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Thread: downsizing my stash

  1. #1
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    Question downsizing my stash

    I need to downsize my stash of fabric and patterns. If I lived to be 100 I could never use all the stuff I have accumulated. I would appreciate suggestions on how to begin the process of downsizing and how to go about selling some of my stash. Thanks
    Ann Brown

  2. #2
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    You could have a quilter's rummage sale - maybe have some grab bags, coordinated bundles of fabric tied together, fat quarter bundles, etc. Just be prepared for the fact that you probably won't get the same amount of money as you paid as everyone is looking for a deal. I just went shopping in my stash and made a whole quilt - top, batting and backing and all in my closet. I plan on doing a lot more of this kind of shopping.

  3. #3
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    In order to sell on the QB, there are requirements to be met. You can read about them in the Members Only Thrift Shop and Yard Sale forum.
    Nancy in western NY
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  4. #4
    Super Member Gramie bj's Avatar
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    I went to a great crafters yard sale, all fabric $2 a yard, she did not cut yardage but she did measure it for you. this included 100% cotton fabric to all kinds of craft and clothing fabric, trims etc. in 2 hours she was sold out I spent over $40 there and it didn't even make a dent in her stash. She had bags of scraps sold by weight just shoved in what you want 1lb. min. $1. All her scraps were large. You will never get what you invested into your stash this way but it will clean out your stash.

  5. #5
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    Do you wish to sell or donate?

    Or do you like the color combos enough to just say 'what the heck' and cut them into 2 1/2" strips and make a lot of 1600 quilts for charity or gifts or for church, etc. This is about where I am with some of my older stash.

    My two quilting groups depend on gifts of fabric which they then use for the quilts we make for the various charities. I know either would feel blessed to have a gift made to them.
    Have fun quilting! If it isn't fun, you will miss a lot.
    ali

  6. #6
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    We have had many who donated leftovers to the guild charity program. Once a quarter a bunch of us get together and cut the yardage into useable kits and then these are distributed to be sewn into tops. We have a monthly guild group meeting that is for sewing and finishing these into quilts. We can use most anything.

    If you have a garage sale (even Eleanor Burns did this one), sell by the pound. A yard is about 5 ounces and you can post this and have a scale available. That way no measuring of any kind is involved. Fill a bag, weigh it and done.

    A very long time quilter had a sale and prepared a flyer to hand out at all the guild meetings. I missed the sale because it was during Paducah week.

    My note about garage sales: Even in our city of 1 million, it is hard to get out the quilters to buy someone else's stash. I have helped quilters advertise and yet only a few come to the sale and really expect to pay pennies on the dollar. My husband said this is because most (not all) girls and women really like "new" stuff and are turned off with "used" things. He found this when selling for a business. Good luck.

  7. #7
    Super Member justflyingin's Avatar
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    So much depends on your personality. Some people hate dealing with things like yard sales--in that case maybe ebay is an idea. Here you can sell it as well, but it is kind of complicated to know the price.

    I am sitting in the airport waiting to begin the journey back to the USA. There someone has generously donated 3 bags for me to go through so I'm excited! So consider donating as well to groups that make charity quilts! It makes it possible to make them!

  8. #8
    Super Member Mitch's mom's Avatar
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    I'm coming home to PA in August for a visit; I'll stop by and pick it up.

  9. #9
    Super Member alleyoop1's Avatar
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    See if any local organizations make charity quilts and donate fabric to them. You could estimate the value and keep the info for next year's tax return.

  10. #10
    Super Member clsurz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by abrown27 View Post
    I need to downsize my stash of fabric and patterns. If I lived to be 100 I could never use all the stuff I have accumulated. I would appreciate suggestions on how to begin the process of downsizing and how to go about selling some of my stash. Thanks
    You could donate some to local quilt guilds to use for charity quilts. You could donate to Freecycle or put on Craigs list. There are folks out there that make quilts and blankets for organizations.

    If you want to sell it offer it to folks in the community that sew. Perhaps have a sale in your home by using one room and tables or whatever and price it to sell. You also could use Craigs list. If you want to sell online try a place like eBay or Overstock or Esty.
    clsurz

  11. #11
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    You could donate to quilting groups. I know a church group I quilt with depends on donations of supplies for their bazaar items. Also, I learned to quilt at a senior center and someone donated material to them. We were able to pick what we needed and it saved a lot of money for new quilters who have to invest in mats and rotary cutters.You could also offer grab bags on the board for a fee if you'd like to make a little money.

  12. #12
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I have a large stash and I plan to try to use it all up. I am going to make quilts as long as I can. My Daughter and Granddaughter can do with what is left when I leave the world. Daughter is a quilter too and has a large stash also.
    Another Phyllis
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  13. #13
    Super Member Gannyrosie's Avatar
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    There are many of us just starting to quilt, or just getting back, and it's very expensive to build a stash. I know most of you ladies have such stashes due to years of sewing and making quilts. Selling by weight would be something I would be interested in. I don't want to be in your shoes, but I'll do a 1/2 shoe.

  14. #14
    Super Member jcrow's Avatar
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    From what you wrote, you want to SELL it, not donate it. I would have a yard sale. Where I live quilters come from all over to a 'Quilter's Yard Sale' that's been advertised correctly and they sell out fast. Put an ad in the paper and set up tables and saw horses in your garage and be prepared ahead of time for the stampede.
    I don't blame you for wanting to sell your things instead of donating. You spent a lot of money on everything. And yes, you don't get half what you paid for it, but you do make a nice tidy sum at the end of the day (or in a couple of hours).
    You can always do an auction if you have a lot. Many people come to auctions. That is what my husband has been told to do with all my quilting stuff when I'm gone. I've gone to many auctions and hundreds of people show up and everything sells. If I were you, I would do this if you have enough to get rid of. You'd make the most money and get the most people. And while you're at it, you can go through you house and get rid of other things you don't want.
    "Be yourself...everyone else is taken."
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  15. #15
    Super Member HillCountryGal's Avatar
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    Our quilt club meets at the local quilt shop.
    We have a corner/shelves in the back room for people to donate whatever fabric they no longer want. This fabric is then used for the many community service projects we do. Also, project Linus.

    Also, twice a year at our meeting, we have an "in-house garage sale". We only bring items that are sewing/quilting related. You would not believe the amount of fabric and notions we pass around!

  16. #16
    Super Member justflyingin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jcrow View Post
    From what you wrote, you want to SELL it, not donate it. I would have a yard sale. Where I live quilters come from all over to a 'Quilter's Yard Sale' that's been advertised correctly and they sell out fast. .
    This is what I was thinking as well. I was surprised when I read that someone said that quilters don't do yard sales. I would think that must vary by area as every place I've been to, it seems like there are people who are glad to buy fabric at a yard sale/flea market. Of course, a lot depends on the price!

  17. #17
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    Post a notice that you want to swap , prepare some boxes , and maybe swap for piecing work( ask for a top of a certain size from the box a fabric , they get to keep the remaining from the box) , others for some long arm work. Then if the quilts are not quite for your purposes .. donate finished quilts.
    This could be a lot of fun! I know lots of people who love boxes of misc. cuts of fabric.

  18. #18
    Super Member charsuewilson's Avatar
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    Just received an ad through local quilting quild for a garage sale for the support of the fabric owner who was now in a nursing home. It said all fabrics would be $4/yd. I went to an earlier sale at the same location and they had a number of fabrics, but it was a long distance to drive, and might not make sense for me to do again.

  19. #19
    Senior Member Skyangel's Avatar
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    You can sell some of it on the Yahoo group "sewitsforsale". You would have to join yahoo and join the group if you don't belong already.

    Take digital pictures
    post pictures and ad on group site
    wait for emails of people who want to buy it.
    receive payments and mail the fabric to the buyers

  20. #20
    Super Member eparys's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by abrown27 View Post
    I need to downsize my stash of fabric and patterns. If I lived to be 100 I could never use all the stuff I have accumulated. I would appreciate suggestions on how to begin the process of downsizing and how to go about selling some of my stash. Thanks
    I have the perfect solution ........ Just send it to me (lol)

    On a more serious note - you could donate it to a guild that does Charity Quilts. Our Guild recently had some fabric donated - we used it in Quilts made for Quilts of Valor.
    Betty

    A quilt will warm your body and comfort your soul.

    http://notesfrommoosehaven.blogspot.com

  21. #21
    Senior Member quiltswithdogs's Avatar
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    To donate, I would give it to my quilt club or post it on freecycle where I've picked up fabric for free (look online, freecycle is local to everywhere).

    To sell, I don't know other than ebay. Does etsy allow selling?

    I understand about downsizing. For Christmas, my niece & boyfriend gave me 4 laundry hampers of his gramma's fabric that the family had to give away when she died. It took me all January to sort, choose and fold into my stacked-to-ceiling plastic drawers. I only allow myself the amount of fabric that fits in those. After folding properly, I ended up only giving my quilt club about 1/3 of one hamper. We are always happy to be given free fabric.

    I've already instructed my family that when I die, to look through my stash, take what they want, then donate the rest to my quilting club where we are all seniors with limited income.

    What I learned in January was that by folding fabric like at quilt show booths, I can fit in twice as much as I did before. You may find that to be true for you too.
    I don't dance with wolves; I quilt with dogs!
    Cathy

  22. #22
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    Last year the local guild had a show and rented tables/spaces to vendors. Several ladies got together and sold fabrics from their stash. The audience was drawn by the show. The prices they sold their fabric at was cheaper or better than the other vendors there. I purchased a kit, 2 panels and some yardage of a fabric I had been looking for a couple of years. The whole time I was at the show that booth where they were selling fabric was busiest.

    Rent a booth at a local quilt show would be my suggestion.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by abrown27 View Post
    I need to downsize my stash of fabric and patterns. If I lived to be 100 I could never use all the stuff I have accumulated. I would appreciate suggestions on how to begin the process of downsizing and how to go about selling some of my stash. Thanks
    You asked how to begin the process of downsizing, and I didn't see any responses that answered that question. Here's what I'd do. (1) Decide how big a stash you want to keep. (2) Make 4 piles -- (a) absolutely love it, so must keep, (b) really like it, so should keep, (c) will I ever use it, so might give away, and (d) what was I thinking, so must give away. If your (a) and (b) piles fall within the amount in step #1, you can begin to decide what to do with (c) and (d) piles. If you still have more than you decided in step #1, you will need to do step #2 again with your (a) and (b) piles and move more fabric into the (c) and (d) piles. Keep repeating until you have the amount of fabric you decided on in step #1. Then, you need to go on to step #3, do I sell it or give it away.

    This is not an easy task. I ended up giving away almost 75 yards of fabric to my quilt guild. I laid it out on a table and told everyone to look at it and if they found something they liked, take one piece. That was to prevent anyone from taking it all (every guild has one or two ). At the end of the meeting, the remaining fabric was donated to the guild for charity quilts. I didn't want to go to the hassle of listing it on eBay or having a garage sale, so the only suggestion I have is the "Sew It's For Sale" Yahoo! group.

    If you do decide to donate it, here are some suggestions -- quilt guilds; Project Linus, Quilts of Valor, the Girl Scouts.

  24. #24
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    Thank you everyone, I have enjoyed reading these suggestions. I will being the process.
    Ann Brown

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    My mother had us kids go "shopping" through her stash a while back (her grand-kids as well) - you'd be surprised on some of the choices the grandkids made! And what a treasure ... everyone now has a special quilt they will treasure forever!
    Pfaff Ambition 1.0
    Pfaff Performance 5.0

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