Unfinished Project Management

I love to quilt. I buy fabric and patterns. I cut into the fabric and start stitching together quilts. If there is no specific deadline for the quilt, I might get distracted, or a project with a deadline comes up, and the current project is shoved aside, put in a bag, tucked in a basket under my sewing table. It could be there months before it is pulled out accidentally as I try to resurrect a different project. And I remember, “Oh yeah, I still have this to work on…”

photos of projects in progress

Out of sight really does mean out of mind. Every year I promise myself that I’ll pull out my “UFOs” (UnFinished Objects) and PIGS (Projects In Garbage Sacks) and finish them up. Instead of leaving my projects buried in a bin, I pulled them all out to assess my mess. I took a picture of each project, and printed the photos. On each print, I wrote with a marker the progress of the project. Some just need a backing so that they can be quilted. Others already have a backing, and just need to be sent to the quilter.

tracking projects in progress

In order to reduce my projects in progress to at least a single-digit number, because zero is an unrealistic goal, I’ve put the photos up on my quilting wall. I could pin them directly to the wall, or use a bulletin board. The point is that I want these projects front-and-center to remind me of the projects I’ve committed to.

As a bonus, I can enjoy some of these projects now… with the photos adding a little color to the decor in my sewing room!

How do you sort your projects needing finishing?



  1. LOVE this idea. Can I ask how you store your ufo’s. I MUST get control of my sewing room. Thanks so much for any suggestions. Gloria

    • My “current” UFOs are stored in plastic boxes. The older ones are in bins and bags… I do try to keep all the important things together – all the fabric purchased for the quilt (including any binding or backing fabric), the pattern or book, any special rulers or other notions, and even thread if I picked a special thread color for piecing or quilting. That way, when I’m ready to get going on the quilt, I can just pick it up and get moving… without having to search for all the related pieces!

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