I love fabric stores and especially ones that exclusively carry home decor fabric. I could walk the aisles for hours (and sometimes, some days, I do just that!) thinking of all the possibilities I could create with all the beautiful fabrics. I know some people order online and if this works for them, great! I though, like to feel the texture, the weight and the drape of the fabric first hand without ordering samples and having to wait to purchase.
I enjoy huge stores with bolts upon bolts of fabrics where my choices are endless and I am very fortunate to have several local ones. When trying to coordinate fabrics for a particular project I especially enjoy those stores and I’m thinking of one local one in particular, that has taken the time to organize the thousands of bolts of fabric by color. This makes pulling a look together so much easier.
When the hunt begins for a collection of fabric, I typically first choose a focal fabric, usually with a large scale print or pattern. I find it best if this piece has several colors because you may need/want these when choosing the other fabrics. However, if you choose to use only a couple colors that can certainly work too. If really depends on the overall look and feel you are trying to achieve. If matching it to other fabrics and paint colors are of importance to you, certainly take samples with you or take some good photos.
Then, I start looking for two medium scale fabrics that pick up a color or two from the focal fabric. You want each of these to have a different print or pattern, even different textures and weights for added interest. If choosing a solid, make sure it has a tone on tone pattern or has lots of texture.
Then choose one, two or three (depending on your project) small scale fabrics that also pick up a color or two of the focal fabric in different prints, patterns or even a solid (again with tone on tone or texture.) Again, using different weights and textures will add extra interest. I usually choose three because I typically use at least 2 for welting or flanges. “Welting” and “Flanges” will be future blogs for sure…
When decorating, I usually like the focal fabric on the largest items. For instance for a collection of pillows on a bed, I might choose to have the euro pillows with largest scale fabric. I then work my way down by the size of the pillows. For instance, I then might choose the king pillows out of the medium scale fabric. And then choose the smaller pillows to be made out of the smaller scale fabric and perhaps welt the larger pillow with the smaller scale fabric. You can certainly do it the opposite way and not follow this order. The patterns and prints themselves as well as the textures of the fabrics play a part in this decision as well. Have fun with this part!