fabric trim down

Lately, I've been toying with the idea of a fabric diet. I'm at the point where my stash and projects I've purchased fabrics for are far exceeding my available sewing time. And my stash is starting to get a bit too big for it's britches (aka the 4 dedicated shelves I have allotted for it). I don't want it to start overflowing and taking up even more space just so I can keep buying and owning more, more, more. While I love the fabrics in my stash, I would love to see them more in finished items here and there around the house! (And I still have a decently large order of fabric coming my way not shown in these photos - full of shot cottons, Leah Duncan's Meadow and Wee Wander....but that's it, I swear it!)

stash 2
So, I am putting myself on a self imposed fabric diet. And I'm writing about it, so you guys can hold me accountable!

For the next six months (my husband has challenged me to a year, silly husband), I'll be sewing from my stashed fabrics only - with 3 exceptions:
  • Solids - I dont have a huge stash of basics like Kona white, snow, black, etc. These can be purchased if required to effectively use stashed fabrics.
  • Backings - I have a few backings purchased for WIPs, but for the most part, I don't have the yardage required for backings in my stash. Of course pieced backs are an option, but even then, I don't have too many cuts over a half yard stashed.
  • Swaps - I can swap my fabric for something else that I want/need but no purchases! 
I'll re-evaluate at the six month mark and see how my stash looks and decide from there what to do.stash 1
Anyone interested in joining me? I'll be hosting a monthly check in so we can all cheer each other on and see the projects we're working on with our stashed fabrics. To join:
  • Start by writing a post outlining your goals - it could be 3 months, 6 months, etc. or just finishing up your current WIPs before buying anything new. Just make them specific.
  • Create and list your own rules - can you buy backings? bindings? solids? Only you know your stash.
  • Come back here and add link to your post!

16 comments:

  1. OMG. If you think that is a big stash, you would die if you saw mine! Coincidentally, I got the CC bill today, and there are an awful lot of fabric purchases on there. I really have gotten out of control and need to cut back. I am a bad deal/sale shopper though, and there seems to be one of those every day. I don't know that I can commit to None, though. And certainly not for 6 months! I'll think about it, but wish you best of luck and will follow along!

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    1. The deals are really hard to pass up! You can join in for any length of time, 30 days? 3 months? Either way, thanks for cheering me on!

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  2. I am doing the same thing now, but more for budgetary rather than space issues. I do have to purchase solids, batting, and backing as necessary, but it is a fun challenge to use my stash! Good luck!

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  4. You're brave but I understand the point! Good luck with this commitment!! And, if any of you by any chance, decide ever to share fabric or give it away, I run a group with proven wishes list granted that will be beneficiated with any left overs http://on.fb.me/1gLJNdt... We are few fairies yet many members in need! :-)

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    1. Have you gone onto late night quilters on Facebook? The do a stash swap on Tuesday and you are welcome to ask for donations there! Maybe you'll get some takers! :)

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  5. I set up an excel worksheet at the beginning of the year, determined to use more than I buy. So far it's keeping me in line, I've used a few more yards than what I have bought. Takes a lot of discipline and my stash is way bigger than yours . . . Gotta get it down.

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    1. That's awesome! I bought a ton when I was stuck breastfeeding for 90% of the day and no time to sew, so its ballooned quite a bit these past few months.

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  6. Oh dear, I wish I could go on a fabric diet, but I am addicted, badly. My fabric is stowed in crates, and I had to go and purchase some more crates. But upon reading your rules, I may be able to adjust to this, i have hardly any solids and I only buy the backing when I am ready to quilt, I will give this some serious thought.

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  7. Good on you! I like the idea, but I know I wouldn't stick to it. If I did, I also would have to break the diet and allow myself to buy backing fabrics (and wadding and thread and zippers and then I would be in the fabric store ...).
    I have only just built my stash to the point where I can sew from it without going to the shop. I will try to shop from my stash as often as I can, but I make no promises other than that!

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  8. I'm very much interested in a fabric diet! I was doing really well, then purchased a whole bunch of stuff when the limited edition art gallery fabrics came out (stupid Arizona collection!) I've got about the same amount of fabric/space as you (a large Tupperware container), and really don't want to outgrow it. Thanks for the motivation!

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  9. I am so the opposite - as a fairly new quilter I'm trying to build my stash! :) I can't wait until I have enough that I can 'shop my stash'. Good luck with your fabric diet. I'm cheering you on!

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  10. I have been stash busting with minimal purchases for six months. It is wonderful to use what I have and stay within my quilting budget. It has also helped me appreciate my stash so much more. Good luck meeting your goal.

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  11. I just looked at my stash and said I'M IN! Or it might be the fact that I was online shopping in bed last night and then going to the LQS tomorrow AM, that I realized I need to use what I have and not buy any more. Thankfully I have 8 or more bolts of Kona that should keep me going for solid neutrals for at least 6 months. I also have a bunch of projects planned out with fabrics I already have so this just might work. I will start July 1st and go until Dec. 31, 2014 which leaves 4 more days to stock up! Love the photo of your stash- so neatly organized. Thanks for thinking of this idea and hope it is OK for me to fabric diet along with you.

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  12. OK, so I just told my husband about the fabric diet- showed him the photos of your stash, saying you didn't have that much fabric, and he looked me and said "you have more than that?" OOPS what was I thinking?

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  13. I've made a major purge of my stash lately but will never out sew (or probably even out live) my wall of fabric. I can get on board with a buying moratorium until finishing a few major WIPS. Looking forward to the linky party.

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