Friday, November 19, 2010

More Stash Problems

How do you organize your stash? Mine is sorted by color except for a few special types of fabrics, batiks, for instance. This works in theory, except that I do have a couple of boxes of fabric I've put aside for a future project. That caused the problem.

Trying to find a border fabric for Interpret This!, I realized I had no fabric of the right tone of green, a grayed blueish green; all my greens were too yellow. After fretting about this, rummaging through the stash, and auditioning fabric for a whole afternoon, I settled on piecing several bits of hand dyed fabric I'd made at a guild workshop. I was satisfied.
Then, while straightening up the mess, I looked in the box of fabrics put aside for my "winter" colored quilt (to be made when I decide on a pattern). Here they are: perfect bluish greens, even with the right kind of pattern. They would have looked just as good, or better, than what I've done, and they would have saved me lots of time. And I could have continued to "save" the hand-dyes for that special project. Arghh!

Even more embarrassing, I had actually pulled a bluish gray and an ivory from this box earlier, but wasn't looking for greens then, and forgot about them later.

Defeated by the stash--again.


Libby Fife said...

Kay, Kay, Kay. Sigh. I have done the VERY same thing-and continued to keep fabric out for "special projects" thereby forgetting about it when I needed it. I finally put everything away and told myself firmly that when I was ready to start a project, the fabric would be there. Honestly, head games in quilting...with myself!

jenclair said...

:) I recognize this situation only too well!

Gari said...

I am thinking that this is something that a lot of us can identify with. I "kit" up fabrics for a future project and then either remove fabrics for other projects or find them after the other project is done. We must seem like a peculiar lot. ;-)

Liz said...

Oh yes, this does sound familiar. It's worse when I do remember I have the fabric, but can't figure out where it's got to! When it turns up, then I can't remember what I wanted it for! I tell ya. It's hard to get old! LOL!

Debra said...

I have my boxes subdivided into some (what I think are) pretty specific labels. I use the color wheel names as much as possible so my greens are green, yellow green and blue green. Then, if I have enough fabric I further divide the boxes into labels like light, medium, dark; and then further into tonals. I do keep my prints separate from my solids. So, theoretically, I could have boxes for light, med, dark solids and light, med, dark prints. It takes some discipline to "reshelf" return the fabrics to the right box but it helps when searching for fabrics in the beginning of a project.

When I was growing up and doing lots of garment sewing, we used to bundle projects by patterns and fabric. I did that for quilting too until a few years ago. I finally decided that setting fabric aside locked its possibilities too firmly in my head.

Now I have some dedicated shelves for projects I plan to do immediately and the rest of the ideas and fabric are in my boxes waiting. I don't feel so overwhelmed when I open the closet and see all those "idea projects" waiting to be executed. I think the bundles were zapping my energy--too much like a To Do List staring at me all the time. I also change my mind and some ideas aren't worth pursuing later. (I think we go through cycles of thinking of ideas and then executing them--sometimes I am in more of one mood than another.)

I did a complete overhaul of my studio 2 weeks ago and posted pictures so you can drop by and see them, if you want.

But, clearly, I feel your pain!

Debra said...

One more note--I used to be frantic about cutting into my fabric for fear I would never have that fabric again. It's crazy and now I have fabric I should have used years ago. Wes assures me I can buy whatever I need for my projects and doesn't see any need to hoard what I have; but, there was a day when little kids' shoes were more important than fabric. It takes a long time to unlearn old habits and thought patterns. I am trying.