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5 Tips for Thrifting Your Next Sewing Project

Reduce textile waste and save money by shopping for your sewing supplies secondhand.

Posted in: Seamwork Radio Podcast, Fabric & Textiles • January 17, 2024 • Episode 176

Did you get into sewing to help reduce textile waste? A lot of people do. And it's great to go to a fabric store and get that new, beautiful fabric. But sometimes it's nice to find an alternative and really flex your creativity in a new way and help to keep that waste down.

In this episode, get five tips for using thrift shop finds to create your next sewing project.

Below are the show notes for this podcast episode and a brief summary of what's covered, followed by a full transcript.

5 Tips for Thrifting Sewing Supplies



  1. Look for alternative textiles as well as fabric yardage. Things like curtains, tablecloths, and bed linens all work for garments or muslins.


  2. Don't forget about dyeing. You can dye most of the textiles you find, so if something's not the right color for you, make it the right color for you.


  3. Your thrift shop doesn't have to be local. Look at some online deadstock fabric stores, or you can try Etsy or eBay to find those secondhand goods.


  4. Don't forget to look for sewing patterns and notions as well. And it's a great time to stock up on some buttons, zippers, and trims.


  5. Get creative with upcycling. Think about all the ways that you can change things up. Use the sewing skills that you've developed in creating garments to fit, crop, mend, and re-create thrift store finds. But remember to do this with clothes in your size range. Don’t upcycle by buying plus-sized clothing.

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