Sorting the Stash

Ever since clearing my home of all the extra stuff that didn’t “spark joy,” I knew I needed to do the same with my fabric stash. Well, after sewing up that top I shared in my last post, I was so excited to make clothes that I ran out and bought 4 new patterns. Then that night I was so anxious to get started, I jumped online and started shopping for the perfect fabrics to sew them up with. And then around midnight I clicked over to my Pinterest boards and was quickly reminded to slooooow down (Thankfully, before pulling the trigger on any purchases). Note to self: I’m not in this to scoop up all the new and shiny things or to finish projects quickly.

I want to deconstruct and reconstruct clothing I’ve saved, piece together special bits I’ve collected from flea markets, play with natural dye, print, stitch, create surfaces and turn them into wearable things.

The problem was my fabric stash wasn’t sorted in a way that lent itself to this endeavor so I didn’t realize just how many worthy pieces I had. I got to sorting using the KonMari approach of pulling out every single bit of fabric I own (including everything on my refashion rack) and throwing it into one giant pile, then holding one piece in my hands at a time to see if it sparked joy. No’s went into (a total of 10!) paper grocery bags without a second thought and Yes’s were tossed into two separate piles based on whether I’d wear it or not. The only exceptions were a few pieces of yardage I knew would work great for muslins before cutting into similar but more precious fabrics.


What a difference! There was a clear visual divide between the two resulting piles. A rainbow of lace, burlap, fur and tulle along with sweet prints like teeny polka dots, hearts, stripes, and vintage florals went into drawers for dolls and soft sculpture. It’s my inner little girls dream. Lots of pretty, playful, pink and pastels. Then there are my stacks of wardrobe fabrics with a toned down earthy palette, mostly devoid of pinks, reds and purples. Lots of blues, greens, browns and whites with rich bohemian prints, a wide array of textures and plenty of soft comfy knits.

My vision is becoming more and more clear and with my Pinterest boards for reference and my materials sorted, visible and accessible, it’s going to be much easier to plan out new projects and maximize this gorgeous stash I already own. I’ve also photographed and uploaded all of my clothing into the Stylebook ap on my phone so I’m able to flip through what I have when planning new items to think about how it will work into my existing wardrobe. I think I’ll end up writing a post with more on that later because at the same time, I did a quick assessment of how many pieces were handmade, thrifted, ethical or fast fashion and it’s something I’d like to document to show where I started at the beginning of this long journey.



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