Monday, November 19, 2012

it's all just....

Thanks so much for all you who commented on my take a guess post. It was so fun to read your responses!

Here's the answer.....
(Right???)

I made this because I desperately need the reminder to quit hoarding fabric. I've got lines that I haven't really used yet....like Pips! How old is that line now? I've got Ruby and the new Flea Market Fancy that I'm holding on to. Also, layer cakes of Reunion, Marmalade, Sew Stitchy...Posy. Let's not forget Chicopee! SO, what am I waiting for? (Other than time to sew! HA!) Hopefully this reminder helps!! Because I want to use my fabric while I still love it! You know?

Are you like me and hoard fabric? What line is hardest for you to cut into? Or do you have no issues cutting into the good stuff right away? If the latter is the case, can you share you secrets? Please?

Happy Monday to you!

84 comments:

Palak said...

I am horrible about hoarding 'special' fabric. especially scraps. I try to remind myself that their will always be fabric at the store if I need it; and things always go on sale. It helps a little. :) I'm also trying to buy much less fabric, so I'll be forced to use what I have.

Kerstin said...

It's very strange, I have a few lines that I can't bring myself to cut into (Hope Valley! Echo! Reunion!). I'm just waiting for the special project to come along. And then there's some that I just can't wait to use, that I love but that I can also part with after it's turned into a quilt. Does that make any sense?

LC said...

I just cut right into stuff. I can't help it, I get so excited. I have to say, it's a bit of a shortcoming on my part. My sewing could do with a bit more planning/direction as far as fabric choice is concerned. I just remind myself that there will ALWAYS be an omg-must-have-it-absolutely-love-it collection. So even if I cut into whatever it is I'm super crushing on at the moment, I know there will always be something else I'll love just as much later.

brownj6610 said...

I hoard Japanese fabric. And blacks and whites. And reds. I have trouble cutting into really nice multi color batiks.

Patchwork and Play said...

Well I guessed correctly, so maybe I don't have too much difficulty getting stuck in ! Admittedly I don't buy entire lines of fabric! But I do have trouble cutting into yardage of individual pieces of favourite fabric!

elle squared said...

You haven't cut into the new Flea Market Fancy? I still have the *OLD* FMF that I just can't bear to cut!! Am I a loser or what?! I have stacks and stacks (and STACKS) waiting for "just the *right*" project to do the line justice. Well, I recently decided that if I wait for that perfect moment/pattern/inspiration---it most likely will never come. So I'm taking the Nike attitude of "Just do it!" Cut away. Make a few mistakes. Take the risk. Because like you say.....IT'S JUST FABRIC. And it's okay. I've curbed my spending on fabric. Now I'm curbing the hoarding. Feels great! Cut away---I can hardly wait to see what you make!!!

Jennifer said...

Surprisingly {my stash certainly doesn't look like it} I don't have a problem hoarding certain lines. When I get new fabric, I love to cut into it and start the project that I bought it for.

Now scraps... that's a different story.

Jennifer :)

giddy99 said...

I don't have enough time to sew, and I think I buy fabric to compensate for that. I can buy bits and pieces rather quickly online any time of day or night, you see - it only takes a couple of minutes, and I can make an online purchase from home, an airport, a hotel room (and sometimes work)... :)

giddy99 said...

...oh, and occasionally, I've bought a line because I'm afraid if I don't, I'll miss out entirely (like a lot of the older Heather Ross stuff). :(

Terriaw said...

I decided to get really picky and only buy what I need or what I absolutely can't live without and realistically think I will use. I still have too big a stash of fabric that I would absolutely love to pare down since my tastes have changed over the years. It also comes down to a lack of money and time for sewing these days. I've also been trying to make more room these days for my stationery supplies and inventory.

Kelsey said...

I hoard fabric too! Although it's not that I don't want to cut into it. I get it into my head that I love it so much that it has to be used for the perfect quilt and a pattern that works with it perfectly and then I'm never quite sure so I'm hesitant to cut into it! Definitely something I'm going to work on!!!

Dhia Peach said...

I buy too much fabric but if i love it i use it as soon as i find a project and as many projects as i can sneak it into

Linda said...

I had to buy a set of Ikea shelves to keep my stash! I buy the fabric, I think, to fill the whole left by not having someone to share my life, and to love. I don't think the fabric will love me back (I hope), but it makes me feel good, if only for awhile. Yes, it is a sickness. I do have trouble cutting into them, and I don't know if I'll ever be able to cut into Far, Far Away I....lol. I am getting better, though. I have been able to show SOME self-control lately. I'm buying less, and smaller amounts, and am proud of myself for it!

SarahZ said...

It all looks pretty in a stack...but so fun to see it used...and there is always plenty for a pretty stack, isn't there?! I only wish I were better set up to sew more frequently...so quilt on, Crazy Mom!!!

♥Duff said...

the previous comments were great! I'm a total hoarder. I have certain designer's lines I've been purchasing for 4 years and still haven't cut into it! I want to make something magical with it!

Elizabeth said...

I too hoard fabric. I'm waiting for someone to make and post a great quilt pattern in which to use my Flea Market Fancy. Maybe you could start a quilt a long in which we could both cut into stash. Just an idea?

katie z. said...

I usually buy with a project in mind, so it's easier not to hoard those bits. When I buy just because it's pretty, I have more trouble. Every year or two, I go through my stash and pick a few fabrics that I decide will be used in a certain amount of time. Then, the deadline helps me find a perfect project!

Mina said...

OOOhhh, I just cant cut into fabric. I still have a line of Echo that I cant seem to cut into and a line of Outfoxed.

Allison said...

I have most of the Meadowsweet line hoarded in my closet {although last spring I did cut a couple prints to make a tote bag} this is one bunch of fabric I have been waiting for the perfect use for {other than wallpapering my livingroom, which I would totally looooooove to do with my Meadowsweet!} how fantastic would it be to have WOF strips of every print floor to ceiling all around the room? heaven ;)

Kari @ The Purple Quiltapotamus said...

I love it! I'm in the hoarding stage right now and have a few quilts on the go. Once those are completed I have a TON of quilts I want to try including a few from your book (Cheryl is in my Quilt guild in Calgary).

Heidi Staples said...

I absolutely love this saying, Amanda Jean! I need to make an embroidery or something of that for myself. Yes, I collect more fabric than I can probably use -- there's always something new that I "need" -- but I'm learning to use it more freely. When I actually sew something with the fabric, then I get to enjoy seeing it in use every day, which is better than keeping it in the closet, right?

Sherron said...

I try to use my fabric right away because I fear that if I wait for a long time and the fabric is no longer available, I'd be in trouble if the 'perfect' quilt required more fabric than what I have. If I use it right away, then I can run back to the store to get more (usually!) if needed!

Esch House Quilts said...

I'm totally guilty of this too! I'm trying :)

Deb said...

I hardly ever just use one line in a quilt. I think the key to using it is to mix it up. Just jumble all those "precious" fabrics into neat stacks. Play with colour combos and see what happens. I don't have a big stash to be fair, but I try and use it all up every few years including all the scraps because I find the colours change and it gets hard to find things that work in. I find if I use fabrics from a similar time period they just marry quite happily. Also it's much better to see a piece of a favourite in a quilt somewhere than to hide/hoard it in the cupboard!! She who dies with the most fabric most definitely does not win in my book, but she who has cheerfully made quilts to bless others from fabric she loves will be blessed!!! Well that's my motto anyway xxxxx

Sew Lovins said...

I can barely cut into any Echino fabric I have and noticing that I rarely um, never only use one line of fabric in my quilts. So I use my stash for variety in my quilts. But I don't hoard, I'll just buy in spurts thought the year if I can. Lately though I've been trying to just use what I have.

Camille said...

YES! I do know!

*sigh*

Kim said...

Still can't cut into my line of Kaffe's...love them and pet them often! Will they ever be a quilt?
Well I did take them with me to Gwen's retreat in Sept. and actually used a few. Let me know if you learn any secrets to letting it go :0)

Happy Sewing and Have a blessed Thanksgiving

Suzanne said...

I know! You are right. The reminder is perfect. It's time to break out the fine china too.

Laurie said...

I love this discussion! I am torn on this issue because I do think some fabric collections become less special if you wait too long to cut into them. But, as an example, one of my most favorite collections was Loulouthi- I held onto it for a while and I finally just jumbled it with a bunch of other AMH - and I LOVE it. I had originally planned to do a solely Loulouthi quilt but I am so glad I didn't - I am glad I waited and thought of something "better." My favorite fabrics that I haven't cut into yet include Lark by Amy Butler, a Flower Sugar FQ bundle, City Weekend, and tons of older Sandy Henderson. Yum! I am encouraging my guild to cut into their "Precious" pieces for the next several months - it's sort of a guild challenge and I am excited to see what people come up with!

Allison Knaus said...

Funny enough, since I'm a pretty new sewer and a very new quilter (just this summer actually) I thankfully don't have much that I "can't" cut into because I don't have much fabric to begin with! Still, it hasn't been easy to start using the fabric scraps I received from my grandmother because I have that same need of finding just the perfect project use it in. I'll keep this saying in my mind though and see where it takes me!

mammafairy said...

Yes, I hoard too!Dreadful habit, but...

Diane said...

Totally a hoarder... I have a FQ set plus yardage of 1974 that I have not used yet...

Sharon - Lilabelle Lane said...

I am trying to change my habits and not hoard fabric anymore. It is such a waste to have it away out of sight, much better to cut into it and create something that you can truly love and use. The last thing I want is to realise in a few years that my fabric tastes have changed and I never got to enjoy those fabrics :(

rachelmp said...

I've got some kids novelty lines still that my children are too old for now, and Echo and Curiosity that I am hoarding.

Karen said...

When you need more storage for fabric, is that hoarding? :)

Cheryl Arkison said...

I've got no problem cutting into fabric, but that only goes so far when you have tonnes of it! I gather fabric, but I don't hoard it.

Erin Palmer said...

I have an easier time cutting into fabric if I am using it to make something for someone in specific.

Jeneta said...

I'm like Erin - I can cut into fabric if it is to become something for someone else (or if I have over 6 yards of it!!). Now I don't bring any more fabric into the house unless I have used up the equivalent amount (great incentive to use up what I have in order to replace it!).

Beth said...

If I find a project that really calls out to a fabric I can cut right in. If not...I hoard. I have a fairly large stack of pink and brown but I just can't settle on a pattern.

Paskiaq said...

I definitely have some hoarding tendencies so I can relate!

Marge said...

I not only have Ruby in 2 layer cakes, but also a jelly roll and 2 charm packs. AND just about the same in flannel Ruby! Love that line. Cracked me up when Cammile commented that she has lines she can't cut into. It's her fabrics that I have a hard time cutting! into!

9patchnurse said...

Oh wow! I don't feel so alone anymore, lol. I have a big stack of Pips and haven't been able start using them. I also have out of print Heather Ross that I am terrified of using. What will I do when it's gone? blah blah I tell myself I'm saving the pink and blue VW camper fabrics for grandchildren. Neither of my kids are married or even engaged! I love what you said, "use it while I still love it." Thanks for the motivation!

Denise Russell said...

Yeah, I take a while to use the 'special' fabric, but once I do, the rotary cutter won't stop. I have lines I bought years ago which I haven't used, and I often wonder if people will even remember them once I do. By the way, I consider myself a
'fabric collector', not a hoarder!!! :-)

Lynn said...

Yes. Especially if I buy fabric not for a project in mind, but just because I like it.

Patrice said...

I can't bear to cut into my Pearl Bracelet fabric by Lizzy House. I know it's just fabric, but it's so pretty and when it's gone I'll be sad. (Thinking seriously about hoarding 2 yards of EACH color in the PB reprint).

Dolly said...

I've been quilting for 30 years or so, and I have seen so many lines of fabric come out the I could drool over, and then never wanted to see again a few years later !

And now, I have a chest of drawer full of fabrics that are too good to just get rid of, but are keeping me from using my 'new stuff', just because I feel guilty over 'passing the old stuff by ' !

Use it when you get it ! Trust me !

Mama Pea said...

I have a lot of the same fabrics, and I can't bear to cut into them either. It's so bad!

LaTonya Johnson said...

I still have Ruby and Countdown to Christmas!

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Dawn Brown said...

Amanda,
I used to be a serial hoarder but moved to a smaller home a couple of years and just didn't have the room to store all the fabric I couldn't bear to cut. I gave away beautiful fabric that I was saving for the "right project". Though saddened, I learned a valuable lesson and have since bought fabric I crushed on and cut right into. It's possible to love even more after you use it ... Cut into that stash!!!!

Glynis said...

Laughing about how well you said it - use it while we love it!
I have a line of Nancy's Harvest that I purchased when I first was exposed to quilting in 2003. Bought the fabric, had 2 more children, didn't quilt of stitch for years. The past couple of years I have returned due to the passions of my dear friend, and have discovered usually months late some amazing line. In my desperation, I searched etsy in a seek and acquire mission yielded a layer cake of Kate Spain's Terrain (after I gave up on my search for her Fandango). The Terrain is ever so lovingly resting in a drawer, waiting for the identification of the perfect project and the overcoming of my fear.
Hello, my name is Glynis, and I will cut Terrain by the end of the month just so I can say I did it!
Have a blast Amanda! Happy Thanksgiving to you and your fabulous family!

Farm Road Ramblings said...

It really is a shame to hoard it so long and then find you don't love it as much as you used to. Much better to cut into it and take a chance. I'm going to do better! Thanks for the discussion!

Farm Road Ramblings said...

P.S. There's always another line to fall in love with!

Glynis said...

And I didn't tell you what happened with the fabric I purchased in 2003. I really did like it immensely when I first purchased it, I purchased the entire FQ set. And that was ten years ago, before I really knew what quilting was, much less modern quilting. My preferences and styles have changed a lot in ten years.
So I was like asking God what to do with these. I felt like He told me to "sow my harvest". So I chose to look past the few modern charm packs and layer cakes that inspire me but lay yet uncut, and enjoy the rich fall colors of eggplant, burnt orange, greens, golds, browns, motifs of wheat and grape vines ready for harvest. And I have been stitching a beautiful harvest quilt. I am "sewing my harvest" so that I can reap lots of good, new things. And as I have stitched and unstitched, these colors and fabrics have combined such that even my 18yo daughter agrees - though we might not have chosen them now, it's looking pretty amazing. And I am certain we will enjoy it now just as much as we would have 10 years ago.
So - Won't make it in time for Thanksgiving as I had hoped, but very soon I'll have something to enter on one of your Finish It Up Fridays!!
And I guess quilts really are glimpses of history. Whether it's Grandmother's quilts with the why in the world did she use that fabric? chuckle or ours with fabric we loved in the past. It's all part of the legacy and adventure of quilts!

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Kathy@KayakQuilting said...

As a new quilter this year, I didn't think this would be a problem for me for a while....oops. I can't seem to go anywhere near a fabric store without "just taking a peek" and buying a little something! I also find that I may miscalculate my needs. For example, I had a few small projects in mind with the adorable Dear Mr Claus and purchased 8 half yard cuts! Lots remaining to add to the stash! I'll just have to up my sewing game!

Sarah said...

I hoard fabric too! Why? Coz I'm waiting to find just the "right" design to make with them! Oh yeah there's the issue of time too, with work 4 days a week and 3 little kids!

Angela Bullard said...

Let me just say thank you for reminding me of that. I buy fabric and then wait for the perfect project to use it on (which never happens) so it just sits in my shelf. From here on out I will try to be more free with my fabric usage :)

daveandlo said...

Amanda,
I just bought your book and have to say I love it! (and I don't buy just every book that comes along - I only have about a shelf and a half of quilt books) Now, fabric, that's a different story. I wouldn't say I hoard, but I have a collection of fine cottons. And enough fabric to make quilts for the rest of my life (and I inherited my Aunt's stash). So, go ahead, find a great pattern that will work with those stacks of fabric on your shelf and cut, cut, cut and sew, sew, sew - you'll enjoy the fabric even more when it's a quilt and get another thrill when it shows up in the scrap bin!

Lois

Artsy-Craftsy Ivy said...

I used to hoard fabric. When I stopped quilting for several years, I got rid of all but my most special pieces. Now I'm quilting again and so far almost all of it fits in these little stackable Sterilite drawers. But except for a few pieces here and there, I no longer have trouble cutting into any of it. I have these old Liberty pieces, which I actually got in London so those I haven't been able to cut into. I keep telling myself I haven't found the right project :)

Barb N said...

Wow - lots of comments! I am getting over my fear of cutting into pretty stacks. I think I didn't because I wasn't sure how to cut them up and put them all back together so they'd look as well as they did in the original stack! I'm getting better.

Kwilty Pleasures said...

You might be a hoarder if...you come across a fabric in your stash and you wonder...who the heck bought this? CUT IT..your tastes will change over the hoarding years!

V and Co. said...

i'm the opposite! i give all mine away because i want it to look all pretty and organized! even though i'm not!

Mitzi said...

I've still got some Nicey Jane and Innocent Crush I haven't been able to cut into yet! You're right though - it's just fabric! I'm going to cut into soon thanks to your urging. Thanks.

momof3 said...

I do hoard fabric because I am looking for just the "perfect" pattern. The stash I have had the longest is some DS Quilts fabric from Joann. My whole stash is only 2 years old.

Chara Michele said...

Love this! I actually have no problem cutting into my stacks of fabric, it is mostly a time issue for me :) If I had more time our house would probably be swimming in quilts :)

Dana said...

Well, consider me a hoarder of sorts. DH and I put the shelving up in my sewing room(after our flood 2 1/2 years ago)and I brought in 17 boxes of fabric and shelved it in one day. Now remember this fabric was in storage and what I couldn't see, didn't exist, right? And I had bought another whole stash waiting for my room to be done!! Must not buy fabric, must not buy fabric is now my mantra!

JaneB said...

I don't think I hoard (not that I don't have a large stash) i am always anxious to use what I buy. I have gone "deep stash" digging recently for scrap quilts and its pretty fun to unearth some long lost pieces. I rarely if ever have bought "a whole line" of fabric, but I may break that habit for Chicopee!

Michele said...

Well if I ever find the time, I have plans already for almost all of my favorites. So it will get used at some point.

karen @ badlandsquilts said...

Oh I am just terrible...so many of the lines that others listed as their favs and have hoarded... I have many of them! Though I do feel a new leaf turning as I've become more realistic and realized that time is not unlimited and am just going to dig into what I want and destash a bit.

Sherri said...

This post is perfect timing for me...I really do need to get better organized...and not be afraid to use the fabrics I love...wish I had the answer to your question...but the comments have been fun to read!

Live a Colorful Life said...

This is such an awesome post. Yes, it IS just fabric. These comments have been so interesting. I need to remind myself to use it while it is fresh, because there have been many (more than I care to admit) times when I have HAD to have a line of fabric, didn't do anything with it, and then other stuff comes out and the old stuff just looks kind of "meh" and I wish I would have used it right away!

diegoagogo said...

Let someone else (a non sewer) pick the fabrics fro your next project. Give them an idea of what colours & pattern you are going for & then let them at your stash.
If your favourites are in there - chop & sew away!!
I have fabrics that my Mother bought when I was a child! I am 50 so not so much hoarding as archiving!! LOL

Linda said...

I still have Ginger Blossom I haven't cut into. Never mind the piece of red fabric that you got for me in the Philippines... I always have this idea that I am going to do something special with my special fabrics, or I have a specific idea for them, but then never get around to actually DOING it. LOL.

Deb said...

This really hit a chord...I'm bad about hoarding fabric that I really like. I love fabric from Tula Pink and I've not cut into one piece yet, from several years ago! I know I've got FQ bundles that are several years old, not cut into...and like you I have Flea Market Fancy and Chickopee not cut into either! BUT, I keep buying other material too! It must stop, otherwise I won't get to use that material before I die!

KateKwiltz said...

The problem with hoarding fabric is when you finally decide to use it, you can't find a backing to even remotely match because you've hung onto it for so darn long it's out of print! So I'm TRYING to use things up before I can't even get them on eBay for an arm and a leg.
Maybe I should just start hoarding solids????? :)

I am Just One Mom said...

In order to overcome my possessiveness of 'favorites' I have opened my fabric collections up to high school senior girls at my church. They wander through picking the fabrics for their graduation quilts. I recognize my inability so let others help me overcome the 'saving' habit.

Perhaps that is why I love pre-cuts: they are ALREADY cut so I do not have to 'cut into any yardage.'

O'Quilts said...

WOW all these people are just like me?? Nice to be in good company. I have a collection of fabric that spans 50 years..saving it all from my grandma's time. Saving it, petting it, loving it...until July when a stair chair collapsed sending me falling into a concussion that I am still reeling from. My wake up calls have to be dramatic. Now I use my favorites!! I finally got it..Life hanging on the slender thread..

Amanda Conger said...

I mostly buy fabric with projects in mind. And I've missed out on some fabric that I loved because I "did't have a project for it". But I've learned that (a)there is almost always something that I love out there and (b)my tastes change so that fabric I loved 10 years ago, I may not be crazy about now.

That said, I have started buying small amount of fabric that either (a) I just adore (hullo heather ross) or (b) fill holes in my stash. Step 2 is going to be to learn to pull from my stash for projects. I find that as I sew more, that is getting easier (because I need something now and whatever is in my stash is what I can use.) Though based on that logic, I should just buy yards and yards and yards of solids to keep on hand, and buy prints specifically for projects.

I hate seeing fabric go unused though, it seems like such a waste. : (

Maja said...

It´s good to know that I´m not alone!
Thank you all for sharing!!!

Leslie said...

I have a different problem. I started "archiving" (I love that idea but maybe it's because I'm a librarian!) anyway, I have collected a fair amount of fabric that includes yards and yards of fabric that is not the best quality. Now that I know how hard it is for me to actually make quilt I'm having a hard time imagining using this fabric since quilting is a very painstaking process for me. The dilemma, to give it away? To use it as I learn? Help!

Chris the Quilter said...

I'm not so much a hoarder as a searcher...but I *may* have a teensy obsession with Denyse Schmidt fabrics. my '13 goal is to USE them!!

my girls always seem to want quilts from of out-of-print fabrics...

miss 6 is Autistic and fixated on a Swoon quilt "just like the picture"

so the search begins!!

Staci said...

You know, with the way the price of cotton and pretty fabric is soaring I consider my stash my FABRIC SAVINGS account! Right now I'm not really adding to the hoard, er, stash, but I don't feel guilty about what I have.

And yes, certain things are tough to cut into!
I have a stash of Terrain, which might be my all time favorite fabric. I want to make a Dresden plate quilt with it. I"ve also got a stash of Heather Bailey's Nicey Jane. Pattern is picked out for it, too. I hope to use both stacks after the first of the year. It has taken me a long time to decide on a pattern that is WORTHY of my lovely prints! LOL!

Kerry_Kid Giddy said...

Did you do these letter free hand? or are these EPP's? Is there a pattern you could recommend if you did use one in particular? Thanks. kg