Sewing with Outdoor Fabric

Published Categorized as Quilting, Sewing 3 Comments on Sewing with Outdoor Fabric

Recently I’ve been sewing with some Better Homes and Garden Outdoor Fabric that I picked up at Jo-Ann’s.  It’s for a project I’ll be posting as part of the Sew We Quilt “A Perfect Picnic” blog hop.  I’ve had a stinky habit of waiting till the last minute to work on blog hop projects but forming the beginning of a good habit I’m ahead of schedule with this one!

Trimming Selvage on my Outdoor Fabric (too lazy to clear the table, I know...terrible!)
Trimming Selvage on my Outdoor Fabric (too lazy to clear the table, I know…terrible!)

I don’t want to giveaway too much but I wanted to share some things I’ve learned in sewing this fabric.

About Outdoor Fabric

  • Outdoor fabric is designed to be durable and withstand use as well as the elements (within reason).
  • It’s often treated and shouldn’t be preshrunk like cottons
  • Many outdoor fabrics are also mold- and mildew-resistant, great if you live in a wet or humid climate. Check the labels on your fabric to verify

Tips for Working with Outdoor Fabric

Here’s a couple things I learned in my first time working with outdoor fabrics.

  1. Use a walking foot
    I’m so glad I used mine, with the thicker and slippery fabric the walking foot kept the fabric moving perfectly through the machine.
  2. You should jot down the washing instructions before you leave the store!
    I had to look mine up online through the Jo-Anns website cause I didn’t take notice when I picked up the fabric
  3. Store the fabric gently
    To prevent my outdoor fabric form getting unnecessary creases while it waited to be cut and sewn I laid it out over the ironing board
  4. Really consider the seams you use
    I’d initially planned on just using a regular seam since I was joining two pieces of fabric but I ended up using a flat fell seam because the weight of the fabric seemed like it would hold up better with that stronger seam. Learn how to make a flat fell seam at SewNeau

Here are some articles I found about working with outdoor fabrics that you might find helpful!


And I can’t help but point out these other posts about great outdoor sewing projects too.



Check out home decour fabric at Jo-Anns or at if you want to use some for your summer projects this year!

[calltoaction]Are there outdoor projects you have in mind this spring/summer? Do you have tips form your projects?[/calltoaction]


  1. Thanks for gathering up so many helpful tutorials. I actually do have some cushions upstairs that I need to finish and plop on the rocking chairs on the front porch before my house goes on the market next week. Gotta go for that curb appeal! I don’t have any tips though because I am literally just throwing together some rough cushions, no fancy piping or anything 🙁 My chairs hardly ever get any rain, so I wasn’t too worried about what I filled the cushions with. I wound up using old pillows that were no longer suitable for decorative shams. It was nice to clear out some space in the linen closet 🙂

  2. Love these tips for working with outdoor fabric, thanks! I’ve never tried using it before but maybe I’ll give it a shot! This Spring/Summer I’m making a picnic quilt. I looked into different weather resistant fabrics for the backing, but decided on using recycled jeans with a fleece batting. I’m hoping that will be enough to keep our backsides dry 🙂

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