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Taming Mount Scrapalotta

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    Taming Mount Scrapalotta

    Well, the time has come to begin the great scrap purge, from clothes and quilts over the last few years my mother and I managed to accumulate well over 30 gallons worth of scrap. Just cotton scraps. Who knows how much in fleece, flannel, corduroy and various other more apparel type fabrics like satins and velvets. Various tactics were previously employed to both hide and use the scraps but to no avail and the mountain grew more with our efforts and well my cousin finding out 6th child is on the way, which naturally means buying new fabric for cute baby clothes right 😇.

    I'm not going to lie, this purge we have begun has been difficult, these fabric scraps are our babies and my mother and I are obsessive about wanting to use everything down to the tiniest crumb (though at no point in our sewing lives have we done a string or crumb quilt... but we COUUULD) simply because they remind us of each little dress, each little quilt, bag or other project we have done over the years. They are as dear as family photos and evoke the same memories and emotions as if looking at a photograph and seeing our loved ones joy shining back at us.

    But 30 gallons worth of it... well... the time to purge with avengence had long since past, basically had to remove those family photographs that make you ask why is there a half blackened picture of a patch of grass here? Or who took the close up of a chicken's butt, who even had a chicken, did we ever go to a petting zoo, waitttt how do you even know thats a chicken's butt????

    So we had to make a system and after much thought and consideration and heart hardening over the "what else could it be if not a chicken butt" bits of fabric, we went for a standard of pre-cut sizing. So all scraps are in the process of being purged to fat quarters, layer cakes, charms and 2.5 strips of greater than 5" and 2.5 squares for the rest.

    Fat quarters and layers are already done. And I earned myself a hefty portion of both, charms are being worked on now and we have more than half filled an 11.5x11.5" cube storage bin with them, and by working on 2.5s at the same time we have just about filled (lots more scraps to go) another storage cube with those. Oh yeah and I "acquired" through this simply from what we set over as scraps about 15 sets of scant yardage as we are calling large pieces of fabric that are greater than 3/4 a yard.

    The mountain of scraps still barely looks like it has been touched, I swear the fabric is breeding because in addition to what we have cut to a size, we have already tossed out 1 full 13 gallon bag of crumbs (if math is correct thats over 1/3rd so why does it look like I can fill to the brim another 30 gallon bag with scraps???)

    But despite the struggle being very very real, and still being in the stage of overwhelmed with a neigh nightmarish amount of scraps to go through and no real light at the end of the tunnel either. I have to say I do feel a little lighter going into the sewing room. A little more inspired to get scrappy with some quilts, and some less favorite fabrics that we thought for sure could only be used for the 1 project we bought it for are now resting beautifully among similarly sized precuts begging to be used.

    This purging was clearly long overdue, and today we are setting aside home improvement projects to really work on the final purge (might be more convincing for our respective husbands had we not gone to joanns 3 days ago for a glue gun and come home with 14 more yards of fabric....I mean come on they were 2 yard precuts in solids at less than $5.00 a piece!!!) And I still don't think even dedicating today will complete the project entirely, but perhaps we can get through most of what is left of the cotton.

    Next up will be the fleece and flannels, and then the specialty fabrics. My mother still can let go of the corduroy so that will be last, but I have put a date on it... she has until August 19th to use it for something else or its time is up as will be well over 5 years old and we live in the south so not much reason for corduroy clothing, it gets sliced and diced to reasonable to work with sizes and probably turned into bags for the local Salvation Army. Wish us luck ppppppllleeeaase cuz heaven knows we need it. Thank you 😊



    #2
    Sounds like a big job, but you're making progress. Hang in there. You can do this!

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      #3
      Good job working through your scrap pile. I am sharing my leftover precuts with my Thread Head ladies, but the going is slow. Getting the fleece reduced it really a struggle. But it must be done!

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        #4
        Impressive amount of progress. Cant wait to see your scrappy projects.

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          #5
          As both my mother and mother law passed, I inherited large quantities of their stashes, including lots of scraps. It literally took me years to sort and cut, roll and wrap, stack and organize. It was so worth it all! Now that I have it all organized, it is a treat to make appliqués, scrap quilts, and just peruse the fabrics. I will happily stitch the rest of my life from those scrap boxes alone! It is easier to use those precious pieces. It is so wonderful to see little bits of my children’s clothing scraps in quilts......like a walk through their lives in one cozy quilt. Keep at it........it is so worth the time invested now!

          Comment


          • Namastarz
            Namastarz commented
            Editing a comment
            Oh dear, now I'm slightly afraid, my mother in law has a sister in law who quilts like mad. So she's dabbling in it as well... thats going to be something of a pile if either passes before me since I'm the only one who sews aside from them on my husband's side of the family

          • SuzyQue
            SuzyQue commented
            Editing a comment
            No need to fear....it’s just fabric. Live for today and if the day comes when you are gifted more than you need, consider it a blessing. It will add new life to that which you are already using or it can be gifted to someone else who needs it more. I have decided it will never all be used up!

          #6
          It's a job we all have to go through time to time. Keep us posted, we'll keep cheering you on!
          Katrina
          “Nothing can dim the light which shines from within.” Maya Angelou

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            #7
            It sounds like you are close to being organized like you want to be. I did some of that, but I have a long way to go.

            Comment


            • Namastarz
              Namastarz commented
              Editing a comment
              I will send on whatever energy I regain sometime next month to ya It is a huge undertaking but chicken butts must go

            #8
            I feel your pain! I went through and organized the fabric from my quilt group. The group started about 15 years ago and when I moved out of town I could no longer go. After retiring I rejoined the group and after trying to find fabric for a quilt we were making I decided to organize. We only have 5 large totes of fabric so no where near what you have but boy did I find loads of scraps. I went through got the larger pieces refolded and in the totes so you can see them all. Then I tackled the scraps. I still have a mound to go through as when we were putting things away I found a "paper" box (the ones reams of paper come in) and it was full of mostly Christmas fabric. So I do have a little more left to do. What made it all worth it was when we were recently looking for fabric for a wall hanging we were making for the pastor. We talking about the colors and I went to the room where we have the totes and within a minute or two brought several possibilities out to view with the panel. Several of the gals said, "Why, it's just like we have our own fabric store right here!" It is a lot of work but so worth it, keep it up you will find the benefits!
            Carlie

            Comment


            • Namastarz
              Namastarz commented
              Editing a comment
              Yes definitely! Already up over $100 worth of charm squares alone if we put them into little 42 square coordinated bundles. Which is kind of next quest for us is taking all these precuts now and sorting them into actual quilt bundles with pattern and needed squares all wrapped up in a bow

            #9
            Enjoyed reading your scrap conquering adventure. It will be worth when it's all organized and ready to use. Loved your comment about going to Joann's and coming home with 14 more yards of fabric. Too funny!
            "I'm putting together a list of 100 reasons why I am NOT relentless!" - Sue Heck, The Middle

            Leonard: For God's sake, Sheldon, do I have to hold up a sarcasm sign every time I open my mouth?
            Sheldon (intrigued): You have a sarcasm sign?

            Comment


              #10
              Don't forget to post picture when you're done.. You might inspire others (read that as me, lol). Gina

              Comment


              • Namastarz
                Namastarz commented
                Editing a comment
                Will do and since we just finished up the last (we hope) of 5" squares pictures should be coming soon

              #11
              So glad you have someone to help you with this BIG job. It really helps to keep the flow going. I work in fits and starts here, but am slowly getting there so you can too!
              No act of kindness, however small, is ever wasted.
              Aesop

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              • Namastarz
                Namastarz commented
                Editing a comment
                Well since the person "helping" is a big contributor to the mountain she kind of has to help lol

              #12
              I think you need to put your credit card in lockdown till some of your stash gets reduced or next year you will be house hunting for a house with a bigger sewing room. Obv this job would be much easier if you do it once or twice a year. Good luck letting go.

              Comment


              • Namastarz
                Namastarz commented
                Editing a comment
                Really funny because I am almost considering knocking down the wall between sewing room and guest room for a long arm quilter yeah yeah just the long arm not at all so I can just stash more scraps and ignore them for a while 😇

              #13
              Could you come and do my sewing room next, please? I saw a photo from a friend who just moved, and her sewing room is filled with all the clutter of moving, and it STILL looks more organized than mine!

              Comment


              • Namastarz
                Namastarz commented
                Editing a comment
                Stay strong, be brutal or at least hide things well 🤣 that got me through a few years at least with the DH not knowing the true state of things

              #14
              Well with the day of purging down to just a little bit left of the 2.5" strips and squares to cut, but arm is getting sore from final covid shot. Good thing I have more of the storage cubes on the way though since I foolishly thought I could put my 2.5 strips and squares in the same cube 🤣🤣🤣 yeah no. Its just a little bit of that grrrrr.... though with as little as there is left to cut like an hour and I would be done with all the cottons. Well minus whites since we use them as background which is often cut to different sizes, and the homespun/lightweight muslin which is a whole different mess but cotton none the less.

              But since my father has a dr appt in the morning my mom and I decided to call for a second round of purging to commence tomorrow. And I might still after a good long hot shower push through and finish my cuts. We shall see...

              Comment


                #15
                Way to go with organizing.

                Comment

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