5 simple ways to organize fabric (that you can implement today 👍)

Fabric organizationDo you suffer from SABLE syndrome (Stash Accumulation Beyond Life Expectancy)? If you do, you’ve come to the right place! To us, SABLE seems not so much a syndrome—it’s more of a sign. A GOOD sign that you’re a dedicated quilter who always has piles of muses at the ready. After all, when it comes to fabric, the more the merrier!

Even if you’re new to stash building, it helps to keep your fabrics corralled so you can easily find what you want, when you want. So today we’re sharing a few easy-to-implement ideas for organizing fabric—because when you’ve got a system to help you keep track of all your treasures, you’ll be ready to sew whenever inspiration strikes!

  1.  Fold, fold, fold. When you fold your fabrics to a uniform size, they’re easier to stack (and prettier to look at). Follow these steps:• Use a 6″- or 8″-wide acrylic rotary-cutting ruler to wrap fabric around until the piece is fully folded around the ruler.

    • Slide the ruler out of the fabric until the folded piece measures to the uniform size you want (in this example, the fabric is folded to form a 5″ rectangle). Fold the fabric onto itself with the ruler still in place. The ruler’s edge will create a crisp fold.

    • Remove the ruler and fold the fabric onto itself, keeping the size of the fabric folds at 5″ (or whatever size you desire).

    Stack folded fabrics on a shelf, or stack them vertically in a basket or bin with the fold in the fabric facing front. And speaking of bins and baskets . . .

  1. Bins, baskets, and boxes, oh my! Containers of all sorts come in handy when organizing your stash, especially if you don’t have much room to spare. Matching containers are nice, but if the cost of buying several at a time is holding you back, take a look around the house—any container will do. From there you can organize fabric by color, size, style, or type of precut. Think about how you select fabrics for a quilt to determine which categories will work best for you. Whether you stack your containers in a closet, slide them under the bed, or place them on shelves in your sewing room, seeing your stash at a glance makes it easy to start a new project.
  1. A “shoe”-in for fat quarters. Amassed a LOT of single fat-quarter cuts over time? Kim Diehl’s clever idea for storing them is perfect—use an over-the-door shoe holder! Rolling or folding fat quarters uniformly will give your stash a tidy look.

Fat-quarter storage ideas
From Kim’s book
Simple Appeal

  1. Scrap-happy solution. Because scraps tend to be small and oddly shaped, they can get lost in a shuffle of yardage or precuts. But sort them by color and put them in see-through glass jars? They become so pretty, you’ll want to put them on display.

organizing fabric scraps

  1. Why organize when you can decorate? No need to hide away every fabric in a bin or basket—instead, turn your favorite cuts into a display you’ll love to show off. We adore what Sunday Best Quilts coauthor Sherri McConnell calls her “library stack” approach:

Sew pretty, right? See Sherri’s blog post about how she organizes her sewing room

Fear you’ll forget which fabrics go where? These handy printable stash labels are just what you need to bring order to cloth chaos. Print the labels on adhesive-backed sheets and press them onto shelves or containers (they’re compatible with the Avery 8161 label template). Or simply print, cut apart, and tape in place.

Free printable fabric-stash labels
Download your free printable stash labels now

Now that you’ve got a fabric-storing plan, you’ll need some fabric-busting quilt patterns! Get a peek inside the books below by clicking on a cover:

Stashtastic! Oh, Scrap! The Big Book of Fat-Quarter Quilts
Stash Statement Scrap-Basket Strips and Squares Stash Lab

Your stash: nice and neat or a beautiful mess? Tell us in the comments!

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