The Free Motion Quilting Project: What do I do with...

Monday, February 15, 2016

What do I do with...

With the crazy upheaval of my sewing room, cutting room, and office, I've been pulling out old projects, fabrics, and supplies and wondering what should I do with all this stuff?

A lot of these are "someday" fabrics. Someday I'll create a shirt from that special yellow fabric I purchased on vacation. Someday I'll make a skirt from the blue stripe and the red stripe has been set aside for YEARS for stockings or the trim of a Christmas quilt.

Most of these fabrics have a special memory or vacation attached, but I've never prioritized these projects so they've never been created.

Are they really a priority? When I made a list of each fabric and the project I'd planned and most were garments. But I don't do that much garment sewing anymore! I certainly love to make myself something new to wear, but I never think to start one of these projects because my plate is always filled up with quilts.

So what should I do? Scrap the memories and sell the fabric, or prioritize these projects and start getting them done?

Let's go quilt,

Leah Day

20 comments:

  1. I have a lot of fabrics that I think would look good in a quilt for *someday* but with no firm plans. I recently just started using them to make one-off projects, like fabric envelopes for my hand stitching, or a random quilt that I wanted to test a new technique with. I'm so relieved to be using up some of my stash. I suggest you give it a time limit. If you haven't started those three projects in the next three months, let the fabric go.

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  2. I suggest you make new plans with the old fabric. Maybe you can think of some new creative projects, small bags, pillows or something completely different, so you can keep the good memories of the fabric but in some other projects than first planned. Keep the sewing machine running...

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  3. I would set a goal of sewing one garment project a quarter - keep 4 that you really LOVE for this year, and let the rest go. Sell it, donate it, swap it, or put it in your stash to use (reappropriate it).

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  4. Maybe you could give yourself one day or one weekend a month the work on a "someday" project. That's not much time, so hopefully you wouldn't feel guilty for not working on you priority projects - especially this month as we have an extra day anyway.

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  5. I guess it would depend if the motivation is still there or not. You always have memories, just not always ones you can touch.

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  6. The stripe fabric makes great bindings with a zip.

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  7. Unless its stretch material I would say use them in a quilt. You'll still have the memories but it will be in a different form.

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  8. I can enter in to your quandary. I have a coat that has been waiting for me to sew it for.....em...I don't even want to think how long. It is cut out and ready to go. I don't sew clothes any more and spend all my time quilting, when the quilt is done the project is beautiful...no matter what. Clothes aren't quite the same. Having said all that, I would advise you to take the time for clothe sewing. One weekend a month doesn't take too much time away from quilting.

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  9. I think you should prioritize these projects and get them done. Start with the blouse. That yellow fabric is pretty.

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  10. I think you should sell them. Free your mind of obligations of the past that obviously were not that important to fulfill them then. Part of my stash consists of fabric I've bought when I started quilting some 6 years ago. I loved those collections then and I still appreciate the designs, but I know I'll never make that quilt I thought in the past I absolutely had to make. These fabrics no longer can translate what I'm passionate about now. So I know I'll regret the time I've wasted in making something that I do not really want to make. Let go of the past to make the most of the present: you only have the "right now".

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  11. Who says you have to keep those fabrics for the item you planned? I say work them into a new project and keep the memories.
    Thanks for all you share.

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  12. I think you should keep the fabric. Never know what you might use it for!

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  13. How about making a quilt with all the fabrics that you got on vacation or have special memories....

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  14. I've been thinking about your dilemma. What about both and neither solution? Keep a small piece of each of the fabrics to use in a quilt (preserving the memories) and sell the rest. I've seen you highlight special fabrics in other quilts so perhaps this is a chance to do that again.

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  15. I have a lot of these too! I sent most of my fabric to a new home, since the project it was intended for didn't appeal any more.

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  16. I say keep it (but then my husband thinks I am a "hoarder"! Use them in a quilt! The blue stripe would make a great binding, as Linda Swanekamp said, but would also go with a lightweight denim for a quilt!

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  17. I've found over the years that any attempt to stockpile materials for "someday" just weighs me down and creates both a psychic and physical burden. Sell or gift the fabric and create room for new thoughts and ideas.

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  18. Get rid of them and let your spirit fly free. You are a fabulous quilter and bring joy to other quilters. Today I gave away a bagful of fabrics that did not speak to me any more. What a relief to get rid of them.

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  19. Save the memories, they will surface time to time in your mind. Scrap the garment making plans. Use the fabrics in newly planned quilts!

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  20. De-clutter sales are all the rage now! Bag up all the fabrics and notions you aren't using, you know, the ones you thought were pretty at the time you brought them and have been in your stash for years, and take them along to the next fabric fair. You will feel so much guilt-free once you have done this and then you can focus on the projects you really want to do. Life is too short to focus on the "what ifs".

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