I generally order my fabric online, both for price and selection issues. When I ordered the fabric for my Tula Pink Prince Charming quilt I had a bit of a brain spasm and didn't order anywhere near enough white cotton. With the postal workers locked out and no other projects on the go (ok, I've started the Loulouthi tiles, but that needs white, too), I knew I had to go local. So the other day I ventured out to my LQS with a sample of the white I'd ordered and had started using. Now I've got to admit my LQS is pretty good. Katja, the owner, is really supportive of the local quilters, and has a lot in stock, including my beloved aurifil thread. But the stock is a lot more country than I prefer, with an emphasis on Moda's more traditional lines.
At this point you're probably thinking, blargh, blargh, blargh, get to the point already. Ok, the point I'm here to make is that white is not always white! That Freespirit designer solids white sample that I brought in was dayglo, shiny bright compared to the whites they had! The closest we could find was a Moda, but it's still pretty cream toned in comparison. Don't believe me? Here's a bunch of photos showing the Freespirit white, Kona snow (which is almost a dead match, maybe a touch bluer) and the Moda white. Moral of the story: buy enough white so you don't have to try to match it!
keep your whites white and your brights bright,