I confess that I spend too much money on fabric. But the way I look at it is, if I am going to spend as much time as I do making quilts, then it doesn’t make sense to then be stingy about the materials with which I will make that time investment.
Some of my early (like, early 1990’s) attempts at quilting were made with a blend of high-quality prints and cheaper basic dyed fabrics. The cheaper ones have not gone the distance. They’re faded, and in some cases, now bucked and bubbly. Granted, if they had been edge-to-edge quilted, that might have helped prevent some of the buckling, but it wouldn’t have prevented the fading.
Take a look at this one. The solids have faded in the areas where the quilt was folded, and there’s bubbling throughout. It’s a terrible shame!
When I use the very best quilter’s fabric, I get results that take my breath away, long after the project is complete. I can (and do) treat them roughly. They are machine washed, line dried (often in the sun), chewed by children and spread on the ground as picnic blankets or play rugs. The best materials withstand all of this abuse beautifully.
The moral of the story is, use the good stuff.
Any fabrics by Moda never let me down. It’s worth using the bella solids too. They are made to blend well with Moda’s current designs and the quality is top-shelf.
My favourite Moda designer is Bonnie and Camille. Camille Roskelley’s blog is full of great inspiration! I’ve had great results with the Bonnie and Camille happy-go-lucky and April Showers ranges. It’s a pity they can be hard to get in Australia. The pre-cuts Moda produces make quick quilting possible, and make the craft so accessible for beginners.
Camille is coming to Australia soon. I’m a little bit too excited.
I like the children’s fabrics made by Robert Kaufman. Dr Seuss is always in style!
My all-time favourite is, however, anything by Liberty of London. Since they started making their classic designs in quilting-grade fabric, I have been enjoying them immensely. You can get the Liberty Lifestyle range in Brisbane at The Quilters and Embroiderer’s Store.
As an aside, I stay away from any of the pre-cut fat quarters that you can get in Lincraft or Spotlight. I just don’t think the quality stacks up. Better to go to a proper quilt shop (and you’ll be supporting small business – yay!) or buy the good stuff online from Etsy or elsewhere.