Tuesday, January 03, 2012

State of the Stash : 2012

The past two years I have been both tracking and trying to use my stash. I feel like I have a lifetime's worth of fabric, but there is always that NEW line that you're sure you NEED.

Tracking both amounts in and amount used for every project has been a fabulous exercise.

Christmas treat

In 2010 I added nearly 117 yards, and actually used MORE - at 120 yards. Hurray for me.

Last year I added 107 yards, using about 94 yards - for a balance of 13 xtra yards which will be carried into 2012. I'll chalk that up to last year's Christmas fun at the Fabric Shack when I bought 30 yards. I completed more quilts this year, but a bunch of them were actually started in 2010.

I'm still working on getting them all blogged, as I finished a whole bunch up at once. Leigh and I had a 5-quilt-finished pact that was a HUGE help in both finishing lingering WIPs as well as not buying new fabric.

For 2012, I started it once again with a Christmas outing to The Fabric Shack.  Honestly, it is a must when your in-laws live only 20 minutes from the shop.  But I was much more controlled this year - after two years of tracking everything in and out, you seriously think about every thing In and decided if it is truly needed.

I plan on continuing using my stash.  It's a fabulous feeling when you make a quilt without pushing some buttons or running to the LQS.

One big lesson learned from the quilt exercise with Leigh is that I use way more whites/neutrals than I would guess.  It was challenging to finish fronts and piece backs without going out to buy more white!  I expect that most stash additions this year will be background fabrics.  Anything outside of that will be added mindfully.  I'm really getting a better feel for the kinds of fabrics I search my stash for every time I start a new quilt.

Here's the accounting of the first fabric additions for 2012:

I literally spend hours searching The Fabric Shack for treasures.  My first stop is their scrap cart - and lucky me they had TWO overflowing when I visited the day before Christmas.  Anything on the cart is $3.98/yard - you buy the whole piece.  I pull pretty much every Kona solid I find, and came up with white, blue and pick this year.  The pink and blue pieces on the left really caught my eye, and then I think I squealed a little bit when I found 1.25yd of those letters!  I bought a FQ last year and had been carefully using every last bit of it.

The next place I park myself is at their FQs - any that are already cut are only $1.95 each.  I found five favorites.

There is also a little drawer of fat eighths and I couldn't pass up these.  I think I pulled/returned them three of four times before finally deciding to keep them.

Anybody have a good use for a fat eighth?!   The prints in this line are so awesome together that I think I would like to use them as a group.

Finally, a small group of FQs that I had them cut from yardage.  You should have seen these bolts on the shelf - there is no way you could pass them up!

That's it for a while I hope.  Now off to sew!



Heather D. said...

It's all so gorgeous. LOVE that last photo. :)

Jenny said...

that is great Angela! you do such a great job being mindful of your purchases! how do you figure the scraps and pieces left over from cutting out your quilts?
i should really consider doing this!

NadineC said...

I have a question - did you start by cataloging ALL your stash? Meaning, what you had on hand? Or did you just start from a point? I'd like to do this, but my stash is completely overwhelming. I'm talking thousands of yards. Any advice you can give to a seemingly incurable fabicaholic? ;-)

Laura said...

I love your pile of fat eighths!!!

Marg M said...

Like Nadine, how did you start? I would love to try this and also finish all those WIPs in my head that I bought the material for. I know I would have a lot more time if I didn't check out blogs :-)
I do love your colours and oh to have prices like that .....

leigh said...

I'm glad our little pact worked well for you! I did finish up 2 queen sized quilts for Christmas - so I did complete 5 in the long run. I'm waiting for FMF and pez and then I'm probably ready for another diet. I'll let you know :)

ps - what are those ones on the bottom (last photo)? So pretty!

patchworkdelights said...

Oh wow could just stare at your fabric for ages!

AnneMarie said...

Are you talking the Fabric Shack in Ohio?? I've heard some serious dish about going there, but haven't made the trek yet myself. If it's the same one, I think it's 1 hr 20 min from my place.

epban said...

I too have spent quite a bit of time perusing the remnant carts at Fabric Shack...on my first visit several years ago, I found Lush paint by number deer!

goletagirlwendy said...

I love the fabric. Can't wait to see what you make.

quirky granola girl said...

how do you figure out your yardage used? i just bought a 3rd shoe organizer shelf to store my stacks of pretty colors. that's in addition to a suitcase of mixed colors and a bin of solids. i definitely have an issue. i rarely buy more than 1/4 yds, but they do add up in a hurry.
i sew so scrappy that i can't imagine keeping track of every little tidbit used.

Susan said...

Wow! 120 yards?! Thats awesome! Camt wait to read about your projects!

Kim said...

I see this question has been asked a couple times...but I am just thinking about starting this and I was also wondering...did you inventory all of your stash to start, or did you just start with new purchases?