If you took all of the scraps of fabric that I’ve accumulated over the years and weighed them, that’s the number you’d get.
Okay, so I totally made that up. But it sounds pretty compelling.
I recently cleared out a bunch of outworn and unnecessary things from my apartment, and well, my life. It has taken me a long time to realize that if something isn’t working for me, that I need to actively do something about it. Take for example, my closet. It really wasn’t working for me. It was packed to to the gills, full of unused crap, stinky and worn out shoes, and clothes that I hadn’t worn since moving back to the US almost seven years ago. But I had a nice, almost comforting habit of walking in– bumping into at least seven things– looking around, and coming to the conclusion that to actually do something about this catastrophe was far too daunting and overwhelming. So I would shut the door and walk away, knowing in the back of my mind that the problem was still there.
Then, for reasons unknown to me– perhaps the Ides of March? The universe? Boredom?– I had an epiphany. Why do we keep ourselves small? Why do we ignore those nagging feelings that tell us something is wrong? We know, deep down, what greatness looks like for us. For me, my closet was a big old fat metaphor for my stifled greatness. And it was time to stop ignoring it.
One day, instead of tackling my to-do list, I did it. I took EVERY LAST ITEM out of that damn closet. By noon, I had already taken five giant bags of clothes and crap to Goodwill, and had filled up another five bags for recycling or trash. And that was just from my closet.
You should see it now! I actually want to spend time in my closet. Who am I? But I’m not sorry, because it is so beautifully sparse, whittled down to only the items that make me happy.
Because of this, it was no surprise that within a week of the “Great Clearing,” all other parts of my house– and life– received the same cutthroat, yet thoughtful, attention. There was carnage everywhere, but dammit, that’s the price of greatness.
And then I got to my sewing space.
Fellow crafters will agree that the fabric stash is a bit of a non-starter. We all inadvertently sign a contract upon purchasing fabric that states, “I will not, ever, throw this fabric away. Ever. In the event that I am cleaning out my house in some sort of kamikaze fit of clarity, I will keep every scrap of this fabric, no matter what. Period.”
So what did I do? I kept it all. And those thousands of pounds of scraps? Those too. Those stayed. I simply made my fabricaholism a part of the decor by implementing these two magic words: Fabric buckets.
My advice to you all? Clear out all unnecessary things in your life, except your fabric. For that, make fabric buckets.
What to get:
-2 x 18” squares fabric for exterior (We LOVE these Echino fabrics)
-2 x 18” squares fabric for interior
-2 x 18’ squares sturdy fusible interfacing (this is a great heavyweight one)
-iron and ironing surface
-sewing supplies (pins, scissors, sewing machine)
What to do:
1. Iron on interfacing to the exterior squares following the manufacturer’s instructions.
2. Pin exterior squares together, right sides together. Sew a ¼” seam along three edges. Repeat with interior.
3. Box corners. Use the seams on the inside to line up your corner, and nestle your seams so they fit nicely (seam allowances going opposite directions). Pin. Use a ruler to draw a line that is 4 ½” from the point of the triangle. Sew along this line. Cut the extra, leaving ¼” seam allowance. Repeat for all four corners (two exterior, two interior.)