Scrappy Sunday

A rather mundane, but hugely practical, interpretation of our scrappy theme today.  Meet “Grandma’s Red Bag” – hastily made from leftover strips and chunks of fabric about six years ago and much-travelled since then.  It has seen use as an overnight bag, shopping bag, travel tote, sewing bag but it’s most important function is to carry treats, comics and silly gifts for Barbara’s two grandsons.

This was very satisfying (and easy) to make and has held up well to hard use.  It might be time to use up some more strips and scraps and make another……

Before Christmas Barbara received a stunningly smart quilters bag from one of her students.  To call this bag scrappy probably does it an injustice – several different fabrics  may have been used but they have been carefully chosen and the overall effect is very handsome. It holds an amazing amount of “stuff” as you can see and has already travelled many miles.  Thank you Pat B!!

And that’s it for our scrappiness today!  Back to gathering up and organising all the scraps that have taken over in our sewing spaces during the recent festivities.

Happy stitching!

 

Scrappy Sunday doodles

Hopefully by now technology has been playing nicely (for a change) and the January Doodles are up on our doodles page. We thought we would introduce a new element to our Scrappy Sunday posts by adding in a scrappy version of the monthly doodle.

This month’s doodle is based on eight-pointed stars and the two blocks turned into a quilt might look like this –

jan blues a

But if we change those controlled blues to lots of blues and put them into a quilt then we could get something like this

Jan doodle blues a

Not very different but (possibly) more interesting.

Or we could go mad and use up lots of scraps from our scrap sacks and we might end up with something like this.

jan doodle multi b

A bit riotous? But using the same background fabric tames them a bit. Or you can try the third way . . . a more controlled palette than the multi-coloured one but add a little more colour into the blues.

jan blue and pink

You can download a doodle to colour here. And if you fancy making the quilt – or just a couple of 12 inch blocks – then you can download the templates for the Le Moyne Star here and the Four Stars block here.

Scrappy Sundays

Lots of reviewing and planning at this time of year – over on our Doodles page you’ll find our selection of this years doodles. Over here it’s the last Scrappy Sunday of 2019 before we rev up our scrappiness for 2020.

Just the smallest scraps today from a mostly vintage piece that Barbara conjured up several years ago. It began with several vintage Hourglass blocks bought at International Quilt Festival, Houston. The blocks/units were machine pieced from black and white “mourning” prints. After just owning the blocks/units for a number of years Barbara finally decided she could be brave and actually use them to make something! Three new blocks were made, changing the units around in the third block. Scraps of both old and new reproduction fabrics were used for the setting, borders and binding. This piece is a great example of our theory that scraps work really well together when you restrict the colour palette or keep a colour theme.

Scrappy Sundays with Young Quilters

We know you are all busy at this time of year but Chris has been searching her archive of Young Quilter patterns for things that are quick and easy to make and can be adapted for children of various ages – which may (or may not, of course) keep them occupied for a few precious minutes.

Way outside Chris’s comfort zone of machine patchwork these involve hand stitching and are based on that perennial old favourite – the Suffolk Puff. Remember you don’t have to use your fabric scraps for these if working with young children – felt works well too and doesn’t require turning under a seam.

Grab some scraps and get started. First up is a Suffolk Puff wreath – you can stuff them with wadding or leave them flat. Draw round anything circular from a cup to a dinner plate to make the initial template. The photos are of ‘works-in-progress’ as the finished articles have long since vanished along with the their photos.

Or you can make trees

tree layout

You can, of course, make different sizes of SP and pile them one on top of the other from largest to smallest to make a 3D tree – photos of this idea have also long since disappeared along with the tree!

Lots of these Suffolk Puffs can be joined in a long string to make a garland – add in different sizes for variety, or stitch (staple?) them to a ribbon with perhaps beads threaded in between . . . ?

The there is the felt Christmas Pudding (looking a bit blurry, but you get the idea)

complete pudding a

And Christmas Bells (although these are circles not ‘Puffs’)

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You can find patterns for these and more free to download on our sister site – Meadowside Designs.

And if you have scrap wadding why not turn the larger pieces into snowmen – decorate them (with felt, fabric or pen) and stitch several together to make a ‘garland’, or just hang from the tree. You can download a snowman template here or you can download more YQ ideas here  – the snowman is included in this project booklet (and apologies, I have just realised that a couple of pages have been repeated).

Let your imagination (or that of the children) run riot – keep calm and carry on stitching!

Scrappy Sunday – more vintage

Our remit for Scrappy Sunday was quite wide-ranging, but Barbara seems to have got stuck on scrappy vintage – possibly no surprise as The Cupboard at the Rural Office contains a lot of exactly that!  So this Sunday we’re featuring one of the first vintage quilts Barbara ever acquired.  No provenance, bought at a general antiques fair in 1984, fabrics are all furnishing weight wools and chenille, cotton wadding, pieced strippy back, linear scallop quilting across the whole piece. Enjoy!

Scrappy Sunday

It seems to be December already. Again! So I suppose the Scrappy Sundays ought to look at using up some of those red, green and white scraps that we will have accumulated. Chris was playing with these when making the braid strips the other week but if we go back another couple of weeks there were Christmassy (oops, said the C word) scraps used in some of the Dresden Plate blocks.

These may (or may not) be destined to be turned into a runner or table mats at some unspecified time in the (distant) future.

But the Dresden Plate can be turned into other useful things at this time of year. Such as a wreath

Dresden wreath 2Dresden wreath

or a tree skirt

Dresden mini tree skirtDresden tree skirt

The big one is still lacking its ribbon – and may well continue to lack its ribbon!

If you would like a guide/pattern to making either of these you can download it here.

Scrappy Sundays – Braid

Strips and hexagons again this week – but not at the same time. Braid is an excellent way to use up left over strips, particularly those of different widths. Chris was demonstrating this at the weekend’s quilt show in Eccleshall. Starting with a triangle (these ones cut from 5 inch squares as they were available) it involves sewing strips to alternate sides of that triangle and trimming as you go. Chris had a bag of assorted green strips and a bag of assorted red strips beside her and just picked from each bag in turn and at random. To get the chevron effect half the triangles were started with the green on the left hand side and half with it on the right.

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These sections were cut to the width and length of the ruler available on the day, which was a small one, but you can make your strips any length or width you like – the width is determined largely by the size of triangle you start with. If you make your strip really long (bed length) you may find it starts to bend like a banana by the time it gets beyond 4 foot – take care with the pressing to try to correct this; also, with luck, when you join all your bendy long strips together you can fudge/block (in extremis – dampen it slightly, pin it to the carpet so it is square and straight, leave it to dry) the whole thing straight!

2019-11-17 11.30.48

You can be a little more ordered with your braid and cut all the strips the same width to start with.

block c

quilt 1

You can piece the strips with contrast fabrics.

block d

quilt 11

quilt 6

You can add squares to the ends of one set of strips so they travel along the centre of the braid.

block b

quilt 2

You could make the strips on one side of the braid an equal width and the strips on the other side alternate wide and narrow and light and dark.

quilt 7

quilt 8

When you put the strips together you could separate sections with plain ‘sashing’.

You could make very ordered (in terms of colour and width) braid strips which can give a totally different look.

quilt 9quilt 10

But didn’t someone say ‘hexagons?

Yes, you can make braid strips with these! They do need to be the same size, and actually they are half-hexagons . . . . but  . . . !

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These ones were cut from jelly roll strips, so there’s another way to use them up.

And if you fancy (or have to) use completely random strips in a variety of colours? Try to use darks on one side and lights on the other if you can.

And those pieces Chris was making last weekend – they may end up as a runner a bit like this

runner