Fabric Stash – Do You Have One?

When I first started stitching I was the type of stitcher that only worked on one project at a time, and did nothing but pre-assembled kits you can purchase at any major craft store that included 14 count white or cream aida.  Then I joined a guild and learned all about UFOs (unfinished objects), having a stash, etc.  I’m no longer a member of that guild, but treasure most of the experiences I had with it.  Including one of the instructors, Karen Duggan from Massachusetts.  She changed my stitching life!  She was the first person that said to me, “Don’t be afraid to make it your own. Change the floss colors, use a different fabric, whatever.  It’s your piece and make it something you like and want to stitch.”

It was after that conversation that my stash started growing…more kits, patterns, fabric, you name it.  My fabric choices back then were limited to the small selection of 14 count Aida that Jo-Ann’s carried.  Honestly I was afraid to try anything other than that.  I kept with the standard white or cream and sometimes used a pastel pink or blue.

Then a couple of years ago something changed.  I decided to go outside the box and start using other colors; things like bright oranges, purples, fuchsia, etc.  I also ventured into trying evenweave, linen and different counts of aida.  My stash has grown substantially since then.  OK, it helps that I hand-dye fabrics to sell, but I still also purchase them from other sources.  I have an entire drawer (it measures 22w x 14d x 7h) full of fabrics!!  (see photo)  That’s just my personal stash and doesn’t include the drawers full of what I sell.

If you look in the photo you can see some of them in bags & labeled and some in tubes.  I personally iron every piece of fabric before I package it for sale.  Sometimes I keep some of them for my own stitching use later on down the road.  I had this brain storm several weeks ago when I pulled out one of my pieces of fabric to use and had to go to the laundry area to iron it a second time…why don’t I store them in the empty tubes I have from store bought fabrics???  For me it was one of those slap your forehead moments, lol!

fabric storageDo you have a fabric stash?  If so, how do you store your fabrics?  What’s your favorite fabric to stitch on?  Do you like to use bright, bold colors or do you stick with the “traditional” fabrics?  Share with the rest of us your story and maybe you’ll inspire someone like Karen Duggan inspired me.

About Kelly

I've been stitching for 35 years now after first learning to needlepoint at the age of 6. A day is not complete unless my needle, floss and fabric meet. My quest to learn more & grow in my craft never ends. I'm hoping that some day my cross stitch "empire" can be my full-time job and retirement. Hey, we all have to have dreams! :)

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  1. I must confess, my own stash is probably 75% fabric. I don’t keep much of a floss stash, and my charts all fit into a file box. But my fabric takes up almost my entire stash cabinet.

  2. My guess room is my stash room. The dresser (8 of the 9 drawers) are full of fabrics, arranged by stitch count. I mostly collect high count linens (36 and 40), but I also have 28 and 32 count for the basics and hardanger, banding, afghans, silk gauze, perforated paper, and all my scraps are organized by stitch count in bags for easy access when it’s time to stitch ornies!

    I also have a closet full of shelves for the cabinets full of various fibers I collect…DMC, Anchor floss, pearl cotton, flower thread, silk floss, various hand dyed cottons and silks,…

    I also have5 feet of wall spaced dedicated to floor to ceiling shelves of needlework charts and books, and a few kits.

    Did I mention I used to own 2 needlework shops. **she grins sheepishly**

  3. Joni via STNA's Facebook Fan Page says:

    I have a stash of hand dyed crystal fabbie that I have NO idea what I’m going to do with :-/

  4. Katherine via STNA's Facebook Fan Page says:

    I didn’t really have one before but I realized recently that one is growing in my house. Not only do I have multiple types of linen and Aida cloth but I also have a stash of different colored perforated paper.

  5. Joni, sparkles are always good to have on hand, even if they’re just to look at LOL

  6. Ohhhh, I don’t have any perf-paper in my stash cabinet…. I’ll have to add some of that.

  7. Katherine via STNA's Facebook Fan Page says:

    I have 11 different colors of Perforated Paper, I love working on it because you don’t need a hoop or scroll.

  8. I started stitching small Aida projects without a hoop. I found it was less weighty on my hands, and I found on the small projects my stand would get in the way.

    Unlike you *fabric hounds*, my inclination is to hoard patterns. I have hundreds of patterns. Tons of books and online bookmarks in which I just accumulate patterns. I have the best intentions just never get to them! I have some fabrics, and I mostly embroider on those and cross stitch on Aida. Its just my preference. I prefer white everything. I find white is easier to coordinate, mat, and decorate with. Its weird. I’ve been stitching for 10 years and I still have only one finished linen piece I like and the rest never charm me the way the Aida does. I always revert to the Aida. I know, call me a freak.

    • I follow enough blogs to know there are stitchers that DESPISE Aida like it’s the plague, but I’m with you. I have no issues with Aida. In fact, it’s my fabric of choice with smalls and ornaments because it’s easy to finish and the stiffness of it helps when it’s too small for a hoop. I do like linen and evenweave though.

    • I have a hoard of patterns too, Joy. In fact, I think I have a hoard of just about everything cross stitch, lol!

  9. A good portion of my stash I inherited. It included a bunch of patterns, 4 huge binders of magazines and a large Ziploc of random fabric. When I stopped stitching kits and started with having to buy supplies separately, I pretty much stuck to 14 ct Aida but once I discovered LNS stores, I would buy a pattern with matching fabric and it generally wasn’t Aida.

    I have quite a bit of fabric now but only because I pick it up at SCRAP, the art thrift store in Denton for really really cheap. Most of it is Aida (in various counts and colors) but I have recently got some really nice linen there. I also have perforated paper and plastic and some vinyl weave as well.

  10. Liz via STNA's Facebook Fan Page says:

    My fabric stash is starting to grow along with the dmc & charts & kits, it’s turning into a regular store!! 🙂

  11. I was much the same way when I started. The majority of my work was pre-kitted projects on Aida. I branched out to linen and evenweave but stuck mostly to neutral colours. I just recently purchased my first-ever hand-dyed stash, but I contained myself and only bought four. They have been allocated to specific projects.

  12. I have totes full of crossstitch mags from as far back as the 1980’s. I still love to subscribe even though I know quite well I will never do even 1/4th of the projects! Am I addicted? Is there a cure?

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