You just found fabric on sale for your handmade baby crib quilts, but it is 90 degrees outside. Now, you need tips for storing it. Quilters who make handmade baby quilts do so in their own unique way, but they all share the same guilty pleasure: Buying huge amounts of fabric for future projects.
It is not just a frivolous habit. First, there is the economic factor. No one is going to pass up potentially useful fabrics when there is a good sale going on. Then there is the surprise of discovering just the right print to anchor a new design, or just the right complementary fabrics to support the anchor print.
Makers of baby boutique quilts are always formulating homemade baby keepsake quilt patterns, so gathering materials to create them is always on their minds. And let us face it: Some fabrics are simply irresistible.
How to Safeguard the Fabric Stash
It is a good idea to arrange the fabrics not only by color, but by shades. Being able to go to just the right stack needed for a design can avoid shifting pieces and will reduce the chance of creating wrinkles that will require ironing.
Another option is to group all the fabrics meant for one project. Textured fabrics, like those used in minky baby quilts, might have their own stack.
Fabrics that are stacked on open shelves that get light need to be shielded with a cloth barrier. Perhaps an unused drapery panel or an old sheet can be pressed into service, or pillowcases can be used to provide protection.
In the case of cardboard boxes, air holes are also needed, as is an aluminum foil lining to keep the fabrics from contact with the acidity in the cardboard.
Plastic tubs might be convenient receptacles to store fabrics, but over time, the lack of air circulation could result in a moisture problem. If plastic containers are used, it is a good idea to drill a few holes in the sides and top so that air can circulate.
Good Ideas Come Out of the Closet
Quilters creative enough to come up with unique handmade baby quilt ideas can also be creative in adapting other devices for storing fabrics. For instance, some people who make handmade baby quilts from flannel find that those see-through plastic bags that hang in the closet for sweaters or purses are handy places to accommodate and compartmentalize fabrics.
Plastic shoe bags that hang over the door are another way to store small amounts of material and scraps. And skirt racks and trouser racks work well, too.
Proper Storage Prevents Problems
As the quilter’s stash increases, so does the need to keep it in a way that preserves it in the best possible way. And then there is the time-wasting hunt for a certain piece when there is no organized arrangement. Improper storage could cause wrinkles and folds that must be ironed out before the work begins, or fading, or, perish the thought, mold.
Roll the Bolts
Large yardage is best stored as bolts. Home-made tubes made of PVC pipe are inexpensive and available in most home improvement centers. Hampers and wicker baskets will keep a cluster of bolts compact, aired, and easily visible for selection. Try the idea of a new trash barrel with wheels this could serve as a commodious and mobile container.
An Inventory Helps
Try logging in new purchases as they are made, on file cards or in the computer, so that you will know exactly what you need. If you list the manufacturer also, this comes in handy should you need to reorder.
No matter how appealing that green and white duck pattern is your favorite store, it makes little sense to buy more if you already have a stash at home. By the same token, it is frustrating to return from shopping and discover that you are out of fabric for the backing fabric on your handmade baby quilt for your niece.
Efficiency Pays Off Whether the project is a blue and white handmade baby quilt for a newborn baby gift, or a dainty pink and white baby quilt for a shower gift, organized storage will help reduce the challenges of the job and boost the pleasure of making something wond