Did you know it is national scrap week? It is not. I made that up. But it should be a thing. I’m making it a thing. A bag of scraps is food for thought, inspiration, an invitation to happenstance, possibility thinking. It always has been for me.
January is an organizing month here. I am sorting through pretty much everything but mostly fabric scraps. Choosing what to keep, what to let go of and making what I keep as tidy and orderly as scraps can be. I’m ironing my scraps. I secretly love to iron. Not my clothes, I’m permanently, slightly, comfortably disheveled. I like to iron scraps. It’s a little ridiculous. Lets call it meditative. Or it could also be called productive procrastination…
And sometimes not so productive procrastination. It frequently devolves into spending a lot of time pondering a very small and fabulous scrap. I love this scrap. Now I have to make a tiny pair of pants so I can add this patch to them. And then I have to make a lamb to put in the pants. You see how this goes…
There are some pieces I can’t call scraps. Some are so exquisite I call them fragments. Something left over from a life with marks from other hands and days.
If you have found your way here it is likely you have scraps too. In celebration of the inaugural scrap festival I’ve collected 10 ideas for your scraps. Let’s start with 3 projects for your most special scraps, your fragments.
1. sweet needle books – for needles and ideas and memories.
2. amulets – little stitch experiments I started making last summer. I begin with no shape in mind, just layering my favorite fragments, experimenting and playing with compositions. Then I trim them and sew a backing. I find the compositions are more interesting if I approach them this way rather than beginning with the shape. I made a little template of the shapes I use for you – you can download that here. And for cord I usually use this waxed thread (PS I get a tiny commission if you buy it through that link, you can also find it in craft stores).
3. ethereal garlands – for the tiniest scraps, the un-sewables, the little whispers you can’t let go of.
4. string quilts- there is a full tutorial here for this quick and easy flip and sew technique for your longish scraps.
5. Once you have pieced together a bunch of scraps you can make a fabric basket – you know what you could put in it? Scraps.
6. marvelous fabric compositions – let happenstance be your guide and find inspiration in these stitched pieces by Specks and Keepings. The left-overs from garment sewing are used as is. I love the compositions. There is magic in those accidental shapes and relationships.
7. french seam pillow cases – for your larger scraps. This is on my domestic sewing list.
8. jar opener – so clever – made from fabric scraps and rubber shelf liner.
9. fabric twine – for your tiny scraps. And netflix. And wine.
10. And finally – it is illegal to do a blog post about fabric scrap projects without including fabric bunting. Plus I love it – so sweet to make for little folks.
Find 4 more scrap project ideas here. And if you have a project to recommend please leave it in the comments.