By Annie’s Soft and Stable

If you haven’t heard much from me lately, I’ve been busy making bags, and some of these bags I’ve made using By Annie’s Soft and Stable. A blog reader first asked me to look out for it at Quilt Market this past Fall; I had never heard of this product. I didn’t think anything of it, in fact, until I got there and saw the samples in the booth. When I saw this image, I thought there must be some kind of trick to get the wooden handles to allow the bag to stay up (handles are somewhat heavy!)…

So, I made a little 3-minute video so you can check out what I have to say about Soft and Stable. Before I even started using the Soft and Stable in my sewing patterns, I thought long and hard about being a responsible pattern-writer…Soft and Stable is available on the By Annie website, Amazon, and at local quilt shops. It is not widely available, especially to people in other countries, and as it is a very specific product, I thought long and hard about if I should use it in a pattern’s supply list. But once I sewed with it, I felt like the difference it makes is so substantial that I couldn’t not use it. It’s kind of amazing. So my decision was to use it in patterns, but provide a substitute interfacing choice (although the bag would turn out somewhat different if using the substitution).

So, what do you think?? Do you have any comments about the Soft and Stable, or anything about my

thoughts on responsible pattern-writing? And if you have used Soft and Stable before…what do you think about it?

Where to find it online:

In the US -  By Annie’s
                   Amazon
                  Connecting Threads (they also have free shipping over $50…they sell fabric, thread, books)

In the UK - Quilt Direct
                   Barn Yarns

Australia – Punch with Judy 

34 thoughts on “By Annie’s Soft and Stable

  1. On my phone, so I will watch the video later. Thanks so much for checking this product out at market. I had heard good things from one other well known, reliable source and was dying to know more. can’t wait to watch the vid and try it myself!

  2. Nice video. I am convinced! Wish I’d had it for a purse I just made. I will buy some this morning and let you know how it turns out. I am curious about the appearance after quilting it, and how the inside seam allowances behave. Thanks, Sara!

  3. Interesting- is it a bit like the foam that is sold for crafting I wonder? As I doubt it would be on sale here in the UK!Looks great for larger bags particularly.

  4. I was interested to hear about this project, and I think it’s totally fair to include it in a pattern supply list, especially if you offer an alternative. We trust you to make the best bags you know how, and if one product ‘just makes it’ then we need to know that. On the other hand, having guidance in finding the second best option is just plain generous.

  5. I found Soft & Stable while on vacation in a quilt shop in Minnesota. I had not seen or heard of it before so I bought some. I used it when I got home in a small project and loved it. Will plan to use it for a bag project I have. I cannot buy it locally but love the Internet! It does give more form and is very easy to sew with.

  6. First, thank you for your blog. I enjoy your posts. To your question, if I saw a pattern and I knew ahead of time that it would be difficult to find a certain product, then I would refrain from buying it. (Just as I am now checking patterns for yardage requirements before I purchase them. If they call for 1/3 yards, then I’m taking a second to think about it because I purchase most fabric online and 1/3 yard cuts are harder to buy.) If the author offered a substitute with almost equal results, then I would certainly reconsider. I totally understand your duty/obligation/want to write the best possible pattern out there and use the best possible items when doing so.

  7. I’m so glad you made this video! You answered some questions/concerns I had. I have always looked to you for interfacing info and you have never disappointed me. I bought it online without knowing anything about it other then your recommendation to use it on these new patterns. I should get it in the next few days and I’m looking forward to using it. In fact, after seeing your video I’m sure I’ll be using a lot of it! Thank you so much, Sara, for putting so much thought and effort into your pattern making and giving us such great info on products that can help make our bags even better!

  8. I have a pattern that calls for this, so I looked it up online. I had a hard time figuring out exactly what it was and what (if anything) I could use in its place, so I have yet to make the pattern. Thanks to your video, now I know what it looks like and am excited to get some and try it out!

  9. I ordered this online and received some Soft & Stable about 2-3 weeks ago. Unfortunately for the bag I am working on, the quantity required was revised after I had ordered, and I didn’t have enough to use it in the entire bag. But I am using it on parts. Personally, I do not like the rubbery feel of it, but I will reserve judgment until I complete this purse and at least one other. There is a Weekender Bag in my future, and I am thinking this might work well for that.

  10. I’ve been using Soft and Stable in bags and love it. It seemed a little pricey at first, but after I added up the cost of other interfacings and fusible fleece I didn’t have to use, I think the cost is about the same. If it’s not available in your area, check out the automotive headliner fabrics at your local fabric store. They are a little less stiff (or dense might be a better adjective) but very similar.

  11. I’ve never personally used it, and never heard of it either. But by the looks of those purses, I love that it keeps it’s shape and body without being too stiff. The down fall I’ve found with some interfacing that are called for when making purses is that some of them tend to make a crease and there are times when those creases do not come out (hope that makes sense). I loved how when you balled up the piece you had in your hand and it bounced right back into a flat piece, very nice!

    Thanks for this share, I will definitely have to remember this stuff!! :)

  12. Hi Sara, Amy butler tipped me off to that wonderful stuff at quilt market. I got a sample and tried it out on a zipper pouch. I love it better than any interfacing I’ve ever used. I generally use thick felt for the insides of all my bags but I’m sold on soft and stable. I also love that it has a microfiber finish to it that makes it stay in place so you don’t even have to baste it.

  13. I love that you thought about the availability of the component parts when writing your pattern! I think sometimes pattern writers forget that not everyone lives in the US, or has access to the exact same materials as they do. It’s frustrating, and definitely makes me less likely to buy a pattern, if I can’t get the specified materials and the author doesn’t explain what they are or what could be substituted. So I definitely appreciate your thoughts on responsible pattern writing, and making a conscious and considered decision about what materials to use.

  14. Wow Sara, you probably saw my blog post from yesterday and so you know that I am playing with by Annies Soft and Stable in my latest bag pattern too (The Bowling Bag). So far I love working with it and I’ve got some on order to sell in my online shop so that when customers purchase my pattern, they will know where to find the By Annies Soft and Stable as I’m not sure it is widely available in Canada. I love the weight, and I love sewing with it. I am also providing an alternative in my supplies lists. I think/hope that this product will soon be found everywhere, as it’s becoming such a favorite, and the prices will go down. I’m loving it! Janelle from Emmaline Bags.

  15. Thank you for the review and I’ll definitely get some to try. I have my first couple of bag patterns and fabric and of course I want them to turn out the best that they can.

  16. I had thought of trying the Soft and Stable but wasn’t sure how bulky it would be to sew with, so thanks for the info! Did you use it alone or did you use any other type of interfacing for your fabric? Also, where is your favorite place to shop for hardware online( if you shop online). I don’t have much of a selection to shop locally:( Thanks!

  17. Sara, I am making your Aeroplane bag pattern right now, and I just basted the top portion to the Soft and Stable and I don’t like the way it looks – I saw where you said you liked to pull your fabric taut and while I tried doing that – I still had to unpick my basting seams and pull more – I am just not satisfied with the way the pieces look and am hesitant to continue on. I am worried the fabric with pucker. Have you any other suggestions?? I am considering taking the stitching out and just putting some big hand basting stitches in – thanks for a reply – I will keep checking back here for one.
    Natalie

    1. I too am making the Aeroplane bag. I topstiched/quilted the top piece and I like the way it turned out. I used headline fabric found at JoAnn’s. Only $14.99 per yard and I had a 50% coupon. I’m confused by the supply list of 1 yard. I have tons left over…

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