Fabric Storage

Yesterday on Facebook I asked for some blog post suggestions for the new year. I got quite a list (which I printed – 6 pages worth) and am working through them as we begin 2012! Several people asked about FABRIC STORAGE. This is not my area of expertise, as you will see down below. But, I can tell you how I do things and then make 1 suggestion that I’ve seen and like (but am too lazy to do). First of all, I USED to cut a fabric swatch of my fabric (4-5″ square) and organize it by style or theme and safety pin each style together. I did this when I was doing a lot of customer work and had people in and out of my house picking out fabrics for appliques. This was a great way to show my fabrics and for my customers to be able to pick out what they wanted without them having to sort through drawers of fabric. Somewhere along the way I stopped doing this :(, so this is only a fraction of my fabric selection. As you can see, they are “organized” by colorful polka dots, ginghams (all sizes), boy stuff, stripes, color w/ white polka dots, seasonal, etc etc etc….

¬†Someone also asked about how to pick out fabric for an applique design. I would say my “go-to” fabrics are always polka dots and ginghams. They just “work” with any design you are doing! I use A LOT of polka dots, ginghams and solids. I look at a design, usually start by picking 1 fabric I know I want to use, and then try to coordinate with that. Sometimes I can pick out fabrics very quickly, and sometimes it might take me an hour! This is another post in and of itself!!

As you can see I had arranged these ginghams according to the colors of a rainbow! ūüėČ

¬†I just pin the swatches together in the corner with a big safety pin. Nothing fancy! I guess I should mention that when I used to cut swatches of my fabric, I would try to cut a swatch out of whatever edge might have the name and designer of the fabric. Sometimes the piece you get (if you get 1/4 yard) doesn’t have that info, but if it does, it’s helpful to cut that piece!

¬†Now… this is MY fabric storage and it works for me, but I would not call it neat! Several of you said yours was in boxes and you had no idea what you had. I concur!! Sometimes I dump a basket out and go through it if I can’t decide on fabrics for a design. My fabrics ARE organized by style, so I do know what is in each basket (…sort of). Yes, I have 15 baskets full of fabric. I have a problem.

 This is how they are organized ~ solids, seasonal, boy fabrics, corduroys, minky dots, polka dots (regular to big dots), colorful dots, pin dots, stripes, florals, fat check ginghams, regular ginghams, microcheck ginghams, plaids/checked fabrics and more florals.

¬†My Expedit from Ikea is the 25 cubby Expedit. LOVE me some Expedit!! We had friends who were in Atlanta this past weekend and they were going to Ikea, so they brought me 4 more of the Pjas baskets. I am so thankful!! I’m hoping to go back in a couple of weeks!!

Here’s a look inside my baskets. They are just thrown in there! This is my go-to polka dot basket. All of my Michael Miller Ta Dots are in here. MOST of these have white dots too, although I see a teal fabric in there with big red dots!! That is Sissy’s hand pointing to the purple.

 Here is my basket of ginghams. They are all basically the same size regular ole 1/16th ginghams. My fat chunkier ginghams are all in a basket as well as my microcheck ginghams which are in another basket.

 Here is my seasonal basket ~ mostly Christmas, some Halloween and Valentine fabrics are in here. Notice the arrow pointed to the neatly rolled up fabric secured by a rubber band. That USED to be my practice (probably when I also cut swatches of every fabric). I still have some that are rolled and rubber-banded, but most are just thrown in the basket. Some are at least folded!

Now, I drool over this……

The above photo came from Pinterest ~ fabric NEATLY placed on boards and displayed beautifully on a shelf. I think most people who showcase their fabric this way use Comic Boards (see below) which usually come in packs of 100. Try Amazon or just Google “comic board”. I would love to display my fabric like this! But, I am too lazy and my system works for me and it would take me 6 months to iron and wrap all of my fabric like this! Maybe I should just take my favorites and try it??

¬†I hope this helps! I’m sure there are 1,000 ways to organize fabric! I find the best way is to organize it by style. The swatches are great too if you have customers coming in to your home. Before my Expedit I used the plastic drawer bins from Target or Walmart (see below). I think I was up to 6 of them before the cubbies.

Thanks to those of you who suggested FABRIC STORAGE as a blog post! I will be contacting you via Facebook for a surprise!