I’m a bit of a fabric junkie. Which, unfortunately means that I know how expensive it can be. But just because one's budget isn't big doesn't mean it's necessary to settle for vinyl or burlap, unless that's what you're going for. With a little digging, it is possible to find great, affordable fabric for any project.
I love fabric and I cannot resist a sale, so I spend a lot of my “messing around on the Internet” time looking for deals on fabric. Here are some of my favorite sources:
Design Diva Fabrics: The “weekly specials” page on this site is my kryptonite. If you are patient, there are epic deals to be had here. I’ve found designer fabrics from Scalamandre and Versace that retail for $300+/yard selling here for $10 or $15. The selection changes regularly, so finding the best deals is largely a matter of e-stalking the site until something dreamy pops up. Definitely check in for the big holiday sales.
Fashion Fabrics Club: This shop also changes its stock constantly, but the prices are excellent and the quality in my experience has been very good. Some fabrics can be swatched, but if a sample isn’t available it is usually possible to just order an eighth of a yard for a few dollars. Pro tip: If you're opposed to synthetic fabrics, enter "100" in the search bar with whatever you're looking for. "100 silk" will return the complete stock of 100-percent silk fabrics.
Fabric.com: This site runs a huge collection of quilting, home décor and apparel fabric at crazy good prices. If you’re looking for something weird nobody else has, like a really deep-pile faux fur, check this place out. There’s also free shipping on orders over $35, and the sales are great.
Pure Silks: I do not know how they get their prices this low, but it becomes difficult to shop for silks in retail stores once you see how low their prices are.
Ebay: If you are willing to forgo being able to swatch and handle the fabrics, eBay can deliver pretty much anything you need, from $1 crafting fabric to $300 super fancypants fabric. You’re on your own when shopping here, though, so definitely check out your sellers’ feedback before committing to spend a big chunk of money. When you find good, trustworthy shops that carry the kind of fabric you like, make sure to bookmark them for later.
Discount Fabrics USA: This place stocks wholesale upholstery and drapery fabrics from just $6.99/yard, along with accessories for your upholstery or drapery project. Everything is neatly sorted by fabric type or theme, so you won’t have to do as much digging as you would elsewhere.
Online Fabric Store: The store with the super generic name has really great deals on fabrics by Amy Butler and more. They have an excellent selection of contemporary fabrics. Definitely check out their sale section. You wouldn’t believe what you can find in there.
Fabric Guru: This online store has an enormous selection of upholstery fabrics, and you can get them in remnant bundles and by the yard. They have a lot of designer brands like Waverly, Ethan Allen, and Ralph Lauren, and tons of upholstery basics.
Hancock Fabrics: Hancock has an online store! Definitely take advantage of their frequent coupon codes to get even more extreme discounts than you’d normally find.
Joann: Joann also has an online store! If you need quilting fabric, or sports team themed fabric, you can get it here. The prices are great to start with, and the frequent discount codes and extensive sale section make them even better.
(Image credits: Eleanor Büsing)