Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Scrap Processing and Recovery

 In the last post I had just acquired a large tub of scraps, and this is what was hiding inside...in strips and chunks and stuff. I supplied the thread. 

The tub was a bit like a commercial Easter basket...where you can see a cute stuffed bunny, a chocolate bunny and egg. When you dig further, you find smaller chocolate eggs and jelly beans...and a whole lot of tangled plastic grass. In this case, there was a massive tangle of fraying strips. And many of the strips were accidentally cut as boomerangs or tapers, hence their destiny in the scrap pile. These were perfect for trimming to the 1.5 inch strips used in this log cabin.

Here is a closeup of the log cabin blocks. As you can see, it looked like it had a lot of movement and variety when my nose was up against it...and turned static when I started looking at the blocks from a distance. And that is where the choice of the lightening set was made.

And here are the spools I made from some of the scraps. For the most part, I wanted to make more light valued spools. There were quite a few strips cut to one inch width...so these were just begging to become spools. 

And here are the leftover strips and larger cuts of fabric after making the quilt top and microspools. Not shown are the solids and various size/shaped chunks and bits.

While I had the joys of digging through scraps, Molly and Buddy had a tougher time. My sister stopped by to visit the tub of scraps in my sewing room, where she saw Molly sleeping in her princess tent. My sister laughed out loud and said that she didn't realize the tent was so small.  Molly has since required constant consoling despite the fact that her small stature (length, not width) matches her kitten branding.

However, Buddy's identity crisis is much worse. Here is Buddy nestled in the small heated bed. If you visit Cathy's blog (Crazy by Design) from a week ago, you will see her cat Alfie completely filling a similar bed. Is it a small bed like Buddy's...or the larger version? Is Alfie a stand-in for Clifford, the big red dog? Buddy wondered aloud if he was normal and maybe his sister is a pipsqueak, but he was drowned out by derisive laughter.

Wednesday, November 10, 2021

Scrap Processing

 Most of the scraps in the tub are left over strips and hunks, but there are a few bits of construction thrown in. And yes I am also finding one inch and 1.25 inch strips, and this block explains why. And I can see why this one bit of selvedge was saved.

And so far, this is my favorite of the prints that I have uncovered in the scrap bin.

Meanwhile Molly has abandoned her princess tent to wallow in wads of batting. Last week Molly sent an unsolicited box of fabric to Cathy at Sane, Crazy, Crumby Quilting, only to have the fabric hoarding space continuum whiplash and fill the void in the cat's play area with the new scrap bin. 

Monday, November 8, 2021


One of the less glamorous aspects of quilting is accounting. I usually keep my accounting to a minimum, except for the microspool project where I am attempting to have a charm quilt with no duplicates. Half of the microspools are light in value and half are darker. To make a 60 inch square quilt I need 1600 total microspools. And after taking out duplicates, I have almost 900 light value ones and over 1,000 darker microspools. This means it is time to put it together.

These are the duplicates.

I also put together all the strip sets I need to make the clown kaleidoscope quilt. The next step is to cut the strip sets and background fabric into triangles.

Last but not least I cut pairs of 2.5 inch strips to make more Kaffe Fassett Shard blocks. And to accomplish this, I apparently needed to have about every piece of Kaffe fabric or similar laid out on the floor in front of the design wall.

So with the microspools no longer at the sewing machine and no more need for clown strips or Kaffe mountains, I set out to clean up the sewing room. First, I found the sewing machine table. I also found a micro kitten project and a couple others I had started. Next, I started to clear off the cutting table...with the hope that once clear I could layer a few quilts. And last but not least, Buddy sorely wanted his play area in front of the design wall back so he could chase his laser mouse and feathers and mice.

And yes, I managed to put every piece of fabric away until I had a lapse...

I may have noticed that there was a quilter's estate sale over the weekend. (In this case, a moving/downsizing estate sale.) But to give you a sense of the scope, there was a room of fabric where one bookcase, floor to ceiling, was neutrals. Other bookcases were loaded with fat quarters etc. But as it turns out I have absolutely no need or room for more fabric. So I did not go...on Saturday.

Resistance was weaker on Sunday. I thought it would be good to get out...only to find lots of people lined up 45 minutes before opening, with limited parking in a hilly area with no sidewalks. (Most of the people were there for vintage collectibles.)  In a moment of clear thinking, I said, "oh no..." and drove off.  But I am a weak individual and within five blocks I had turned around.

And I was in the house for about a total of fifteen minutes...the first five minutes was realizing that the estate sale photos only showed about a quarter of the fabric stash, the next five minutes I stood like a deer in headlights and then I saw the scrap tub...I grabbed it, paid for it, and ran. (Plus the tub has wheels for faster flight.)

And it turns out that the bin is bottomless and refills no matter how much I take out. Buddy has lost his play area and I am cutting more microspools. A lot of the fabrics in the bin are reproduction-type, small print, single color...well suited for microspools. Also, it is fabric I have never seen before (or different color ways). So no more progress on quilts for me...I'm just doing endless laps in my infinite pool of fabric scraps.