Lather, Rinse, Repeat

Those of you who know me or have followed my blog for awhile will get a chuckle out of this post. It's a repeat of one that I seem to post at least a couple of times a year, but usually around the first of January. Maybe it's the flurry of last minute sewing before Christmas, or the fact that my sewing room becomes a dumping ground when we're getting ready for company, but by the first of the year, it's an epic disaster.


That probably doesn't look too bad, but if you turned around, you'd see more piles. But I think I've come up with a system for organizing my fabric that might actually stick. The problem is not pieces 1/2 yard or larger. If you look at the neatly stacked shelf, those pieces lend themselves to being folded nicely. The problem is all the other smaller pieces, that are too big to discard, but too small to fold into a uniform shape. So here's the plan: Pieces 1/2 yard or larger are folded neatly on the shelf and organized by color/theme. Pieces smaller than 1/2 yard are cut into 10" squares. Pieces smaller than 10" are cut into 5" squares and pieces smaller than 5" are cut into 2 1/2" strips. Voila:


The 10" and 5" squares will be stored in bins by color. The 2 1/2" strips are proving to be a little problematic because I already have a bin overflowing with them!


I also have a few jelly roll and fat quarter packs (mostly received as gifts) that will probably be kept as is and go into their own bin.


It's not a quick and easy fix and is proving to be quite time consuming, but I'm hoping it will help keep me more organized. I can't tell you how many hours I spent last year searching for things in my sewing room!

Now that Christmas is over, I can show some of the stealth projects I was working on. First – I made the girls owl purses:


And for my sister, a coat for her American Girl, here modeled by my doll Ivy Ling (the first Chinese American doll and she has the names of both my granddaughters – Ivy is Mei-Mei's first name and Ling is Isobel's middle name).


We also tried something different this year – instead of having both of the girls over Christmas, we had Ivy come three days before Christmas and Isobel three days after. This gave us dedicated time with each of them to accomplish the projects they wanted to do. Ivy was insistent that she make a quilt for her teacher, who is having a baby. She proved to have a great attention span while sewing and finished her quilt. She did most of it all by herself. All I did was help a little bit with the quilting and I applied the binding.


Isobel had a recipe that she wanted to make – a four layer gingerbread cake. It took us about 3 hours and a gazillion dishes, but it turned out beautifully.


Sadly, she got sick and spent the next two days on the couch. We managed to somewhat salvage the time by binge watching Star Wars movies.

And one of the best things about Christmas – we had a white Christmas! This is only the second time in the almost 40 years we've lived here. It started snowing Christmas Eve and stayed until a day or so after. Perfect!


Ok, enough break. Time to get back in the sewing room to iron and cut! Maybe by next post I'll have some "after" photos.

4 thoughts on “Lather, Rinse, Repeat

  1. It’s a good feeling when things are organized. I’ve been working on that once again with my yarn, books, and patterns, and weeded a lot out at the guild swap.
    So nice that you spent quality time with each girl (despite Isobel’s illness 😦 ). Beautiful creations! Ivy’s teacher will be thrilled by that gorgeous quilt.

  2. Wasn’t that Christmas snow amazing? Boy, have your grand daughters grown up! It’s so great that you’ve got them sewing. I need to follow your example and straighten up my sewing area. Thanks for the inspiration! (It’s so good to see you posting again!)

  3. It all makes sense, the fabric organization and the dedicated time with each granddaughter…Since I have more fabric but fewer grandchildren, I’ll have to modify your plan, but you have given me a starting point. I’ll let you know how it works!

  4. Those girls are growing up quickly, where has the time gone? So nice you have common interests to share with them.

    We’re in B’Ham for a short time, then Feb 15 into April. Hope we can meet up.

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