Hello and happy Thursday, and welcome to the A Quilting Life Sew Your Stash 2019 | 6 post. In this new series of posts I share tips and ideas to help quilters use the fabrics they love, stay organized in the sewing room, and find joy in the journey! Enjoy!
It’s definitely been a crazy couple of weeks around here…I really love to travel and teach, but I’m really kind of a homebody and do love “stay home and sew days” as often as I can get them. Over the weekend I really didn’t have much time in the sewing room since we had several family activities, but I did some things that have sure made it easier for me to get in and sew when I get little snippets of time.
Quick Projects in the Sewing Room | Under 30 Minutes
Here is a list of the projects I’ll tackle first if I’m feeling overwhelmed but really want to get something done. Not all of these result in something sewn, but they sure do make it easier to get things started later.
- Do a quick-clean of flat surfaces. I cleared off my ironing board, my sewing table, and my cutting table. My tables were a mess, so this took about 30 minutes.
- Change the needle on your machine, oil your machine, clean lint, and fill bobbins. I spent just about 15 minutes accomplishing all of these tasks, and now all of my bobbins are ready to go!
- Lay out blocks to sew on a project board. Luckily, I had half-square triangles prepped and ready to sew for my Block of the Month series, so this took just a few minutes.
- Sew blocks that are ready to go. I also had a couple of blocks just waiting to be sewn. This took another 15 minutes.
- I also prepped and sewed half-square triangles. They’re ready to be trimmed the next time I get a little chunk of time.
Scrap Management Projects | Under 30 Minutes
I keep scraps in bins, and when they get pretty full I will take some time and cut them up into useable pieces. Here is a list of tasks you can accomplish in under 30 minutes.
- Cut 2 ½″ strips from WOF pieces. Then, store all of these strips together for scrappy strip quilts. Here are my favorite things to do with Jelly Roll Strips.
- Cut Layer Cake (10″ x 10″) and Charm Squares (5″ x 5″) from bigger scraps. I store these together in a similar manner to the Jelly Roll Strips. Here are some terrific Layer Cake Square Projects.
- Gather 2 ½″ squares together and make something fast and fun. Here are some favorite Mini Charm Pack Projects.
- Read this post for other sizes of scraps I cut and store together.
De-Stash Projects | Under 30 Minutes
Although I think many quilters keep fabric for “just in case” or “future quilts to gift,” sometimes it’s just the right time to clear some things out. In this case it might be wise to apply the Marie Kondo method to fabric and ask yourself these questions:
- Does this fabric truly “spark joy” in my life?
- Do I have the space to store all of the fabric I’ve accumulated?
- Is there a project I’m likely to use this fabric for in the next year or two?
- Read my post on “Managing Your Fabric Stash” here.
Now, I have kept fabrics and not used them for several years and been completely happy that I held on to them. I’ve made some favorite quilts and projects with older collections. But I have a certain amount of shelf space that I’ve set aside for older groups, and once something new is added to the shelf, then something has to go to the donation bin.
If You Have a Bit More Time…
If you have a longer amount of time, then I recommend putting all of your older fabrics and pre-cuts in a pile. Rearrange them into two piles: Keep and Donate. This is often best accomplished if you have someone who can help you decide. My younger daughter is really good at going through fabrics with me and convincing me to either keep or donate.
Remember: Find Joy in the Journey
I feel like having a passion for quilting is such a blessing and that we need to remember to keep our quilting journey joyful! If some of these tasks are a bit overwhelming, then just work on them a little bit at a time. Tackle Jelly Rolls one week and charm packs the next. Just make it work for you!
I hope you’ve enjoyed the Sew Your Stash 2019 | 6 post. Remember, you can find all of the posts in this series here. Thank you so much for stopping by!