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Thread: Storing Scraps?

  1. #1
    Senior Member amelia0607's Avatar
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    Storing Scraps?

    I do not have a room for sewing. I work from home and have my home office that I can store a few things in but have to use my dining room for the actual work area. I am starting to collect some fabric scraps and will store them in my office.

    I am looking for suggestions of how to best store this.

    Thanks,

    Amy

  2. #2
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    Use the plastic shoe boxes. That way you can see what is in them. I put an index card on the front with a name.
    I have lots of shoe boxes. Happy quilting.

  3. #3
    Super Member QuiltnLady1's Avatar
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    I use a variety of containers that I use. I cut my scraps into squares or strips and for the squares I like to use a container the squares lie flat in. I also a couple of 3-drawer chest from Walmart that I have some scraps in -- these are a bit messy and are roughly sorted by color/type.
    QuiltnLady1

    When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.

  4. #4
    Super Member noveltyjunkie's Avatar
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    I have mine in ziplock bags by (approximate) size. When I need a scrap it is usually a size- limited thing. If I have too many small crumbs I just sew them all together for a doll quilt. Or, these days, even throw out some of the really teeny ones.....

    On the other hand, i have FQs in plastic baskets, standing up like hanging files in a filing cabinet, by colour, so I can walk through them with my fingers.
    Fortune favours the prepared mind
    "Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler." Albert Einstein

  5. #5
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    I would recommend to always clear containers and always label them because sometimes you forget what you were working on.

  6. #6
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    Depends on how small the piece is before it becomes a "scrap"

    I prefer to NOT cut up the larger pieces ahead of time - because if I trimmed it to 2.5, what I now need is 3.0.

    I DID trim the 'Swiss Cheese' left over from the I Spy squares I fussy cut, into 2x5, 2.5x5, and 3x5 pieces and those are stored in a small plastic drawer thing.

  7. #7
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    I keep my squares and rectangles in clear shoe box size boxes and my strips in pizza boxes which have the width of the strip written on the side.

  8. #8
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    I always use clear containers. I don't cut up strips till I need them. What strips I do have are in with the scraps of the same color. I try to have the strips off to the side. You can get some containers on wheels and those are nice because of being able to roll them here an there. I also have containers of WIP and UFO. Both of which I have the works in a zip loc.

  9. #9
    Power Poster mighty's Avatar
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    I use plastice ,clear, boxes.

  10. #10
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    The uncut ones, I have in paper boxes for now, probably not the best storage idea. I usually cut the biggest square I can from the piece and then work downwards. The smallest I cut is 1 1/2 inch squares. Then I have put them in the clear plastic storage boxes by size. Strips I cut anywhere from 1 1/2 inches wide to 3 inches wide if there is enough material to go three inches. I have those all together right now in one box as I don't have too many strips yet. May change the strip storage as the amount grows. Plan to use Bonnie Hunter's Leaders and Enders on some of them and who know what else on the others, but at least I am getting them cut into sizes to be used in the future and not just a box of "junk" sitting around. Have several boxes full that need attention and once I get my sewing room more organized will work on them.

    My sewing space room will be full up so to speak, with room for me to move around the cutting table and sewing machine area, but figure no one will be in there basically but me so that is fine. Have a long way to go on organization and it is basically being put off until we finish moving completely.

    Made a small curtain for a small window to break the afternoon sun in our faces yesterday and it is going to work out fine, so need to do a second one for the other small window. It was so nice to be able to work and not have to move everything when I was finished and just close the door. Loved it so figure eventually I will get more sewing and quilting done.

    So find what works best for you, I like the clear boxes as I can see what's in them, but I also label them too, as sometimes some of the sizes are a little difficult to tell from the end of the box.

  11. #11
    Super Member MartiMorga's Avatar
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    This is also a new project for me. I use to just dump them in a rolling plastic drawer thingy. But after reading how everyone here has them organized, thought I better do that too. Well I have started.....started......started, lol. I will tell you that I save all those plastic packages that you get with sheets, sheer curtains, some towel sets, and God knows what else. They usually have zippers in them - so as I have started I have one for 1" squares, 1 1/2 ", 2", 2 1/2 " and 5". I put all of them in a larger plastic box which is were I am putting my strips of 2 1/2 and 1 1/2. Those I have in stacks inside the box. I figure it is a good starting system and as I outgrow that I will expand. I am really hoping that I will use them up before they become "boxes and boxes".
    God Bless Quilters and Sewers
    Marti

  12. #12
    Super Member nanacc's Avatar
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    As some others said; I have begun cutting my scraps usually into the largest squares or strips that work or whatever I believe will be the most practical. I have done most on my AccuQuilt Go. I sorted into zip-lock bags with sizes printed in sharpie. I have bags from quart to 2 1/2 gal. All bags are in a plastic tote. 1 gal to 2 1/2 gal are also great for blocks.

  13. #13
    Senior Member amelia0607's Avatar
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    Thanks so much for all the replies! Great thoughts!!

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    Mine just keeps growing and growing,I must not be sewing fast enough.lol

  15. #15
    Junior Member acesgame's Avatar
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    Amy,
    If you are like me you won't want to store your stuff all over but in one place. If there is room in your dining room, find an old side board for storage, then decide how you would like to store the scraps. You can make an ironing cover for the top of the piece when you are working and then store it inside. Most sideboards have door units and drawers which would be great storage.
    Just my 2 cents and probably not worth that much but I ALWAYS have an opinion!

  16. #16
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    How big and small should a scrap be - meaning I don't know what constitutes a scrap. Little pieces that would have to be glued to work, large pieces you could almost make some little something out of. My scrap box right now has all sizes and I'd like to break them down but don't know where to start. HELP PLEASE!

  17. #17
    Junior Member phranny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaylinski View Post
    How big and small should a scrap be - meaning I don't know what constitutes a scrap. Little pieces that would have to be glued to work, large pieces you could almost make some little something out of. My scrap box right now has all sizes and I'd like to break them down but don't know where to start. HELP PLEASE!
    I understand your frustration because I was there once too! I wanted to make Bonnie Hunter's scrappy trips around the world, and started cutting up pieces of fabrics. The left over fabric I cut into 5 inch squares, as I find this is a size I like to work with. There are many patterns and books that use this size as well, and it is a pretty standard measurement (charm packs are this size). I then cut the remaining fabric into 2 1/2 inch strips, another standard measurement (jelly rolls). With these two sizes I can make numerous quilts and combinations that don't test my quilting skills for now. Someday, I hope to be more skilled, and make more intricate designs, but for now I am content to play away with these sizes.
    And all the odd sized scraps go into the scrap box. I found a pattern I liked on-line that would use up my odd shaped scraps, and sewed them randomly onto a muslin foundation. It made a very interesting scrap quilt. Any trimmings go into a pillowcase lined wicker basket and when it's full, I stitch it up and the dog gets a new pillow.
    I will try to attach a few pics of what I mean.
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    The first photo is the scrappy trips quilt, next are the extra charms I cut and can't wait to make something out of them. I also just finished a snowball scrappy, and the next is the scrappy one sewn onto muslin backing. And a closeup of the fabrics, there is everything in that quilt. Both quilts need to be quilted and I just pulled them of the shelf, so pardon the wrinkles.
    I hope this gives you an idea of how just one person organizes their scraps. Your system will be different. And, all these tips and ideas I have learned from this quilting board!
    Have fun, and don't stress over it! A system will develope for you too.
    phranny ~ I cannot call my day complete. 'til needle, thread, and fabric meet.

  18. #18
    Senior Member amelia0607's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by acesgame View Post
    Amy,
    If you are like me you won't want to store your stuff all over but in one place. If there is room in your dining room, find an old side board for storage, then decide how you would like to store the scraps. You can make an ironing cover for the top of the piece when you are working and then store it inside. Most sideboards have door units and drawers which would be great storage.
    Love this idea! Unfortunately, the dining room currently has 3 (very full) china cabinets, a buffet (also full), and my table. Barely room for folks to pull out chairs to sit in on the rare occasion that we actually eat in there. I do think the buffet could be cleaned out though! And there might be a corner free - oh a music cabinet would fit there. Next antique trip that's an item to hunt for!!

  19. #19
    Senior Member amelia0607's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phranny View Post
    I understand your frustration because I was there once too! I wanted to make Bonnie Hunter's scrappy trips around the world, and started cutting up pieces of fabrics. The left over fabric I cut into 5 inch squares, as I find this is a size I like to work with. There are many patterns and books that use this size as well, and it is a pretty standard measurement (charm packs are this size). I then cut the remaining fabric into 2 1/2 inch strips, another standard measurement (jelly rolls). With these two sizes I can make numerous quilts and combinations that don't test my quilting skills for now. Someday, I hope to be more skilled, and make more intricate designs, but for now I am content to play away with these sizes.
    And all the odd sized scraps go into the scrap box. I found a pattern I liked on-line that would use up my odd shaped scraps, and sewed them randomly onto a muslin foundation. It made a very interesting scrap quilt. Any trimmings go into a pillowcase lined wicker basket and when it's full, I stitch it up and the dog gets a new pillow.
    I will try to attach a few pics of what I mean.
    Name:  DSC01344 (640x480).jpg
Views: 500
Size:  234.8 KBName:  DSC01343 (640x480).jpg
Views: 484
Size:  248.4 KBName:  DSC01342 (640x480).jpg
Views: 490
Size:  276.8 KBName:  DSC01340 (640x480).jpg
Views: 482
Size:  272.6 KBName:  DSC01341 (640x480).jpg
Views: 490
Size:  283.9 KB
    The first photo is the scrappy trips quilt, next are the extra charms I cut and can't wait to make something out of them. I also just finished a snowball scrappy, and the next is the scrappy one sewn onto muslin backing. And a closeup of the fabrics, there is everything in that quilt. Both quilts need to be quilted and I just pulled them of the shelf, so pardon the wrinkles.
    I hope this gives you an idea of how just one person organizes their scraps. Your system will be different. And, all these tips and ideas I have learned from this quilting board!
    Have fun, and don't stress over it! A system will develope for you too.
    Beautiful quilts and thanks for the tips!

  20. #20
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    amelia0607, thanks for your help on the scraps. Love the idea for new pillow for dog. I did buy a tub w/lid and 2 shoe box sized w/lids containers. Now to figure out just how I want to do this!

  21. #21
    Super Member Judith1005's Avatar
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    Thanks for your examples and suggestions. I thought about the Bonnie Hunter system. But, I really don't want to store that many different sizes I really like the 2 you suggest. And, will probably add in 3 1/2" sq. as well. I am still working on getting my scraps in order. (Probably be a work in progress for awhile. )
    Quote Originally Posted by phranny View Post
    I understand your frustration because I was there once too! I wanted to make Bonnie Hunter's scrappy trips around the world, and started cutting up pieces of fabrics. The left over fabric I cut into 5 inch squares, as I find this is a size I like to work with. There are many patterns and books that use this size as well, and it is a pretty standard measurement (charm packs are this size). I then cut the remaining fabric into 2 1/2 inch strips, another standard measurement (jelly rolls). With these two sizes I can make numerous quilts and combinations that don't test my quilting skills for now. Someday, I hope to be more skilled, and make more intricate designs, but for now I am content to play away with these sizes.
    And all the odd sized scraps go into the scrap box. I found a pattern I liked on-line that would use up my odd shaped scraps, and sewed them randomly onto a muslin foundation. It made a very interesting scrap quilt. Any trimmings go into a pillowcase lined wicker basket and when it's full, I stitch it up and the dog gets a new pillow.
    I will try to attach a few pics of what I mean.
    Name:  DSC01344 (640x480).jpg
Views: 500
Size:  234.8 KBName:  DSC01343 (640x480).jpg
Views: 484
Size:  248.4 KBName:  DSC01342 (640x480).jpg
Views: 490
Size:  276.8 KBName:  DSC01340 (640x480).jpg
Views: 482
Size:  272.6 KBName:  DSC01341 (640x480).jpg
Views: 490
Size:  283.9 KB
    The first photo is the scrappy trips quilt, next are the extra charms I cut and can't wait to make something out of them. I also just finished a snowball scrappy, and the next is the scrappy one sewn onto muslin backing. And a closeup of the fabrics, there is everything in that quilt. Both quilts need to be quilted and I just pulled them of the shelf, so pardon the wrinkles.
    I hope this gives you an idea of how just one person organizes their scraps. Your system will be different. And, all these tips and ideas I have learned from this quilting board!
    Have fun, and don't stress over it! A system will develope for you too.
    My little shinning stars. Brantley, Kaylynn, and Emmalee

  22. #22
    Senior Member Scraplady's Avatar
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    whatever you use, if you're like me you will be more likely to use the scraps up if you can SEE what you have. I have begun storing mine in the plastic containers I buy lettuce and grapes in at Costco. They hold quite a lot, are big enough for squares or strips, stack neatly, and best of all, they are free.
    www.makeminepatchwork.etsy.com
    www.zibbet.com/makeminepatchwork
    "Piecin' a quilt's like livin' a life...The Lord sends us the pieces, but we can cut 'em out and put 'em together pretty much to suit ourselves, and there's a heap more in the cuttin' and the sewin' than there is in the caliker...I've had a heap of comfort all my life making quilts, and now in my old age I wouldn't take a fortune for them." (Eliza Calvert Hall, Aunt Jane of Kentucky)

  23. #23
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    Scraplady, I just started using the plastic grape, strawberry, lettuce containers also and really like them too...and they are free....gives me a better view of what I have....

    Also, love your avatar...what block is that???

  24. #24
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    a hint I found that helps control some scraps, plan two scrap quilts and cut for them as you are cutting scraps.
    maybe one has sq. and triangles and the other has strips under 6 inches long. Optional - Can use as leader-enders as you're sewing your special quilts.

  25. #25
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    I like clear boxes also because I slip a file card inside showing thru for a label, easy to see, easy to change.

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