One way I keep track of ongoing projects is to make myself my own little kits. This way, even if I have an idea that I wish to explore further, I can “kit” up all the pieces and things I need so I can get to it later.
It helps me remember AND it helps keep me on track.
I use the super XL ziploc bags. These are the 2 gallon size and are about 13″ by 15″. There’s only ten in the carton, so they do seem pricey but they can help you limit your projects in progress and you can reuse them.
You can also reuse other product bags, like batting bags. I find clear bags are best.
First, I gather up all my quilt projects and I make sure all the parts and pieces are together. Do I have the pattern? Do I have all the fabric needed? If so, put it in a bag!
For the half done projects, bag them all up too. Have some sticky notes handy or any of the free downloads for project organization to go in the bag – just something with any needed notes about the project, who it is for, what step you are on, sometimes any modifications needed. Here’s a free quilt project planner with a design grid. Here’s a quilt project planner with step by step progress boxes.
Everything is in the one bag and ready to go – for the next time I am ready to sew on the project, or if I need to take one with me to a sewing day or retreat. It’s all there in the bag.
If you’re like me and have multiple projects, you may also wish to sort the bags by stage of completion.
Any bags with just pattern and some fabric where I haven’t cut anything, I stash away on a shelf. These are ideas and “someday” projects. Sometimes these get bagged up when I’m going through my stash or I find a new quilt pattern I wish to try.
Bags where I’ve started the blocks tend to go in stackable bins near my sewing machine. One bin holds bags where the blocks are in progress. The next bin holds bags where the blocks are almost done, or all done and need to go in rows. The bottom ones holds bags with near completed tops.
Once a quilt top is fully pieced, it usually is larger than the huge bags I have for them.
When I choose the backing fabric and the binding fabric, the top usually moves to a dedicated shelf I have in the closet area of my sewing room. I can see at a glance all the quilt tops that need quilting. (oh my! Then try not to get sad.)
I have a separate shelf for quilt tops that have been quilted and need to be squared up and have the binding sewn on or other finishing details.
How about you? How do you store your projects in progress? I’d love to hear how you organize your works.