Friday, May 9, 2008

Help!! fabric scraps are taking over!!!!

Are your scraps taking over the sewing room?

I know mine are! As a long time sewer, and quilter I find it hard to part with my fabric scraps. I mean I save everything from small to large, from strips to squares, and even blocks that did not make it to a quilt. Help! If I don't do something soon I feel that the scraps will take over the room.

Does this sound familiar? I know you are not alone here. After all you paid good money for that fabric, so why would you want to throw it away, right? But now that you have this overwhelming stash of scraps what do you do with them?

Here are some suggestions to help you take charge of your scraps. First of all you need to take the time to go through them. Sort your scraps into piles.

  1. Sort by color

  2. Then sort each color into piles by size.

  3. One pile will be all pieces smaller than a 2 inch square. And here is the hard part....throw these away! Unless you do miniature quilts then you are allowed to keep them.

  4. One pile will be for all the largest pieces of fabric

  5. Then the third pile will be for strips that are more than 2 inches wide and long enough for use in either bindings or strip quilts.

  6. Now you are down to the odd pieces. I suggest keeping only the pieces that can be cut into squares. Nothing smaller than 4 inches.

That's it! Your almost done. Take your large pieces and fold neatly by color, put them in a clear tub so you can see them. Mark your tub "Large Scraps"

Next take the strips and put them in a container too and mark then "Strips"

For the odd pieces I suggest selecting a size square you use often. And you could do several sizes depending on your scraps and your quilting preference. I find that 5.5 inches are a good size to work with and make the best use of my scrap piles. Sometimes I will cut smaller ones if I like the fabrics and can not get 5.5 inches from the scraps. Now put the newly cut squares into a container by color. (This is the best part) because you will now have precut squares all looking pretty in the box, and no more messy scrap piles.

Now that you have the hard part done..........reward yourself by making a quick quilt from all those lovely pre-cut squares!

One last thing, if you are the ambitious type, you can cut up your box of larger pieces of fabric into squares of a larger size too!

Now don't let your fabric scraps just sit looking messy, do something with them so that they find their way into a lovely quilt.

For ideas on making scrap quilts try these sites.
Scrap Quilts
Scrap Saver Patterns
UFO-rphanage for Quilters, Scrap Quilts
Happy and Scrappy this is a quilt class for making a scrap quilt. But the cool part is the class is done all online! And the best part is the class only costs $21.50 for a full 2 months subscription. That's 8 weeks to work with the lessons, download and print them out to work at your own pace. Not bad!


Waterrose said...

Even below two inches...I just keep a little box of them and when I collect enough I just sew them together in a haphazard fashion until I have enough that makes a 8, 10, 12, 14 inch square and use them to make things with.

Chris said...

I used to keep the smaller ones too. But find myself not using them as much anymore. If you use them then that's great.

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