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Thread: I'm starting to feel self induced pressure to sort and organize!

  1. #1
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    I'm starting to feel self induced pressure to sort and organize!

    Hi Fellow Organizers,
    Some of you may remember that we downsized and moved a year ago. Some of our boxes went to Florida and some to Maine. We are here in Maine for about two more months.
    We have a lull in cimpany currently so I've taken over a guest room to spread out and sort through my sewing and craft stuff. What a job! I found some plastic baskets so might try labelling those to help with the process.
    Any suggestions on how to do this and keep my sanity?
    Thanks!
    lots2do

  2. #2
    Super Member rusty quilter's Avatar
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    I am sorry for your troubles! We are moving across state...I marked boxes carefully...still can't find a darn thing!!!

  3. #3
    Senior Member ibex94's Avatar
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    I am organizing my sewing room right now, too. My fabrics I'm sorting by color or collection except for my flannels.... My flannels stay together. If I have UFOs, I am making sure that all the things pertinent to that project are in the same container. Lumping my scraps together without separating them or cutting them into a particular size. Thread in another container. Notions together, too. Pattern together... Books on bookshelf. I have plastic see-through tubs, regular nonsee-through tubs, and office file boxes. My sharpee gets a workout on the boxes and tubs I can't see into. It is nice having everything in one spot... sort of. I have a dresser in another room filled with ongoing projects, too. I am not labeling my dresser drawers, btw. I keep hoping that those UFOs will be moving on faster than a label would imply. :-)

    Good luck with your project!! Travelinggramma lives out of an RV and has organized her fabrics into seethrough tubs.... fat quarter sized materials for scrappy projects. Check out the pics on post 54 on this page: http://www.quiltingboard.com/member-...t280962-6.html

  4. #4
    Super Member coopah's Avatar
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    I organized my sewing room last year. Couldn't find anything. It is now a mess again and the door is shut if anyone visits, but I know where everything is!!!
    Good luck with the organizing. Moving is a huge pain.
    "A woman is like a tea bag-you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water." Eleanor Roosevelt

  5. #5
    Senior Member Fizzle's Avatar
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    I kept all holiday together, all flannels, all cottons, baby, But it's not working well for me? They are in totes, separated and it is a PAIN. When I figure out how to get them all "out" will be so nice.

  6. #6
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    My organization trip, aka saga, has been amazing! I'm amazed that after buying clear project cases and spending days sorting and putting specific project fabric, stabilizer and some small tools in the appropriate case....it has taken days to search through every other drawer, box or organizer - only to find the 'missing' item in the last l searched. Sigh...

    I hereby resolve to take a photo and post the labeled photo on my Pinterest board. Another consideration is to print a photo of the contents of opaque containers. We'll see....now I'm off with my label maker.

    Good luck with your spaces!
    Last edited by gbo44; 08-08-2016 at 05:57 AM.

  7. #7
    Super Member Wanabee Quiltin's Avatar
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    We are moving in two weeks. I will be sorting through my quilting room this week and have a few ideas on what I will be doing. I am donating all my ribbons, zippers and lace to charity. I am going through my fabric, bin by bin, and discarding fabric I know I will not use. I will clean up every drawer I have and keep like things together. I will keep all jelly rows separate from the charm squares and layer cakes. I will repackage all my genuine vintage fabric into special boxes. I will be packing all my magazines and quilt books together (very heavy!). I will keep my solids together in 1 yard or more packages and discard the rest into my scrap bin. I will separate flannel to give away (just not a flannel person) and go through all my decorator fabrics. All my vintage sheets for backs will be packed together. My huge scrap bin will be put in a separate box. I will find my USA related fabric and finally give it to Bette. There are wonderful charities who really appreciate fabric and I will try and list them later for anyone who wants to clean out their stash. I do not believe that the person with the biggest stash wins. It's a pain in the butt.

  8. #8
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    I have a few questions.

    1. Will you be keeping both houses (Florida and Maine) indefinitely, or will you transition permanently to one of them?
    If keeping both long-term, and you have equal space at each place, I would suggest having doubles of all your go-to supplies (mats, cutters, rulers, a few threads, scissors, marking pens, etc). Keep one set of these go-to supplies in one big box for now.

    Then, to start, I would make the bed and tidy the area so I can think and spread out to organize.

    I would get one big box (long enough for your longest ruler), and mark it "other house". All your duplicates go in that. I might only "organize" the small contents with ziplock bags. labeled.

    2. Keep only the fabric you really like. Chances are, you did that a year ago when you moved, but a year's worth of fabric has probably already found its way into your new place? If so, make sure you love it. If not, sell or donate it. Don't organize it. Don't waffle about it. If you really aren't inspired by it, let it go. Don't overthink it. Go with your gut.

    3. Keep your categories fairly broad for those plastic baskets--and label, label, label. I would keep all adhesives in one (tape, glue stick, 505). All measuring devices in another (meas. tapes, seam guide). All marking stuff (pens, pencils, chalks in another, etc). If you'll be using the stuff every day, it's okay to keep them in open baskets, but I prefer most everything to be lidded, doored, or otherwise closeable. I don't like visual clutter (although you'd think it was my best friend) and HATE to spill a basket of little notions on the floor. UGH!

    Hope that helps.

    Main thing is: only keep what you love. Keep duplicates separated, sealed, and ready to tote to your other house. That would save my sanity!
    Last edited by zozee; 08-08-2016 at 06:50 AM.

  9. #9
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    years ago an organizational professional made a suggestion that I have used with my workroom, my store and when I had to empty my parent's home (they were hoarders!). Do not look at the whole project - look at it in segments. Then it doesn't seem so daunting and you feel happy with each little accomplishment. Sounds like you have the idea with wanting to label your containers - do that and then stop and feel good at step one and plan step two. You will be surprised that you keep going and not feel quite so overwhelmed. As someone who has organized (for now) her workroom, you will not believe how great you feel when it is done. And such a HUGE timesaver to have things is places that make sense instead of digging through the same stacks over and over again! good luck.

  10. #10
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    I used post-a-notes and made sure they stayed on with a little scotch tape.
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  11. #11
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    well I moved sort of... when i moved my sewing stuff from an 8x10 room into a 12 x 14 spare bedroom with 2 large closets. Installed 4- 6 ft shelves in each closet. Refolded all fabrics.
    *flannels stayed together.
    *then backings
    *novelty/children
    *30's
    *ethnic/animal prints
    *solids
    *all other by color
    *of course UFO's in own container/bag
    **I have all of my quilts to be quilted hanging in a separate empty closet

    I did find fabric that I knew I would never use..gave it to 4H.
    need to do this again...have too much fabric and am not getting any younger...am 75..

    Since I Long arm I have clients come into the sewing room often so It stays pretty clean.





    .

  12. #12
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    We, too, are downsizing this year to sell our house in the Spring. My husband is selling most of the big pieces this Sept. (Shriek!!) So, like it or not, I am having to destash my studio. Health conditions prohibit my sitting to sew or standing to cut. I learned something about myself in the process: I am finding lots of unfinished projects!! I have found lots of beginnings of quilts--10 blocks of this one, 15 blocks of this one, a pattern for applique with the pieces cut but not even begun! My friends and charities are going to be very happy. My machines are going to grand girls, except for my FW. She goes with me to keep with the mending that always seems to need doing.

  13. #13
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    I feel tired just looking at my stash/mess in the basement. Would like to get a dumpster and start over

  14. #14
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    I just finished organizing my sewing fabric. I ordered the Fabric Organizers from PaperPieces.com and I love them. I only ordered 50 of them and decided to use those to fold my fabric that is at least 1 yard. Then fabric that is less than 1 yard, I used a folding template that's about the size fat quarters are folded. I used up all my Fabric Organizers (yikes...that helps me understand that I have lots of fabric) and I just pulled out the template for the smaller folds and stacked them. I put the smaller folds into a plastic bag with holes punched in them. The plastic helps keep them nice and tidy and the holes hopefully keep the fabric breathing. Anyway, I took the plunge and anything that is less than 2" in width was cut up and thrown into the bin for dog bed stuffing. Then, I have little plastic bins for 2", 3", 4" and put those scraps in them. Larger pieces were put in plastic bins and I numbered the bins and labeled them. Also put a sheet together of what's in each bin (easier to look thru the list than pull the bins out). I actually found an empty bin in the spare bedroom that I was able to use.....yippee! It was not empty any longer. No matter how much time you devote to this process...it truly is rewarding. Just being able to refold the fabrics and admire them all over again...it was like a mini-shopping spree! I usually put them in categories like:
    - flannel - fleece - colors - collections (Moda Autum Lily, Children's Goodnight Moon,
    Downton Abbey, etc.).

    Just don't get discouraged....for a little while...it will look like a grenade exploded in your room.......make stacks, pull out your bins, keep the vacuum handl, etc. Once you are done...it looks GREAT and you feel sooooooooo organized!
    flannel
    mini

  15. #15
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    Thank you all for your suggestions and understanding. I haven't been able to work on it for two days due to other obligations. We were going to do something out of town tomorrow and I told the hubby that I'd rather work on the stuff instead. He's going to do a thrift shop drop off for me mid-day. I've started a box for the ladies I sew with. Progress is being made. It may not look like it but it is.
    We will be spending each year in both places. That's why I really want to get this organizing done so that I'll have what I need in the right place when I need it.
    I love the idea of using ziplocks too in addition to everything else.
    Thursday's temperature here is supposed to be 95 degrees so that will be more motivation to work efficiently tomorrow. I know I won't be too eager then!
    Thanks again!

  16. #16
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    I am blessed with a sewing studio in a building separated from my home. I just shut the door and go home. No one sees my mess...

  17. #17
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    A separate building? That's part of my daydream for up here in Maine. But it's probably not practical.

  18. #18
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    Only advise I have to clean and organize is to do it the same way you eat an elephant, one bite at a time.....Good luck, each step is rewarding.

  19. #19
    Super Member cashs_mom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by coopah View Post
    I organized my sewing room last year. Couldn't find anything. It is now a mess again and the door is shut if anyone visits, but I know where everything is!!!
    Good luck with the organizing. Moving is a huge pain.
    You're a woman after my own heart Every time I reorganize I can't find a thing to weeks. I lost a big button that I wanted for a project for a year. By the time I found it, I had already bought another for the project.
    Patrice S

  20. #20
    Super Member cherrio's Avatar
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    We need a "like" button! Lol so many helpful tips! I have been gone for almost a year. Had to go back to work and things were a bit overwhelming. But I really missed the sewing and the chats, support and helpful experience I find here. I have so many projects started also. 6 quilt tops done just can't get em sandwiched and done. Sigh. That's my goal by the holidays so I can start the new year with fresh fun projects. Good on you for donating the fabrics to 4H club! I love seeing the projects at fairs in our area.
    You never stand taller than when you stoop to help a child.

  21. #21
    Super Member QuiltnLady1's Avatar
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    I'm still working on it -- I am sorting my fabric into getting rid of and keep (I couldn't do it before we moved). Hopefully they need more at church this year (they got a big donation from a place going out of business last year). I am also trying to centralize all of the rulers and notions and give DD and DDIL the duplicates. I took the doors off of the closet and had a bunch of built in shelves and drawers installed before we moved in, but stuff just got shoved in there. I tackled that this week with the help of DGS. I have a little more to do. It seems that every time I get one part organized and move to the next I mess up the cleaned part while organizing the other -- ugh. This time I am moving around the room a little at a time in a circle -- maybe that will be more successful.
    QuiltnLady1

    When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.

  22. #22
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    I was on a pretty good roll then turned around and saw a lot of things missed. Kind of like doing dishes. You think you're done and let the water out, clean up the sink and turn around and see the pots and pans you totally forgot. Are they worth it? can we just pitch and buy new?

  23. #23
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    I live in a 5th Wheel camper. My stash is in 4 (18-gallon) tubs, plus a small outside shed with plastic dresser units. My quilting/sewing area is from my recliner in the living room. I use S-hooks on the curtain rod to hang scissors from, I have an old coffee mug on my sewing table with marking implements, a small Tupperware container for my pins, sits beside the machine and a rectangular box keeps some threads handy, FMQ gloves, & my rotary cutter handy. My special rulers are in a box behind my recliner on shelves along with a large wooden sewing box that holds bobbins both empty & filled, more thread, all my sewing machine feet & extra parts. It's all very handy & keeps the area fairly neat. I keep patterns in big binders on the shelves as well as the quilting books in my library. All is handy & easy to reach. Also easy to pack up & go quickly with. :-) My biggest rulers & cutting mats are at the end of the kitchen island. (Maybe 2 ft from my chair). It works great for me!! Our neighbor is amazed how I can find what I want so seemingly easily. :-)

  24. #24
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    Becky, that sounds great! It's funny, I was just googling small teardrop campers and dreaming of having my sewing space out in the yard. I don't think the other half will go for that though. I am feeling a little frustrated again about my lack of progress. Wait. Now that I'm thinking of it...there's a built-in bureau that I can put some containers in... Does anyone know where I can get some of those little metal label holders to put on the front of the drawers? I'm off to measure those drawers right now. I can always empty a few drawers for company. ��

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