Let the Busting Begin

I got roughly 2 1/2 hours of sleep last night, so if my writing seems a little slurred, that’s why. [Yawn. . . ]

Thanks to the incomparable Cindy of Cation Designs and Emily (aka EmSewCrazy) of Tumbleweeds in the Wind, we all have some extra incentive to cut down on all that yardage of fabric we’ve been hoarding like little pack rats. My dreaded fabric stash may not be quite as terrifying as others (I haven’t had as long to hoard, you see), but it’s still unacceptable to me to be keeping fabric that I’m not using. The same goes for patterns.

So when Cindy announced the Stashbusting Sewalong (Are you in? Did you get a button? Do it! I Double Dog Dare you!), I was like, “Heck, yeah!” Not only does this help out with my unwritten goal to use up my already purchased fabric, but it also counts as one of the two sew-alongs that I wanted to be a part of this year.

Each month has a theme and the theme for January is to use up those tiny bits of fabric (a yard or less). January is fast coming to an end, but I knew that first I needed to assess the situation to see what needs to be done. (I do have some January stash-busting to share, but we’ll do that later.)

My goal is to use up 75% of my current stash. I’m not sure how to calculate 75% of my fabric–I could go all nerdy and figure out all the yardage, but I’m not going to. I also am not buying any new fabric unless it’s something specific that I need to use up fabric I already have. You know, like linings and such. I am, however, allowing myself to buy something emerald for one dress to wear to a wedding.

The first thing I did was attack my pattern stash. I’ve been realizing over the past few months that I have patterns that I don’t even like. I’ve never used a lot of them and I really wonder what possessed me to buy them in the first place. So, without mercy or regret, I pulled out any pattern that I know I’m not going to make (or make again) and ended up with 23 patterns needing a new home. Twenty-three doesn’t seem like much, I guess, but when you consider that it’s roughly 15% of my stash, it’s not too shabby.


My next step was to separate my patterns into groups: accessories, kiddy clothes, patterns I’d already made, and patterns I hadn’t used yet. Setting aside everything but the patterns I hadn’t sewn up yet, I started matching up patterns with stashed fabric. It was a very interesting exercise because I came up with some surprising combinations that I know I never would have imagined before. In fact, I was so absorbed in the process, I completely forgot to eat dinner! At around 10:00, I was like, “Why am I so hungry???”

What you can't quite see here is a couple of bridesmaid dresses (included because I had the fabric out to measure it) and a super  top secret project that shall be revealed in due course. . .

What you can’t quite see here is a couple of bridesmaid dresses (included because I had the fabric out to measure it) and a super top secret project that shall be revealed in due course. . .

But, I think it was totally worth a delayed dinner; I’m excessively excited about my plans and will share them with you by and by. For now, I have a renewed interest in chugging through my fall/winter sewing. My Beignet is coming along nicely now after a few hours of taping and tracing and pinning and snipping. . . and maybe some shaking my fist at the gods of sewing. But, I basted the thing together this morning and it fits well enough for me to be pleased! It ended up somewhere between an 8 and 10. So, if all goes well, I’ll be avoiding sewing on buttons by the weekend.

And now I am in dire need of a nap.

Oh, and Eloise sends her love.


Fess up, who’s sewing along with us?? Stash-busters, represent!


14 thoughts on “Let the Busting Begin

  1. I love the idea of this challenge!! You think it would be okay if I start in February? Also because, I have no idea what I would make that would be usable with my remnants. Eloise is gorgeous! I hope you got some sleep or slipped in a little nappy-poo. 🙂

    • I am a TERRIBLE napper. All during my “nap” I’ve been lying here reading blogs.
      You can absolutely join the sew-along whenever you want! Hop over to Cindy’s blog for the details!

  2. yay! i was stash busting anyway but their sewalong gives us a purpose! esp as i do have a LOT of scraps that i keep in several plastic bags lol. I think I am randomly going to sew them together to make a huge blanket. … 😀

  3. I’m in! I just posted on my blog that one of my goals for this year was to sew all of the projects I have material for. It’s fun to know other sewers out there are trying to tackle the same thing. 🙂

    • You are far ahead of the rest of us then, I think! My problem was that I would by all this fabric when it was on sale without any sort of plan for using it. I have learned that it’s not worth it to save money on a piece of fabric you may never use.
      I love, love, love to organize and sort and clean out! I even made a database for my patterns in Evernote. I’m a nerd to the core 🙂

    • Anything to be organized!
      I wrote about it several months ago and someone commented that it would be a great way to keep track of fabric as well, noting down the yardage and care instructions and the like. I haven’t done that yet, but I’m beginning to think it may be a good idea!

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