Sunday, August 31, 2008

Fabric Cutting

This week I have been cutting fabric from my stash. I had a stack of light cream pieces that were factory leftovers that were a quilt room donation. I cut some squares from it for applique (another post on that project later), but there were skinny pieces left, so I cut them into 2 x 5-inch strips. I had seen a photo of a rail fence design like this once, so thought these newly cut pieces would be perfect for this variation. Again, leftovers from one project inspired another! I cut some fabrics that were leftovers from other things into the same size pieces, and stitched them into blocks, a print, muslin and then print. I love the on-point set of this design. One top later, and I have pieces left, of course. With a solid blue used for the setting triangles and a border, the lap quilt is very colorful and cheery.

I spent 13 hours one day pressing scraps and cutting them into the shapes. I've had a sore arm for a few days as a result. I don't usually do that much at one time, but wanted to get the mess taken care of at one time. I do have one rule about cutting scrap that I have found very useful, and that is that a fabric gets cut up all lthe way while it is on the cutting mat unless it is yardage or I have a specific plan for it. That means that I may be cutting a specific size or shape right now, but if it is scrap, the rest of it gets cut into usuable shapes now and these shapes are put into storage for future projects rather than getting folded up and then have to be pressed and re-cut at a later time. My focus this week was 2 x 5-inch strips, but ends of strips were cut into squares or 1-1/2-inch strips. All of the scrap I cut is taken care of, either the shapes I need now or squares and strips for a future project.

A friend donated some great new books on scrap quilting to the quilt room this week, and I brought a few home to browse through. I got a great new idea from each book! I have recently learned how to use my scanner so I have been scanning project ideas and saving them as computer files, and I am getting quite paperless! Ain't technology great? I don't have many skills (as friends comment they need to start charging me by the hour for consultation) but I love to be able to learn new things, especially when they help me save more space for fabric.

Today I was going through a binder of quilt designs that I had created for scrap quilts several years ago. It had to be a LONG time ago, as they were printed on my dot-matrix printer. Anyway, I discovered a 4-patch variation I had created and forgotten about. It is an interesting design, and thinking about all those squares I cut from the leftovers this week...

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