Monday, July 02, 2007

Fabric mystery

I got a response from Jinny Beyer's shop today:

Hi Helen,
After some inquiries, we are unaware of RJR Fabrics having seconds. We would be very curious to see a swatch of the fabric if you would not mind sending a piece of this to our post office box. There is a chance that the fabric has English Garden printed on the selvage, but that some of this was also in a smaller collection called Patagonia. We realize at this point you probably do not need the exact match, but the swatch of fabric would allow us to make an exact match. If we cannot match it exactly, then perhaps it was not a genuine as the sales man lead on!
I will copy RJR Fabrics on this email as well, in case they are aware of "seconds" ?
Thank you for your inquiry,

Fair enough!! I replied saying I'd send the swatch then went to their site, where the fabric is listed under collection title, and looked under Patagonia. Lo and behold... what looks like the right fabric!! Of course I had no reason to look under that category because it was labelled English Garden by the manufacturers.

I went back on the site of the quilt shop I bought from and yeah - they have it there too under Patagonia not English Garden!! I have e-mailed them to ask if they knew about it being labelled English Garden.

So, it looks like my suspicions of seconds in terms of print runs might be wrong but I think there is a definate question about the quality of selvedge labelling.

Grrrr. My quilt is not what it should be and I don't have time to start again with the UK fabric not least because I have chopped up the half done blocks! (Mind you, I suspect the recipients might like it better the redesigned way!) and it has cost me a lot in international postage and fabric I didn't want to get to this stage. The US shop is copying the fabric manufacturers in on correspondence so I'll let you know what the answer to the mystery turns out to be, because I am determined to find it! (Perhaps I need to get out more?!)

1 comment:

Helen said...

Aargh! I lost my first comment to this post, so here goes:

This is a very interesting story and although you have an answer of sorts, for me it doesn't really answer why the 2 fabrics are different shades. Do the fabric companies "pad out" ranges of fabric with prints from previous ranges? Are the designers aware of this? If they are 2 different shades of the same print why would they have the same code number? Surely 2 different shades, even of the same colour, should have different codes so "they" know which one "they" are talking about. Or did they have different code numbers being in 2 different ranges? Even then it doesn't explain why the labelling on the selvedge appears to be incorrect. If the 'correct' shade is from the Patagonia range then why does your original fabric have English Garden on it? If the QS you went to has the correct shade how come you weren't able to access it? (Were you there in person or looking on their website only at the English Garden range?)

I believe that it is true that the cheaper fabric from "chain" stores is from trial print runs or is "seconds". I once bought some cram fabric from the Patrick Lose marble range from a "cheap fabric" chain store. It was labelled on the selvedge as Patrick Lose, but the printing of the wording was in white print on the cream selvedge. I later bought a scrap bag of fabric from an independent quilt shop in the same town and it had a piece of the same fabric in it with the wording on the selvedge printed in black on the cream. It seemed to me that the first fabric I bought wasn't first quality, although I couldn't tell any difference in thf fabrics themselves. But it was cream so it is probably harder to tell any subtle shade differences. (orry for the essay)