Building a different kind of stash

It’s a new obsession – as if I needed any more, where quilting is concerned….

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Evidence of industry. I don’t think anyone will accuse me of wasting fabric scraps…

So far, all the blocks that I’ve made and planned for F²F have been paper pieced. When you’re making a block for someone else, you want to push the boat out a bit, showcase your skill a little, go the extra mile, because it’s only small and you don’t have much space to impress with, and whatever you do end up making won’t take forever anyway…

Previous experiences with paper piecing haven’t been happy. I’ve found it hard to work back to front, upside down, sewing on the back of the piece. I’ve tended to avoid even looking at PP designs. But with the end of WWF and the hard grind that went with ensuring it was completed in time, I’ve been enjoying a slower, more considered pace of working. I wanted to build a new skill and it seemed the obvious place to start. It helped to organise myself very thoroughly up front and not regard the need to unpick as a disaster, but as a valuable lesson in checking not once, but twice.

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Wanted: Good home for multiple scraps of all colours. Must be prepared to accept very small scraps and odd shapes and generate very little waste…

So, I’ve come to a decision. Alongside the blocks I’m making for F²F, I’ll be building a personal stash of 12″ blocks. There’s no colour or design theme. There’s no purpose in mind. I just want to have a basket full of gorgeousness to dip into whenever I need to make something for someone in a hurry. And 12″ blocks are great because they’re big, and versatile. You can place them straight or on point or round the outside as a border or in the middle as a central medallion.


#1: Hand drawn ‘Teardrop Star’ template – hope it works!

I’m not going to post about it whenever I make one, but I may show off a handful of them from time to time. And I’ll be really happy if anyone out there falls in love with one of them and would like to become its new owner, so please speak out if you see one that works for you. The first one is already in the pipeline, and any patterns from F²F that I think work particularly well will be repeated for my stash.

It’ll be like a little quilty holiday from whatever big project I’m currently engrossed in. Not quite a portable hexie project, but something quick, small and perfectly formed!

36 thoughts on “Building a different kind of stash

  1. knettycraft says:

    I like foundation paperpiecing because of its accuracy… but it takes a lot time, doesn’t it??? I tried it earlier and repeat it now for F2F (because of the skill-showcase 😉 ) too. At the same time I’m trying to reduce my mini-scraps – I’ve joined crazymomquilts scrapvortexqal… and wow, it is really cool how my scraps melt away :-)(

    • katechiconi says:

      Yes, I’ve been watching that too, and wondering if I really want to take on yet another big quilt, or do I want to just do some small projects for a bit. Maybe another time… Meantime, I’m looking at blocks and fabrics for your set – only 2 more weeks and it’s your month!

    • I wanted to join in the scrap vortex too, Annett, but I have too little in my scrap box! I am going to watch with interest. One day those scraps will grow and I will be able to put her tips into action.

  2. mlwilkie says:

    sounds like a great idea. I like that it will give a break between the bigger projects 🙂

  3. I’m exhausted just thinking about all this! Wishing you firm resolve and pain-free hands.

  4. tialys says:

    Following examples online of people being organised with their scrap stashes – I have at least started cutting scraps into 2.5 inch squares, 2.5 inch strips and 5 inch squares. Whether I’ll ever use them remains to be seen but at least the intention is there. Also, all the little triangles I have left over when cutting the ‘gussets’ for my hexagonal boxes, I am keeping with the intention of, sometime, making some bunting.

  5. Grannymar says:

    I admire your patience and your energy. I look forward to seeing the work progressing.

  6. anne54 says:

    While I don’t understand the paper piercing, I do understand the thrill in developing new skills! You will have it mastered in a very short time. Your idea of making the larger squares is great. Clever you😉

    • katechiconi says:

      Having just stuffed one up royally this afternoon, I’m now suffering doubt. However, at least I know what I did wrong and how to avoid it in the future!

  7. rutigt says:

    Funny……I also joined Crazy moms scrapvortexqal (can´t figure out what it means, but the tutorial suits me well) cause I have leftovers from my latest quilt, that looks just like her blocks 🙂

  8. Debbierose says:

    Good work at FP. I have only FP once, yes very slow but precise.

  9. Nanette says:

    I joined Angela’s rainbow scrap challenge at So Scrappy blog, she gives us a colour each month to work with. I’m finding it a great way to use my scraps in an orderly kind of way. I keep adding new blocks each month, then go back and add them in the colours I’ve already done. I like the sound of the Vortex qal as I still have lots of scraps. Oh and I love PP, so will be doing some for F2F.

  10. Nanette says:

    PS….had a look at the Vortex qal…….I make a lot of these “sew small bits together” blocks as leaders and enders when doing other sewing, sometimes in the rainbow colour I’m working on if I have enough small scraps, but usually just scrappily. I have blocks coming together easily with little thought or planning. Rather than make a large quilt with them, I sew them together when I have enough to make a baby or lap size quilt and off to a charity they go. Or they make great bags or pouches and great softie bodies….

    • katechiconi says:

      You’re already ahead of the the rest of us, then. I just have boxes and boxes and baskets of scraps, many of which are pretty small, some of which are a little larger. I just need to DO something with them, they’re eating space!

  11. Nanette says:

    just start sewing ! 🙂

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