Several of you said “yes”, you’d like to see how I store my smaller scraps, so today, I’m here to show you how I do that.
My theory is that if something isn’t organized, it’s hard to use. If I can’t readily find what I’m looking for, I’ll end up not using it, and using something else, and probably making a bigger mess in the long run.
So . . . I keep my pre-cut scraps, and my little shapes I save, fairly organized.
Most all of it lives in this end of my cutting table:
On the bottom shelf, I have a large bin for 1 1/2″ strips, a large bin for 2 1/2″ strips, and my string bucket.
The middle shelf holds little baskets with tiny pieces, sorted by color, that I use for appliqué, when my appliqué project calls for little pieces. I have cut LOTS of leaves and berries from these baskets! The five baskets hold the following color groupings:
The top shelf holds my bins for the rest of the pre-cuts. They are cut into the following sizes:
1 1/2″ squares
2 1/2″ squares
3 1/2″ squares
3 1/2″ strips
8 1/2″ squares
The 6″, 7″, and 8 1/2″ squares are in the bags on the end. The rest are in the bins, labelled. They are not sorted by color.
I also have 10″ squares in one of the drawers in my rolling cart. I use these when a pattern calls for a layer cake, or I use them to piece backings. I also use the 8 1/2″ squares to piece backings for scrap quilts.
On the other end of the cutting table, I also have a bucket for scraps of irregular shapes that I use for appliqué, (right now I’m using a lot of them in my Tile Quilt), and I also use them for “made fabric” Victoria-style.
I’m working on several scrap quilts that use various sizes, so when I’m cutting up my scraps, if any of them fit those projects, I put those pieces with those projects in their bag or bin, ready to sew.
One of my projects is called MixMash, and it uses 1 1/4″ strips, so if something is smaller than 1 1/2″, and fits my color scheme for that, it goes in there. If it’s not the colors I’m using in MixMash, then it goes into my string bucket.
AND . . . I’m making a locker-hooked rug that uses strips 1 1/8″ wide, so if the strips fit that project, I use them for that.
I save trimmed triangles, and sew them together into these little blocks:
The extra triangles I’m not using in that quilt, I give to my friend, Barb, along with all my selvages.
Some of these bins are getting quite full, so my plan this year is to make projects that will use them up, because I’m always making more scraps to put in them!
And anything smaller than all the above that really isn’t big enough to do anything with? It all goes into recycle, and one of our guild members collects it and delivers it to a place where they do something with it to make other products. So nothing goes to waste! I like that part.
Bonnie Hunter has outlined her Scrap User’s System here, if you’d like to read up on it and see if it’s for you.
Heather at the Sewing Loft has some really cute ideas for scrap storage.
You can watch Susan Claire, The Gourmet Quilter, show you how she stores her leftovers.
Do you have a system for storing your scraps?