Thrifting for Fabric

It’s no secret I am a big-time thrifter.  I haven’t been thrifting nearly as much since Covid hit back in 2020.  In general, I am just not in town as much so that means fewer stops.  That means fewer opportunities to find goodies.

Then for a while, all of the fabric that was coming into the thrift store was being snagged by local ladies who were making masks then volunteering at the store to help with making sure those who entered wore masks.  That meant there was never cotton quilting fabric to be found.

I still looked when I went but I rarely found fabric.  Fast forward to a week or so ago.  I was in town because I had a doctor’s appointment and needed to have a blood draw in advance of the appointment.

I looked for fabric and FOUND SOME!


I found some awesome lightweight T-shirt fabric.  I am collecting that for a blog reader who has been making sleepers for the baby care kits that my friend makes for Lutheran World Relief.  Some might not pick these darker colors but they are perfect as many of these kits go to third-world countries and they don’t have access to laundry like we do.  These darker colors that we here in the USA don’t think of as baby colors.

These were all unmarked so they are only 50 cents per piece of fabric.


I found this…  $2.  I unrolled it and there is 2 1/4 yards.

It is a Civil War reproduction print that I have often used in the past and will happily use again.


This was…A bigger chunk of fabric.  It was also $2.  There were almost 5 yards in this piece.  That is great as it will make a good backing for a quilt.


This was my really good find.  Check out the rainbow selection of batiks.  If you look at the tags you can see that they were $1.50 per piece.  It makes me wonder if someone was going to make a rainbow batik quilt.

I could tell by feeling them that there was over a yard in each cut so knew that $1.50 per piece was a steal.  I was so eager to get home and see how many yards I was in the pieces.  I paid $17.50 for all of the fabric I bought.

It turns out that there were
2 1/4 yards of the brown Civil War reproduction
4 3/4 yards of the blue for a backing
5 yards of t-shirt fabric for baby gowns

Then for the batiks…

The top blue piece had
5 yards

The other 7 pieces were 2 1/4 yards each!

So…I got 32 3/4 yards of fabric for $17.50!!

WOW…right??


I was super happy with my find.  It’s hard to believe that I paid just over 50 cents a yard for the fabric.

The batik prints aren’t fun and fancy batiks but they are great blender pieces that are a great staple to have.  I’m so happy that I was treated so great by my thrift store stop.  Days like this are exactly why I love thrifting.  It’s a good thing I don’t live in the town where the thrift stores are.  I’d likely be one of those people that stop every day.

I have no idea what I’ll be making with these…who knows?  Maybe another rainbow quilt is in my future.  Feel free to send suggestions my way on quilts I could make with the batiks.

21 thoughts on “Thrifting for Fabric

  1. Sandy Allen

    Great find! I love thrifting for fabric but lately haven’t found much, or what I have found wasn’t quilting fabric. I shop for a friend who belongs to a quilting group, so if I find something that I may not use, I text her to see if they would use it. I have found some great deals, too!

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  2. Jazz

    Wow! You really scored, Jo! Especially with the batiks! There aren’t any good thrift stores near me that have fabric or sewing supplies, but I am thrilled for you

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  3. Karen Fitzgerald

    Wow, those batiks look like a Lone Star quilt just waiting to be made! They go together fast and easy when they’re strip pieced.

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  4. Judy Hawkins

    All that fabric!!! That was an early Christmas. I’ve got a huge stack of fabric sitting here that is mostly for apparel sewing–blends and knits and polyesters. I’ve kept all the quilting cotton. I’ve got a thrift store near me that I have to take it to. I know I will never get it sewn up and I’m sure there must be someone that can make use of it.

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  5. Kate

    Jackpot!! Wow what great deals. I really like that brown and of course, the batiks are so pretty. I’m sure you will find good use for all these pieces. So fun!

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  6. NJ

    What’s the minimum yardage needed in lightweight cotton knit ? I’ve passed on some because I didn’t know you were collecting it. Also have question: do you cut with rotary wheel cutter or do you have a cutting machine, Jo ?

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  7. Sherrill

    WOW!! That is unREAL! I never see anything like that at the thrift stores (but then I rarely go in them as I never find anything..HA). Lots of good stuff comin’ from all that fabric.

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  8. Chris

    I am so jealous!!! I seldom find anything decent at the thrift stores here. I have found some terrific buys at yard sales. When I belonged to a quilt bee we had fabric sales for the families who had list a quilter in their family….fabric was usually 1.00 a yard….but the thrift stores…nope….

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  9. Patt weimer

    I would quilt with Nothing but batiks if I could afford to. What a HAUL. Glad you hd car room, Ha. I have Good will 3 mls.,away! Oh no not stopping again! WENT TODAY 23 PCS. OF COTTONS, 1.00 to 5.99, ( those 2 were 2.5+ yds @). Most I’ll send to a group in Iowa, quilting for church charties. Found name from you i think. 1st box was $70.,but they were pleased. Sweet thank you. Good Will & I get along v. Well.

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  10. Hedy

    I find unbelievable deals at thrift stores. I once went into a store and found enough charm squares to make 4 full/queen quilts for $5.00. I find up to 10 yards of one fabric and pay at best about $3.50 and they are name brands too. At a flea market I asked how much on a gorgeous roll of white fabric and the woman asked her husband how much and he said he didn’t care so she said $10? And I had that ten dollar bill out in a wink. Then he complained it was too cheap but the money was in her hands and I was walking away. It was a whole bolt of a name brand fabric. My friends tease me how lucky I am finding fabrics no one else finds and it’s true. I came home once with about 25 fat quarters in fall fabrics for $7.50, they were in a plastic bag threw in a corner, so absolutely beautiful, name brand quilt fabrics, all picked out for a quilt. Makes me wonder why it got donated. So congratulations on your wonderful buy.

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  11. Judith Fairchild

    What a gorgeous h a ul of fabrics and color ranges. The money side was a steal. There are a couple ofvwomen here in town that holdxa massive yard sale i paid $25.00 dollars for everything when I wentvthrough the stack I found tha one of them was. Nearly a full bolt of fabric perfect for anyvthing from quilting to light curtains. I love yard sales and thrift stores.

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  12. Bonnie Farris

    Great minds run together! I went to the local thrift storeyesterday and got 14 1/2 yards for $16. It felt like Christmas! Of course when I dig into my stash, i feel the same way! Color jut makes me happy.

    Reply
  13. Elle

    I am totally drooling over the bargain batiks. Actually, let’s call it 100% jealous and envious? ;-)

    I see the batik in a trip around the world type, maybe with bricks instead of squares?

    Happy Wednesday Jo!

    Reply

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