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Friday, March 7, 2014

Folding Fat Quarters

"Hey Deb, what have you been up to" you ask?  Well, I've been folding and folding and folding fat quarters and ta da!!  I finally can see what material I have without having to dig through piles and piles, yipee!

I was lamenting my dismal organizational abilities when it came to my fat quarters of fabric a few weeks ago; I did have them (mostly!) organized into colour groupings but then they were piled one on top of the other in a huge storage bin and it was impossible to see what fabrics I had.  I've been hoarding collecting fat quarters through the Bargain Lover's Club at Sew Sisters Quilt Shop and have a lovely stash started but I wasn't utilizing them the way I should because I really couldn't see what I had.  So I went on a hunt for some fat quarter folding tutorials on the 'net and found this lovely method of folding over at Badskirt's blog, she calls it the Ballarat packet.  A few quick folds and voila, a lovely little package of material, small enough to stash easily yet it still lets you get a good idea of what the fabric looks like.  These are my blues that I currently have (note to self, you have enough blue fabric!!):

and since the storage container I used was deep enough for two layers I just made a quick little box from some card stock to house the top layer of fabric.  I've five containers in total with all the colours organized and room for a few more.  I'm so pleased with this, I could probably do even more organizing to group like colour tones together but for now this will do.

And since I was on an organizing roll (or should I say fold?!), I decided to do my ribbons and trims as well.  Now, this method of using the zip lock bags with a chipboard top to hang them was one I found on YouTube, but do you think I can find it again to give you the link?!  Not a chance, so if anyone knows whose idea this was originally, let me know in the comments so I can give credit where credit is due.

I didn't have any split rings when I made the bags, so I just used some twisted wire to hang them from the dowel for now and the bag tops haven't been labelled yet but what a treat to be able to unzip just one bag and get the colour of ribbon I need rather than rooting through a disorganized bin.  I've got this hung up over my work bench in the basement so they are there within easy reach, yet up and out of the way.  I used large zip lock bags and then used some old cardboard file folders I have to sandwich the top of the bag.  Used my Cropadile to punch holes and add the grommet and done.  Easy peasy, the most labour intensive part was dividing my ribbons into colours and then winding the bits and bobs I had onto these printable ribbon organizers that I got from Free Pretty Things For You.

I finally completed the vintage Christmas image bowl fillers that I was making for one of my Etsy customers, they were a challenge as the images she wanted to use were so delicately coloured that it was difficult to get a clear transfer to the fabric.  I ended up in the end printing the images directly onto some white cotton fabric, not something I like to do since it is so hard on your printer heads but it was the only way that I could get a true copy of her images.

I did try the Lesley Riley TAP to transfer them and while the image itself was beautiful, the colours were completely distorted since you have to use a high heat on your iron to transfer the image from the TAP to the fabric.

The right side is the untransferred image printed on copy paper and the left side is the image transferred to white cotton fabric using the TAP, lovely crisp image but the colours are no where near the same.  Have to admit I was more than a little disappointed at the results since this transfer paper is not cheap and no where, in any of the articles or videos I saw about it, was the colour change due to the high heat mentioned.  So just a heads up if you are contemplating using this paper, what you see is not necessarily what you are going to get!

And finally, I'm working on a little fox shelf sitter (he's inspired by a pattern by Matsutake), here he is waiting for some paint and embellishments.

Sorry for mentioning "that song", you'll be humming it all day for sure now :O)  I watched it on YouTube awhile back to find out what all the hype was about and have regretted it ever since LOL!

Hope you have a great weekend and that Spring is beginning to show her face in your neck of the woods.  We had freezing rain last night which has made it rather crunchy around here today but the sun is now out and the trees are raining melting ice so it's all good!  Happy creating,



  1. Wow,that is a lot of fat quarters! Love to see pretty fabric,especially all neat and organized.Mine will never be on display like that,lol!Have a wonderful weekend.Be blessed,Jen

  2. Hi Deb, love how you have your fabric so organized. Love your new projects too, you always have a wonderful project going. hugs, Lecia

  3. Great organizing and creating! I think being well organized helps creativity flow.

  4. Sew Sisters will be the end of me...LOL They had a fat quarter sale recently but I was very good and resisted. I have to go there on Monday to get a Q Snap frame but I'm taking my husband. That way I won't buy too much...ha ha. I did the same thing you did. I have my fat quarters in clear shoe boxes that are colour coded. So much better. Can't wait to see the little fox finished:)

  5. Oh my! How inspiring. I've been wanting to do some organizing for the past few weeks but needed a little kick in the seat to get started...

    That is a great stash of fat quarters.


  6. I love fat quarters! Your organizational skills are awesome. And that little fox and bowl fillers are so sweet! Very inspiring! ~*~Lisa

  7. Hi Deb, it must be a sign of upcoming spring that everyone has been organizing.

    I love your ideas for tidying up. Have you thought of using dollar store pants hangers for those bags? You could clip a few together in the hanger, and they would be easy to take down each time.

    So, do you have a "secret" fabric stash? The one only your best friends know about? LOL.


  8. Oooooo....I love the fat quarter stash!! Looks very organized now. Can you come to my house and organize mine. LOL! :)

  9. Love the organisation! The little foxy shelf sitter look fab, looking forward to seeing him completed.

  10. You are so organized now you won't want to craft and mess it all up again. LOL


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