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Mandy's Tips – The Serious Problem of the Fabric Stash

Secret Society Blog

Mandy's Tips – The Serious Problem of the Fabric Stash

Alison Owens


Fat quarters. half a meter of fabric cut in half, folded neatly into a small square, sometimes sold in bundles, wrapped up with a nice ribbon. Never to be unfolded, just stacked, stored, admired and stroked, sometimes moved from one place to another but never used. It’s a serious problem that needs addressing in my house and one that needs attention!

So let’s be better organised and have a useful stash. So here are a few tips to help you buy wisely and so you use up your fabric stash (and then you can go out and buy some more of course)!



  • Only buy 100% cotton.
  • Never buy an odd fat quarter, they will never match with things you have at home even if you think they will at the time of purchase.
  • Only buy when you have a project idea in mind.
  • Have an idea of the colour schemes in your house. No point in buying orange fabric if it is going to clash with everything else you own!
  • Don’t worry if you only buy fabric in one or two colours – I have lots of red fabric in a myriad of shades, patterns and designs and it all gets used!
  • Quilts are often wider than the standard 42 inch width of fabric, this makes it expensive when buying backings. Rather than buy an extra length to fill the gap, in the width, patch some squares, from your stash!  Simply cut the backing fabric in half, along its length, and add a patched strip in the middle.
  • Patch a unique backing fabric from your stash, sewing fat quarters together uses up fabric and makes a more individual backing.

Download these tips and stick them in your Secret Society Notebook here