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Fat Quarters Vs. Scraps

Scraps that really need some attention and a project.
There seems to be an abundance of scrap-friendly quilt books and patterns today in the marketplace. This is a trend that keeps growing, and the beauty of this trend is that you probably have everything you need to start a project right in your sewing room. For those who have the talent and ability to work with fabric scraps, this is wonderful, but for those who are scrap-challenged it is very frustrating.

I, for one, am scrap-challenged. My scraps are overflowing to the point that I really need to either figure out a way to use them or get rid of them. As a connoisseur of fine fabrics, getting rid of them isn't an option. I am attached to each and every piece I own, and the need to find them a place to live is very important to me. My biggest problem is that I will never live long enough to place them all in a quilt. And that's mainly because I just can't do scrappy. But that's not my only problem. I also have hundreds of fat quarters. I buy them on impulse just because I love the color or texture. What I need is a plan to use both my scraps and my fat quarters.

Fat quarter vs. scrappy.

I know there are others out there just like me. I receive letters and emails from many of our readers asking for advice on the same problems I am having. It's kind of hard to give them a solution when I really haven't conquered my own problem.

Many of my ideas seem to come to me in the middle of the night. I wake up at 2 a.m. with a single thought, and I can't go back to sleep. For some reason, my thoughts were on fat quarters this last time. Maybe that was the last thought I had when I was falling to sleep. But for whatever reason, I may have finally found a workable solution. Well, at least it's workable for me. My thought was to take my fat quarter stash and blend it with my scraps. I know that might be considered cheating, but if it works, I may have a solution I can live with.

Here's my plan: I love this pattern I've chosen for the free quilting pattern in this newsletter. First, it's made with batiks, which is my favorite type of quilting fabric and what I have the most of. Second, the pattern can easily be done with lights, mediums and darks. If I divide my scraps up in lights, mediums and darks in similar colors to those I've chosen from my fat quarters, I should be able to blend the scraps and the precuts together, and in my own twisted way, make it look scrappy.

Here are my fabric scraps and the fat quarters I plan to use.

The trick for me is to actually use the scraps I've chosen. My plan is to use one from each pile until I've completed a block, and then continue on. From what I can tell, the pressing and cutting will take the most time, but once that is done it should be a breeze.

Sorted and pressed fabrics from both scraps and fat quarters. Now on to the cutting.

So far, my plan is working. I'll let you know how I do in the next newsletter. If you are one of those quilters who is scrap-challenged also, why don't you try this too, so we can compare notes and possible solutions. I'm always open to suggestions.