Author Archives: jennifer

Managing Scraps: Me Made Low Volume Fabric

Sewing creates scraps.  It’s the way life goes.  My scraps were getting out of hand recently so I sorted them into two categories:  colors and low volume.  I’m trying a new approach to managing scraps.

I put all my low volume scraps into on bin regardless of shape or size.  It sits on my sewing table and when I have 15 minutes I sew pieces together randomly to make “me made fabric.”

I set several creative goals this year and one was to sew for 15 minutes every day.  If I don’t have time or energy to get my brain into another project, I can sit down and sew scraps together without a plan.

I don’t measure my “me made low volume fabric” when I sew it together, but most of them are about the size of a fat quarter when I finish.  I use scraps of all sizes for variety and interest.  And to save time.  I also add a few bright colors here and there just for fun.

These will be fun to cut up and use in a quilt someday.  I’m excited to keep making them until my low volume bin is empty, which might take a long time!

Or perhaps I’ll use them as background for a scrappy applique quilt.  I have so many leftover pieces from my Carolyn Friedlander projects that a scrappy applique project might be in my future.

What do you do with your scraps?  I have a good friend who throws all of them away so she doesn’t have to worry about them.  I like them too much for that!  This method of managing scraps has been fun for me.  I’m finding it to be relaxing, productive, and creative.  It keeps me sewing regularly, and that’s a very good thing!

Lone Star Tree Skirt Sew Along: Piece Diamonds

Welcome to Week Two of the Lone Star Tree Skirt Sew Along!  If you’re just joining us, it’s not too late.  The pattern is available here and you can jump in anytime.  We’re going to finish our tree skirts well before Christmas!

Last week’s video covered sewing the fabrics into strips and then cutting them into strips of diamonds.  This week we will sew the strips into eight large diamonds to make a star so BE CAREFUL  in handling your fabric.  You have a lot of bias edges and don’t want to stretch them!  Once again, the video is in two parts.  In them you will find all my tips for marking, pinning, and sewing.  I love this step because the beauty of the lone star begins to emerge.  Here we go!

The first video covers marking and pinning your strips together.

The second video covers sewing the strips together into large diamonds.

There you have it, eight large diamonds!

When the diamonds are sewn together, play with them to see how they look if you flip them around.  I’m planning to put the red diamonds in the center of my star, which will look like this:

But if I wanted to flip it around, it would look like this:

You can see that the star looks very different when I switch them!  Last week I shared photos of an unfinished mod lone star as I deliberated on which way to sew it together.  I’d like to focus more on value in the future; I’m sure I will learn a lot!

We will meet back here next Monday for week three of the sew along.  Please share your progress with the hashtags #lonestartreeskirt and #hopefulhomemaker.  I’ll be watching for them!

Remember that all posts for this project can be found on the Lone Star Tree Skirt Sew Along page.

Have a great week, and happy sewing!

Sweet Dreams – an unfinished lone star

I am enjoying sewing my Lone Star Tree Skirt along with many of you, and filming it has been a lot of fun.  One result, however, has been guilt over an unfinished lone star project I have.  After I released my Mod Lone Star pattern, I started another one in Anna Maria Horner’s Sweet Dreams fabrics. Life intervened and I put my carefully cut strips of diamonds in a box.

I got them out this week and sewed them together into diamonds.  I can’t remember which print I intended to put in the center, so I am testing the diamonds in both directions.  This is something I like to do every time I make a lone star, just to see what the star would look like both ways.  Nearly half of the time I end up sewing the star together opposite from how I planned it!

I like the purple in the second round of diamonds above.  It really stands out.  It’s interesting to see what the fabrics look like together at a distance compared to the greater contrast they seem to have up close (below).

Up close it looks like I have a great variety, but when I removed the color I learned that most of the fabrics are medium in value.  I have very little light and dark in this star.

That’s not a bad thing, especially since my goal was to work in a narrow color scheme.  But it’s an interesting lesson in value.  How does it look with the yellow points in the center?

I like this layout because each round of diamonds in the middle seem to stand out more.  I like the light pink.

The value is still mostly mediums in both layouts and there is no right or wrong choice.  I took a photo of both options below.  You can see how the value will be different with each option.

Either way, this quilt is going to be beautiful.  I want to participate in the Anna Maria Horner sew along on Instagram (#AMHsewalong). Sewing this star together will be a great way to do it.  It’s also making me wonder what it would look like to applique on top of the star….

What do you think?  Would you choose the yellow/gold center or the purple?

Happy Sewing,

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