Thursday, January 10, 2013

Getting Organized

Hello again, back from a HUGE trip across the country!  We drove 8,137 miles in the past 3 weeks, and it was incredible.  The three little travelers did great, in fact, better than I expected!  The trip was great for all of us, and now I'm excited to get things back into order so I can SEW!

For a long time I kept my scraps sorted by color, in bins, because I didn't want to cut them into a size that might not have been what I needed for a specific pattern.  There were so many scraps, however, that sorting through them was fun- yet never produced much for ideas.

So I finally bit the bullet and cut into them.  And now I'm so glad I did!  It took roughly 30-35 hours total, but I love the results.  For that past few months, I've been able to search for colors within the sizes, and it's so much more fun!  If you have any sort of stash or scraps, it's helpful to get them sorted in a way that you can find them when you need them.

The 2 1/2 inch strip bin is the fullest:

There aren't nearly as many 2 inch strips:

 I used about half of them up making scrappy potholders to give to people we visited or stayed with:
(the hand-stitching part of the binding I saved for in the car)

5 inch & 4 inch squares:

The only bin I haven't gotten to yet, is the neutrals.  They still need cut up, but I haven't taken the time yet.

I almost got rid of the 1 1/2 inch strips, they just seemed to tiny to bother with (especially considering the abundance of larger scraps!)

But I just couldn't do it, and now I'm so glad!  They are what I'm using for this quilt:

For pieces that are not small enough for the scrap category (FQ's or larger), I have them folded in uniform sizes.  Have been doing this for a long time, and it just seems to work well.  Looks pretty too, and makes them easier to find.

For Fat Quarters, I fold them in half with the furthest edges matching up.

Next fold in half with the furthest edges matching up again.

Next fold in half from side-to-side, and you are done.

They stack neatly together, and finding the color you want is simple.

For even larger pieces, or uncut pieces; I fold them around a rotary ruler.

Keep flipping the ruler until all fabric is together, and slide the ruler out.

Fold the piece in half end-to-end, and you are done.

This is a very quick, yet accurate folding technique, and it looks so nice when you are done!
These are my new fabrics from an INCREDIBLE! store in Minneapolis, called S.R.Harris.  My sister introduced me when we were on our trip, and I spent way too much time in there!  But I could have spent all day, so that's not so bad?  They have high quality fabric at 1/2 price- it was so much fun!

For flannel fabric (or anything that is bulky or you have lots of), simply slide the ruler out and omit the folding-in-half step.  They make a nice stack this way too, and depending on your shelf size- you could do this with all your fabrics.

My fabric wall:

You can use any width of ruler when folding fabric, but it's best to stick with one size.  Or use different sizes to differentiate between types of fabric, size of pieces, etc.  I have always used the 8 1/2 inch wide ruler for folding, but found that my new 1/2 yard and 1 yard pieces worked better on the 6 1/2 inch wide ruler.
    It worked so well, I decided to fold all my quilt-shop fabrics into the smaller size also, to quickly and easily tell them apart.

I decided to have a give-away of scraps, would anyone be interested in a pile of 2 1/2 squares, and another of 3 inch squares?  Leave a comment, and let me know what you would like to do with them.  I didn't count the 2 1/2 inch pile, but the 3 inch pile has 49 squares.  All squares are coordinating aqua and lime scraps.
Breanna will draw a winner on Saturday, have a great rest of the week!


Heidi said...

Looks lovely! I haven't sewn for SOOO long, but this post makes me want to dream with fabric for awhile.

I am so behind on reading blogs -- where did you go? That's an amazing amount of miles!

I hope all is well there...greetings to your family from ours!

Amy said...

Pick me, pick me! Mostly because I love mail, and I love your scraps. :)I am in the process of making a quilt for Mike and Tawn's baby coming soon. I don't need any more scraps, of course, but somehow I love adding new colors and designs to my collection.