Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Taming the Scraps

When I moved in this house last year this is what my scrap boxes looked like--

Now, I don't have a newer photo so you'll have to take my word for it, but at this point only the purple, pink and brown boxes will close.  In fact, the green, blue and black & white boxes are so stuffed they now stand on the shelves alone.  I can't put another box on top because the scraps fill the space from the bottom of the box to the top of the shelves above. I'm afraid to breathe on them for fear of being buried in an avalanche of scraps!  It's a lot of scraps.......... a LOT!  So I needed a plan to tame this crazy mess!

This lovely book landed at my house shortly after it was published & I've pulled it out often and pretty much just drooled over all the photos. It's just filled up with really wonderful patterns & eventually I'd like to use at least three of them.  

For my first foray into the scrap boxes, I've decided on this quilt.  It's called The Missing U and is made up of large single color slab construction blocks. 

Since the sheer volume of scraps feels pretty overwhelming right now, I've decided to work with one color at a time.  I started with the RED box.  After sorting through the scraps, tossing bits that were just ugly, pressing all the pieces and making piles of teeny pieces, thick strings, thin strings, chunks of various sizes I discovered something unexpected: there are a LOT of solid scraps in those boxes.  I decided to take all the solid bits out and will deal with them separately and at another time.  Right now I just want to play with the prints.  

Here's my first three blocks!  Right now the blocks are 16.5 inches square, but I might choose to trim them down a bit at a later date. 

PURPLE was the next color!  The purple blocks proved to be a challenge.  While the purple box had quite a bit in it I quickly discovered that it's all the same maybe 10 prints and the pieces were small.  The purple blocks took quite a while to make due to the small pieces.  All in all, I was feeling tired of purple by the time I finished these up!


This is going to be a relaxed no deadline kind of project.  I'll pull out a box and play in the scraps as the mood strikes me.  This kind of quilt block construction takes a bit of time and makes a grand mess all over the sewing room, but it is really fun. All in all, I think it will be a very enjoyable project and someday I'll have a really fantastic slab quilt!

I'll be sorting out and pressing PINK scraps next!  Wish me luck!  

Happy Stitching!
Staci

12 comments:

Vroomans' Quilts said...

I can relate to the not closing the lid problem - which means those 'go to' quilts need making. But not enough hours in the day. I love where you are going with these blocks and that most importantly - you are having fun with it.

Kate said...

alright, way to go !!

Ranch Wife said...

I hear your call to tame the scraps, although its a bit muffled from under your pile of pretty scraps. :) You've made a valiant, and beautiful , start and I would do well to follow your example.

Lisa C said...

Sometimes this thoughtless way of sewing (even though it isn't thoughtless - you just don't have to match seams!) is the perfect ticket. Great job.

Sarah Craig said...

Such pretty blocks! I need to do this too - my scraps are totally out of control!

Jacque T said...

I have this book too, Sunday Morning Quilts and it is one of my favorites. It's one of the few books that I want to do everything in it!! Great start on your slab quilt Staci!! Keep up the good work!!

margaret said...

Love these blocks you are making.how lucky are you with all those scraps, I ave a few but they all more than fit into one container!

Mary said...

I was drowning in scraps too - buying more plastic tubs to keep them in. Hiding them in the yardage tubs, lol. I put the Scrap Therapy system in place, the book is called Cut The Scraps. You precut those scraps, and ONLY the scraps, not the fat quarters and yardage, into commonly used sizes, like 5" squares, 2.5" squares, 4 x 2" etc. Then bagged by size, and by color. It took a long time to cut those scraps, worked a little each day. But, since then I have made no fewer than 9 -- that is NINE - queen sized quilts from those scrap bins. I emptied all but 3 small tubs. One has 2.5 inch strips in it; one has light colored squares & rectangles of various sizes; one has darker colored squares and rectangles. ALl neatly cut and pressed, just grab a bag and away you go. It made a huge difference. Now I cut all the scrap fabrics after each project.

Mary said...

LOVE your blocks, by the way; great quilt design for them.

Archie the wonder dog said...

I love those blocks!

Show Me Damani said...

Good use of cloth and time, I loved the quilt

Show Me Damani said...

Good use of cloth and time, I loved the quilt