The selection of quilt fabrics in fabric stores, specialty quilt shops, craft stores and the fabric departments in local department stores are phenomenal. To add to this quilt fabrics selection, quilters are now able to order fabric online as well.
Even if you shop the sales, youwant the good stuff. Just because the fabric is on sale doesn't mean it is a good deal. Remember to look for fiber content. 100% cotton is the best choice for quilting. Also look at the pattern or print and make sure there are no obvious print errors, like missing color or smears. Don't forget to check for pulled threads. This can ruin a piece of fabric too. If the color comes off on your hand while fingering the fabric, this is a sign the fabric will bleed. If the fabric is too thin, it will not make a good choice for a quilt.
I have personally found some really nice, 100% cotton fabric that's 45" wide or wider at local department stores on their clearance tables for $2 a yard. My advice is to check the clearance tables whenever you pop in for this or that and see if any of the really good seasonal fabric has landed on the sale table. It usually has.
If you're faced with a table full of really good fabric at unbelievable prices, but you have limited funds, whip out the handy notebook in your purse with your list of fabric wants and future project needs and buy fabric specifically for that project. Label the fabric when you get home for the project it was purchased for, then cross that fabric off the list. No notebook? No problem. A good rule of thumb is to buy fabric in the colors you like to work with or colors that are complementary to your home.
Even though these are good rules to follow, I have been known to buy a couple of yards of this and that, just in case I might need it. You never know when that one particular piece of yardage might come in handy. Who can resist adding to their fabric stash anyway?