For the most part, even the ugliest fabric can be used if you know where to look. If you think fabrics have only a "right" and "wrong" side look again.
Sometimes, great surprises are found on the back of an ugly or otherwise undesirable fabric. A fabric on the clearance table may not appeal to you … unless you turn it over. (Note from Bonnie: That's why I say, "Fabrics have more than one 'right' side. Check both sides to see which works best for you!")
On the back, this fabric looks almost like a batik and the tone-on-tone shades are much more appealing than its rather loud print. It was perfect for the teddy bear bookmark my granddaughter wanted to stitch.
I have used the back of fabric as coordinating prints, too. The first time, I was using a print for applique on several blocks. It looked great on some fabrics but was way too, for lack of a better word, bright, for others. I turned the fabric over and there was a beautiful, subtle design that looked perfect and kept the same color family!
While making a reading pillow (you can get the pattern here), the fabric I chose for the pocket was just not the right color for the tone-on-tone pillow fabric. I turned it over, and the soft cream matched perfectly.
This also can work well if you want to embroider on a fabric but find that the pattern is too distracting, the back may be softer, like this tone-on-tone.
It depends on how the fabric is produced. Some printed fabrics coordinate with more of a contrast.
Dyed fabrics turn out more like batiks or marbles.
Even brighter prints that are dyed produce softer patterns on the back side. May you look at fabric a bit differently now! Have you ever tried this?
Sew Inspired by Bonnie