Tuesday, February 11, 2014

In 2012 I spent a year sewing from my scrap drawers.  I was living in a little house down the street, and I left my stash at the hall, as I didn't want to drag all my material into the new sewing room.  So I sewed many, many quilts from the scrap drawers.  Now, the drawers are nearly empty, and I haven't recut pieces to go in them; it's not as though I don't have scraps, it's just that I haven't dealt with them.

In the past, I filled my drawers with strips cut from small pieces weeded out of the stash drawers.  It felt wonderful to slice up that fabric and see the scrap drawers filling up.  Things have changed now; I seem to be on a controlled colour scheme jag, and I don't want my scraps to be all cut into the wrong sizes for what I have in mind.  I think I've fallen out of love with my drawers of strips and scraps :(

I guess I just have to acknowledge that I'm in a different mindset now.  I want to make quilts with exactly the fabrics and colours that I have in mind, not what's stuffed into a drawer of 2.5" strips.  I'm not sad about that, but it means that I need to rethink my storage requirements.  I don't need  all these long thin drawers for strips anymore, or the little short ones for squares and triangles.  I need large flat areas that I can store my pressed remnants on.

 I have stacks of wire baskets that I find really useful;

 they can take nearly a whole FQ out flat.
 I have these lovely drawers from IKEA, now sadly discontinued, and they are wonderful for any piece less than a FQ.
And I supplement that with cardboard trays that hold other ironed scraps; these just sit on top of each drawer and are easy to move around as I need.

The strips that I do have left are stored in this metal Ikea chest of drawers.
The drawers are long, so strips have minimum folds, and they're lightweight enough to take to the cutting table.  Because I don't have a lot of strips anymore, I can also fit flat containers of squares and triangles in the same drawer as the strips of that size.
How come my strips are always in a mess?  Don't answer that.....I guess I shouldn't rummage in them.

I wonder if my commitment to downsize 30% applies to my patchwork storage as well?  I mean to repurpose some of the smaller drawers and use them as tool and hardware storage; I really need them to organise door and furniture fittings, curtain hanging gear and various nuts and bolts.  They won't be in the quilting room anymore, but I won't have disposed of them either;  I guess if I have uses for them it would be silly to get rid of them. 
I've been ruthless and weeded out approximate a quarter of my clothes, so I am making progress.  Might tackle the kitchen cupboards next, once our predicted cool change gets here. 


Sue SA 9:26 PM  

Wow you really are committed to downsizing aren't you! I see your point regarding cutting scraps into pre set sizes, regardless of colour. Perhaps you could decide to make some scrap quilts though and pick the patterns, then sort the scraps by colour in the interim and cut them later, when you decided which colour for which projects. Having extra storage units will help organise you in other parts of the house/shed.

Diane-crewe 12:45 AM  

sounds as if you have worked out the plan .. hope it works x My method tends to be to TRY and keep the same colours to-gether .. and after that .... He-He xx

julieQ 3:13 AM  

I am still in love with the wild and scrappy look, but my quilts have a sameness about them sometimes...maybe more controlled colorways would be better. I too am downsizing, and I started in the kitchen pantry...looks so much better in there! good luck with your paring down!

pamela thorne 5:18 AM  

I understand the need to downsize. I moved my sewing room last year and was overwhelmed with how much I had. I sort my scraps by color since I use my dies to cut pieces for a quilt so I will cut off whatever size I need to run through the dies. When I do get down to the last bit of the scrap I will go ahead and cut it into either a 1.5, 2 or 2.5 inch strip.

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