Friday, 14 June 2013

Bringing a bit of order: part 2

I've been telling everyone recently that I don't have a large fabric stash. However, if you ask my boyfriend he would probably tell you differently (I don't know for sure, I haven't asked!). Fabric seems to be everywhere in the flat. I can be a little lazy short of time once I have completed a project and the call of the next one is more overwhelming than the need to tidy. However, with the flat "purge" going on, of which I said nothing is safe, it was time to tackle how I store my fabric. 

Armed with a cup of coffee and The Apprentice on BBC iPlayer I brought everything together:

Untidy mess of fabric

I then divided it all up into different piles: "stash fabric" which is anything that is big enough to make some from whether an item of clothing or a bag of some sort, scraps, UFOs (unfinished objects) and toile making material. 

My stash part 1
Stash part one
I was surprised by the "stash fabric". There is more there then I realised although a lot of it is left over fabric from other projects. None of these sprang to mind before when I thought about how much I owned. I came to realise how much was there when I decided to catalogue it. Call me a geek but if you're going to get organised then you might as well do it properly. A simple table will now help me make decisions on what fabric to use with which pattern. I listed the type of fabric, colour, amount (I measured every piece but not the scraps obviously) and any pre-treatment including temperature washed at if applicable. I can only access this from home which is a little annoying. Anyone know of any apps that could help here? 

My stash part 2
Stash part two. Almost all from previous projects.
I wasn't so surprised to see the pile of scraps growing and growing. I'm not one to keep every little piece, if I can't see what use it will be in the future I throw it out. I have a few thoughts on what to do with this lot. 

Scrap box

My UFO pile is pretty big. I need to decide whether to carry on with them or try to use them for something else. I have changed shape since cutting a lot of these out so I'm not sure they will fit.  

Some of the UFOs

I also have a growing pile of items that should be refashioned. Most of them are Adam's old work shirts. I can see more feminine shirts from some of them, probably not skirts as the grey ones are made from a lightweight cotton. I can probably rework the white ones for him as I can remove the company name by taking away the pocket but not the grey ones - they are definitely mine! 

Refashion items

Two hours later and everything was put away neatly. I've decided to make a few bags to keep the items in as I'd rather look at pretty bags instead of plastics ones. Luckily, I have a lot of the purple fabric with embroidered squares which would work perfectly! I just need to find the time to make them... I don't have a sewing room but this process definitely makes me want one even more. I have to store all of my fabric under my bed, like a young child stores their toys. At least I have managed to find a dedicated storage space, even if it is awkward to get to - I had to stand in the wardrobe to get this shot!

Under the bed storage

What storage systems or solutions do you have?


  1. Intriguing looking at someone else's stash! I keep my fabric in a drawer. I swore to my husband this chest of drawers would solve my storage problems... Well, no, but I'm working on it!

    1. Haha! Storage will always be a problem for sewists, I think.

  2. You've got some lovely fabrics in your stash by the look of it. I've just recently joined the Style the Stash Sew-a-Long being coordinated by Sarah Liz at SarahLizSewStyle, and am hoping to use quite a bit of my small(ish) stash before I buy any more fabric.

    1. Such a good idea by Sarah Liz, I must take a look to see what you're all making.

  3. Good for you for organizing it all! I know from experience that's not such a fun task!

    I also made spreadsheets - for stashes of both fabric and patterns - and I did them on Google Drive. That way, I can access them from my phone while I'm out and about. It especially helps me avoid buying duplicate sewing patterns!

    1. Good idea, I haven't listed my patterns yet as I don't have a huge amount but I'm sure that will change!

  4. I have my fabrics sorted in a similar way to you although I haven't yet done a spreadsheet. Gail's idea is a good one! My problem is the box of smallish scrap pieces under the bed. One day I'm going to have to really tackle that lot and either do something with it or bin it :(

    1. I know! They mount up really quickly but I just can't throw them out if they look useful.

  5. We sewers all love stashes - and it is so satisfying getting them in order so you can see what you have got. I've got a huge stash but I think my husband doesn't mind in the least. He thinks a stash is "fabric lovingly stored until it is made into a lovely garment".

    1. A good way to think about it!


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