Fabric can be one of the most expensive parts of sewing, especially if you are making larger projects such as curtains or clothing.
There are a variety of ways for how to get cheap fabric to save money when sewing. From discounted fabrics to free fabric scraps, we have your ultimate list of where to get cheap fabric!
I have found a lot of different sizes of fabric at thrift stores, from fat quarters to several yards on a bolt.
Fabric at thrift stores are usually remnants of crafting projects, so you may not get a full size yard and often there are cuts out of the yardage.
Be sure to look through the entire linens section at thrift stores for fabric scraps. Napkins, placemats, pillowcases, table cloths and other linens are all unusual but great sources of discounted fabrics.
Thrift stores are a wonderful place to get deals on sewing notions, too.
Garage sales and estate sales are great places to find inexpensive fabric. You can usually find large fabric stashes.
Often, people are cleaning out their entire fabric stash, rather than just a yard or two. So you can get a lot of fabric for a bundle.
Did you know that fabric stories, such as JoAnn and Hobby Lobby, have clearance sections where you can find some great deals?
Clearance fabric at craft stores usually comes in two ways:
The clearance remnants are small sizes of fabric bundled up and priced at a discount. While the yardage will be listed on the label, you can not have the size cut smaller if you need.
Clearance bolts are usually patterns, prints and holiday fabric that is being removed from the store floor. You can find these fabrics at up to 70% off the normal price and have them cut to the size that you want.
See one of my recent JOANN fabric and sewing notion hauls where I found lots of great clearance fabric:
There are plenty of Facebook groups in every part of the world dedicated to giving away free stuff.
Check out Facebook groups in your area, including local versions of:
- Buy Nothing Facebook Groups
- Barter Facebook Groups
Home Improvement Stores
Stores such as Lowe’s and Home Depot have a surprising array of inexpensive fabric that is perfect for making patterns or minimalist designs.
Drop cloths are a great source of a lot of fabric in a larger size than you can find at a fabric shop.
Moving blankets are another source of unusual fabric often cheaper than you can buy at craft stores.
Don’t overlook clothes that you no longer wear as a great source of free fabric!
Jeans, sweaters, t-shirts, skirts and dresses are all made of pretty fabrics that are perfect for reusing for smaller projects.
Even better, you can keep the buttons, zippers and embellishments to use on another project, too!
Consider buying clothes at thrift stores and garage sales just for the fabric. You can usually get clothes for very cheap and repurpose the material.
This is especially great when thrift stores or Goodwill outlets let you stuff a bag with as much as you can fit in for one low price.
A helpful tip is to buy the largest size possible when shopping at thrift stores and garage sales. An XXL skirt will have much more fabric than a XS skirt.
An unbelievable amount of yardage can be found in old sheets, especially a King-size flat sheet.
Flat sheets are the perfect choice for lots of fabric. However, you can use fitted sheets and cut off the elastic to get a flat piece. Plus, you may be able to reuse the elastic.
I used an old sheet to make a turtle mop.
Just like sheets, tablecloths come in larger sizes than what you can find in a fabric store.
Tablecloths usually come in more decorative prints and styles, and many have gorgeous embellishments.
Another large piece of beautiful fabric for less money is curtain panels. You can buy these new in the stores or get them at thrift stores and garage sales.
Curtains are a great source of material and I used curtain panels to make this beautiful double-sided minky blanket.
You never know who used to have a craft hobby and has a stash of fabric they no longer use!
Ask friends and family if anyone has fabric or clothing they are no longer using. You will probably get more fabric than you know what to do with!
Crafters are an interesting bunch. No one wants to get rid of their fabric stash or craft supplies in case they can use it one day.
However, if there is someone in need of fabric or just learning how to sew, crafters are more than happy to donate their supplies to encourage someone else to learn the skill!
Post a request on Facebook groups or in Facebook Marketplace asking for fabric remnants and sewing supplies.
Sales and Coupons at Fabric Stores
You don’t always have to get second-hand material to save money!
JOANN Fabric always has sales on their items. Just get on their email list and you will never have a lack of coupons!
Usually JOANN has some really great doorbuster deals around some holidays and other sale events. This is where you can find fleece fabric for less than $3 a yard sometimes. That’s cheaper than what I find at thrift stores!
While Hobby Lobby no longer has discount coupons, they do often have great sales, too.
Ikea does sell fabric by the yard, but it can be somewhat expensive.
However, be sure to look in their clearance section for discounted fabric remnants, as well as textiles such as curtains, tablecloths and other linens.
The prices are so cheap at IKEA that you may be able to find a great deal on large fabric yardage by buying the sheets, duvet covers or other home accessories at normal price.
Upholstery Shops, Reupholstery Shops and Curtain Makers
Remnants of upholstery fabric will take up space in the landfill and cost the shop owners a lot of money to dispose of.
These small business may give you fabric remnants for free or charge a fraction of the price of what they would cost at a fabric store.
Many fabric sellers have small remnants of fabrics that they can’t sell so they put together fabric mystery boxes.
Etsy fabric sellers offer great selections on mystery boxes. Here are a few of my favorites:
- FABULACE (different types such as jersey knits or polyester rayon stretch blends)
- FelinusFabrics (scrap packs of fabrics as well as lace and embellishments)
- MoonaFabrics (these fabric scrap bags are sold by the pound)
- FarmStyleFinds (not only do I love the pastel vintage fabrics scraps, but their lace scrap bag is a great deal, too!)
Yes, you can find discounted fabric online. There are plenty of fabric sellers, as well as places like eBay and Craigslist, as well as Temu.
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Want more helpful sewing hacks? Check out our big list of beginner sewing tips!