Here’s the situation: You have a sewing project in mind and it’s going to be a gift for someone.
Maybe you’re going to make drink coasters (also called mug rugs) or pajama bottoms.
Could be the gift will be a lanyard or a pillowcase.
Regardless of the project, there comes a point when you’ll need to decide on fabric. For many people, this can be one of the hardest parts of sewing.
With so many options, selecting the perfect fabric can be overwhelming.
However, there is one decision that will make fabric selection easier.
Choose a Themed Fabric!
Think about the person who will receive the wonderful gift you’re going to make. What are their likes and dislikes? (You don’t want to select a fabric that showcases something they hate.)
Consider the following:
- Sports teams
- Disney characters
- Cartoon characters
- and the list goes on
After you decide on a theme that will work for your gift, it’s time to go shopping.
Where to Buy Fabrics with a Theme
There are several places I’ve bought fabric with a particular theme or concept.
Most of them are online because it’s easy and pretty quick to search for a particular fabric.
When I search online I go to:
- I’ve searched on Etsy and have found several shops that have what I’m looking for.
- Sometimes I Google the fabric theme I’m looking for. It never fails, I always get results from a variety of online shops that allow me to easily compare prices.
Examples of Themed Fabric Projects
When my niece was getting ready to turn 5 years old, she told her grandmother (my mom) that she wanted her 5-year quilt to have princesses, fairies, cats, fish, and purple on it.
My mother is very talented when it comes to quilting and this request didn’t stump her. Her creative juices started flowing.
The cats and fish were created through machine piecing blocks. Fabric was the solution to princesses, fairies, and purple.
Mom used Disney themed fabric for the princess and fairies and a sparkly purple for the sashing.
The faces for the cats were hand-sewn but that’s a whole other story!
PJ Bottoms for My Sister
Years ago my sister and I took our mother to a quilt store that was about 2 hours from where we live.
At the time, my sister was talking about learning to sew. As she was looking around she found a pajama bottom pattern that she liked.
She picked it up and started looking for fabric. Pink fabric with cute little brown birds caught her eye. (She loves pink and birds.) She didn’t need to look any further.
Sadly, she hasn’t learned how to sew yet but I helped her out. That’s a whole other story, too!
Fabric Drink Coasters
The principal and assistant principals at my school are all big sports fans. They each have a different football team they support.
Last year, I was in charge of the gifts my team was going to give them on Boss’s Day.
Wanting to indulge my love for sewing and give them a gift that was personal and practical, I decided to make drink coasters and use fabric for each of their favorite sports teams. I even made a bag to hold the coasters. They were a big hit!
Also, I had quite a bit of fabric leftover from my sister’s pajama bottoms. I decided to fussy cut the birds and make a set of coasters for her birthday. They were so cute, I almost kept them for myself.
What makes your heart happy?
Don’t limit your use of themed fabrics to just gifts. Use them for projects you make for yourself, too!
Every school year, I purchase a ready-made lanyard and wear it all year long.
This year, I wanted to do something different and use my sewing skills to make my own lanyards.
I wasn’t sure what kind of fabric I wanted so I headed to my local Joann store. Standing in front of the wall of fabric, I was overwhelmed. Then I turned my head and saw they had put together a row of holiday fabrics.
Why was I looking for just one fabric?!
I made the decision to use a different fabric for each month to represent seasons or a specific holiday.
Right away my fabric selection became easier because I was looking for something specific.
Don’t let fabric selection paralyze you after finding a project you want to make.
Looking for fabric with a theme is one easy way to make the selection process easier.
I’d love to read about any projects you’ve done that featured a themed fabric.
Send photos of what you’re sewing as well as any sewing questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Follow The Ruffled Purse on Facebook. One of the things I do here is set weekly sewing goals and encourage you to do the same with me. By putting our sewing intentions out into the world, it’s a great way to make progress on projects!