I planned on posting part 2 of this series; Organizing a Sewing Room, late last week. But came down with an allergy-type virus. Thank you for everyones kind wishes, and I am fine now. I posted on this blog that I was re-scheduling that post until Monday. Back in 2010, I read a great series of posts by, Jeni Baker @In Color Order. At the time, we were looking for a new place to live, where I actually would have room for fabrics, sewing furniture, (not the dining room table), and a large stash of scraps. I never sorted it at the old condo. They stayed in a few big boxes, because there were no places to sort them into bins, and mostly sore them. And I needed to figure out a system that made sense for me. Jeni Baker’s system and blog posts helped me think about what would work out best for me. Thank you, Jeni.
This is what worked out at the beginning of 2017. It was a year after we moved into our new house. It became my first New Year’s resolution, and took a few days. I still may edit or change it, but for now it’s just right. I can’t wait to share it with you.
We bought these two great cabinets. As you can see, things are put away in drawers, and labeled. Maybe still not perfect, but close to getting it to what will work for me.
And finally, Biscuit posed all on his own on the sewing basket, in front of the new cabinets. I’m so proud of him. ( He is a Ragdoll). And he sits behind my big Bernina Sewing Machine 750, Josie, all day when I’m sewing. How sweet is that? We are very close, and so am Emma and I. The cute, little tuxedo cat you see you may often see in the sidebar is Emma.
Okay, now for the bins. This is in a closet with a desk beneath it. My husband is putting in a different desk in the next few weeks, and rearranging the shelves you see above the desk. All the plastic bins will be stored there after that is finished.
Then I sorted the scrap fabrics into bins. I will show you the photos, and then explain how I came to create these categories, and labeled the them the way I did.
The scraps were sorted by color and size. Size was separated by the question, “Is it an uncut fat quarter or still an uncut fat quarter or bigger? If the answer was “yes” and “yes,” it went on to the top of the shelves with all the uncut fat quarter fabric on it. There are charm square packs up there too. That shelf still needs to be organized by; fat quarters on one side and charm packs on the other. Note: None of these fat quarters have been cut into, for lets say applique work, which I used to do a lot. And fat quarters that were cut into, for whatever reason, found a new home in the plastic bins. That was my benchmark criteria.
Categories of Fat Quarters in Plastic Bins
2 bins of green scraps
Blue fat quarters
Yellows – an overstuffed box – it’s my favorite color
Text and low volume fabrics
More low volume fabrics, texts, grays and neutrals
Oranges – (that’s the least filled bin)
Fat Quarters mix – low volumes, purple, browns and tans
Mixed prints – fabrics that had no one, really dominant color
Cheater Scraps – Those scraps that can’t be used again in a quilt, but I keep to begin sewing when I am beginning chain sewing blocks, etc.
Whites and Mostly Whites – a few off-white with patterns were mixed in to that. But it seemed to make sense for me, because that’s where I would look for them.
This is the group of fabrics that made me realize, this is an art, not a science. And as I sorted, I knew there might be some adjusting and changing of what goes into these scrap bins in the future. And that’s okay.
There will most likely be a part 3 to this series. Because there is an office component to this room too, as well as a very full book shelf. My office is a home office. But also serves as a quilting/blog office, and as I continue to free-lance write about quilting and other things, it serves as that too.
If you have any questions as how I organized this or anything related, please feel free to ask in the comments box.