fbpx

The Perfect Fabric and Scrap Storage System Does Not Exist

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 sort my fabric scraps by color. My fabric storage system works for the way I work on quilts.

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.)

Fat Quarters (back row) and not-quite-fat-quarters (front row) are sorted by hue, folded, and arranged vertically in a drawer, so I can easily see each fabric.
Fat Quarters (back row) and not-quite-fat-quarters (front row) are sorted by hue, folded, and arranged vertically in a drawer, so I can easily see each fabric.

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.

The perfect way to store fabric yardage - geeky bobbin

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.

4 thoughts on “The Perfect Fabric and Scrap Storage System Does Not Exist

  1. You seem to have come up with a great system for the way you work. I tried the “cut down scraps” system you rejected, and have yet to use most of the pieces I cut down. Now I separate by color into bins. I have also recently accepted that I’ll probably never use the really small scraps and need to pass them on to someone who will.

  2. I love your idea of using file folders to hand your yardage. I would love to know how you fold them. I also want to figure out how to mark them so I know how big each piece is without unfolding it!

    1. Great question! I write down the yardage on a scrap of paper, and staple it to the selvedge. I still need to show the folding! Thanks for the reminder!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: