The stash reports will again be hosted here in 2013. Even if you don’t have a huge stash or if you’re using only a little fabric, if you’re interested in tracking your purchases and uses, this is a great way to do it.
I’ve tried a variety of ways to keep up with the ins and outs and the best way for me is a Google spreadsheet. Here’s a snapshot of a few weeks. You’ll have to enlarge it to be able to read it but the first column is the week number, the second column is the project because sometimes I forget if I’ve counted a project. The third column is the amount of yardage for that project. The fourth column is a running total of the amount of yards I’ve used. The fifth and next to last column is for fabric added and the far right column is the net used/added.
When I do a blog post for this Sunday, I copy that info into a new blog post for next Sunday. This is the info for this week and I’ve copied it into the post I’ll use next week and I’ve entitled that post “Stash Report – Week 39, 2012″ and that hopefully is helping me keep the week numbers correct.
Used this Week: 5 yards
Used year to Date: 157 yards
Added this Week: 0 yards
Added Year to Date: 48.75 yards
Net Used for 2012: 108.25 yards
It’s pretty easy to keep up with it if you want to keep up with it. If you just don’t care and don’t want to mess with it, that’s surely ok too. I love knowing about how much fabric I use in an average month or an average year. I think in a year when I get in a normal for me amount of sewing, I should be able to use 300 yards of fabric. For everything I use, whether it’s fabric related or cooking, or cosmetics, I like to know how much I need to last me at least a year. If I use 2 cans of green beans a week, I know exactly how many cans of green beans I need to last me a year. When I start a new cone of piecing thread, I date it so I know about how long it takes me to use one cone so I can be confident that I have a year’s supply of piecing thread. That’s just how I operate. Kind of anal but it works for me and I understand if that doesn’t work for you.
Up until this year, I counted the fabric in the used column once I pulled it for a project. My thinking was that it was out of the stash, into a project bucket so it was stash reduction. The problem with that method is that it truly isn’t stash reduction but stash re-arranging. Also, there wasn’t a whole lot of incentive to finish projects so beginning this year, I count the yardage for a quilt top once that top is finished. I count the backing fabric when I load the quilt on the longarm and am ready to quilt it. They don’t usually stay too long on the longarm and most times, unless I load a quilt on a Friday or Saturday, it’s already finished before Sunday. I count the binding when I apply it to the quilt and I usually finish the binding the same day I put it on the quilt.
As far as counting yardage, it’s pretty easy to count what’s been added. If I’m adding extra wide backing, I count it double. If I buy 10 yards of extra wide backing, I count it as 20 yards added because when I’m calculating backing fabric, I always calculate it first as if I were using 40″ wide fabric. It makes sense to me but could be one of those things that no one else thinks makes sense. For the amount of fabric used, I take the numbers EQ gives me. Their numbers are pretty close to correct.
That’s what works for me but you do anything that works for you!