Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Thinking about the Stash

Like many quilters when I first got started quilting I bought fabric.  Lots of fabric.  Anything that caught my eye, or was on sale, or was just pretty.  It was so exciting starting a new fiber interest, that I went a bit nuts with fabric, and books, and tools.

After all, having a stash is part of being a quilter, right?  Just like a yarn stash was part of the knitting explosion.  Revelry has tons of people "flashing their stash".  I talked to the husband of a quilter, and he said to me knowingly, "I bet you have a huge stash".

Well this may be blasphemy, but for me the stash is not a good thing. I don't actually like scrappy quilts, and if I did make them I would use, well, scraps!  Which I am accumulating pretty rapidly.  I like using coordinated fabric lines for quick quilt projects, I have even done a couple of kits where the fabric was provided.  And when I design a quilt using my own fabric going shopping for the fabric is a whole lot of fun.

And I am finding that too much clutter in my crafting life sucks all the joy out of it.  All that stuff sits there sort of quietly nagging me to do something with it, and makes me feel guilty when I plan a new project and go buy new fabric that fits the design idea.



I am really trying to pare down to things I can finish. I can’t help but have a few UFO’s in the works, especially in different crafts, but am trying to pare down on random things I may never do. This is currently a big deal with me, I am going so far as to clean my studio and do some serious de-stashing. I have just found that the sheer amount of stuff, especially in my craft world, is making me miserable rather than bringing me the joy a hobby (or three) should bring.

The funny thing is that this is the second time I have come to that realization, I went through this with yarn a few years ago, did a ton of purging and pared it down to a small bin.  I have more than enough if I randomly need to start a project and can't shop -- but odds are the next project I knit or crochet I will start with a trip to a store or a wander online.

And with the quilts, I have a list of UFOs much longer than I posted a few weeks ago.  Most of them aren't started enough to qualify for a UFO challenge, but I have been through the weeding process twice now and those have stayed.  Some of them I have more than enough fabric for, so there will be more de-stashing once I pick the ones that make it into the project.  But it feels so much better to have a manageable amount of fabric in the wings, with a small cupboard of stuff I just really liked in case I want to make a small item without shopping.

And I found a link to some great projects to help with stash
http://tipnut.com/scrap-happy-fabric-scrap-ideas-free-patterns/

Feel free to share your thoughts on stash building, does it work for you or just benefit fabric and/or yarn companies?

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