Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Stash talk

Over on the Sew Mama Sew blog they requested readers tell them about their fabric stash. I've really enjoyed nosing at people's material boxes and shelves, so, despite having a tiny stash that definately needs some work, I thought I'd give the questions a whirl.

What do you usually sew?

I started out with curtains, cushions ...anything nice and square basically. Then a few years back I started making very basic 'squares' quilts from scraps of materials.

I didn't really know what I was doing then but I have learnt bits of technique along the way and I'm now branching out into more adventurous things - largely due to finding ultimate inspiration out here in blog land!

When you shop for fabric, what size cuts do you usually buy? (i.e. If you see something beautiful, but you don’t have a use for it right away, how much do you buy?)

In the past I have usually gone for fat quarters, but I've also been known to trawl the charity shops to buy second hand clothes and sheets etc. in cool and funky fabrics to chop us and use on my scrappy quilts.

Do you buy on impulse or do you go out looking for something you need?

Usually I head out looking for something I need, complete with my little bag full of scraps and samples from my current works in progress. I have made a promise to myself to start impulse buying more often as my stash is definately an early work in progress. We live in the middle of nowhere and the local fabric shops are pretty poor so I tend to head out for the day on specific fabric acquiring missions to various cool places I have discovered. I've dabbled in buying online but I'm not that keen. Choosing fabric is definately one of my favourite stages of making things as it usually also involves lunch out and tea and cake stops :)

Are you a pre-washer? If you are, do you wash your fabric before you need it, or only when you’re ready to use it?

No, I don't wash as I like working with new material. The exception is when I use second hand stuff from charity shops which always gets a whizz through the washer before I do anything with it. So far everything I have made that subsequently needed washing has survived.

Do you iron it?

Usually, just as I cut.

How do you sort it? (color, print size, collection, etc.)

Kind of by project. But frankly anything goes - my space is limited so it all gets into a bit of a hotch potch.

Do you have any special folding techniques?

Nope, I'm also ashamed to say I have some boxes where stuff is just thrown in. I feel a stash sorting project coming on.

How do you store your fabric?

I have a lovely antique desk which is bursting at the seams with all my craft stuff and most of my smaller bits of material are in there, in boxes or in the drawers of the desk. I do have a hamper basket on top of the wardrobe for larger bits of fabric, these are mostly off cuts from curtains and cushion projects plus some vintage fabrics my Nana gave me a few years back.

What tips do you have for building up a well-rounded stash?

Hmm. I don't have a well rounded stash so I'm not sure I could offer many tips. Maybe just buy lots of fabric!

When do you say enough is enough?

I don't :)

What are some of your favorite stash-busting projects?

My scrappy quilts.

Do you have a current favorite print in your stash? Let’s see it!

I'm obsessed with spots and stripes, but if I had to pick an absolute favourite it would probably currently be one of my retro kids prints, I'm in the middle of making a cot quilt for my little lad who is 6 months old.

What’s your definition of the perfect stash?

One that is bigger than mine! I definately have stash envy after seeing some of the posts on this thread. And after the confessional nature of responding to these questions I am going to have a fabric sort out and tidy up what I do have - I feel totally guilty at how disorganised I am :)

Toodle pip.

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