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Thread: How small is too small?

  1. #1

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    There seems to have been a lot of discussion lately about the sorting and keeping of scraps.

    So my question to you all: how small does a scrap have to be for you to throw it out instead of saving? Do you keep the bits left over from squaring a piece of fabric? What is your standard for too small to keep (palm of our hand, index card, etc)?

    Kristy

  2. #2
    Super Member LucyInTheSky's Avatar
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    It was 1.5" square (not that I've done anything with those yet)... then I found a great Anita Solomon Grossman (or vice versa on her last name... can never remember :) ) pattern using 1.25" squares - so that was the minimum. Then I found the crumb demos....

    My goal is to actually make a crumb quilt. So now anything below .5" is too small. Anything above that can go in the crumb quilt and be seen after seam allowances.

    The best reason I started keeping my scraps was when someone pointed out scraps are still $7-10/yard too.

  3. #3
    Super Member
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    I keep anything 1" square and larger. The smaller scraps I use for leaders, when I begin sewing. I use them a number of times. When they get worn out, I throw them away and grab another small scrap.

  4. #4
    Super Member
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    I save every scrap. The ones that are actually too small to sew, I found instructions for making fabric beads out of those and I keep my snips of thread since I found instructions for making thread bowls, cups, etc., not that I've done them yet. LOL

  5. #5
    Tiffany's Avatar
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    I was collecting everything, no matter how small. I have finally decided that there are just some things I will likely never get to and have begun only saving fabric scraps that are an inch or larger. If it is close to an inch I throw it in my applique scrap pile to be used as a small circle or flower center, something along those lines. If it is less than half an inch I don't bother with it. I do save them, but I pass them on to the two major art quilters I know who teach and are big at having their quilts tour the country in various shows. It makes me feel better to know that someone else can make good use of what I consider scraps. :D

    I also use the smaller pieces for leaders, though I call them spiders or monkey tails. Sometimes I'll get so many little threads sticking up they look like a 2D image of a hedgehog. :lol:

  6. #6
    Super Member Boston1954's Avatar
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    If it is less than two inches either way, that gets tossed. I have known me for 55 years, and I rarely get into the mood to use scraps anyway.

  7. #7
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
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    When I have a lot of a fabric, I am more generous with what I toss. When I only have a little of the fabric, I gauge the size and make the call on the spot. No measuring involved.

  8. #8

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    I must be crazy. What is a leader?

  9. #9
    Tiffany's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kmohan
    I must be crazy. What is a leader?
    A leader is just a small piece of fabric, folded over, that is used when you first start sewing and after you are done sewing a unit or piece together. Instead of pulling your thread waaaay out and clipping it, which ends up wasting a lot of thread, you just run a little leader through and this helps keep both the thread use down (thread's expensive & saving an inch here and there really adds up!). It also helps keep the tension in the machine so that when you start sewing a new piece you don't get a bird's nest on the back when you first start sewing. You leave the leader in when you are done sewing, needle down, and when you begin sewing again, everything is perfectly ready. Works great!

    Clear as mud? :lol: If it doesn't make any sense, I'll just head downstairs and take a picture, or I will once I get my grandson's quilt sandwiched. Right now I've got everything shoved over to the walls and I've got the backing laid out on the floor. Once I finish sandwiching it I will be able to reach my machine again.

  10. #10
    Super Member Deecee's Avatar
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    I have just started sorting my scraps and am keeping everything until I decide what I really will use. Then I may cut down on what I keep.

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