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Not sure where to order fabric online? Have you ever received swimsuit fabric that wasn’t what you expected? If you want to learn about ordering fabric online, then you’ve come to the right place. This guide on buying fabric online can help you reduce the risk and shop with confidence.

Should You Buy Fabric In-Store?

There’s no doubt that the best way to shop for fabric is in person. When you visit a fabric store, you can see and judge the colors for yourself and coordinate with other elements like thread and zippers. Most importantly, you can feel the texture of the fabric and assess its drape and weight, which is essential for garment sewing.

Being able to touch and see the fabric helps you choose exactly what you want and eliminates any surprises later on. Shopping in a store also offers additional benefits.

You can support local businesses, avoid extra costs for shipping and packaging, and receive assistance from the staff. Many people enjoy spending time at local fabric shops and prefer the experience of shopping in person.

Should You Buy Fabric Online?

If you’re looking for a specific product that’s not available in stores, you can likely find it online. Additionally, if you need to purchase fabrics in bulk, your local store may not be able to fulfill that requirement.

If you’re interested in finding fabric at a discounted price, online fabric stores often offer sales, especially during holidays and special occasions.

Ordering fabric online offers convenience. Whether you’re feeling unwell, in your pajamas, or shopping late at night, online fabric shops are always accessible.

During times when shopping in-store is not possible or uncomfortable, such as during the pandemic, ordering fabric online provides a viable alternative. Some stores may only offer pick-up options, prompting you to explore the best places to order fabric online.

What are the Drawbacks of Ordering Fabric Online?

Ordering fabric online can often be overwhelming, especially if you’re new to it. There is a significant risk involved since you can’t physically touch or see the fabric before purchasing. Your first experience with online fabric orders might leave you surprised or disappointed.

You may find that the texture, weight, or color is not what you expected and doesn’t work for your projects. It’s also possible that you simply don’t like the fabric you receive. It’s easy to misjudge the quality of the fabric or be caught off guard by additional fees.

If you’ve had similar experiences or can relate to these concerns, you may be worried about whether the fabric you order online will match your expectations.

How to Minimize the Risk of Surprises

Can you order fabric online confidently without encountering any surprises? Absolutely! However, it’s important to acknowledge that there will always be some level of risk involved since you can’t physically inspect the fabric, feel its texture, identify flaws, or match colors precisely.

It’s essential to accept this and consider that you could repurpose the fabric for another project if it doesn’t meet your expectations. If you have the budget for it, you could also purchase a replacement fabric.

That said, there are several strategies you can employ to reduce the risk and increase your confidence when ordering fabric online. These tips will help you navigate the process and ensure you get the fabric you desire. Online shopping is also a great alternative when you can’t visit a physical store or can’t find what you’re looking for locally.

A Guideline to Purchasing Fabric Online

There are two methods to minimize the risk of surprises when ordering fabric online. The first step is to become a fabric detective. This involves gathering all the essential information available to make an informed decision.

The second step is to educate yourself about fabrics. Conducting research will give you a better understanding of different fabric types, allowing you to make wise choices. By following these approaches, you can increase your chances of selecting the right fabric and avoid unexpected outcomes.

Act as a Fabric Detective

Remember that when you shop for fabric online, you won’t have the opportunity to see, drape, or touch the fabric. This can increase the risk of receiving a fabric that doesn’t meet your expectations.

However, despite the limitations, there is a wealth of information available to assist you in choosing the best fabric. All you need to do is learn what to look for and pay close attention to those details. By being knowledgeable and attentive, you can make informed decisions and minimize the risk of surprises when ordering fabric online.

What are the Important Clues to Gather?

Samples or Swatches

The best way to overcome the limitation of not being able to touch and see the fabric when buying online is to order samples or swatches. This allows you to assess the texture and color of the fabric and see if it matches your existing items.

While swatches may not be large enough to judge the drape, you can still get some idea based on the fabric’s weight. Ordering a sample or swatch is highly recommended if:

  • You still have time to wait for the swatches to arrive before making your order.
  • You are taking a huge risk such as ordering in bulk.
  • If swatches are available since some online fabric shops do not offer swatches.
  • If there are limited stocks of fabric.

Gather Clues

If ordering swatches is not possible, there are still ways to gather important information about the fabric from online fabric shops. By carefully examining the provided information, you can form a confident understanding of how a particular fabric will feel and look.

Additionally, some shops may offer specific details about the fabric, so it’s essential to compare and gather as many clues as possible to make an informed decision.


The photos of a particular fabric are also crucial as they can provide valuable visual information. By carefully observing the pattern and color in the photos, you can gather important clues about the fabric, such as:


If you have a close-up photo or the ability to zoom in on the photo, you can get a better idea of the fabric’s texture. While you won’t be able to physically touch the fabric, you can observe whether it appears rough, smooth, ribbed, or other texture characteristics.


Most online fabric shops will place a ruler on the edge of the fabric. This can give you some idea about the scale of the print.

Spandex Warehouse offers different types of fabrics. If you are looking to buy swimwear fabric wholesale, sublimation fabric wholesale, etc., then you can call us at 213-629-7416 or send us an email at [email protected].