I’m so happy that Heather asked me to participate in this Stash-Busting Series, because (like everyone else has already said) I was in desperate need of some organization and clean-up. I’ve been doing a whirlwind apartment spring cleaning and redecorating, that all began with this master bedroom makeover, and a couple weeks ago my tiny sewing closet was up for it’s renewal. That’s when I came up with the idea of a sewing planner notebook.
I pulled out everything in the whole closet and reorganized my craft supplies, patterns, and fabric. I actually touched every single piece of fabric that I own and decided whether to keep or toss, then re-boxed it by type, color, etc.
Originally, I had planned on taking photos and doing an inventory of my fabric for this post, talking about how to make decisions about what to keep and what to toss. But, as I was organizing my stash, I realized that I really love all of my fabric, and had a specific purpose or design in mind when I bought it.
Somehow boxing it up erased my ideas (out of sight, out of mind), so I’m always coming up with new projects for which I of course need to buy more and more fabric!
I decided what would help me actually begin using what I have was to create a sketchbook for my stash. A place where I could create- on paper- the designs and ideas that I have for each of my many pieces of fabric. I am much more likely to turn sketches into reality, since I can see them, and plan for not only the outline, but the details of each project. Sketching helps me invest in my sewing, and is the first step towards a great outcome.
I pulled out this beautiful sketchbook that I received on my 30th birthday, and began pasting small fabric samples onto the pages. I cut a swatch from every material that I could immediately think of the intended use, and some that I simply love, but have never been able to dream up the perfect use. I figured the sketching would be super helpful for both scenarios.
I could get down a real visual of the projects that I had been brewing for months (years in come cases), and for those I need to figure out, I then had a space designated for brainstorming and working it out. Next to the swatch I wrote the type of fabric, designer (if I knew), yardage, and whether or not I had pre-washed already.
I think my stash busting sketchbook is going to be a super useful and valuable tool for my sewing. Not only does the sketching help clear my mind, develop my designs, and invite inspiration, but having a catalog of actual intentions feels so much more tangible than just having a closet full of fabric. Now when I am struck with love for some new fabric, I can weigh it against not only my “stash” but an organized book of projects. Until I get through some of these projects, I really have no need to take on more ideas! It’s so cool to realize that I already own all of the fabric, notions, buttons, elastic, etc. that I need for pages and pages (and pages) of new, interesting, beautiful clothing. Now, if I could just get ahold of a book full of additional hours…
Isn’t that what we all need? Miranda, I LOVE this idea, and I’m so grateful you shared! The stash busting sketchbook is fantastic and gives such great direction! Thanks!