Thursday, January 21, 2016

Stash Sorting


Things are looking pretty fluffy and white in my neck of the woods.  Everyone in the area is preparing for the upcoming snowstorm due to hit tomorrow afternoon.  Hopefully, it will not be as bad as they are predicting, but what ever the case it never hurts to be prepared.  My evening will be filled with some baking so that we have small things that require no heat to eat.  Because we are in a mountainous region, it is very common for snow covered tress to take out power lines and it is better to be safe than sorry.

I have been doing more blog reading than writing as of lately.  Jenn over at A Quarter Inch From the Edge has inspired me to take a good look at my fabric stash.  She is encouraging all of us to take a good look at what we have acquired and has declared 2016 The Year of the Stash.


We had been talking back and forth through email and I told her I do try to make use of the fabric I have hoarded collected.  But that got me thinking...do I really make the best use or is it a half-hearted attempt that ends up in me buying more fabric?  I made my confession to her that I try to use my stash, but maybe if I followed her advice and sorted it by colors I could do better.

I love fat quarters.  Who doesn't??  But I always buy them in groups with good intentions of turning them into something.  What is that they say about the road to hell and good intentions?



These fat quarters came to mind.  The ones on the left were purchased with the hope of making a mini quilt (2 years ago).  The ones on the right were suppose to be a Jacob's Ladder quilt (purchased 3 years ago).  They all lived together in a tote, going absolutely nowhere.  Maybe if I separated them, I could also diminish the guilt of using, say the blue fat quarters, for something else.  Then I wouldn't have to stare at the sad little yellow pieces wondering why they are being skipped over.  Kind of like when you separate a litter of puppies.

So I pleaded with my daughter to drag my totes from the back room, put on my jammies, turned on some Netflix and prepared to sort.


I only left behind two totes.  One with left over Miss Kate fabrics the other 1930's reproductions.   As you can see from the pictures, everything is just thrown in.  They actually use to be in a folded neat order, but quite frankly who has time for that? (okay, lots of people, just not me)


Tote by tote, I created piles of yellow, orange, blue and so forth.  What was surprising to me is the colors I thought I had a ton of turned out to be some of my smallest piles.  Purple being the color I lacked the most.


It's not a huge stash of fabric, but it's mine.  My biggest fear at this point was that I wouldn't be able to make the fabric fit back into the totes they came out of.  Blues took up a whole container.  Reds, pinks and oranges in the next.  Followed by grays, black and yellow.  Greens, white and purple.  And an extremely large tote of browns and tan/neutrals.  I had no idea the last grouping would be the largest.  Of course this does not include precuts.  They hangout somewhere completely different.


Princess Caroline of the Fuzzy Butts thought fabric sorting was the BEST THING EVER!  Or at least the empty tote part.


Everything made it safely back to the bookshelf, but dang it if I didn't find a tote full of fat quarters that we forgot to pull.  Maybe I will try again this weekend.  I'm still not 100% happy with how I'm storing my stash, though I think by color grouping I will use it more.  So if anyone has a better idea, I'm all ears.

One last thing...I have you heard about the Ugly Christmas Sweater Party over at Sew Fresh Quilts?


  Lorna has put together another fabulous sew along, this time with ugly (though I think they are darling, probably why I needed to hire a stylist) little Christmas sweaters.  Now with my stash sorted and the weather looking more and more like Christmas everyday, I am ready to get my sew-a-long on!  Hope you will consider joining in, Lorna's sew-a-longs are the bomb.

If no one hears from me in the next few days, please consider sending out some search and rescue sled dogs or even a St. Bernard with a barrel of whiskey.  If you could convince him to bring wine...even better!  Stay warm my friends!!  Thank God for quilts.



Today I'm linking up with Can I Get a Whoop! Whoop!

10 comments:

lalaluu said...

I bought an over-the-door shoe organizer - one with horizontal boxy slots - to store half-yard to yard pieces (you could do FQs, too). I made a template of the size of the slot using a cereal box. Now I just fold the fabric around the template, slide out the template, and slide the perfectly-sized and folded fabric into the shoe slot! It has a clear vinyl outside so that you can organize and see by color.

Yvonne @ Quilting Jetgirl said...

I love having my stash sorted by color. I actually use smaller bins so that I can have a bin (or two) for each color but it kind of keeps me limited on how much I have at any one time, too. At least, that was the theory. Now I'm buying solids and expanding out into a second grouping... :)

Stitchin At Home said...

I like to store by colour. BUT my downfall is FQ's I just can't seem to resist them. Which reminds me they need to be sorted ughhh

Bonnie said...

I used to store in totes by color. But eventually started storing on open shelving. I fold my 1/2 yd and above around a 8 1/2" x 24 ruler and then slip the ruler out and fold it in half. I've learned to measure and safety pin a note with the amount of fabric and sometimes where I purchased it and when. Then I put them on the correct pile of fabric on the shelf. Luckily the shelves are not near any windows. It makes it really easy to see and grab fabric. Or course, after grabbing several hunks of fabric it becomes messy. But, I find it fast and easy to put back into order. Fat quarters go in basket and box tops (think tops of paper boxes...) on the top of my long row of shelves. I'm hoping to winnow down the amount of fat quarters I have but so far no success on that. I really need to use up some of this fabric so I have an excuse to buy more....

Sandra Walker said...

I smiled all the way through this post! Blue is the colour I have the most of too! Yardage, and smaller pieces, although the smallest pieces (in Ziploc bags) now are not the most numerous thanks to Scrap-a-Palooza. I also keep grouping together, and they have lived together in dark drawers for years too; might have to examine that. I didn't know about Lorna's new sew-along, thanks for that; have been keeping out of QBL for a bit. Hope you do okay through the snow-mageddon.

Lorna McMahon said...

That's what I did today! I did a big purge and am donating what I pulled out to my mom. I think we all maybe have a bit of a problem with what to do with our fabric when it comes to storage. My post will be up on Sunday. Thanks so much for sharing about the Ugly Sweaters!

Anja @ Anja Quilts said...

Kudos for making an attempt to organize your stash. I'm halfway through. I need to pull some fabric for my Ugly Sweaters. Not sure what size I'll make. Good luck with the storm. We heard today that now it's going to pass by us...thank goodness...because it was sounding like a wicked storm.

Cheryl said...

I organized my stash two weeks ago and got rid of a lot of fabrics that I liked but really never saw myself really using. One good side effect fro the sorting was that I found tons of fabric I really wanted to use, this has helped me resist buying anything new in the last couple of weeks.

Shasta Matova said...

I sort my stash by color too, but I think the key is putting it back when you are done with it. I totally fail at that.

Jennifer Fulton Inquiring Quilter said...

I store my fabric, sorted by color, on two bookshelves. I put specialty fabrics together...you know, flannels with flannels and novelties with novelties. When I want to make a quilt, I go shopping in my stash. Fun!

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