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Thread: How do you organize your projects, stash and scraps?

  1. #1
    Junior Member GiddyUpGo's Avatar
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    I have a really small space to keep my quilting stuff. Actually it's just a tiny corner closet that doesn't even have shelving in it. I recently inherited five boxes of fabric from my grandma, who passed away last year. I also have a growing collection of fat quarters, a few UFOs, a box of scraps and fabric I bought specifically for future projects, most of which are still sitting in the bags I brought them home in.

    Was wondering, how do you organize your stuff, especially projects? Do you keep it all in your head, do you have any great products you use or is it just chaos (like mine)? Looking for some ideas (and pictures!), especially from those who manage to keep their stuff in a pretty small space.

  2. #2
    Senior Member MoanaWahine's Avatar
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    When I have fabric for a specific project, I will put them in one of the bags I get from the LQS and the pattern that I intent to make with the fabric.

    As for other items, I keep my FQs in one location and then I have a pile of 1/2 yd cuts and then a pile of anything over 1/2 yd. I do not have much, so this works for me. I also have a few small tote boxes that I store Holiday/Winter/Animal fabric in. Once again, I do not have much, so this works for me.

    Everything else goes either in or on my computer desk that is now my sewing desk.

  3. #3
    Super Member Gramie bj's Avatar
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    Clear storage boxes if your closet has no shelves use the boxes label each as to what is in it. put all fabric and the pattern you have collected for a futuor project together in a box. I bundel mine together with Christmas wrap ribbon then you can put more than one project per box if need to. tools you use with every project (scissors, ripper pins, needles, thimbles,you the stuffI mean)into one box. Specilty tool into another box Thread should have its own box, ALL LABELED it is neat, stacked, and easy to find what you want. Fabric sorted by size and or color in there own box.

  4. #4
    Super Member SuziC's Avatar
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    When i start a new project i keep all the related peices in an inexpensive clear bin on my sewing counter. I got the bins at WalMart for 3.00 ea. They are the shape of a shoe box. Maybe you can get several of those to stack so you can see thru them.

  5. #5
    Super Member Greenheron's Avatar
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    It's rather complicated. The trash bag full of plaid factory cut outs is on the closed-in porch. The boxes of my late mother's stash cover the guest bed. The box of my oldest cotton scraps is in the closet. Blue jeans waiting to be ripped are on the upstairs bannister. Jeans fabric ready to cut is in a boot box on the floor. The quilt I'm working on made from thrift store star squares is on the coffee table and the top for my DS &DIL is folded over the back of a dining room chair. Ripped, washed and pressed recycled woolens are in color rolls in totes. Wool clothing waiting for same are piled in the middle of the guest room floor. Various cottons are on the dresser and two boxes of rescued patches and pieces are on an end table. Quilt top WIP for a dear friend is on the bedroom sewing machine. The pile of new old fabrics just in from the thrift store is on the clothes dryer awaiting the washer. The collection for the I-Spy is in a bag on the door knob of that closed porch. Everything else is.......oh, don't ask.

  6. #6
    Senior Member MoanaWahine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greenheron
    It's rather complicated. The trash bag full of plaid factory cut outs is on the closed-in porch. The boxes of my late mother's stash cover the guest bed. The box of my oldest cotton scraps is in the closet. Blue jeans waiting to be ripped are on the upstairs bannister. Jeans fabric ready to cut is in a boot box on the floor. The quilt I'm working on made from thrift store star squares is on the coffee table and the top for my DS &DIL is folded over the back of a dining room chair. Ripped, washed and pressed recycled woolens are in color rolls in totes. Wool clothing waiting for same are piled in the middle of the guest room floor. Various cottons are on the dresser and two boxes of rescued patches and pieces are on an end table. Quilt top WIP for a dear friend is on the bedroom sewing machine. The pile of new old fabrics just in from the thrift store is on the clothes dryer awaiting the washer. The collection for the I-Spy is in a bag on the door knob of that closed porch. Everything else is.......oh, don't ask.
    This sounds like my mom before my brother and cousin got to her things and organized them :shock:

    No worry, nothing lost, just had to dig to find a few things but needed to have done because of major amount of family coming home during the summer (including me and my kids) :P

  7. #7
    Super Member Jill's Avatar
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    I have a 5-tier vinyl shelving unit on one side of a double closet. I keep my stash--separated by color--on the shelves. I have one stack just for FQ and other cuts that are less than 1 yard. My scraps are in a big basket under my sewing table. When I select a project I keep the fabric and pattern in one of the big Hefty resealable plastic bags. As far as all the misc things I see in magazines and online, I keep them in page protectors in a large 3-ring binder.

  8. #8
    Senior Member cny_sewer39's Avatar
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    I am very blessed in that I have a sewing room. So my fabric stash goes into my 2 fabric cabinets that are stacked one on top of the other. My projects are placed into 4 bins that I bought at Dollar Tree, they fold up & store flat for storage space. My scraps go into a 4 bin canvas bag, under my cutting table. My strips go into shoe boxes based on size. (I also bought these at Dollar Tree.) I hope this helps. Good Luck with your organizing.

    debra

  9. #9
    Super Member GwynR's Avatar
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    Each of these bins has a different project in it. I put finished blocks, extra fabric, and the pattern in them. :-D
    They work out great! I have a dozen of them with ongoing projects! :oops: :oops:

    Storage bins
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  10. #10
    Super Member Charlee's Avatar
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    Organized????? We're supposed to be ORGANIZED???? oh boy...I'm in trouble!!

    ;) :lol:

  11. #11
    Super Member New Quilter's Avatar
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    I have been working for the last 2 days...I finally got all of mine out of the store bags and/or mailing packages...then I grouped them according to holidays, specific projects, and soon I will be sorting and grouping the rest according to colors...I then placed the groups into clear plastic and stackable totes...it just seems like an uphill battle, but I am determined to get everything organized first, then to clean out the spare bedroom(that has become a storage room...ugh!!!)...Naomi

  12. #12
    Super Member Phannie1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlee
    Organized????? We're supposed to be ORGANIZED???? oh boy...I'm in trouble!!

    ;) :lol:

    I try! I keep known projects in baskets, bags and boxes. Stashed under my work table. extra fabric and accessories are in the closet.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlee
    Organized????? We're supposed to be ORGANIZED???? oh boy...I'm in trouble!!

    ;) :lol:
    Me too! I start out organized, but by the time I get ready to sew, fabric is everywhere, and I'm working on another project than the one I started out with!

  14. #14
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    At the moment I have a huge mess! Still don't have the shelving up and stuff is in cardboard boxes.

    Have been digging through them frantically looking for fabric to drape the various displays for the Celtic Festival a week ago (plaids and coordinating solids for candle booth plus fabrics for a shop banner) and for the Texas Renaissance Festival which starts this weekend (royal blue, deep purple and gold for stained glass booth).

    Seems like every year we can't find what will fit all the odd sized/shaped counters and tables. We vow to put labels on everything when we take it down at the end of the show, but then it goes in the washing machine and that's the end of any labeling we might do.

    So my organizing is very much a disaster at the moment.

  15. #15
    Senior Member gigi10's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mom-6
    At the moment I have a huge mess! Still don't have the shelving up and stuff is in cardboard boxes.

    Have been digging through them frantically looking for fabric to drape the various displays for the Celtic Festival a week ago (plaids and coordinating solids for candle booth plus fabrics for a shop banner) and for the Texas Renaissance Festival which starts this weekend (royal blue, deep purple and gold for stained glass booth).

    Seems like every year we can't find what will fit all the odd sized/shaped counters and tables. We vow to put labels on everything when we take it down at the end of the show, but then it goes in the washing machine and that's the end of any labeling we might do.

    So my organizing is very much a disaster at the moment.
    Not to mention the fires that made you evacuate with a u-haul truck. Youare amazing, for sure.

  16. #16
    Senior Member sylviak's Avatar
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    Gallon size storage bags from Walmart for smaller projects. I bought the shoebox size clear plastic containers for a buck each at WM this summer. The bags can be "squeezed" to remove excess air before storing and most have a place to label with a sharpie. I store scraps by color this way. Bags are placed in larger plastic bins and stacked. I also use the sandwich bags for storing small pieces of a project.

  17. #17
    Super Member hobo2000's Avatar
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    I get plastic food type containers from the Dollar store. The are about 10"x14" and 3" deep for $1.00. They stack beautifully and they are see thru. Works great!

  18. #18
    Super Member CoventryUK's Avatar
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    Uhmmmmm?? Not very well!!! My sewing room is 6' x 9' BUT my stash/WIP/UFO's would fill a 20'x20' space!!!! :roll: :roll: :lol:

  19. #19
    Super Member CoventryUK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gramie bj
    Clear storage boxes if your closet has no shelves use the boxes label each as to what is in it. put all fabric and the pattern you have collected for a futuor project together in a box. I bundel mine together with Christmas wrap ribbon then you can put more than one project per box if need to. tools you use with every project (scissors, ripper pins, needles, thimbles,you the stuffI mean)into one box. Specilty tool into another box Thread should have its own box, ALL LABELED it is neat, stacked, and easy to find what you want. Fabric sorted by size and or color in there own box.
    Fancy a trip to the UK??? I could use your organizing skills!!!!!
    :roll: : :lol: :thumbup:

  20. #20
    Super Member CoventryUK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greenheron
    It's rather complicated. The trash bag full of plaid factory cut outs is on the closed-in porch. The boxes of my late mother's stash cover the guest bed. The box of my oldest cotton scraps is in the closet. Blue jeans waiting to be ripped are on the upstairs bannister. Jeans fabric ready to cut is in a boot box on the floor. The quilt I'm working on made from thrift store star squares is on the coffee table and the top for my DS &DIL is folded over the back of a dining room chair. Ripped, washed and pressed recycled woolens are in color rolls in totes. Wool clothing waiting for same are piled in the middle of the guest room floor. Various cottons are on the dresser and two boxes of rescued patches and pieces are on an end table. Quilt top WIP for a dear friend is on the bedroom sewing machine. The pile of new old fabrics just in from the thrift store is on the clothes dryer awaiting the washer. The collection for the I-Spy is in a bag on the door knob of that closed porch. Everything else is.......oh, don't ask.
    Love it!! :thumbup: :lol:

  21. #21
    Senior Member scrappy2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Navy Wife
    Quote Originally Posted by Charlee
    Organized????? We're supposed to be ORGANIZED???? oh boy...I'm in trouble!!

    ;) :lol:
    Me too! I start out organized, but by the time I get ready to sew, fabric is everywhere, and I'm working on another project than the one I started out with!
    I start out organized too but it's all down hill from there.

  22. #22
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    I'm blessed that I have a sewing room. But it gets smaller each time I go to the LQS. Some of my fabric is in a wardrobe cabinet (bought at thrift shop - it could have been a tv cabinet in its first life), other fabrics are in containers, seasonal fabrics are in bins under the bed, and still more is in the under the stairs closet. Organized - hum not there yet. Maybe when I grow up.

  23. #23
    Senior Member stitchengramie's Avatar
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    I like the idea of putting each project in their own bin.

  24. #24
    Super Member lynnsim's Avatar
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    I've also been blessed to have a sewing room. I have a large stash, so can't help you there. However, I can help you with storing projects. It has helped me so much since I've been storing my UFOs in plastic bags. I started off buying 2 gallon bags, but they are hard to find. then, my DD joined Avon. they have the neatest bags. so, find an Avon lady, lol.

  25. #25
    Senior Member JabezRose's Avatar
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    Organized? hahahahaha. But I will mention, those thingies one hangs in closets to stuff shoe boxes in or sweaters, etc, make nice storage for material that is ready to sew into quilts. Totes, yes, lots and lots of totes and one can hang hooks all over to hang bags of new acquisitations(spelling off). You can cut the legs in two for those tall plastic shelves to make short shelves to avoid the need to unstack many shoe boxes to get to one you want, or to hold long flat totes like drawers. They will hold one long flat tote and a plastic shoebox each.

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