Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Back Bin

Almost everyone I know has a backache from time to time. Metaphysically, it is believed when our backs hurt it is our body's way of asking for more support. And the way I first learned to make a quilt was to just put muslin on it or at least use 4-5 yards of a fabric with a seam down the middle. Then, as I searched for ideas to make quilt backs, I found a group of fabric artists using up large leftover blocks of fabric from the top. I have tried all those ways.

And I notice that with my quilts, I tend to have the back-side closer to my body with the top out.

I've been saving fabric scraps and cutting them to sizes I hoped to use. And use them I do. However, when I made borders, there would be leftovers too. I started folding them up and saving them in the same-size bins. I called those bins 'Potential Backs'. I pulled out all the 5" squares that were orphaned from quilts they helped build. They were pieced in strips, blocks or were stand-alones. I kept piecing them to make a 48"x55" center for a back that will go on the Ghost Moth quilt I just started. It is scrappy too. As I wait for the white muslin that will be its background, it seemed smart to make the back. That pattern measures 51"x58", so it will need two more rows and two more columns of blocks to finish the back, giving it a few more inches larger. 

Easy-peasy. Of course, just because the pattern gives a measurement doesn't mean that will be the finish. Luckily, there are enough scraps to do it.

Scrap quilting is not easy. It certainly is time consuming. I cannot even say it saves money. 

I read that Americans waste nearly 1 million pounds of material per person every year. Of course that number includes everything from construction waste, spoiled or discarded food to hazardous waste. They say we waste 600 times our body weight in our lifetime. Scrap quilting is one way I do my part in reducing waste. Sometimes we wonder if our actions make a difference and I really don't know. What I do know is that I do this. Scrap quilting.