Scraps, scraps, everywhere there are scraps or my version of Scrap Busting!
Posted 26 February 2009on:
Well, that may not be entirely true. To be honest, I do not have a large scrap collection, at least I don’t think so. I have them sorted as miscellaneous size and shape, strips (sorted again by width), squares (sorted by size), and pieced scraps (left overs from making blocks or trimmings of borders and such). Each “category” fits into a bin which is about 17″x12″x6½”. That is MY scraps.
My DD#2 on the other hand has been receiving bags of scraps from guild members. To be honest, her scraps fit into a box that 10 reams of paper fit in. But we haven’t completely sorted them yet.
How did I acquire these scraps?
It began with making quilts. A piece here, a piece there. Strip piecing leftovers. Trimming of half square triangles. All these bits of fabric, and haven’t even mentioned the strips and squares that have accumulated. What to do with them? Sort them of course. Strips sorted by side, 1”, 1½”, 2”, 2¼, 2½”, etc. Okay, now sort through the squares. Wow, still a lot of fabric bits. Okay, all the “dogs ears” and other various triangle bits. What am I going to do with the left over “pieced” bits, another bin for them.
Somehow, guild members thought DD#2 was into scraps (maybe she is, but you would never know it, trying to get her to do some quilting with me these days, is like pulling teeth, oh well, she’ll do it when she’s ready). So now, bags and bags of scraps!
One of the guild members suggested that DD#2 use the scraps using the mile-a-minute technique to make quilts. After a search on the internet, I found out how to make mile-a-minute quilts. The following are a couple of links that are “how-to’s” to make Mile-a-minute quilts. Do a search on Google, and you can find photos and more.
They are sort of like log-cabins, but not really. I started off with some scraps, and started cutting and sewing strips. I soon realized some of my strips, were not in fact strips, but chunks. Smaller than 22” long. They still worked for the beginning of the mile-a-minute quilts. I kept on sewing, and adding strips, in some cases sewing some of the chunks together (pieced on the diagonal for interest), and using them as strips. I kept sewing and pressing until the blocks were larger than 12” square, okay admittedly most were not square, but they were larger than 12” on either side.
Then trimmed down to 8½”. I used my 12½” square ruler, and tilted it, to get some very interesting results.
These are some of the finished trimmed blocks.
Egad, I was running out of strips, I didn’t really want to cut into my stash, what was I to do. As I was trimming the blocks I noticed a new pile of scraps accumulating. I’ll never have enough strips to add to these new blocks. Wait a minute, hold on, what if I take this pieced scrap, and sewed it to this pieced scrap… Hey, look at this.
Now I know what to do with that bin of leftover pieced pieces. I’ll just add them to what I have here. As I started this, I took a break, and looked up scrappy quilts on the internet. Apparently all those itty bitty pieces, are called “crumbs”. Very cool! So now I’m making some really crumby quilts.
I haven’t started it yet, but I can sew some of those triangle bits together to make wonky half square triangles… doesn’t matter if they match or not, and then sew them together to make a 4-patch block. Ohhh, the possibilities are endless.
I’m planning to use the blocks to make some quilts for the house, and possibly even a few for charity. I know I’ll have lots of scraps to make lots of blocks to make lots of quilts.
I’ve been teaching a dear friend how to sew and quilt. I think I’ll get her going on sewing some of these pieces and blocks together, will give her great practice on working on her ¼” seam. OH!, Speaking of ¼” seams… I was using mine, but I’m thinking, you don’t need to. Who cares if the seam is a tad more here or there? And for thread… I have a few bobbins (correction, “had”) of thread that were left over from other projects, and well, I used them up. Now I’m going through my thread, and using up left-over spools that were for other sewing projects.
What do you do with your scraps? Do you organize them? Perhaps give the mile-a-minute or crumb blocks a try, its a great way to take a break from larger projects.