Like most sewists, I love shopping for fabric. Set me free in a fabric store and you can generally pick me up in a week or so.
However, I live in a remote area with only 1 local fabric store and they cater to quilters. Almost every bolt in there is 100% cotton. Great for quilters. Not so much for other sewists.
If I travel the 2 hours to the city, there are a couple of stores but they are relatively limited and expensive. And those are all the choices I have.
Shopping online has opened up a whole world of fabric for people like me. Now I can sit in the comfort of my own home (in my jammies, if I choose!) and browse beautiful fabrics from far away places.
The trouble is, many of us fabric-aholics need to feel the fabric to know what we’re buying. Although we can overlook that colors can be slightly misrepresented because of varying computer displays, the feel of the fabric is nearly impossible to demonstrate over the internet.
I hate buying something I am not sure about. I could order swatches. Most online fabric stores offer this service. But that means waiting and I’m impatient.
After sewing for 20+ years, I still didn’t know my cotton lawn from my wool gaberdine. I didn’t know enough about fabric to be able to purchase wisely online. But I knew enough to buy a great book to help me!
Enter Sandra Betzina’s More Fabric Savvy (ISBN-10: 9781561586622/ISBN-13: 978-1561586622) published by Taunton Press. (I borrowed the picture from Amazon. Go there if you want to click to see inside the book.)
This book is my “Online Fabric Shopping Bible”!!
Inside, you will find pairs of pages dedicated to each type of fabric. There is a fantastic picture (which you can almost feel) and TONS of information about each fabric, including how to clean, how to sew it, what type of needle and thread are best, fabric characteristics, special tips for handling, what garments it is best suited for, and much more.
Every sewist who wants or needs to purchase fabric online NEEDS this reference book while browsing! You can purchase it through Amazon.
I have no affiliation with Amazon, the author, publisher, or anyone else who makes money from sales of this book. It’s just another tool I love.
PS. One online fabric store I highly recommend is Gorgeous Fabrics. I have no affiliation with them either.