Monday, February 25, 2008

Fabric Folding, etc..

Since I started posting pics of how I'm organizing my stash, I've had requests for more explanations on how I do this, so I thought this is a good place for me to go deeper into talking about how I organize my yardage!

Paige wrote:
Hey Bonnie,

Looks like you’re getting settled in to your new home. Your studio looks fantastic with lots of room.

I’m still working on organizing my fabric…yours is folded so nice and neat. If I may ask, how are you folding your fabric? It’s all the same size and so organized. Did you say ½ yd or more cuts go in one place and fats or less go in another?


I take the fabric just as it is off the bolt..it already has one fold down the length...so instead of being 44", it is approx 22" wide folded. Take that fold, and bring it to the selvage edges so it now measures about 11". fold it once again...so it measures about 5.5". You've got 8 layers at this point!

Measure the depth of your shelves. Subtract an inch or two to decide where you are going to fold over the length of the fabric roll. My shelves are 15" deep, so I fold over at about 14".

I lay my fabric down on my rotary mat, so I can use the ruler along the edge to measure. At 14" I fold over one end to start the process, and then fold the fabric over and over and over until I reach the end. No matter how many yards are in a piece, they are all going to be the same width, same length. It might be a deeper roll if there are more yards, but it will still fit in the same place.

Folding this way makes it easy to see the fabric you have if you place the raw edges towards the back of the shelf, the thickest part of the folded roll towards the front.

Since I just redid my fabric, I just altered it a bit. I pulled out all the 1/2 yards and kept them separately to go in their own stacks. Anything smaller than a 1/2 goes in with the FQ's. My thinking is this..sometimes you NEED just 1/2 yard for an inner border or binding, or an accent or something, and 1/2 yards kind of do get lost amongst the bigger cuts.

I fold the 1/2 yards the same way....but when it comes to folding lengthwise I just fold them in half. It makes for a shorter "roll" but I know they are 1/2 yards because they are in their own short stack. I placed them in between where one color ends and the next color begins. Here in this pic you can see my 1/2 yards of shirtings/neutrals in the same stack as my 1/2 yards of pinks..I didn't have enough shelf space to give each their own spot, but it is still easy to see what is what there :c)

I finished quilting the plaid bargello yesterday! YEAH! And once I got it off the machine, the stitches I"thought" looked too big, really aren't THAT bad unless someone gets really close. In which case...I'll tell the story...but I think once it is bound and washed, everything is going to "sink in" just fine.

I hope to get the machine part of the binding done today, and will work on the hand part during my time in Georgia this week!

Handouts for classes need to be finished today, and I also have to go register our cars in NC...and get my new NC drivers license! They only give you 3 weeks to get that done after moving in, and by the time I get back from GA, that time will be UP..man. Time flies. So it will be a run around day for me today. Best get a move on!


  1. Your energy is amazing... I am in awe.

    Folding fabric is so therapeutic and when you are done you have a work of art in your cabinets and a wonderful sense of accomplishment.

    The Plaid Bargello looks almost ready to cozy up into on a couch in front of a fireplace.


  2. Hi Bonnie:
    As I use book shelves to store my fabric and prewash everything, I fold fabric a little differently, but it works for me. My first fold is selvage to selvage. I then use one of my favorite quilt books (approx. 8 1/2 X 11)... this book is placed on the fabric and the fabric is folded over and over the quilt book. When I reach the end of my fabric, I pull the book out and fold the rolled up in half (selvage to selvage) again. This makes my folded fabric approx. 9" X 11" or so. All my fabric is then stored on the shelves. While the fabric does hang over slightly, I am happy and it looks terrific seeing it all nice and lined up.

  3. Okay, don't tell anyone, but I moved here to NC 4 years ago and have my tags, but not my license yet. Some day they're gonna figure it out, but hopefully I will have been to the DMV by then! lol

    Can we spell P-R-O-C-R-A-S-T-I-N-A-T-I-O-N?

  4. Thanks for the folding tips! I'm going to have to tackle that job soon! ;-)

  5. I'll admit to having no idea how (or even if) I fold my fabric. My only attempt at real organization is the bin for tiny pieces and a shelf for backings. I'm feeling a bit pathetic!? Maybe next move?!

  6. I gotta say I'm not usually a fan of overall quilting in general but this Bargello looks great!! Is that a comercial pattern or one you designed? Very Nice!!!!!!

  7. Thanks for the folding tips, much more systematic than my method. Makes me want to rethink my entire storage system.

    Your bargello is so pretty and cuddly looking. BTW, you inspired me to start one and i've posted the beginnings on my blog.

  8. p.s. am also in awe at how much you manage to accomplish.

  9. That bargello quilt is stunning. I am halfway through putting a small one together, but love the idea of a huge queen bed sized one. Your quilting as ever looks gorgeous :-)

  10. Anonymous10:16 PM EDT

    Once you fold it, and stack it, it is so beautiful who wants to put it where you can't see it. Thanks for sharing the beautiful shelf full of beautiful fabrics. Barby MH, ARK


Did you know that ad space on this blog provides for all of the free patterns and free mysteries and challenges at no cost to you?

Thank you for understanding the many hours that go into this blog every day, 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year. :)

Each ad you click X to close is a thank you in return.