Since about 2009 I've tried many mail order and on line sources for various products. I do love Amazon for books and other 'hard goods', I've gotten used books for as little as $4 including shipping. Hey, they read just as nicely as new books, right? If shipping is free I consider it a bonus because I haven't used $4 a gallon gas to make a purchase, even though my car gets pretty decent mileage and I can sometimes stop on my way to somewhere else.
Yes, I do know the library is free, but there's that time thing. Plus returning on time... that's a whole 'nother story!
The drawback is you don't always know what you're getting so you have to do your homework.
Fabric shopping on line can be hard if you don't know enough about weights and fiber content, etc. Then there's the tactile nature of sewing, fabric shopping is as much about feeling as it is about seeing.
Because in my area most of the fabric stores are quilt shops, which I do love but they don't carry much garment fabric, or they're chains which don't always carry the quality of fabric I want, I started checking out on line fabric stores. Now if you're an American Sewing Guild member, you get a leg up on this! Many on line vendors have been at various ASG conferences so you know the quality of their goods. Many of them offer deals through the ASG web site, so you can try them out and help the Guild at the same time.
I have a couple of favorites... I love Vogue Fabrics in Chicago and will even sometimes take a road trip there. I've gotten nice things at good prices from fabric.com too. There are some others but those are my go-to defaults.
I was looking for some leopard print fabric that would be appropriate for a jumper or dress for Miss A. I only found swimsuit fabric and fleece locally. But fabric.com had some poly/cotton and some sweater knit so I ordered some.
Of course I also found a few nice pieces for doll skirts and dresses to go with the sweaters I've been knitting.
Here's what came yesterday:
|Leopard and some camo, all knits. The back one is a sweater knit, perhaps for Miss E or my daughter.|
|Cats and pink plaid are a nice weight of flannel, and the blue and yellow are cottons.|
|This one is mine, a nice weight of doubleknit for a spring top and there's enough for either a skirt or a cardigan too.|
Now I need to get some of this prewashed and pick out some patterns.
Oh, did I say I won a pattern package from another blog, Sew Everything (link in my blog faves at right). I'm pretty excited about that, I haven't statistically been lucky at winning things and it was such a pleasure. Of course the odds were in my favor, not like the lottery.
New fabric, new patterns, now all I need is some vacation time.