and some patience.
I would cut down the index card to the size you want, but be sure it will accommodate the swatch size you want and save a place for the name and SKU.
Better yet, did you know you that most AGF Pure Solids have the name and SKU printed on the selvage? This means you can easily save a piece of the selvage and glue that to the index cards.
Punch a hold in the corner and now you can begin building a set of color cards for yourself.
Whichever way you choose, being sure to buy the colors you need will help you shop more wisely and efficiently.
I hope this tip encourages you to invest in yourself and your craft. Buying smarter will allow you to use your fabric budget wisely and with minimal waste.
I hope to see you next week for part 3!