- Guest Post
9 Ways to Sew with Scraps
Updated: Jan 6, 2020
Sewing with scraps of different fabrics is usually associated with patchwork quilts. In fact though, the choice can be much broader and depends on the size of the cut of each piece. We’ve collected 9 ideas (from the cat's house to the picnic basket) which are perfect projects to use up those fabric scraps even for beginners. Now you no longer have to throw away the scraps of the fabric you collect! You can use them for creative ideas instead.
Author: Dmitrieva Iren.
Iren is an editor of Sewing Top Gear. Iren mostly writes reviews on various sewing machines. She is inspired by the creativity that is created on sewing machines by the skillful hands of the seamstress.
#1: A Pet Hut
As a rule, the question “what to sew from the scraps of tissue” arises if you have a big piece of fabric. So, with a piece of fabric the size of 47 to 23 inches, you can create a real “hut”— though, it will fit only a pet. Alternatively, for this master class, you can use an old sheet or curtain made of a not very dense fabric, which you are tired of storing.
Like most other handicrafts that can be sewn from the scraps of fabric, this project begins with a simple pattern. Draw five isosceles triangles with sides of 15 and 23 inches on a piece of cardboard and cut the corresponding patches of fabric. From the bottom and from above they need to be trimmed: you will get neat trapezoids with long side edges. In one cut, provide a cutout for the front door.
Next sew the trapezium together with two seams: between them, there should be a place for vertical beams that will serve as a support for the hut.
Before you install the hut, you need to drill small holes in the beams, pass the twine through them and stably fix the whole structure.
#2: Seat Upolstery
The fabric meter can also be used for new upholstery— for example, for stools or bar stools, which have been waiting for a change for a long time. The cover, as in the photo, can be made from the scraps of fabric even without extensive sowing experience: in addition to textiles, foam rubber and a furniture stapler are required. Important nuance: to attach the seat back in the fabric, most likely, you will have to make neat cuts— with this task a utility knife can come in handy.
First of all, we remove the seat from the chair and release it from the old upholstery. The soft element (usually foam rubber) can be saved. But if it is wrenched, it is better to replace it with a new sheet: it should be slightly larger than the seat. The textile element should be even larger (as shown in the photo)— leave indents on each side not less than 4 inches.
Wrap the seat with foam rubber and cloth, fix it with the help of a furniture stapler ... and glue ugly folds with one more piece of cloth. If the main cut is not enough, you can use a different fabric: this part of the upholstery will be at the bottom, accordingly, so it is difficult to see from above and doesn’t matter as much.
#3: Picnic Basket
Another way to “refine” the basket is to turn it into a picnic bag with the help of tissue scraps. To cutleries and foods are not mixed, the textile tab can be supplemented with pockets.
There is no universal pattern here— the size of the flaps depends on the depth and diameter of the basket. The side length (the longest and the main part) should be equal to 1.5 parts of the inner circumference of the basket, and the height should be 4 inches more. The second element (the outer wall of the pockets)— the length will be the same as the main part, and the height— 2/3 of it. Finally, we need a third element for the bottom—a rectangle made of a cloth flap that is 3 inches wider than the bottom of the basket.
The first thing to do is to bend and stitch the edge of the main part: he will lean out and turn over the side of the basket. Then we sew together the main part and the side of the pockets: the stitch will divide the last into separate sections. The third stage: we sew a textile strip with pockets in a ring and try on a basket.
To add a bottom, cover a small piece of cardboard with a cloth and attach it with glue on the wrong side of the fabric edge. You do not need to sew them: so you will always have the opportunity to wash the bag with pockets.
Especially convenient is that the main part of the cover and the bottom can be removed at any time if you want to use the basket for its intended purpose— for example, to go for mushrooms.
For this colorful experiment, ready-made napkins made of natural fabric will be suitable. However, they can be sewn from the remains of fabric— for example, a plain sheet, which must be cut into towels of a convenient size and trimmed from four sides.
A pattern for a picture can be any fruit or vegetable: for example, from an orange, there are pretty veins, and it is convenient to give the desired shape to the potatoes (cut into crosses, squares, or somehow else). If using citrus fruits, cut the fruit in half and leave them on a tissue paper for a short while to stack excess juice.
Now the fruit needs to be dipped or covered with special paints for the fabric— they are sold in the shops of goods for a hobby. Make arbitrary prints as fantasy tells you. This technique works equally well on both light and dark fabrics, just in the second case, it is better to use white or light gray paint.
#5: Decorative Pillow
Let's say at once: usually on a pillow, large cuts are required. From pieces of fabric, you can sew miniature versions— for example, a round pillow with a diameter of 11 inches.
First of all, we cut out the base—two identical circles. Given the small diameter, for convenience, you can circle the cover from the pan. Another necessary element is a side strip for strengthening the structure, which should be several inches longer than the circumference. The optimal width is 2-4 inches.
The next step is to sew the circles and side elements. If you use a fabric with a print, the color side must remain inside. The second circle should be sewn to the side element not completely: leave the hole through which your hand passes.
Turn the work piece inside out and fill it with a soft padding: the remaining pieces, cotton wool or slivers of foam rubber (depending on the softness you would like to get). After that, the hole must be sewn by hand.
#6: Beeswax Food Wraps
Lunch-boxes made of plastic are literally good for everyone, except for the material itself: often lunch absorbs an unpleasant chemical smell, and the container— on the contrary, smells of food. We offer an ecological way to store sandwiches: a napkin with natural impregnation which can be sewn from rags and scraps of fabric.
Any natural fabric is suitable: by size, the cut can be no more than an ordinary table napkin. The secret ingredient of the master class is organic beeswax: it will ensure reliable impregnation so that the fabric has survived several months of constant use.
Rub the wax on the kitchen grater and sprinkle the cloth flap— about the same as if you were adding cheese to the pizza. Then put a sheet of baking paper on top and iron it well: the wax should completely dissolve and cover the entire surface of the fabric.
Now the fabric needs to be dried— this process takes no more than 10 minutes. You can also cover hot dishes with the resulting napkin. It is very simple to clean it: it is enough to wash the napkin by hand with a very small amount of detergent.
#7: Holiday Garland
This master class is a rescue for those who never throw anything away. Have you been storing old clothes, table napkins on the mezzanine for ten years? It's time to get rid of blockages in one fell swoop and get a beautiful, bright garland for the decor of children's room or home holidays.
Take the cuts of fabrics with different patterns and cut out triangles of the same shape from them (a prefabricated model of cardboard or thick paper is useful.)
Align the flaps with the front side and sew on the two edges. Then turn them inside out and fasten the workpieces with a long tape: under it, there will be no visible third unstripped edge. First, use a black stitch and then gently stitch the entire string on the typewriter.
#8: Colorful Cans with Cloth Lids
One of the most pleasant gifts that you can make with your own hands is home-made preparations. Even better if they are packaged in author's banks!
To make templates, use paper with an adhesive layer: you can cut any templates from it. Fix the figures on the glass and cover the jar with acrylic paint: under the stickers, the glass will remain transparent.
To hide the expressionless metal covers, use any scraps of fabric. Especially nice in this role are old kitchen napkins in a cage or flower.
#9: Dog Toys
In pet stores, there is a huge selection of products for animals. Why spend money on toys, if you can make them with your own hands? From an old tennis ball and T-shirts, which you still were going to throw away, you'll get a pretty dog accessory.
To get long bundles of fabric, cut the T-shirt in a spiral (we need tows up to 100 inches.) Then make holes on both sides of the ball and thread the bundles through them. It is most convenient to use a knitting needle for this.
Secure the bundles with knots from both sides and begin to weave braids. After 7 inches, connect the two braids into one and fasten the end with a tight knot.
And what do you do from the scraps of the fabric? Share your ideas and implemented projects in the comments under the article.