What to know: The manufacturer’s name is key. “Take the fabric apart at the hem or seam and look behind the lining,” says Juliana Catlin, owner of Catlin Interiors, an interior-design firm in Jacksonville, Florida. If the manufacturer is unknown, Catlin recommends taking a digital picture and e-mailing it to major fabric makers (start with the “sources” section at the back of home-decorating magazines) to see if they recognize it as theirs.
Where to go: There are many fabric sites worth a try (thefabricfinder.com, fabrics.net, rickrack.com). If you need help, Catlin suggests making inquiries at upscale furniture or department stores with interior designers on staff. “They’re often willing to take on smaller jobs,” she says. You can also seek referrals on the American Society of Interior Designers website (asid.org/find). If you have the time for the auction site eBay (ebay.com), refine your search by using specific terms (“Michael Miller floral print fabric”).