Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Binding with scraps--waste not

When I mentioned I had a bag of leftover strips from bindings ....here's part of my assortment... I actually thought most quilters used their left over binding on other projects.  But judging from my emails, I was wrong.  In my assortment some pieces  are long--a yard or more-- and others fairly short pieces.  I save them all.  I rarely buy extra yardage for binding.
 Why?   I think I like the final statement a mixed scrap binding says, "Don't take me too seriously."  Kind of a waste not approach....or my contribution to being green!
  This is not an original idea.  It goes back to a guild program from several years ago.  I don't even remember  who our speaker was, only that she did the most wonderful  scrap quilts and that she used whatever she had that blended in value.  Example.....she did not have enough black for sashing  in the quilt she was working on.  So she pulled whatever black (including some with prints) out of her stash and mixed it all together.  She also needed yellow for an applique and did not have enough of one fabric.  Again, she pieced yellows of the same value together to create a "new piece" of fabric from which to cut her appliques.  Each of her quilts had so much life and movement.  That tidbit stayed with me and helped me develop my own style/technique/method of waste not. 
  How do I use them? I join these strips together and bind scrap quilts and wall hangings with them. It depends on the quilt, of course, but many scrap quilts look wonderful with a mixed binding. Again, I often--but not always-- work with value when I use them.  From a distance the values will blend usually and not be noticed.   Or, I might use some to finish off a label for a quilt. 

How to join the strips......well, I'll be honest and admit that I sometimes just do a straight seam, especially when I am in a hurry.  It works, but just doesn't look as nice as the diagonal join.
The correct way is the diagonal join.  The fabrics are right sides together and the ends are placed as in the photo.  I slightly extend the ends to have a good visual reference of where to draw the sewing line.  Sew from the top left to the bottom right.  Trim the seams to 1/2 inch and press open.   Pretend you are making a HST and sew on the line!   I find this easier that cutting  a 45 degree angle and joining. 
And if you really want to be a scrap user, stitch the cut off triangles together to create a real HST.
Tomorrow I'll pull together a few examples of different bindings I have done.   Maybe next time someone will try the scrap thing instead of buying yardage for binding. 
Happy stitching. 


Cheryl said...

I have seen some quilts finished this way before , I just never think of it when I should ! I have a shoebox of them thinking I will use them for a smaller project , I might try this with another scrappy quilt .

Anonymous said...

I save my binding leftovers, too. I like how a scrappy binding looks. At one time I was sorting out the leftovers. I have the cardboard bolt thingies that fabric is on, and put straight cut binding on one, and bias binding on one. I see I need to clean up again, lots of loose ones laying around.

Rebecca Grace said...

I wish you had shared pictures of some of your quilts with scrappy bindings! I'm intrigued by the idea, but having trouble visualizing it. Are you using binding scraps that blend with your quilt top or contrast? Do you use all scraps of the same color family, like assorted red binding scraps rather than buying red yardage? I'm so curious!

Adventurous Quilter said...

I love scrappy bindings but I've never done one! I'm saving all my binding leftovers now so I'll do one eventually when I have enough binding scraps.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...