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How-to

Keep Track of Your Fabric Stash

submitted by Deb McMorran
from Threads #123

As the owner of a home-based company, I have to keep hundreds of fabrics on hand, and I need to know at a quick glance if there’s enough fabric for a project I have in mind. For each square yard of fabric, I keep a swatch that measures 2 inches square. If I use half a yard of fabric, I cut the corresponding swatch in half; if I use only a quarter of a yard of fabric, I cut a quarter out of the swatch. That way, I don’t have to waste time rifling through piles of fabric only to be disappointed there’s not enough of my desired fabric. You can organize your swatches by color, fabric type, season, or whatever system best suits your needs.

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  1. katzber | | #1

    Good idea. You measure by square yard? that seems odd.

  2. User avater
    sew101 | | #2

    I installed a long closet rod all along the back wall of my sewing studio and I keep my fabric on hangers. I'm a garment sewer so I have a lot of yardage and flip through my stash very regularly. I keep in divided in sections based loosely on what type of garment I might sew with it. When adding new fabric I take a photo of the fabric with a ruler to create an electronic swatch that I then add to my online photo gallery. In the comments of the photo I can make notes on how much yardage I have, projects it might be good for, washing instructions, or whatever else might be helpful. This allows me to see all my fabric at a glance, easily show fabric to friends, and sort through my stash without loosing anything. It's my online swatch book!

  3. Fabric_Addict | | #3

    I have over 800 fabrics. To remember what and how much of it I have I got several looseleaf notebooks with plastic sleeves for baseball cards. I cut a swatch of each fabric and I apply a small post-it note on the back stating how much of that particular fabric I have and I assign a number. I then place the fabric in plastic storage bins with the range of numbers on the outside. I put the swatch of fabric and the note into the plastic sleeves. I think there are about 12 on each page. Look through the notebooks for fabric you would like you use and find the bin with the corresponding number. Adjust the amount of fabric left accordingly.

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