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Posts Tagged ‘modern fabric’

new fabric 002

I had time to check out a couple fabric stores while traveling the past couple of weeks. All of the above fabrics were found in the sale section of New England Fabrics in Keene, New Hampshire.

The easiest way to describe this fabric shop is an independently owned Jo-Ann Fabrics. It’s not affiliated with Jo-Ann’s in any way that’s just what it reminded me of. The quilting fabric selection had a lot of novelty prints and mostly brightly colored fabrics. There was also a small selection of Michael Miller fabrics. In addition to quilting weight fabric they also stock apparel and home decorator fabric, notions, yarn, and a small book selection. I was excited to finally get to see Block Party in person! I didn’t purchase the book nor had I intended to but I’ve been curious enough to want to flip through it. If you aren’t familiar with the concept the book talks about the modern quilting bee movement and gives instructions on how to make the 12 quilts these ladies made during their bee. It’s a novel concept for a quilting book but none of the patterns really spoke to me.

The only thing I found that I really wanted to purchase at New England Fabrics came from the large sale section. I’ve seen all three of these fabrics online but didn’t want them enough to pay full price. For sale prices from $2.99 to $5.99 a yard I literally could not say no! I have no clue what I will do with them but for the price I’m happy to keep them in my stash.

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18 apr 11 002

Depending on my schedule I will try and find local quilt shops when I travel for work, unfortunately I haven’t had the time for the past couple months and I almost didn’t stop this time. But I had noticed Quilter’s Way on as I was driving to my appointment and knew I would have to drive past it again on my way out of town. I figured that was just to convenient to pass up!

When I went inside I was in heaven! I’ve never even been in a brick and mortar quilt shop that carried Echino before! They also had a nice selection of Anna Maria Horner, Amy Butler and the more “modern” Moda lines like It’s a Hoot and Sherbert Pips. I didn’t need any fabric and I’ve been trying not to spend any money lately but I felt the need to do so in a shop that fits my style so well. Too many quilt shops seem to ignore the modern designers, I think when you come across one that doesn’t that it is important to support them.

If you are ever in or near West Concord, Massachusetts you should definitely check it out :)

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If you put a gun to my head and said I could only buy fabric from one shop then I would have to choose Hawthorne Threads. I’ve been a customer since they were known as Fabric Supplies on Etsy and the move to their own web shop has only improved their offerings!

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Selection:

The wide selection of modern designers (well known and newcomers) was what originally drew me to Hawthorne Threads. It is after all an online store and one of my goals when purchasing fabric online is to save on shipping by shopping at as few shops as possible. They are also constantly getting in new fabric which is of course good and bad. Good because there is always something new to check out and bad for that same reason ;). Their selection focuses on the most well known of the modern fabric designers but they also carry a decent selection of Japanese prints and couple lesser known but up and coming designers. Many times they will carry the full line in all the color ways for the first stocking but after that they only restock the most popular prints (that’s just good business sense).

A couple cool features they have are the ability to search by color and hue as well as coordinating fabrics from the same line and a print in other colorways from the same fabric line. They also have a changing set of fabrics on the front page from different lines that coordinate well.

They have a very small selection of solid fabrics which is disappointing for me but I understand that it would be hard for them to offer a large selection and still keep inventory managable and make a profit.

Price by the Yard:

This is one of my other favorite features of Hawthorne Threads. Instead of a flat price for regular fabric and a second price for sale fabric they have tiered pricing based on all the fabric you have ordered from them in the past and how much fabric you are purchasing on a single order.

” Order Yardage Discount per yard
3+ Yards 25 cents
15+ Yards 35 cents
40+ Yards 50 cents

Order History Discount per yard
40+ Yards 15 cents
100+ Yards 25 cents
400+ Yards 50 cents

On an order of 3 yards (25 cent discount per yard),
where you have previously purchased 45 yards (15 cent discount per yard),
you would receive a 40 cent discount per yard in your order.
Fabric listed at $8.00 would be discounted to $7.60 per yard.”

We won’t discuss how much of a discount I get in case anyone I know is reading this and decides to stage a
fabric buying intervention ;)

Shipping:

These are the shipping rate for the U.S. but you can find the rest here.

“Whether you’re a manufacturer or a home sewer (or both as the case may be!) we pride ourselves on our fast shipping, so you are sure to receive your order as soon as possible. We make every effort to ship orders the same day they are placed.

Based on medium weight / quilting fabric that is 44″ wide 1/2 Yard USPS First Class $2.00
1 Yard USPS First Class $2.25
1 1/2 Yards USPS First Class $3.00
2 Yards USPS First Class $3.50
2 1/8 Yards – 9 Yards USPS Priority (Flat Rate Envelope) $4.80
9 1/8 Yards – 30 Yards USPS Priority (Flat Rate Box) $10.35
30 1/8 Yards – 40 Yards USPS Priority (Flat Rate Large Box) $13.95
(Tracking and delivery confirmation included)

USPS Express Mail is also available, up to 6 yards ships for $17.50.

Shipping Delivery Estimates USPS First Class 2 – 5 Business Days
USPS Priority 2 – 3 Business Days
USPS Express 1 – 2 Business Days

Signature Confirmation is available for $1.95
Insurance on your package is available for $2.50″

Their shipping rates are pretty standard and while I appreciate them maximizing the amount of fabric they can get into the flat rate envelopes sometimes it’s just too much and the envelope will arrive busting apart. Since the fabric comes wrapped in tissue paper I’ve never had the fabric stained or damaged in anyway but the potential is there.

Fat Quarters or Quarter Yards:

From the business perspective I understand why shops don’t offer these but as a hobby sewer I find this frustrating. Hawthorne threads does offer fat quarter bundles or some fabric lines by colorway but that’s it. And although they feature a collection of prints from various designers on the front page they don’t offer a fat quarter bundle of those prints together. The smallest cut of a single fabric you can order is a 1/2 yard but once the cuts get above 1 yard then you can get 1 1/4, 1 3/8, 1 1/2 etc so to me if you are selling 1/4 yards at that point why can’t you sell 1/4 yards as the smallest cut? However this is a pretty common practice in online shops.

Communication:

This is the third area I think Hawthorne Threads really excels. They have a blog and a newsletter to keep their customer up to date. You can also sign up for notifications when a particular line or even a particular print arrives. This is particularly helpful when you are looking for a single fabric from a line and don’t want to keep having to check back. They also post their current stockage online when you pull up a fabric so you know then if the stockage is low or very high and can decide when and how much you want to order.

Overall this is a fabulous shop run by an amazing couple who are incredibly helpful. If you haven’t checked them out I highly recommend you do so.

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