Friday, January 24, 2020

New Year and Scrap Organization

I decided that I needed to try to get a wee bit more organized.  I will admit it has been helped in part that I now have one empty bedroom on the main floor of the house.  The president at guild announced that now that I am working more, assistance with or someone to take over charity was necessary.  A lady stepped forward, so charity moved out of my house.  Woohoo!

That is 36 bins, copy paper boxes, scavenged boxes full of fabric, irons, battings, and backings that I have had stored in my house the past 3 years. I staged it by the front door to go out and down the wheelchair ramp in the front.

With that in mind, I need to organize the room so that I can set it up so that I can move the sewing machine off of the dinner table.  I still have 2 big bins of scraps from guild that the lady who took over charity didn't want to deal with.   I will cut those up and make charity quilts from them eventually. 

I am embarrassed to admit, that many times after I finish a project I shove the scraps to the side, or dump them into a box or two or.....ok I can think of at least 10 different boxes ranging from shoe box  size to one that is almost 2 feet by 3 feet by 1 1/2 feet tall.  Also there is a pile or two that have been sitting by my cutting table for a couple of months. 

My determination started a few days after Christmas, one of my first non busy days after starting back to work.  I decided I wanted to make a Tiny Tree which was  free quilt along during November/December by Temecula Quilt Company after seeing everyone else's.  I was surprised that I finished all of the tiny blocks in one day.  It was easy.  There was a pile of green scraps sitting on my sewing table which were left over from the Challenge Quilt I finished in October.

I then stalled out because I didn't have something I wanted to use as the background.  I put the parts away with the pattern into a 2 gallon Hefty Zipper Bag until I located a fabric I would like.

The second thing that happened.  Last year in my Tuesday sewing group we exchanged 12 inch Civil War reproduction fabrics.  I missed the meeting when they decided what pattern they were going to make.  They are making the Spool Quilt from Edyta Sitar's book Friendship Strips and Scraps.

I looked in my quilt books, and surprise I own the book.  The first meeting of the new year we were to bring all of our brown fabrics from the exchange to start to make the spools.  Rebel that I am, I decided that I wanted to use my batik scraps instead.  I started digging through boxes grabbing brown batik scraps.  Then had second thoughts and started grabbing all of the batik scraps.  I printed out the pattern so I could make notes and it is a wee more wieldy than a  book.

Once I had a handful I started cutting them into the 1 inch strips.  I then realized I had way too many scraps, and knew I needed to find some way to get rid of these.

But first my brown spools.

A couple of days later Pat Broe at Life in the Scrapatch, shared about a Stashbuster challenge for 2020.  The challenge is sponsored by Border Creek Station.  I checked out the pattern, pretty easy peasy, make one block  week for 52 weeks or at least 52 blocks, with evidence of course,  and at the end you are entered into a drawing.  I joined the Facebook page for inspiration, downloaded the pattern called Square Dance, and started cutting up just the scraps on my table. The pattern calls for 3 1/2 inch squares and 2 x 4 1/4 inch strips, and seriously just the scraps on my table would have made at least one quilt, but I wanted variety.  So I only cut enough for one or two blocks.  Then I started cutting into my much neglected scrap system. 

I haven't even started to sew blocks but my little tray is pretty full.

I cut hexies into a large empty sunflower seed container.

I cut more 2 1/2 inch tumblers.

 I cut 5 inch strips, 2 1/2 inch strips, 2 inch strips, 1 1/2 inch strips and squares.  If I didn't make a hexie from it I would throw it into the string bin. 

Surely I could cut some of these into another easy scrap quilt pattern as I am going? Someone shared a scrap quilt called Three Patch Chain, which I learned was from Kim Brackett's book Scrap-Basket Bounty.  I ordered the book through Amazon and had it the next day. 

That quilt needed just 2 inch squares or 2 inch by 3 1/2 inch rectangle.  Two inch strips it is! I grabbed the 2 inch strips and squares from the scrap saver system and started cutting the parts for that quilt too.

I finished the scraps on the table, all that is left are fat quarters, and larger that need to be put away.  I then tackled a shoe box.

Tamed and emptied that one.

Grabbed another small flat box, and emptied that one too.  I bought some little trays to hold the parts for the scrap quilts I was working on.

 I sewed a few squares and rectangles together for the Three Patch Chain.

Since I chain piece I saw this handy little gadget and ordered it a while back.  It uses an old rotary cutter blade and you can use it to cut those threads between units that you have chain pieced.  

When not in use you can flip it into the base.

I finally found some fabric for my background for the Tiny Tree and ordered it.  I just loved the white with the snowflake of different colors.  But of course I saw the red and had to have some of that too.

Speaking of shopping who doesn't love shopping for a cause?  Sharon at Daisy Cottage Quilting shares her pups on Instagram all the time.  She has a gorgeous Golden Retriever Skylar, and a little white dog, maybe a Maltese? named Daisy.  Anyway Skylar ate something she shouldn't have, and ended up at the emergency vets, and requiring emergency surgery followed by a couple of days she just wasn't doing great so remained at the veterinarian, I can just imagine the vet bill. What better way to help them with their vet bills than buying from her Etsy shop?

A fat quarter pack of Cherry Lemonade, the bee print fabric from My Redwork Garden and the spirals is from the line To Be Jolly.  Sharon announced that they sold so much that they had more than enough to cover Skylar's vet bill.  

Today I had off again, other than a vet visit for Bobbin the day was wide open.  I decided to work on my tiny tree since I had background fabric.

All sewn together and even quilted.  Just a simple stitch in the ditch around all the blocks.  I still have to bind it, and I think it looks a little lopsided, but was fun to kind of finish something, and use up some scraps.    

I think I have some more scraps to tame.


  1. WOW you are taming those scraps for sure...nice! hugs, Julierose

  2. I ate this post up with a big spoon! Love scraps and management, your widdle tree is adorbs, the plans and new space. all good things!

  3. Excellent job taming those scraps!! It's a big job, but so worth it!

  4. A free room. That's exciting. Loving that tree. So cute.

  5. Your little tree is adorable 😍. A friend and I have joined the sew your stash at Border Creek and fabric is being cut at a good pace. It’s so nice to her a room for your sewing machine and all the stuff that goes with it. Congrats.

  6. You have been very busy! Having an extra empty room is a big score for you. I'm amazed that you managed to get some sewing done, too. Those spool blocks are really pretty in the batik fabric. You are so inspiring to me!

  7. WOW, you've been so busy. I'm like you with my scraps - just pile them into storage without sorting them, and I need to change that! I didn't realise Charity was taking up so much room in your house. You'll be feeling a great sense of relief having that space back again. Your Tree is looking great :-)

  8. I actually love to make things from my scraps but trust me they are not organized. I love the projects you are taking on and so happy you get a sewing room on the main floor....more sewing for you I can see. Once you have yours organized, come here and do mine???

  9. Love the spool blocks and of course the tree. I can’t believe you had time to sew with all that cutting and organizing! Nicely done.

  10. Hi again Colette! Wow, that was a lot of stuff that went out the door for charity. I'm so glad someone could step up to take over for you. You did fabulous on the scrap taming!! I'm so proud of you. Look at all the projects you have gathered together to get started on when you have time. ~smile~ Roseanne


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