How to successfully choose fabric

One of the questions I’m asked all the time in my sewing classes is how to choose the right fabric. Is this something you struggle with?

I’m writing up a guide to choosing fabrics, but in the meantime I had to share this great video interview on this exact same topic, by Penny Payne, Fabric Editor of the McCall Pattern Company. I’ve been lucky enough to have met Penny, and she’s awesome! She helped me out on my work on a recent TV show, by generously sharing some fabric trend predictions, which were invaluable.

Colorful fabrics on sale


In this Video she shares some insights that sparked a few ideas in me, and I hope will do the same for you too.

Do you struggle choosing the right fabrics? Would you like me to write a post?

Happy Stitching

CL :)


  • Linda Wilson

    12.05.2015 at 23:30

    Hi. Have a look at my page about Fabric. It’s an alternative way of getting to know about them.
    Enjoyed the series 1-3

    • The Thrifty Stitcher

      13.05.2015 at 14:02

      Hi Linda,

      Great blog and post, thanks for sharing the link. Would you be interested in my using your fabric post as a guest blog post here?
      Happy re-stitching, Cl :)

      • Linda Wilson

        09.06.2015 at 20:41

        Hi. I’m so sorry for the delay in my getting back to you. I’m so new to this technology that I only just found your comment. I would be delighted if you used my fabric posts (or any of my other posts) as a guest blog if it’s not too late!

        Linda :-)

  • Cheri Hage

    12.05.2015 at 05:34

    I turn to stone in a fabric store…so many choices, so many distractions ! Hard to focus on just the fabric I need and not look at what’s new in the store. Would love to read a ‘how to’ on choosing fabrics :)

  • Annette burrell

    12.04.2015 at 12:30

    A class on fabrics would be great.

  • Jacqueline

    11.04.2015 at 12:33

    I would certainly welcome a class in choosing fabrics. Even with samples from on line retailers I am still not completely confident in my choices.

  • Wai

    22.03.2015 at 09:12

    Yes please, would be really helpful to have a post and/or, as suggested by Anneli, a class visit to a fabric place.

    Am particularly interested in knits and Jersey – I don’t know the difference between a 20% stretch knit and a lightweight knit. As a new sewing bee I’d appreciate all the help I can get.

    Thank you.

  • Jane

    20.03.2015 at 08:13

    Interesting video & some great ideas. I must admit that almost all the failures I have made have been down to poor fabric choices. I have a habit of trying to push the limits of what might be possible and getting it wrong!

  • Anneli

    19.03.2015 at 13:25

    I would love help on choosing the right fabrics! I am very new to sewing so I don’t really know how to match the fabric descriptions to the fabric I find in the shops (what is cotton lawn – is that a lightweight or medium weight cotton?)… I often pick a fabric because of the pattern and not how it will fit the garment so have made mistakes. If you even did a class where we’d all go to a fabric shop and learn the different textiles, that would be super helpful.