Buying fabric online can be difficult without being able to see and touch the fabric before you buy it. When I made curtains for our house, I couldn’t find anything I was looking for at our local stores, so I ended up buying all my fabric online. That’s a lot of fabric to buy without seeing it in person first! Today I am sharing my tips for buying fabric online so that you don’t need to be limited when it comes to finding the perfect fabric for your crafts.
8 Tips for Buying Fabric Online
- Use the website’s search categories to your advantage. What will you be using your fabric for? What colors are you looking for? While the amount of options online can be overwhelming, most online fabric stores have menus and search functions that will allow you to pare down and filter results so you can find what you’re looking for without having to browse through thousands of different types of fabrics.
- Pay attention to the fabric’s content, weight, and width. You should be able to find this information on the website.
The fabric’s content will tell you what the fabric is made of: cotton, polyester, wool, nylon, etc. This should give you an idea of the feel of the fabric. If you are unfamiliar with the content listed, you can visit your local fabric store to see what that particular type of fabric looks and feels like.
The weight of the fabric tells you how heavy it is. Heavier fabric is thicker and useful for curtains, upholstery, and other home decor projects, while lighter fabrics are thinner and can be used for quilting and apparel.
The width of a fabric tells you how wide the fabric is. This is important to make sure you will have enough fabric to complete your project. Fabrics can be anywhere from 35-108+ inches wide, so take note of the width before you buy.
- Look up reviews. What are people who have bought that fabric saying about it? Honest reviews can be incredibly helpful when considering an online fabric. They might let you know how wonderful (or not so wonderful) that particular fabric really is.
- Check the website’s return policy. Some stores will allow you to return fabric that you buy if you don’t like it or there is a problem. Be sure to also check the store’s return shipping policy, too. Fabric can be heavy, and shipping charges can add up fast!
- Order samples. Samples are a great way to see the fabric in person before you order. Some companies will send you free samples, while others charge a small fee. If possible, I recommend getting a sample before ordering large amounts of fabric. This will allow you to see and feel the fabric’s true color, weight, and texture before buying it. It also lets you see how the fabric will look in your space.
- Perform a web search to see things other people have made with that fabric. Sometimes you can find pictures of things people have made with the fabric by searching for its name online. Before I bought my curtain fabric, I was able to find pictures of curtains people were selling on Etsy made from that same fabric. This was very helpful so that I could see how the fabric looked in large amounts and in different spaces. (And see how much money I saved by making them myself!)
- Put fabrics together in a design wall/photo app. Some fabric sites have a design wall that allows you to put different fabrics next to each other to see how they look together. If the site doesn’t have this, you can easily do it yourself on your own with a photo collage program or app.
- Look for discount codes and coupons. Before you complete your purchase, be sure to search online for discounts and coupon codes. You can save a good amount of money this way, leaving you more to spend on craft supplies! (I mean, let’s be honest, what else were you really going to spend that money on?)
I hope these tips for buying fabric online were helpful. Buying fabric online opens up so many possibilities! Feel free to add your own tips in the comments.