A Jo-Ann’s Journey

Friday night I went to one of my favorite places: Jo-Ann Fabrics

If you’ve never entered one of these stores it’s a candy store for the serious arts and crafts. I say serious because this is no Michael’s or A.C.Moore. This is the grown up version of craft stores where everyone’s super-talented aunt or neighbor disappears to every so often and emerges with what seems to be another quilt already half-done.

So how does fabric shopping work? Well, this is the quilting section. There are many other sections in Jo-Ann’s, but different types of fabrics work for different purposes. There are upholstery, apparel, stretch, flannel, and leather to name a few. Most quilting fabric is thin cotton dyed or printed with a color or pattern. There are generally three options for buying quilting fabrics.

  1. Fabric Quarters (Which Were on Sale!) – These are quarter yards of fabric sold individually. This is good for getting a lot of different small quantities. While there are less overall options versus buying from the bolt, they make the process a lot easier.

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2. Bolt – As I mentioned before, this way can have more options but is more complicated. The bolts are the fabrics wrapped around cardboard. You can get larger quantities of these and they are sold by the yards. ( I like the one below for the back, what do you think?) You get these hand-cut by the staff, which can take a while if there’s a line. You have to be careful when buying these because you may not know the width, which can change, and because the price can add up pretty quick.

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3. Remnants – I don’t have a picture of this but I love remnants. These are “created” when a bolt runs out with around a yard or less or if a fabric doesn’t sell. These are in small bins and are sold at the unit price.

I bought a…moderate amount of fabric along with some extra threads and supplies and set up my station on G2. That was Friday.

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