Sunday, September 20, 2015

stash storage

In my last post, I mentioned that I'd changed my way of storing my stash.  Maybe I alluded to "managing" my stash, but it's really just a way to keep it more visible.

I have some nice built-in cupboards in my sewing room.  I wasn't going to put my sewing room in this bedroom when we moved here, but my mom was helping us move (along with 9 guys and 7 trucks - this included my brothers and my's good to have friends with pickups!) and made the suggestion this would be great storage.  The light in this room is also much better than the room I'd originally planned to use, so it all worked out well.  (Thanks, mom!)  Anyways, here's a shot of the cupboards closed - a rare occurrence...

I took this photo a few years ago and it pretty well illustrates what I had going on before behind those closed doors as far as my stash storage:

On the upper shelf (there are four total), there are fun fabrics.  Stuff I don't want to use for just anything.  Leftover backing fabrics (I tend to go wild with those).  Stuff that doesn't really fit in any other place.

On the lower of the two shelves shown here, there is a bin with fabrics sorted by color.  To the left of the bin is an overflowing shoebox with flannels.

As you can see, this is not very organized.  It was hard to find anything.

In the past two and a half years since this was taken, I have done some work to reduce the stash.  A lot of the flannels were used as quilt backs for the doll quilts I made last year.  I've made a few scrappier quilts, too, and tried to shop my stash first.

On the uppermost shelf (not seen here), it's a disaster still.  It was then, too.  Odds and ends of everything crafty that doesn't have another place.  But it's up above my eye level, so out of sight, out of mind!  The lower shelf (and other parts of the shelves where stash isn't shown/stored here) have more boxes with projects in them.  I try to keep my projects limited to a box so I can find everything, it stays together and it's pretty easy to just pick up and go if I want to sew somewhere else.

But with the sorting and using that went on for the Girl Scout project, I used up a lot and just generally got things organized.  And decided that box system for the color-sorted scraps was loony.  Nothing ever fit right and it was always a smooshed jumble that wasn't really sorted.

So this is where this part of the cupboard stands now...

A slightly different angle, but this is the same shelf that had the box-o-scraps on it.  The scraps are now stored in tidy-ish piles by color.  The shelf above it has black/grey/white/neutral and a few stacks of fun/novelty-type fabrics.  More organized than before.  The shelf below has a few bits from leftover projects that will become leader-ender doll/charity quilt projects as I work through them.  (Sorry it's not all pictured, but I think you get the idea.)

So far I haven't done much with my stash in this format, but I know it's going to be easier to work with.  Easier to shop when I start a new project (and am disciplined enough to do that first).  There are a number of projects in the works, so it will be a bit before the stash gets touched - and will be added to as those are finished - but it's a start and it makes me feel better when I see it.

I don't do any of those cut-strips-to-uniform-sizes of management.  I just fold up what I have and put it in the right color pile.  I'll cut it when I need it.  And this way I'm not limited by strip size later.  Sometimes that' key!

And no, I don't have a big stash.  The biggest piece of fabric I think that's in my entire stash is probably 3 yards and it was bought to be background for a project I never started.  I buy what I need for projects as I want to make them.  I am not much of a scrap quilter and I don't believe in buying fabrics just to have them.  Usually.  I do have a few pieces, but I try not to do that.  I never know what to do with them afterwards...

Today I found some time to sew.  Our electricity issues aren't fixed.  The electrician friend believes we need to rewire the whole house.  Super excited about that news.  But with it being cooler, the air conditioner can stay off, so my iron and sewing machine can function at the same time!

I sewed five of these blocks today, four last weekend.

There are only four more to go and then I'll have to start the less-fun portion of sewing them all together.  But when that's done, I can start something else, right?

Happy quilting,


a good yarn said...

Really enjoyed the tour of your stash and those blocks are going to make a super quilt.

---"Love" said...

What a nice storage place you have! I love that you can see your different colors together, and still have room to get to them! (Not so easy in mine!) I don't bother with cutting and organizing strips and other pieces either; I just might need that larger piece for something, right? All those blocks are so nice. Will be watching to see just what you do with them. Have fun! ---"Love"

Ruth said...

Your built in storage is wonderful and it seems your fabric is under control now! I wish I could say the same! Your blocks are cute. Can't wait to see them put together!