6 Questions to Ask When Choosing Fabric for a Sewing Project?

When you go to the fabric store, there is an overwhelming amount of fabric to choose from. Choosing the wrong one could make your finished product look like a disaster. If you want to make sure you choose the best fabric for your project, ask yourself the following six questions.

What Fabric Does My Pattern Suggest?

The first thing you should do when choosing fabric is look at the suggested fabrics listed on your pattern’s envelope. This will steer you on where to look at the fabric store.

If you don’t have a pattern yet, try to think about the types of fabric that are typically used on the type of project you want to sew. That way you can avoid being disappointed. You wouldn’t want to fall in love with some swimsuit material when you’re making a prom dress.

What Print and Color of Fabric Would Look Best for My Project?

The next question to figure out is what you want the fabric to look like. Is there a specific color you want? Are you open to prints? Also keep in mind the person that the sewing project is for so that the color complements their skin tone and sense of style. Just because you love a certain print or color doesn’t mean that everyone else does. Of course, if the sewing project is for you, it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks about it.

Do I Need to Worry About Fabric Texture?

Another consideration to make is the texture of the fabric. Be careful not to choose stiff or scratchy fabric if you plan to sew clothing, unless you are also adding a lining. Always make sure that the texture won’t look out of place on your sewing project. If you plan to sew a skirt or dress, you also need to make sure that the texture doesn’t prevent the fabric from hanging evenly and smoothly. Literally touch the fabric and imagine what it would look like when you’re done sewing.

What Type of Fabric Is the Most Practical Choice?

Sometimes you’ll find a fabric that you absolutely love but it is not a very practical choice for your sewing project because of the care involved. For instance, fabric that is “dry clean only” is not a good choice if you’re sewing something for a child. Fabrics that wrinkle easily should also be avoided.

There are also other things to consider from a practicality standpoint. Like, do you really want a pair of pants that are light pink? Or, is that see-through material really going to make a good shirt?

What Fabric Am I Confident I Can Sew?

Some fabrics are more difficult to sew on than others. Cotton is the easiest while anything that stretches or has a slippery surface are more difficult to work with. Consider your sewing skills before selecting fabric that will be a challenge to sew. If you really want to sew on a difficult fabric, practice before you start a big project.

What Is My Budget for the Fabric?

It’s not always cheaper to sew thing than to buy them at the store. Before you select fabric, decide if the fabric is worth the price to you. Fabric prices range from $1.99/yard to over $30/yard, depending on the material. You can easily bust your budget.

You can save money on fabric by only purchasing fabric that is on sale. Many fabric retailers also have coupons where you can save as much as 60 percent off one cut of fabric. You should always look for these deals before heading to the store to choose your fabric.

6 Questions to Ask When Shopping for Fabric for a Sewing Project

Do you have any other suggestions for people who are buying fabric? Leave comments in the section below.

One Comments

  • John


    I think the article makes a good point that you’ll want to choose a fabric from the store that is practical for the application you intend to use it for. My daughter recently decided she wants to take up sewing and insists that I be the one to test out her projects. I’ll make sure she knows what fabric types to use based off what she decides to make for me.

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