I keep the stash in steel office cabinets that are 6' high, 3' wide, and 18" deep. There are 15 of them, and some boxes on top. This is the cabinet where the repro fabrics live--1930s on the two top shelves, and earlier repros farther down. There are a few actual vintage fabrics in there, too--some feed sack bits, etc. Then there's the cabinet with red fabrics, next to the one with pinks and oranges, next to the one with yellows and yellow greens. Then there's a gap, and next are two cabinets with multicolored prints, next to one with conversation prints. Across from those, there's a cabinet with batiks (Indonesian and Dutch Java), African fabrics, my very small collection of Liberty of London pieces, and some South African indigos. Next to that is the repro cabinet above, then a cabinet of purples, then a space, and next cabinets for green, blue green, and blue. Behind those three and facing into the studio are the cabinet of brown, tan, and rust, the cabinet with blacks and grays, and the cabinet with neutrals, whites, and oriental print fabrics.
I've had great pleasure in being a fabric collector from the mid 1980s to around 2005. I believe my stash would keep my entire quilt guild going from now until our granddaughters are old ladies, LOL. Do you ever have someone ask you what you're going to do with all that fabric? Well, here's your answer, ladies and gents. You are a FABRIC COLLECTOR. You just look the offending person right straight in the eye, raise your eyebrows as high as you can get them without a stick, and say, "What a peculiar question. Would you ask a stamp collector what he's going to do with all those stamps, or a coin collector what they're going to do with all those coins?" They usually will just slink away after that. :) I look at the collection as being part of my IRA. Fabric prices have gotten so high that it's a comfort knowing that if I ever do retire all the way, I'll still have plenty of gorgeous fabric to keep me busy. I chose the steel cabinets for the collection because the doors keep the light from fading the fabrics. I had put fabric on shelves in the beginning, but found fading along the fronts of the fabric pieces, which meant I had to cut around that part when getting ready to use that piece. How do you store your fabric?
I think tomorrow I'll put up picks of my incredibly messy studio.