Reva's Tips

Reva's Tip: Leftovers, Oh What to Do?

Reva's Tip: Leftovers, Oh What to Do?

The new year and the approaching spring get me in the mood to clear out old projects and remaining fabric bits, aka “leftovers.” This can be easier said than done, as I love fabric, and I love buying fabric! However, my sewing room does not expand with the same capacity as my love. This can cause an issue.

We have options: (1) Store the scraps, (2) give the scraps away, or (3) use them up.

Let’s discuss:

1. If you decide to store the scraps make things easier for yourself. Cut your leftovers into easily usable sizes. The best thing to do is to start with the largest piece of fabric possible and then move down in size once the larger cut is no longer possible. Start with yard+ cuts; when that is not possible, look at cutting ½ yards, then decrease from there: 12” strips, 10” strips, 5” strips, 2½” strips.

If the fabric is no longer at its fullest width, cut 18 x 22” fat quarters and decrease in size from there to create your own pre-cuts. The most common sizes of pre-cuts that can be purchased are 10”, 5”, and 2½” squares. Many patterns and books are written with these sizes in mind, so there are many options for future use. Store the sizes together by width (i.e., 5” strips can be stored with 5” squares).

2. Find a friend or a charity group who could use the scraps. Please be kind and donate truly usable sizes of fabrics (precut as above if you like). Little scraps may be best used as dog bed stuffing. You may even have a friend who makes beds to donate to animal shelters.

3. Using your leftovers is probably the most fulfilling option. Why not make a small project or two that will benefit others? A friend who lives in a different state makes placemats for her local Meals on Wheels. Doesn’t that sound perfect? Here is a video I made about using scraps to make placemats:

Have fun making something with your leftover fabric and bring joy to another. Sewing at its finest!

Want to sew for a cause? You too can make placemats for Meals On Wheels. Find more information by watching this video:

Other charities that Quality Sewing supports are Project Linus and Quilts of Valor. These groups even have in-person sewing meet-ups at our store locations so you can join in the fun.

Happy Sewing,

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