I’ve tried to think about how to apply the Konmarie techniques for decluttering to my fabric stash. I mean, that category just embodies so much for me, it’s sentimental, it’s precious, it evokes joy in some way or form. But if I touch every piece of fabric (which I’ve been known to spend an hour or two just re-folding it to put on the shelf) will I find that every piece brings me joy? Truthfully, no. In 2015 I not only tried to refrain from buying new fabric, but I also decided to gift some fabric that I had remaining from when I had a fabric shop, I purchased it a long time ago and it was not anything I was in love with. I feel like I passed on a lot of joy to other people who seemed so happy to get that fabric! I know they will put it to good use and it gave me joy to give it away! I also recently sent a priority box full of fabric to a woman who is teaching second graders how to sew. How exciting is that!?
I think I will find more joy in making quilts out of the fabrics that bring me the most joy than just keeping them there to look pretty on a shelf.
Here’s the funny part. The fabrics on my fabric shelf are sorted by color and they are in ROY G BIV color order! Plus a separate cube each for grays, black and white, and low volumes. But the fabrics in the color cubes are not my MOST favorite, MOST precious. Those are stored in other places. Maybe in a plastic container on a top shelf, maybe stacked on top of the cube bookcase, maybe in that red cabinet with my Quilt Books. I don’t know why but I haven’t even given my favorite fabrics the place of “honor” Maybe because I didn’t want to break them up to store them with the color groups. That makes sense. But if I were to sort through all my color fabrics and determine what I want to really keep for future projects, I bet I would have room left over for those favorite fabrics.
People often ask if they should store their fabrics by color or by designer (or both). Sorting my non-precious fabric by color made a lot of sense, because then I could see that I had a TON of blues and reds and greens so I consciously stopped buying those colors. I was low on purple, orange and yellows, so those became more appealing to me once I did the color sort. But now, I’m considering the need to have them sorted this way. Then again, I also really love how they look in order like that. Maybe I just need an extension to my current bookcase (the one I have is the Kallax from IKEA which has 9 cubes but they have a variety of configurations).
As I said before though, the process of sorting through all of this should be devoted to a special Fabric Sorting Day. A special day when the kid is at school and hubby is at work and the rest of the house is clean so that I feel like I can give myself permission to enjoy the process.
It is definitely some food for thought.
P.S. Did you know that my friend Kristan has a FREE 7 day mini course about how to declutter? You can enroll for FREE right here!
I hear over and over that people who have sewing/crafting rooms want to get them organized so they can get in there an have a nice neat place to work (at least to start with until the magic starts to happen). I’m a firm believer that IKEA is the PERFECT source for storage solutions for a creative space and since this month is National Craft Month (I didn’t even KNOW that!) they’ve actually featured a craft room MAKEOVER on their blog!
I just saw their post about some quick tips to get started and I think they have merit (even if it is a knitter’s room and not a fabric hoarder – I mean quilter’s- room). Be sure to check out the video at the bottom of the post for the tour of the room and the reaction of the room owner when she see’s the reveal.
Also, if you are looking for some other tips, I have collected A TON of ideas on my Pinterest board just for Craft Room Organizing! Look me up on Pinterest, my screen name is craftygirlanna. I also have a board called Studio Idea or something like that if you’re curious. That is what my dream studio would look like.
Lastly, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention a HASH TAG to search on IG to inspire you to get organized. Check out #honestcraftroomcleanup to see some of the transformations (I have some pictures on there from some time in 2014) of different folks’ craft rooms. What I love is seeing the before and after pictures. Seriously, if I could make a career out of helping people organize their craft rooms, I would totally do it!
So hopefully this gets you inspired to spend some of your snowed in days cleaning up or maybe do some Spring cleaning (whatever the case may be for your part of the country).
Happy Stitches and Happy Organizing,
I’ve had an interesting sewing journey since I started sewing in 2007. First, I had a dedicated sewing/crafting space and even had an entire room with a closet and extra shelving in my old house. Then I moved to a 1500 square foot sewing studio for a year (bigger than my current apartment)! Now, I live in a 2 bedroom apartment and have moved my sewing machine around 3 times in a year trying to find the best spot for it (mostly out of reach of a curious toddler). I also keep a machine in the trunk of my car in case a friend invites me over to sew for a little while.
I realize now that it doesn’t really matter how much space you have, what matters is what you make and why you make it. My quilting projects are my creative outlet. I love to make something that makes my cubicle pretty and that sparks some conversation with people at work. I also love to make quilts that can be used to keep me or my family warm or can give comfort to someone in a nursing home who doesn’t have anyone to visit them.
Maybe someday I’ll have more space to spread out but I hope that my focus will remain on creating beautiful quilts to share with friends, family and those in need.
So tell me, do you have a dedicated space or do you sew a vant guard wherever you can and whenever you can?