Thinning the herd…

My stash lives in a small closet. The shelves are 5' wide and 12" deep. I don't let my fabric grow into other closets. When the shelves are full, I sometimes stack fabric on the floor. Well, it had gotten out of control. The closet floor was completely covered with a stack of fabric that was about 18" tall.

I am visiting an English class at Austin College later this week. The students have read My Jim by Nancy Rawles and are going to make a quilt for the author as one of their class projects. I'm going to give them a quick couple of classes on how to applique a block. When I say 'quick', I mean 2-3, 1-hour classes. I voluteered to bring fabric making this an excellent time to thin the herd of fabric in my stash.

I realize, now, that I should have taken a 'before' photo but it was just too emabarrassing. Here is the fabric that got culled:


And, another view, to help show how much fabric this is. FYI—the tallest stack is 12" tall.


None of this is 'bad' fabric. In fact, it was hard to cull much of it. But a funny thing happens when I do this… even if I like a fabric a lot, once I put it in the pile to go away, I no longer love it. In fact, I'm not sure why I had it in the closet in the first place. It's weird, but true.

The stacks of fabric in front are ones that I think the students can work with. I don't want to overwhelm them, but I do want them to have choices that can work together.

Stash-02 copy

My stash now fits on the shelves. It is more organized. I know what I have. That doesn't necessarily mean that I won't have to hunt for a particular piece, but there you go.

FYI: If you click on the link for Austin College, some of the banner photos are from the dedication of the IDEA Center, the spectacular new science building on campus. Steve is Dean of the Sciences and he is so very proud of the new building and of the work going on inside it! He's in some of the photos.


6 thoughts on “Thinning the herd…

  1. Looks like it will be a fun time. Lots of beautiful fabrics. I enjoyed your presentation at the Sherman Museum this week and your beautiful quilt display. Will you be teaching any applique classes in the Sherman area?


  2. Oh, your stash is so beautiful, and the neatness of it all makes my heart sing! So can you talk about how you fold your fabric to keep it so neat and tidy in stacks, and what do you do with leftovers and odd shapes?


  3. Hi Celia:
    Surprisingly enough, I rarely teach locally. My travel schedule, along with working on whatever book is coming up, keeps me busy.
    Im happy that you enjoyed the lecture—you all were fun to talk to!


  4. I fold fabric in what I assume is the typical way, nothing special. When folded, fabric is roughly 5×11-ish. I stack with the folded end out. Small pieces are usually folded into the larger matching fabric, if there is one. Big small pieces stack in with the rest. Really small pieces are currently in two small piles on my work table until I figure out what to do with them. You know how that goes…


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