The Art of Choosing: Fabric Folding Tutorial

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Art of Choosing is a series discussing fabric, color, and the fabric selection process. The purpose of this series is to arm you with the tools and knowledge to build your own color schemes for your sewing and quilting projects. You'll dive deep into your stash, organize it, and hopefully look at your fabrics in a new way.

Fabric Folding Tutorial
Today I'll be showing you how to fold all your fabric cuts that are a yard or less, down to the same size. This is really helpful for storage and organizing because you can mix yardages. I fold the fabrics in my stash this way and it works great! I think I may have originally seen this method over on Christina's blog.


The Art of Choosing: Folding, originally uploaded by jenib320.
Despite my camera shy-ness, I decided to make a series of videos showing how to fold six different size cuts of fabric. Please ignore my weird voice and the horizontal orientation of the videos!
If you'd to watch all six folds here in one video, or watch the individual videos below:



How to Fold a Fat Quarter

Fat Quarters, half-yards, and yard sized cuts are folded exactly the same!

How to Fold a 1/4 Yard


How to Fold a 1/3 Yard

This works great for any cut in between 1/4 and 1/2 yard.

How to Fold a 1/2 Yard


How to Fold a 3/4 Yard

This works great for any cut in between 1/2 yard and 1 yard.

How to Fold a 1 Yard


For fat quarters or yardage that has scraps cut out of it, I simply try my best and use an uncut piece as a guide when folding. For my stash, anything that's less than a fat quarter or 1/4 yard I store it in my scrap bin.

The next post in this series is on Fabric Stash Storage Ideas

42 comments :

  1. This is so great!! I bought plastic bins to keep my stash in, but haven't organized yet. So this is great motivation!

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  2. great tutorial. it seems basic, but i never paid attention.

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  3. Thanks for sharing!!! I am going to be re-folding all my fabric next weekend. It seems like it would be such an easy thing to do, but this tutorial was much needed!

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  4. This is great, thank you!

    Now here's the question, how do you fold uneven cuts...like once you've used them? I guess they should technically qualify as scraps, but I try to keep larger scraps in with my larger cuts until they're mostly useless.

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  5. oh you are too cute! I love folding my fabric and making it all pretty. I do it slightly different but same concept. :)

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  6. Thanks for this great series and for these videos! I'm just getting into quilting and this is all great information. I really appreciate it! Also, watching you fold fabric is relaxing haha :)

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  7. Thank you so much for posting this - I have been looking at my haphazard piles of fabric for a while and wondering if there was a 'how to' fold that would help out - I looked at your blog and low and behold... just what I was looking for. Thanks again

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  8. this is SO awesome!!!!! Your videos are GREAT!

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  9. Wow, I desperately needed this!!! Thank you for making this video. It never even occurred to me that there was a nice consistent way to fold fabrics! This totally makes me want to organize my stash now!

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  10. Hey, you don't have a strange voice. Well done on the videos (I'm totally chicken).

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  11. Great post, Jeni - I have to do some reorganizing this weekend, I'll definitely be following your tips!

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  12. Thanks so much for this! I go nuts and buy designer prints when I see them on sale. I store my prints in a plastic shelf but am running low on space, this will help me tons!
    Thanks again!

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  13. thanks jeni!
    i think this changed my fabric life!!!:))
    i am now going to be obsessively refolding all my stash.

    can not wait to meet you at sewing summitt!!!

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  14. Thank you! I love this post and the fact that you made videos instead of just still photos. I finally "get" it!

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  15. GREAT video! Thanks so much for being brave and sharing!

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  16. AWESOME. I started folding my fabric last night. It's so pretty now!

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  17. Thank you for the videos! I refolded my entire fabric stash this weekend & now I can't stop looking at it! You rock!

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  18. any tips for folding >1yd? Or shall I just fold it how I wish keep those fabrics in a different pile?
    Just wondered.... thanks! LOVE this series btw!

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  19. Great post! I need this. I am organizing my sewing room this weekend. Thanks!

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  20. Our of curiosity, what do you do with you fabric pieces smaller than a fat quarter or quarter yard.

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  21. Great! Who would have thought we'd need a tutorial on folding fabric? Not I! But it's wonderful and I'm going to go re-fold all my fabric now. Thank you so much!

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  22. Thank you so much for the tutorial! I was wondering what you do with scraps less than a fat quarter? Mine are such a mess.

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  23. Really excellent! So simple yet I hadn't thought of how to deal with 3rds and 3/4ths!

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  24. Thank you so much! I've been trying to find a way to organize my fabric, now that I've a new sewing space.
    -Marcy

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  25. Really helpful to read about folding fabric - I'm new to all this, so was wondering what you do with larger pieces of fabric which are odd shapes - ie you've cut something out of it to sew, do you cut/sqare it up then fold or just tuck in all the scrappy bits! (I hope I'm not horrifying you at the thought of that!. Also with larger bits of fabric, I have lots of curtain off cuts and an old duvet I bought second hand - sounds manky but it's lovely fabric! Thanks you are inspiring me lots!

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  26. Really helpful to read about folding fabric - I'm new to all this, so was wondering what you do with larger pieces of fabric which are odd shapes - ie you've cut something out of it to sew, do you cut/sqare it up then fold or just tuck in all the scrappy bits! (I hope I'm not horrifying you at the thought of that!. Also with larger bits of fabric, I have lots of curtain off cuts and an old duvet I bought second hand - sounds manky but it's lovely fabric! Thanks you are inspiring me lots!

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  27. jorobexeter@gmail.comMarch 12, 2012 at 12:24 PM

    sorry - forgot my e-mail...

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  28. I don't do the last fold (don't like them so small and thick), but otherwise it is pretty much the same.

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  29. Thanks for the video! Now I feel the urge to go refold my stash.

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  30. Thank you for the video! I also got the urge to try your method of folding. If you'd like, you can see the results in this post of mine: http://www.tilkunviilaaja.blogspot.com/2012/05/taittelua-tilkkutaiteilua.html

    I did not get very far but I like the method because it works even with smaller pieces of fabric, unlike my former method of folding into the size of the cupboard shelf (well, sort of into that size).

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  31. I've been doing my folding exactly this way for years, except for the one yards. Couldn't figure those out. Now I finally know how to do those. Thanks.

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  32. This is a good way to fold fabric you keep in bins or drawers, but I have a huge stash, stored on shelves, and this way of folding most of it wouldn't work.

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  33. Thank you!!!! I am going home now to fold all my fabric! (phew!)

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  34. I just re-painted an old china hutch, so I finally have somewhere to store my fabric! I asked a bunch of my friends on Instagram about a good fabric-folding tutorial, and they pointed me to yours. It's perfect. thanks for taking the time to show us. Now I can have it look nice on the shelves, as well as in my projects!

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  35. What do you suggest for pieces larger than a yard, and smaller than a fat quarter? I have SO MUCH that needs organizing.

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    Replies
    1. If it's between 2-1 yards, I try to get it folded down similar to the yard cuts. If it's more than that, I store it separately and skip the final fold. For things smaller than a fat quarter, I'll sometimes use a fat quarter as a guide to get it folded up to a similar size, or I'll throw it in my scraps if it's really small!

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  36. Just what I needed to get my growing stash tidied up and more accessible.
    Thank you.

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  37. What size do your squares of folded up fabric end up being?

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