I tend to suffer from Analysis Paralysis. I’ll stand in the cereal aisle for exactly 27 minutes, mentally plotting graphs of cost-per-gram versus packaging-to-product-ratio to optimize my raisin bran purchase.
So I’m sure it’s no surprise that finding The Perfect System was a huge hurdle to tackling my fabric storage problem.
I had seen some storage systems that involved cutting scraps down to specific sizes, DIY charm squares and other ready-to-sew pieces. But of course I want everything sorted by colour, right? So in my head, I’m picturing a glorious matrix of perfectly sized bins (made from a sustainable material, easy to open, and stackable, ideally) to sort scraps by both size and colour!
But I just couldn’t bear to cut my fabrics into “standard sizes.” What if my pattern calls for 6″ squares and I had a bin of 5″ squares? When is the last time I even used these so-called “standard” sizes? Once I realized that my scrap storage had to work for the quilts that I make, it was easy to get sorting.
I decided that my definition of “scrap” was anything smaller than a fat 8th. I repurposed some colourful formerly-toy-bins for scraps, and sorted by colour. I have another one of these bins that holds “tiny scraps” that are too small for anything but foundation piecing.
Two rows in a drawer – one for fat quarters and one for anything that was between 1/8 yard and 3/8 yard, but not fat quarter shaped. I chose to keep these separate, in case I’m doing something that needs a full fat quarter. (Crappy picture because I can’t pull the drawer out far enough to show both rows.)
Bins for yardage, hung on file folders. I’ll have to do a video on the way I fold these and why. It’s life changing! I’ll have to schedule that for my next procrastination session. UPDATE! Here’s a video of how and why I fold my yardage this way!
You won’t believe how amazing it feels to have that done! The next day, I came across yet another bin of scraps, and it was NO BIG DEAL! I was able to pop each one into the corresponding bin in 2 seconds.
How do you sort and store your scraps? Let me know in the comments below! I’d love to know what works for you.