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Building up a stash

Building up a stash

Old 01-17-2021, 05:50 PM
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Default Building up a stash

Hi all. I will be retiring in about a year and want to build up my stash. I would like suggestions on how to go about this. Should I concentrate on a variety of colors? Should I pick patterns and make my own kits? How much of each color do you think I should get? Should I get blenders in lots of colors(or my favorite colors)! There is so much to choose from, so I'm struggling on where to start. I would love to hear what y'all suggestions are. Thanks!
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Old 01-17-2021, 06:08 PM
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It is hard to know in advance what pattern you want to do but most will need background fabric. I am always buy several length of good cream/white etc. when I find a good price. The grunge line in neutrals are a favourite also.
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Old 01-17-2021, 06:18 PM
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before I retired I did buy a whole stack of solids (I do a lot of modern quilts so like having solids around) and blenders. I didn't buy many prints unless I just loved them --and then usually 3 yds. But usually with a print I've got an idea of what I plan to do(some day!)
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Old 01-17-2021, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Tartan View Post
It is hard to know in advance what pattern you want to do but most will need background fabric. I am always buy several length of good cream/white etc. when I find a good price. The grunge line in neutrals are a favourite also.
I agree. I wish I had more backgrounds in my stash. I would add blacks, navies and greys to Tartan's list. Or whatever colors you might use as background.
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Old 01-17-2021, 08:00 PM
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It depends on what kind of quilts you want to make. I would work on figuring that out before investing in a stash that may not meet your needs. Also, what's popular now may look very dated in a year or two. Focus on what you like, try to avoid fabrics that are too trendy, and remember that colors might not always be available in the tints you prefer as they change yearly. For instance, one year it's bright blue, then periwinkle, then baby blue, then blue-green, in a continuous cycle year in and year out. I made a mistake in the 80s of overloading my stash with dusty colored prints that went out of style before I could use them up.
They haven't been back in style since.

You can't go wrong with solids in basic colors, and polka dots in different sizes and colorways. Beautiful florals are also good picks. I have Kaffe Fasset prints that are at least ten years old that I use all the time. Find designers that you like and buy their simple patterns. I love Tula Pink's designs, but rarely buy her larger scale prints because they're too limiting. I stick to buying her simpler designs in colors I love.
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Old 01-17-2021, 09:25 PM
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I like the idea of making up your own kits.

I am one who has garnered quite a healthy stash, and have found myself wondering why I purchased this fabric or that, and conversely, wishing I had purchased more of this fabric or that. The downside of not buying enough is often times you can't buy more. So, I have started doing exactly that - making my own kits. I put the pattern with the requisite amount of fabric (plus a little extra) in a special area in my quilt studio.
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Old 01-17-2021, 11:01 PM
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I think it will depend on the kind of quilts you will make. Have you quilted all along, and are looking forward to being able to do more? Or, are you new at this madness? Initially I bought every shiny object I loved. Fabric seemed to jump into my cart. Then I discovered all the patterns and pretty pictures, and magazines, and just had to have and bought a ton. Then I figured out I can just look and a picture online, or in a magazine, and figure it out on my own. Much of what I bought I still have, and plan on using, but I am more organized now, and have started separating fabrics into marked bins, making up my own kits with the patterns I have collected. I find I gravitate to certain fabrics and styles so I am working on eliminating things I know I won't use. I don't buy a lot of blenders, or backing. I wait until I have a need. Another thing to consider is space and storage of all your fabric. I'm rapidly running out!

Last edited by Anniedeb; 01-17-2021 at 11:03 PM.
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Old 01-18-2021, 03:12 AM
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From my own experience, I would echo much of what has already been said. I would start with patterns, or at least a plan, and purchase enough for that plus an additional half to full yard. I have discovered over the past few years (since I was forced into retirement by a cancer diagnosis. Thankfully I am doing well.) that each "season" they change the color pallate. I was depending upon my modest stash, but unable to find anything that went together. If anything, I might suggest the cash that you would plan to spend be put into a savings account to spend when you find a pattern after retirement that you want to make
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Old 01-18-2021, 03:23 AM
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Lots of good advice so far and probably lots more to come. Even if you have some experience quilting, I suggest signing up for www.pinterest.com and search for quilts. Lots of eye candy and you will see what your color scheme is. Wish I had this website when I started quilting. You can copy/print into word doc for future reference. I'm like Annie. See a quilt, figure out the block, done.

Once I found "my groove" (and it really hasn't changed much over the years) I always buy background fab by the bolt... always same color scheme meaning tone on tone...white with white pattern, beige ToT, off white ToT. I buy lots of polka dot fab too that I use for sashing and bindings to tie the blocks together.

This works for me but maybe not for you.

(I hope this all makes sense. I started this post 4.00 AM)
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Old 01-18-2021, 04:17 AM
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As a lot of what the others are saying is very true. Look at what kinds of quilts you really like and then figure out why and that may help you get some idea of what you will be making. I agree on the wait to start buying fabric. I didn't and I just started buying fat quarters with no idea of what I might want or need, so for a long time all I had was a bunch of fabric with nothing that went together. The suggestion on buying tone on tone fabrics to use as blenders is a very good idea. I still run across some of "what was I thinking"
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