Reclaimed Object No 1 – Fabric Scraps


An armful of fabric scraps landed in the bin and were retrieved shortly thereafter.  Thankfully, it was a clean bin.  For a brief moment, I’d forgotten the plan.

The fabric scraps are predominantly blue.  Perhaps I’m going through a blue phase?  If that’s the case, then I’ve been going through it for years.  Pragmatism has resulted in a preponderance of blue in my wardrobe.

The plan was to extend that pragmatism to patchwork and, if inclination permits, quilt these scraps into bed linen.

But how to start?

I know from experience that nothing will happen if I stockpile them until there’s enough.  They will sit in a box and become smelly and mouldy, and forgotten, before I commit.

Such delays are nothing more than preciousness.  If I’m to expend the effort, I want to create the best I can.  This object is intended to last.  But that approach becomes a stumbling block because I rarely have a block of time to devote to planning, let alone the huge amount of time required for the execution.  One wrong snip or stitch requires back-peddling and problem solving, which is again more time, more delay.

Some might suggest that a pragmatic response is to stop being precious about it.  I’ve got an alternative suggestion …

Develop a process that allows for a decent end product AND a streamlined construction method AND that can be deployed whenever there is a scrap of fabric at hand.

While carrying the scraps back from the bin this morning, I remembered strip piecing.  It is a form of patchwork where the pieces are joined in a long row and then the rows are joined together.

If I make the rows different widths, I will be able to make best use of the variously sized scraps.

If I have more than one row on the go at a time, then the scraps I’m currently producing can be scattered amoung the different rows.  I don’t even have to always join the new pieces to the same end.  The rows can grow to the left and right.

The design element comes later, when I sit them side by side and work out which row goes where.  I’m not interested in ensuring all the little seams line up.  Pragmatism means the result will have a staggered, brickwork style of patterning.

That’s settled.  Now, let’s get started.



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