I was reading Pam’s recent Sunday Stash post after listening to her podcast and thinking that perhaps I should rethink my scrap storage. I bought a little drawer system some time ago, which works pretty well.
Still, random sizes of scraps doesn’t work that well except for mosaic piecing. Piles of scraps shoved in a drawer are not fun.
Pam and Bonnie Hunter cut their scraps into certain sizes. Pam has talked about the sizes she uses, which differ from Bonnie’s slightly. Bonnie calls her system the Scrap User’s System, which is a good moniker. I have just never embraced that method, because I never seem to have the right project for some of the sizes. And I don’t want to make projects just because I have certain sizes of patches.
Bonnie Hunter Scrap Saver Systems:
- strips in sizes of 1.5″, 2″, 2.5″, 3″ and 3.5″. These are strips 12″ or longer.
- Patches 1.5″, 2″, 2.5″, 3.5″ squares
- bricks in 2″X3.5″ and 2.5″ X 4.5″
Bonnie Hunter writes “*Note* Just for your information, did you know that you could get three 1.5″ strips, three 2″ strips and three 2.5″ strips all from a 1/2 yard of fabric and it would be out of your nagging stash, into your strip bins and ready to be used? If you really want to slice up larger pieces, this is the way to go. Cut a few slices of different sizes and feed them into their bins! You’ll be using those strips in no time.”
Pam’s Scrap System:
- 2″, 3 1/2″, 5″ and 10″ squares
- 2 1/2″x WOF strips
- random 2 1/4″ strips (since I got rid of strings I will keep 2 1/4″ wide strings to use for scrappy bindings)
As I was cleaning out my magazine pile, I came across the magazine I bought last year and was reminded of Joan Ford’s system. It is a little different and much simpler than Bonnie Hunter’s. I did a pretty thorough review after I bought the magazine. With this system we have the following sizes:
- Squares: 2″, 3.5″ and 5″
Of course, I do cut certain sizes from new yardage and have let that practice bleed over to some scraps as I make them. I don’t usually go to the scrap bin later and do a bunch of cutting, though I do think that would be a good idea. Generally, I cut the following out of new fabric:
- 1.5″ squares – all colors
- 2″ blue, purple and green squares
- 2.5″ squares – all colors
- 3″x3″ squares – used fabrics (for FOTY)
- 5.5″x3″ rectangles – new fabric (for FOTY)
I do use the scraps from the actual scrap bin for various things. I sew my scraps using the mosaic piecing method to make journal covers and other small items. I also fill in weird places on the backs of quilts using scraps.
If I make a scrap quilt, I want it come out like Scrapitude in its cheerfulness and fun style. I do NOT use Bonnie Hunter’s method of just grabbing any color and using it. I want my quilts to look good and that means choosing pieces carefully. That is designing.
I do believe in using up my fabric. I have a working collection and not just a collection so the above would make sense for fabrics that I like, but aren’t going to be used for a project.
The other sad part is that my scraps are bugging me and I need to do something about them. Pulling all of these systems together