Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Very Scrappy Quilt

Sometimes people criticize quilters for cutting large pieces of fabric into smaller pieces, then sewing those small pieces into a larger piece to make a quilt. We quilters all know that's just plain nonsense! But I have a project that used already small pieces of fabric scraps to make a quilt. The idea came from Elizabeth at She made a large floor pillow with this technique; I made a small-ish quilt. It can really be made in any size you wish.

Here is a photo of the finished quilt top.

Now I will show you how I got there!

I used my blue scraps for this quilt. I didn't sort them at all, or care if the blues went together or not. The above photo shows my little fabric bowl full of blue scraps sitting next to my sewing machine. Next to the fabric scraps is a pile of one-inch strips of off-white fabric. This fabric is leftovers from a sheet that I had re-purposed into a comforter cover.

This photo shows my first two pieces of blue fabric with a strip of off-white between them. This is the basic step for the whole project.

I sewed the 1" strip to one piece of blue, then pressed toward the blue. The 1" strips were all approximately 20" long, so they simply got trimmed down to the size I needed when I sewed them to the blue pieces.

Here is the first set of fabric sewn together and pressed.

Next I laid them on the cutting mat and trimmed one side to a straight edge. As you can see, I angled my cut, which adds to the fun and scrappiness of this quilt.

Now we're missing a couple photos, but the next step was to sew a 1" strip to my straight edge. Then I made another set of two (or maybe three) fabrics, made a straight edge, and sewed it to the first set I'd sewn. Get it?

And here is a finished block. You may notice that the block itself is not square either, but has a slanted edge on the bottom. That's ok! It will all work out in the end! Also, I have no idea exactly how big this square is. I just kept sewing fabric pieces until it looked about right. Really, this project is so forgiving! Which also makes it very liberating. Just grab a piece of fabric and sew it to the next one! It's so much fun.

Here's a close-up of one of the blocks. I particularly liked this fairy fabric. I remember it from quite a few projects ago!

And here's another shot of the finished quilt top. Now I just need to add borders and finish it up. If you look closely, you can see that the blocks and rows are not square and do not line up exactly. I used the same one-inch strips to join three blocks together into a row, then evened up the bottom and top edges. Another one-inch strip joined the rows into a whole quilt top. You may notice that the rows and columns are not parallel or even with each other. But it doesn't matter: it all gets trimmed square in the end.


  1. I like scappy! If you ever need small scaps, I have plenty!!! This turned our really nice.

  2. Thanks, Harmony. It's great to use up small scraps. I'll keep you in mind if I need a different color of scraps!

  3. Ok Jan, I have to tell you that I can't stop thinking about this quilt. I really think I am going to have to try it. Here I am back at your blog to read your instructions again. I am thinking of making a quilt in all purples for my oldest daughter and am thinking of trying this. Do you think I need solid for the strips or can I use a print. Maybe a print would get too messy. Hmmm. I need to think about it.

    You are the best! Keep up all the great inspiration! :)

  4. Hi Teresa. Not sure, but the strips might be best done in a solid. Give the eye a place to rest. But, who knows for sure! Be sure to check out the blog I cited where I got the directions in the first place.