Using up scraps

I have a confession to make. I sew a lot of garments with quilting cotton. *hangs head in shame* What can I say? I find it almost impossible to resist the lovely array of prints and colours!

Naturally, this means I have a lot of scraps of quilting cotton, left over from making said garments. (It’s true, I’m a natural hoarder. Just can’t get rid of them if they’re still big enough to be vaguely useful in some way. Even if I don’t have the faintest idea of what I’m going to do with them.)

For a while, I’ve toyed with the idea of making a quilt. After all, a quilt would be a logical way to use up scraps of quilting fabric, no?

And then I decided – 2013 is the year to do it. To make a quilt. (My first quilt!)

Conveniently enough, I then stumbled upon a quilt sewalong, with a design I rather like. The Starburt Quiltalong, by Happy Quilting Melissa. I waded through my boxes (yes, I said BOXES) of scrap fabric, unearthed all the quilting cotton scraps, sorted them into colour schemes that I liked, and chose one for this quiltalong. A mix of pinks and browns, with a bit of yellow thrown in too.

The Starburst Quiltalong is being run over several weeks, with another “assignment” each week. (I like deadlines, especially short deadlines. Stops me from getting too distracted. Most of the time.) This week’s assignment was to cut out our fabric.

First time I’ve cut fabric for a quilt! I made myself some little templates out of cardboard for the three smaller sized squares. (The cardboard wasn’t wide enough for the two biggest sizes, so I just used a ruler and my cutting mat for those.)

My random brightly coloured templates

My random brightly coloured templates

Turns out it takes a loooong time to cut heaps of squares out of scraps of fabric. You can’t just cut it all in big long lines, coz, well, scraps, y’know? You have to find ones the right size, and measure them all up and stuff. But I got there in the end.

Here’s the colours I’m using. Each set of three will make a star shape – the fabric on the left will be the centre of the star, the one in the middle is like a boarder/surround thing for it, and the one on the right is for “bursts” that radiate out from the star’s points. (The off-white underneath is for the background. For some reason, I have about 6 metres of it in my stash. Now that it’s done duty as a background for photos, I’m off to cut out the background quilt pieces from it.) I like that these are all memories of projects (all of which were dresses, now I think about it).

From left to right, this is from: Leaves and Hats dress, the March dress, Bookish Willow dress.

From left to right, this is from: All Buttoned Up dress, the March dress, and a dress I made for a friend.


I only had 6 fabrics in this colour grouping that had enough scraps for the quilt, so instead of using 12 different colours, I’ve used 6 and just mixed them up so the same ones don’t appear together.


I’m really looking forward to seeing how this all goes together! A quilting adventure, indeed.

Also, it ties in remarkably well with this months theme for the 2013 Stashbusting Challenge, using up itty bitty pieces of fabric. A happy coincidence all ’round.

9 responses to “Using up scraps

  1. Can’t wait to see how your quilt turns out! Love the starburst pattern.
    I am going the opposite direction to you ie from quilt making to dressmaking, so how can I use all my quilting scraps in garment sewing?!?

  2. Yay, I’m excited for this!! I sew a lot w/ quilting fabric too. It’s hard to resist and sometimes the fabric is not that inappropriate. I need to start quilting too – you will help motivate me. 😉

  3. So fun to be using up your scraps!! That is always a plus!!

  4. i also have a pile of quilting cotton left-overs just waiting to be turned into something, so i can’t wait to see your quilt-in-progress! so inspiring 🙂

  5. How fun! What a great way to use up scraps (and a quiltalong is the perfect way to stay motivated)!

  6. Nothing wrong with garments in quilting cotton! Please change “hangs head in shame” to “holds head with pride and eyeballs snarky sewing snobs”.

    Also, good luck with the quilt!

  7. Pingback: Geese and corners and triangles and stuff | Modern Vintage Cupcakes

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