Friday, February 01, 2013

QAWM : Frugality or Abundance?

In the olden days, way before our mothers were born, quilts were made from scraps and every little bit of fabric was precious. Scrappy quilts were created from worn out clothing or flour sacks or whatever and imbued with memories and sentimentality.
But let's get real. Most of us don't live in a sod hut on the prairie anymore, and here we are looking at quilting on our laptops or Ipads and have an abundance of fabric, more than we could ever use in our lifetimes (not to mention secret stashes).
When I decided to start QAWM a few years ago it was out of a need to use up the fabric I had. In the meantime I got more. And more. And I am still waiting for delivery of more.
Pictured here is a bunch of new unwrapped stuff to jump start me on my scrappy-quilt making. But even this is formidable. It is all so perfect and that makes me feel I ought to have a specific plan, yada yada yada.
Instead, I look to my scrap bins, which are all arranged so nicely next to the new untouched fabric.
I know I can find strips of the correct size (2.5" wide) for my scrappy Trip Around the World. And because they are in the bins, the bloom is off the rose and they can be put directly into use. Yay!!

Opening the first bin I find a leftover piece of patchwork...Wow! (easily distracted) What is this ?
O I remember, it is the leftovers from a small wall quilt I made in December. Because I folded it up and stashed it away like this, I didn't realize what a nice aglomeration it was... But I digress. Perhaps I will return to this and make something else from this start.
Back to the scraps. This is from just two of the bins and is plenty to get me started. Yay again.

A word about making the Scrappy Trip. I was informed that Bonnie Hunter was the instigator and tutor for the easy method to make this quilt. Here is the tutorial I will be following.
About QAWM: Rule #1. There are no rules.
Since February is a short month, and the weather is usually dismal, I like to think we can stay home, without having to make excuses, and just focus on quilting. It is not essential that you make what I make, unless it is agreeable and fun for you. If it isn't fun, why bother?
What we make does NOT have to be a bed quilt. It can be just a block to try out the method, or a mug rug, pillow cover, table runner, tote bag, placemat, baby quilt or lap quilt. I AM TELLING MYSELF THIS TOO.
And it does not have to be quilted, immediately. Or ever. I am leaving lots of unquilted tops in the archives for the surprise and delight of generations that come after me. I hope they are encouraged to finish them for me, hahaha.
I do plan to use the fabulous quilt as you go method if I should get close to a twin size in my patchworking. QAWM and QAYG...what a lotta initials.
OK, let's get started!

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  1. I love your self encouragement! Yes, I feel much better about using up scraps! I have already started my own scrappy trip (I posted a few blocks on my blog if you want some inspiration) but I can tell it is going to take me a good long time to get enough done to make a quilt. I have no plans for the eventual quilt (no deadline means I can take my own sweet time, right?). Love your blog!

  2. I like to use un-quilted tops and even quilts as table cloths. I just bought some clear plastic off a roll at Joannes to put over them. I especially do it when my quilty friends are coming over!

  3. I am excited about getting started. So glad it is a Friday and I can do some tonight! Should be fun!! Thanks for the encouragement and the no rules attitude!!

  4. I quilted along with you in 2010 and started blogging because of it. I had a large stash of floral prints and my goal was to use them up. Three years later I have very few decent size pieces of floral fabric but I have a lot of scraps. Thanks for the inspiration and the kick start to make this pattern.

  5. Okay, I read the post through twice- so hopefully I'm not an idiot who can't read and missed it. What does QAWM mean?

  6. Isn't it fun to go through your stash and then find projects/blocks you have made! I made a scrappy world quilt last month with Bonnie's great pattern and I'll have fun watching yours!

  7. Looking forward to QAWM this year. Off to view the tutorial and then check out my scraps bin!

    @ Jessim --Quilt Along With Melody

  8. I have to say, it's a little comforting that even a design professional such as yourself feels a little intimidated to cut into a fat quarter bundle or jelly roll. Sometimes when I am looking at the beautifully packaged bundles, I have to whisper to myself, "it's just fabric. It's just fabric."

  9. I've had Bonnie's scrappy trip quilt on my 'list' for quite a while. So quilting along with you & making the doesn't get any better than that. I'm in.

  10. Your scraps are so well organised. Mine are chucked, as I work, into a big orange plastic bucket under my work table. It is full to overflowing at the moment so it is a good time to start stripping. Not literally you understand! Eeewww

  11. Yeah! Now if only I didn't have to go to work. My goal is to make one scrappy trip : )

  12. I'm working on for blocks from the scrappy trip around the world tutorial. They're for a friends quilt but I've decide I want to make my own. I have to finish another quilt first though.
    I'll enjoy watching.

  13. I got a head start, jumping on this bandwagon in January, but it is very satisfying to use up those bits and pieces.

  14. Since I just can't cut into my treasured jelly rolls for a scrappy quiltalong and my scraps bin is by no means organised (or for that matter very large), it occurs to me I should cut into the fat quarters and bits and pieces of quilting fabric that I've gone off and use them for a scrappy tripalong. Hooray!

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