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Thread: Storing fabric

  1. #1
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    Storing fabric

    I looked through the search and maybe gave up to soon before i found my answer but i was wondering what is the best way to store fabric? A plastic container, card board box ? I don't have a lot as of yet but i'm sure my stash will grow.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Super Member auntpiggylpn's Avatar
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    Before I was able to store my fabrics on shelving, I used clear plastic totes to store mine. Of course, I was in it constantly so the tops of the containers were opened frequently!
    No one has ever become poor by giving. - Anne Frank
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  3. #3
    Super Member chairjogger's Avatar
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    I use plastic and never ran into problems until now. Purchased clear plastic tub, topped of with lid. Opened a month later and a weird plastic smell! Had to was everything again! Never had trouble before, back to the store and stuck my head in the same tub.Wow! Did not notice the oder before. I know I looked weird. But lesson learned. Has to pass thebreath it all in test next time!
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  4. #4
    Super Member nhweaver's Avatar
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    I store my fabric in a lot of places, too little storage, or too much fabric??? : ). My dh put shelves in my little sewing room closet. there I store large quantity fabric wrapped around the store cardboard things that came from Joann's, (standing like they do in JoAnn's). in front of them, I have the small yardage folded somewhat by color.On the bottom, I have a plastic bin of civil war scraps. I store fabric in clear plastic bins in other closets in the guest room. Then there is more fabric in hope chests in the attic walk in. My advice to you is where ever you store fabric, keep it out of any day light. The day light will fade fabric along the fold - happened to me years ago. My stash is just too large. My goal is now just to buy what I will use for a project. I steer clear of fabric stores, unless I am looking for something specific. Sometimes I can, other times I fall right off the wagon!!
    If life gives you lemons, make a margarita.

  5. #5
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    my fabric is folded around my 6x24 ruler [then remove the ruler] and stacked by color on [plastic?] garage storage shelves. you might want to check out the QB's organization forum here http://www.quiltingboard.com/mission-organization-f23/
    Nancy in western NY
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Tashana's Avatar
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    Since my sewing room is in the basement and Long Island has lots of humidity I store my fabrics in plastic shoe boxes. I am thinking of getting a dehumidifier later but for now plastic it is!

  7. #7
    Senior Member pinkcastle's Avatar
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    I store my fabric in plastic storage boxes I got at Office Depot. I haven't had a problem with weird smells yet. The lids don't fit real tight - maybe that's why. I like that I can see what's in the box without having to open it.

  8. #8
    Super Member Veronica's Avatar
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    I fold my fabric with a 6x24 ruler and stacked by color on shelves in my sewing room.
    Veronica

  9. #9
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    I have my fabric on mini bolts and they are in a 3 drawer plastic unit from Walmart. Alaskasuhshine did a tutorial on putting fabric on mini bolts here on QB.

  10. #10
    Super Member pollyjvan9's Avatar
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    I have a lot of fabric and plastic tubs would take up way too much room so I use the ruler to fold my fabric and then put on shelves in my utility room. I have done this for several years now and have had no problem with moisture. If it is dusty I just throw it in the dryer for a few minutes. Here is a photo of part of my stash.
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  11. #11
    Senior Member cmw0829's Avatar
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    I wrap my fabric on cardboard magazine boards (comic boards but a little larger). Then put on a bookcase shelves vertically. I do wish I had glass doors on the bookcase though.

    This makes it really easy to "shop" my stash. And I can remove one fabric with one hand and without disturbing any others as I would if I stacked them.

  12. #12
    Super Member Deborahlees's Avatar
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    I like stackable drawers from walmart. I fold my fabric and then put them in on end, I sort by color, and that way I can thumb thru to see what I can use....Pieces over a yard go on bolts from Joann, that I cut in half like little minnie bolts...when I do that I pin a little postit note on the end telling me how much is there, that is usually for backings...
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  13. #13
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I use to store my fabrics in big plastic clear boxes with lids. I never noticed any odor or anything. I just got real tired of moving them around. We bought a 48 x 72" cabinet at Lowe's and I folded fabric with a ruler. I had so much a couple of shelves broke and my Husband had to reinforce them. The little plastic things that hold the shelves broke under the weight. I have 6 or 7 large pieces in a stack and three rolls on each shelf. I am finally seeing a shelf getting lighter. I make a quilt about every two weeks and really don't use much of it.
    Another Phyllis
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  14. #14
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    Jingle, I think I have the same cabinet. I got mine at Lowe's' too. I have lined the walls of my sewing room with that cabinet (a wardrobe cabinet) and several smaller cabinets. Works great. I also have 2 open bookshelves. Everyone who stores their fabric on open bookcases, please be careful because the sun will fade most fabrics on the fold line over time. I used to store my fabric on open bookcases, and that is what happened to me. Lots of spoiled fabric. I did enjoy looking at all my fabric, though.
    Sue

  15. #15
    Junior Member coffeebreak's Avatar
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    What's this "fold with a 6x24 inch ruler" thing about?

  16. #16
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    I believe that the ruler method is used in place of the mini bolt boards. For the mini bolt- you fold the fabric again (selvages to the factory fold edge)so that it measures about 11 inches wide. You start rolling/ folding the length of the fabric around the mini bolt until it is all wound on like the fabric bolts at the store but smaller. In the ruler method you use a 6 X 12 or longer ruler in place of the mini bolt board. The difference is when you have the fabric all folding/rolled around the ruler you carefully pull the ruler out and store the folded fabric on the shelf. Those who ruler fold, feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

  17. #17
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    I have wood bookcases lining the walls of my double garage. Plastic can sweat so have never used the plastic boxes for storage. I do use the plastic tubs when going to a sale as they help keep the fabric clean and are easy to transport.
    http://www.oregonquilting.net
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  18. #18
    Super Member DebbE's Avatar
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    One thing to keep in mind is where do you live? If its humid or you get lots of rain (like Oregon, where I live), then I would store on open shelving for lots of air circulation. The added bonus is I smile everytime I walk into my quilt room, with all the colors and fabrics on display. I used Billy shelves from Ikea, and have a wall of those -- folded my fabrics so they fit on the shelves (11" deep) and its perfect. Separated by colors, Christmas, Australian, baby/children, misc and "All Creatures Great & Small" - a quilt I hope to do in the not too distant future. In between are baskets of various things (old hankies, patterns, threads, etc) on shelves & pics. I think you need to do it so you can see what you have easily.

  19. #19
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Cardboard boxes, and actually any wood products that are not treated (including tissue paper), are hard on fabric. Wood contains an acid that gradually eats fabric. This is one reason why many antique quilts that were stored for long periods of time in cedar chests have brown stains and holes in them.

    To make cardboard boxes safe, you would have to either line them with muslin or spray them with a polyester film to prevent leaching of the acid.

    I have stacking plastic tubs for my fabric. If you go that route, my advice is to skip the really big tubs because they get too heavy. I like the smaller tubs that are all see-through plastic. I tape a label to the inside of the tub (label facing outside), which keeps the labels from getting dirty and also allows me to replace the label easily. My very favorite tubs have latches on the box which make taking the lid on and off very easy, plus they stack really well. Unfortunately, Walmart isn't selling them any more. If you can afford it, it's really nice to buy all the tubs at the same time, as similar sized tubs from the store vary over time and often don't "play well" with existing tubs.

  20. #20
    Super Member nannyrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chairjogger View Post
    I use plastic and never ran into problems until now. Purchased clear plastic tub, topped of with lid. Opened a month later and a weird plastic smell! Had to was everything again! Never had trouble before, back to the store and stuck my head in the same tub.Wow! Did not notice the oder before. I know I looked weird. But lesson learned. Has to pass thebreath it all in test next time!
    This also happened to me but I have to store in plastic bins. What I did is I bought some of those little votive
    candles from Yankee Candles.They have room freshner ones and that cured that plastic smell for good and now
    the fabric smells very nice when you use it and is gone by the time you are finished with your project.
    so many quilts to make, so little time.

  21. #21
    Junior Member QuilterMomOf3's Avatar
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    LOL!! I to laugh about your 1st sentence, "I store my fabric in a lot of places, too little storage, or too much fabric???"

    I use plastic gallon ice cream & butter buckets (run through the dishwasher 1st of course...), as well as plastic shoe boxes, pirouette cans, plastic filing boxes; OH, my fave so far is those large Enfamil GentlEase baby formula plastic storage containers!!!

    Pretty much anything that comes to me free, or was originally used to store something else & is reusable!!
    "Some people have bunches of WIPs (works in progress) and UFOs (unfinished objects)....I prefer to think of them as PhDs (Projects Half Done)!!" ~Elena Boen
    "Just keep in mind that your function here is to have fun and not to be someone else's interior decorator! So ... go forth and have fun!" ~Krystyna
    I cannot count my day complete 'til needle, thread and fabric meet.

  22. #22
    Super Member busy fingers's Avatar
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    I store mine in plastic tubs with lids but I do make sure that the tubs are covered in heavy scrap fabric to stop "fade" happening through the plastic.

  23. #23
    Senior Member canuckninepatch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Veronica View Post
    I fold my fabric with a 6x24 ruler and stacked by color on shelves in my sewing room.
    I fold my fabric the same way and then store it on shelves that my husband built for me in the sewing room closet.
    C9P aka Jan

  24. #24
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    i store mine in stacking plastic drawers. i bought a few stacks at a time over the course of several months so i could move my fabs off the shelves where i had been keeping them.

    i prefer the drawers because they keep the fabs clean, they don't fade along the folds, but i can still see what's in each drawer when i'm shopping my stash or reorganizing it. (because fabs come out and don't always go back in where they started. LOL)
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  25. #25
    Super Member JENNR8R's Avatar
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    I put pieces that are a yard or more on clothes hangers in a closet. The smaller pieces are in a cardboard box on the closet floor.

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