I love the scrap-busting methods of Amanda Jean of Crazy Mom Quilts and wanted to join in her scrap vortex quilt-along, but I do not have a very big scrap box. My scrap box is only the size of a large shoebox. However, I did have a mountain of fabric left from my two shirt quilts, so I decided to do some random piecing and make something with that.
I made quite a few scrappy panels using Amanda Jean’s methods, but in the end I chose to use only a handful of them to make cushions and pouches. I also fell off the random improv wagon when I found I had some largish strips that would work well in a log cabin block, so they became one less-than-random cushion front.
In addition to using my shirt scraps, I cut into two ‘new’ old shirts from my dad. They came in handy when making the cushions because the shirt fronts were large enough to turn into cushion backs. I kept the buttons and pockets. Both shirts had short sleeves, but there was enough fabric in the sleeves to line the pouches.
These were the ultimate stash-busting projects. The only things I bought were the two zippers and a length of piping cord. I found scraps of quilt wadding and zigzagged them together to make pieces big enough. (It is a sad day when you realise you have to join pieces of wadding to make a small 9 by 12 inch piece!) Even the cushion inserts are those I made from repurposing a feather doona. With the inserts now in covers, I appreciate the lovely weight and fluffiness of the feathers even more. These inserts are far better than store bought.
I have had problems with quilting in straight lines and suspected the main cause of my problems was foot pressure, so I tried an experiment. When quilting the pouches, I did not ease up the foot pressure. When quilting the cushion fronts, I dropped the foot pressure considerably. The difference is noticeable. Do you have any other tips to improve my quilting in straight lines?
Would you believe that I still have a bag full of shirt scraps? Instead of putting the bag of leftovers back into the Cupboard of Shame, I am posting what is left to Kate, who also has plans for a recycled shirt project. After two quilts, two cushions and two pouches, it is time for me to let go of the shirts and let someone else have some fun with them.