In August of 2016, we moved out of our house so that we could have it renovated. Moving and packing up everything was a chance to really look at everything we have and assess what we really like or even need. I took the opportunity to give away a lot of stuff.
The remodel process lasted through the holidays and in to the new year. It was a stressful time between living in a temporary space, making big construction decisions, trying to sew and still carry on with every-day life. I took my sewing machine to our temporary home, along with 1 tub of fabric. Sewing with just 1/5 of my stash and having to store it and work in our bedroom made me think about what I really liked, needed, and used.
It made me think that I wanted to regroup before moving back in to my "new" sewing room, and re-think habits and how much fabric I own. In fact, I've chosen "Regroup" as my word for 2017, and I'm calling this whole process my "Fabric Diet 2017" (#fabricdiet2017). I'm starting this (sewing) year off with a few goals:
2017 Sewing Goals
My stash is large, and I would like it to be smaller. I love being able to make a quilt simply by pulling fabric out of my stash, but it's to the point where I don't care for a lot of my fabric anymore, and it would take me 10 years of sewing to use it all up. Going forward I would like to be more deliberate and thoughtful in my fabric purchases.
How much fabric do I have? How much fabric to I use in a year? I would like to know the answers to these questions, and I would like to use more fabric than I purchase this year. Here on my blog I will be documenting and sharing what I own, buy, and use.
All of my scraps are sorted by color and are in individual bins. I would like to be able to store them all in smaller bins, and actually have extra room in the bins. I would also like to have my scraps in a form where I will be more inclined to use them.
Jeni Baker gave me the idea to start tracking my fabric purchases and usage, but to start off, I wanted to know how much fabric I already owned. So as part of unpacking my sewing room, I inventoried all of my quilting fabric. I measured and folded every piece of quilting fabric that I own. Lots of it went on my new shelves, and about 1/3 of it went in to bins for a de-stash (stay tuned for that). So here it is: I currently own 544 yards of quilting cotton. Wowzer. (The picture above shows about half of it).
Using Excel, I plan to track fabric usage by project and month, and fabric purchases individually. At the end of each month, I will publish a blog post giving a summary of my fabric usage and purchases. By destashing a lot of fabric, and focusing on using what I already own, I hope to be down 100 - 200 yards of fabric by the end of the year (over all).
I die-cut most of my scraps in to 2 1/2" and 3 1/2" squares, and plan to donate the scraps that are too small to be die-cut (strings). All of my scraps are currently in smaller bins with lots of extra space in each bin and I hope to keep it that way for the rest of the year.
I plan to have a large destash in Mid-March to pass along a lot of nice fabric to people who will use it. I will be selling cuts for $5/yd or less. I have created a destash profile over on Instrgram. Follow me at @goosequiltsdestash for more info on the destash.
In January, I didn't buy any new fabric, but I did make up some blocks to start off my quilt for the "I Wish I Could Go Too" Traveling Quilt Bee. (#iwishicouldgotootravelingquiltbee)
Fabric Purchases: Zip, Zero, Zilch
Fabric Used Up: 1.75 yards
I feel like I'm off to a good start for 2017!