Quilting Outside the Box

After learning how to quilt with a simple, yet chaotic pattern, I wanted to experiment with scrap quilting.  Is it silly to purchase perfectly good fabric, cut it up, and sew it back together?  From that perspective, yes, it is silly.  But quilting is a therapeutic hobby and an art that I’ll probably never master.  I do however want to be able to scrap quilt old t-shirts, serviceable uniforms, and other clothing/curtains/etc. into functional yet aesthetically pleasing quilts for use around the house.  Scrap quilting goes back decades (centuries?) to a time where nothing was wasted and everything was repurposed.  I still have the quilt my great-grandmother made for me out of old clothing.  Nostalgia inspires me to attempt what she so beautifully handcrafted.




I had to start somewhere.  So in order to “teach myself” scrap quilting, I needed a quick and easy project.  No pattern…just go rogue!  I decided to make a lap quilt for my grandmother, who is too sweet to point out flaws in the finished product.  I visited Tea Time Quilting in the Heights for fabric and batting.  I just love their pre-grouped fabric fat quarters.




I was going for a gingham pattern with alternating light and dark patterns, or something to that effect.  I cut my fabric into 4″ squares using a rotary cutter (LOVE that thing), then grouped and sewed the squares into larger squares.  Fold, stack, line up, cut, stack, sew, iron, stack, cut, sew, iron, group, lay out, sew, iron, add border, admire work.  Easy enough…





Not having enough time to send to Kaye (Trixie’s Quilting Room) for quilting before visiting my grandmother for her birthday, I attempted straight line quilting on my Singer.  So basically I sewed a grid of straight lines on either side of small square rows.  This made me want to stab my eyeballs out, burn the house down, and eat cake.  Evidently I can’t sew a straight line. What?!




It might have gone smoother if I hadn’t been in a hurry, which I was, or if my squares lined up with each other in all the corners, which they didn’t.  But as long as you don’t look too closely with a critical eye (my grandmother is not likely to do so), the quilt is just fine.  I closed it up using Beech Tree Lane Handmade’s machine binding tutorial and jumped in the car to head to Nonna’s.  Yeah, I was that rushed.




And you know what?  She loved it.  I mean she LOVED it!  So what’s next on the project list in my little amateur quilt corner?  I have my old Air Force uniforms that are no longer within current regulations (read: unserviceable), and I’d like to make a scrap quilt from them.  Have you done any scrap quilting?  And if you’ve done scrap quilting with mixed fabric thicknesses like my old uniforms above, did you experience any issues?  Stay tuned!


2 Comment

  1. Debbie Smith says:

    Loved your quilt and your quilting blog!

    1. Sheila says:

      Thank you Debbie!

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