The Free Motion Quilting Project: Uggh...I'm a Data Hoarder!

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Uggh...I'm a Data Hoarder!

Yep, it's finally time I fess up and reveal the truth: I am a data hoarder. Today I've been digging through files, sorting out a monumental mess and finally organizing 8 years worth of quilting designs, ideas, inspiration, projects, and thousands of ugly photos.

Honestly I feel like I'm switching from shaking my head in disgust to banging it against a wall in frustration. Before I bought my iPhone, I struggled with several point and shoot cameras that all produced terrible pictures. But instead of just shooting one terrible picture, I'd shoot fifteen. And then SAVE ALL OF THEM!

Regardless of my terrible organization habits of the past, today is a clean sweep. I'm digging through each folder in Dropbox and figuring out whether to trash it or keep it and then figuring out where it can go so I can easily find it again.

The worst are the years 2012 and 2013 when we first began quilting along with new videos published weekly. I posted thousands of photos, but never organized them post by post. Instead I have dozens of folders labeled "d" and "f" from the original photo import, as if that means anything now!!

So please, if you are shooting pictures of anything, if you are creating, writing, or designing anything, please create an organization method that will keep your work tidy. For me it's creating folders of the main headings like Books, Workshops, Quilt Along, then folders within those folders for each individual project like Mega Star Workshop, Heart and Feather Workshop, etc. And then even more folders within for photos, drafts, diagrams, and final copies to separate the finished files and best photos so it's easy to grab what I need.

The upside to sorting through all of this junk? I feel extremely productive! Looking back at all the projects I've made, all the pretty quilts I've experimented with, all the weird tangents, crafts, ideas, and gadgets I've designed, I see my body of work and it is huge. Seeing it all organized makes me feel even better and I feel like I'll be able to work faster, with less fuss and fighting to find the photos and files I need.

Do you struggle with organization or does it come easy for you? What tips have you picked up over the years? Any other advice for a recovering data hoarder?

Let's go quilt (or sift through another thousand photos),

Leah Day


  1. I organize the images that I post on my blog into folders 2017 Thrift Shop Commando. Pinterest helps a lot - I pin quilt block ideas and inspiration on my "Quiltspiration" board. I also save projects I want to revisit on Feedly.

  2. You've come face to face with it and now you're on the down side of it.....Leah,breathe,just breathe......that's what I do and baby steps for me.....

  3. Ha--I also take multiples of the same thing and have no idea why! My big thing--that my kids laugh about--is that I have to take the same picture with the phone vertical and horizontal!
    You make me feel better that I'm not alone!

    1. I don't think it is silly to take photos in both portrait and landscape. Once you see which is better, just delete what is not worth keeping.

      I use my phone when buying fabric, then convert them into greyscale to eye the value in relationships to each other. These accumulate, and the key is to know how to use the delete button.


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