Thursday, March 8, 2007

Scraps and UFT's

Jenni at Fairybread asked me how I knew which scraps to cut up and which ones I should leave whole because I might want that fabric just as is for a later project. Good question Jenni!

I have my fabric folded "just so" on my shelves. For those of you who've not seen it before here is a picture. As long as I can continue to fold the fabric on the original fold lines so it is neat looking and I can get a folded edge that can be seen on the edge of the stack I don't call it a "scrap". I fold it up on the existing folds and put it back in the stack. I know some people strip the remainder of a fat quarter as soon as they've cut into it. I don't do that.

The second picture shows what some of my scraps look like. These are truly scraps - small, oddball shaped pieces, left over half square triangle squares, long skinny pieces, crumbs and strings. That's why it takes so long to trim them into shapes - there are lots and lots of little pieces in that stack you saw in my previous post. Once I finish cutting up all of these I'm going to keep up with the scraps - nothing will go into a general bin to be "dealt with later". That's how I ended up with the mess I'm dealing with now. Those of you who've been reading my blog for awhile know that I can't bear to throw away any piece of fabric larger than 1" per side. I know - I'm a bit crazy and demented when it comes to fabric - I can't help it. I'm an addict.

I thought I'd share some UFT's tonight - projects that are not finished tops. The first two are from a friendship exchange and the third group was made by me.

The appliqué pieces are done on a calico background from the '80's that I provided. The theme was "spring" and they could do whatever they wanted. I love the blocks but the background makes them really busy. It's time I took them out of the drawer, put them up on the design wall and figured out how to "tame" them.

The second group was done long ago in the late 1980's. The block is called Grandmother's Choice if I remember right. I got it out of a Quilters Newsletter. I gave everyone a baggie with the white pieces already cut out and asked them to add brights from their own stash. These were from the days of templates - I gave everyone plastic templates for the brights. I don't think I have the pattern or the templates any more, so even though I have one baggie of white pieces left I don't think I can make another block. So I need to figure out what to do with these 7 blocks.

The last set of blocks I made when I was doing a monthly $5 quilt at a shop nearby. One of those where as long as you bring back the finished block you got the next kit for free. The kits I got were for 12" blocks in Civil War reproductions. Each month that we brought a second block from the same pattern in we got our name in a drawing for a prize. I chose to reduce each pattern to a 6" block and make it from 30's reproductions. Here is a picture of the top I made from the 12" blocks - the first picture in the post - I'm sure you can identify some of the patterns. After 7 months the shop closed. They gave us the rest of the block patterns but I no longer had any motivation to shrink each pattern down to 6" size and duplicate the rest of the blocks.

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Gratitudes:
1. Tomorrow is Friday!
2. Breakfast for dinner tonight
3. The forsythia is in full bloom
4. An entire weekend coming up for quilting
5. Low fat pepper bacon

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30 comments:

Dawn said...

I want to come play in that fabric stash!!! :)

The Chicken Lady said...

Wowwee! You've been a busy blogging chick! How do you get all the typing AND quilting done?! I'm impressed! :) Love the blocks and tops! :)

Carolyn said...

I always love seeing your fabric shelves...the green shelves are such fun!

Susan said...

Beautiful stash organization. Nice "what to do with them" blocks too. Really noticing that all of them are groups of 7 - kind of cool. Wish I could help. All I can think of are table runners.

keryn said...

I have the same attitude to my fabric; if I can't get that nice folded edge any more it has to join the scraps. I admit to being a bit obsessional about folding my fabric neatly; I have put off doing a Ruth McDowell type quilt because I can't bear the thought of folding up the odd shaped pieces of fabric that would be left afterwards.

Lily said...

Yegads Patti! Your stash is divine...and organised!

With those brights on white blocks I'd made little totes or purses as gifts for people.

Sad that the shop closed after the seventh month!

Vicki W said...

Love your fabric stash! Like you, I can't toss out a bit of fabric. glad I am not alone!

The Calico Cat said...

I've got a layout idea for those 7 blocks - needs more background (Setting triangles) but no more templates...

Carole said...

Your fabric stash looks too neat and unused. Let me come ove and play in it a bit! lol Are those the only UFOs you have? As for scraps, I have a bin that is begining to overflow again. I managed to convince a good friend of mine to make weaved rugs (my DH made the frame for her) and she loves it. I cut my backing scraps into 1& 1//2 strips to be weaved. The rug is coming out beautifully. It greatly reduced the scrap bin. Now, I think I need to do another clean up. I do intent to make a rug but there's only so many hobbies I can practice at once. Keep well!

Leslie said...

The Spring blocks are fun... it's true we rarely use calicos for the background anymore. *shrug* What about setting them with lattice strips of unbleached muslin with a 'reads like a solid' print set stone at the intersections?

YankeeQuilter said...

When I look at the photo of your stash and I think of the mess I have upstairs I am really embarressed! I really like the setting you used with your civil war blocks. Sorry to hear the shop closed :(

Suze said...

Such wonderful organization. Naturally I picked up another tip from you when I saw the utensil tray with the tools in it.

You really amaze me. I feel the way you do about scraps. Even those too small to use I save to make pillows for the animal shelter.

Thanks for the joy of looking at your stash.

Anne said...

Oh, I want to play in your stash!!! It looks so organised and comforting to play in :o) Unlike mine who is in drawers and boxes... No room for shelves... And you have to stop (NOT!) showing photos of beautiful quilts and quilt blocks, I want to make!!! And seeing as you already have me started on the hour glasses, I really can't cope with anymore :o)

Finn said...

Hi patti, I'm so behind on reading and commenting everywhere...sorry! I'll try to do better, at least it's time I'm using to sew..*S*

Love the picture of your stash, it's gorgeous in it's neatness, I'd love to come and play. You are getting lots done, and with retirement looming(and a new granddaughter) you'll be busier than ever.
About your blocks with the springy theme, how about setting them as you desire, and then tea dying the top?? Maybe one of those teas that has the pinkish undertones?? Kind of a very faded pale brownish rose?
Just a thought....or you can sent them to me...LOL Big hugs, Finn

Judy said...

Thanks for answering the question. It's one I had too! I bought bins today to start loading with cut up scraps as soon as I get around to cutting some of them!

The second batch of bright blocks would look great with some really bright sashing and corner stones and a wide primary kids print border for Sophie. That would use 6 of the blocks and she'll need a nice drag along quilt that can go anywhere and everywhere and can be popped in the wash.

mereth said...

Your shelves of fabric are so beautiful!I'd love to keep my fabric like that, but we have to contend with mice and moths and other beasties so mine's mostly in plastic tubs.
Good luck keeping the scraps under control, I too had to dig myself out from years of "I'll trim that later...." and I will never let them build up again.

Cynthia said...

i love the photo of your stash. I have no where near that much fabric although i wish i had:-)

I love all the blocks you've shown and look forward to seeing what you do with them.

Pam said...

Great stash. I do the same, if I can fold it back up the way it was before it goes back on the shelf.

It was so interesting to see the different UFO's you have from years ago. It is hard to get motivated to finish something that you started and stopped so long ago. And you don't really want to invest too much more time into them.. where is the quilting fairy when you need her :))

Helen in the UK said...

Your stash is so beautifully organised ... I want to come browse it in!! Love your jewel coloured blocks. Hope you come up with something great to set them - they deserve to be shown off :)

Sweet P said...

Great looking stash. I wouldn't have to go shopping for months if I had your stash.

As for the loeftover blocks I wonder if you could make a sampler quilt with other UFOs you have.

Esteemarlu said...

What a great stash it looks like mine but mine isn't that organized.I really like the Spring blocks they are too cute.

Darlene - Dazed Quilter said...

I keep saying that I'm going to play with you and your stash! Incredible!

Tracey @ozcountryquiltingmum said...

Now that stash is really something. I was thinking about applying to the stash reduction ring but I don't think I can compete. At least it's very organozed so very user friendly. I can't throw anything away either. What a pain about the no blogging at work thing, still visit me though!! Tracey

Pam said...

The clothes line block makes me smile...

Libby said...

I keep my fabric folded in a similar (but less neat) fashion. Then I'm surprised when I pull out a piece and find that there's really not as much as I thought *s* Never fear - there's plenty of other choices.

Diana said...

What a marvelous stash you have! I, too, would love to come and play in it.

When I saw those Grandmother's Choice blocks I suddenly realized that they are the same as some vintage blocks I bought several years ago at an antique store in Illinois. I only have three of them, and I've never done anything with them except take them out from time to time to admire.

Linda_J said...

OHHH those grandmother's choice blocks are my favs of the UFTs. Nice clear colors.

I do much the same as you do with regards to fold it or cut it. If it can be folded it goes back with the yardage. If it is in a kit I will be using it goes in the project bag in case I have made a mistake in cutting and then back to yardage. Small stuff is dealt with as I am cutting--no scrap bag ever again for me. I'm cured of that!!

Hope your finger is healing well--stitches out soon? OH and thanks for the hint about clicking on the time stamp. I sure didnt know that but you better believe I will remember your suggestion!

Holly said...

Enjoyed seeing your shelves with your stash. Your UFT's look awesome. Looking forward to seeing the posted when done. I love the clothes hanging on the line. Cute!

Lynn E said...

I too have the same affliction with itty bits of fabric. I literally have to talk myself into walking to the trashbin and then letting them go. Love the shelves full of stash

Jen said...

I realize this is an oolllllddd post, but someone linked me to your "scraps" section. Your fabric is all folded so nice; what size are you folding it to? Using a folding board or ruler too I'm guessing?

I just got a new cabinet so I'm trying to determine the size I want to use.