Sunday, October 16, 2011

Building a Stash

Not a moustache. A fab-stash!

I've recently take the next step as a quilter and committed to building a stash. That I actually like. Yay! Since it's a little-talked-about part of the journey, I thought I'd share my story.

We live in a little apartment, so my "sewing room" is a small pair of tables in the living room, while my fabric lives in a cabinet in the bedroom. The beautiful cabinet was a wedding gift from the ever-supportive Mr Awesome (notice his Star Wars figures guarding my precious fabrics?).

Don't mind the dust. Jawas are terrible at cleaning ;o)

As for the drums...well, what's a wedding reception without a few djembes?

When my mom and mom-in-law first heard the word "quilt" escape my lips, they generously gave me some fabric from their own stashes, as well as some pieces from various grandmothers. At first, I collected everything I could get my hands on.

I had no idea what I was going to make, or what I liked. Plus there is something special about receiving scraps from the previous generations of crafters. I recognized "family fabrics"...bits and pieces my mom had left over from pajamas, doll clothes, and quilts that she made us over the years. Amazing how they can make you feel warm and cozy just looking at them.

Makes me think of Christmas at home!

My flower girl dress at my mom's wedding!
I can hear my sister groaning...this lined our bunk beds :o)
Some favorite doll clothes and quilts came from these sweet fabrics.

But I rarely dipped into the fabrics I had collected. Most of my projects felt too modern for what I had, or I didn't have enough coordinating pieces (and no solids, boo!), or I was just uninspired by what I saw before me. So I started buying fabric for individual projects...which is great when you know what you want to do. But I wanted a Bat Cave of fabric. Like, to the Bat Cave, let's make some magic, people!!

So I was whining about that one night, when as usual Mr Awesome proffers the perfect plan. Build a stash of my own from the ground up. As in, spend some money on yourself. As in, you're really passionate about quilting, so follow your bliss. Um, duh. But it took someone else saying it for me to realize it's true. (Am I the only quilter in the world who has to be convinced to buy more fabric??!)

I first discarded the fabric I think I'll never use (it's boxed up in a closet. You never know, right?). Surprisingly, it wasn't much. But what a change! Now my "family fabrics" are all clustered up and I love looking at them. I keep mulling over the perfect pattern to pull them all together.

Next I hit Etsy, and I hit it hard. I spent some serious bonding time with Fresh Modern Fabrics and Fresh Squeezed Fabrics. Oh, and Hancock's of Paducah. C'mon, we've all done it.

(Insert angelic music here.)

Solids were a must.

Kona FQ bundles in Poseidon, Blue Heaven, and Hot Spice.
Kona cotton in Coal, Med Gray, and Ash.
Kona cotton in Khaki, Sand, and Snow.

Why was I trying to make quilts without neutrals?!!

And then came the prints. Oh, the magnificent prints...I'll spare you, but these are some of my new favs:

Heirloom by Joel Dewberry, Kona Corn, and the last one I forgot.
Rainy Days and Mondays and Leaves from Spring Street by Carolyn Gavin
Splinters from Cut Out and Keep by Heather Moore, Heirloom by Joel Dewberry, and Wild Flowers from Far Far Away III by Heather Ross.
Ta-Dot by Michael Miller (plus that pink and brown one from somewhere else?)
Grand Revival from Dolce by Tanya Whelan
Various Kona teals, Sheherezade from 1001 Peeps by Lizzy House, more Ta-Dots

Quilt friends, as the mail comes in, I basically just sit there and stare at the beautifulness. I guess I should...go make something? :o) And I have a million plans. But for now, I'm content to just stare and dream about what these little lovelies are going to become.

1 comment:

  1. This is brilliant. Thanks for (comically) sharing your building experience. What a great idea, I think that investing in solids was a great plan. That I feel I should reproduce.
    BTW, I couldn't answer because you have a no reply comment thing, but I appreciate the input on my stars (the ones I onerously lamented were cream tipped) and I have decided I will take the brilliant advice and am going to hand quilt red outlines around them and do the rest by machine in a non-contrast thread.
    Good luck with your stash busting endeavors, as all quilters with fabric stashes seem to be constantly busting them.


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