Friday, June 8, 2012

Leftovers: A Great Quick Quilt Technique

I hardly ever make a quilt that I don't end up with some leftovers.  Booboos, over cutting, blocks or units for blocks where the colors just did not work, you name it, I've probably made that mistake.  But mistakes can be opportunities, right?!  So when I'm finished with a quilt I take those booboos and put them in a baggy or basket (depending on how many booboos I made) to keep them together for a rainy day.  The 'Quick Quilt' angle is that if you can figure out what to do with those extra units you already have some of the quilt sewn when you start!  Of course truth to tell I spend a lot of time puzzling over those extra pieces, but I think that's half the fun.

There's a gal in my quilt guild ( who runs a charitable group that makes lap quilts for wheel chair bound veterans.  The size requested is 36" x 48".  This is a great size for 'leftovers' projects that have a modest amount of leftovers.  I've made 3 quilts just recently using 3 different leftovers baggies.

This quilt was made from leftover stripy units from this quilt:
Blue and Gold for Jimmy - 2000      51" x 51"
As you can see from the date some times the leftovers have a loooong incubation period. This quilt  really drove me nuts.  I just did not have the right contrast going on in the fabrics to get the effect that I wanted and I kept making more and more units to try and fix the problem.  Consequently I had a lot of leftovers...  The next quilt in contrast had very few leftovers so I had to barrow from another UFO that had similar fabrics.
The main 'mother' quilt of this leftover project is still one of my favorites: There's nothing like a blue and gold color scheme to brighten ones day!

Blue and Gold Friendship Blocks- 1998   65" x 89"
This last quilt has a lot of piecing experiments in it but since I stuck to just three fabrics I think it came out rather well... if you like abstract quilts.

I unfortunately do not have a picture of this quilt's 'mother' because I forgot to take a pic before I gave the quilt away.  I actually really like making this size quilt of 36" x 48" it's pretty quick and it is definitely an incentive for me to use up some leftovers and it always feels good to make some charitable quilts in between my own projects.  happy quilting, CW


  1. I love your new blog! And of course the pictures are fabulous! And I'm not finished with needing you testing for me...

  2. I love making quilts with left overs too. Fun! thanks for sharing

  3. Such a wonderful variety of quilts from your leftovers. I'm trying to reduce mine, but I'm pretty sure they reproduce overnight. I agree. It's fun figuring out how to put them together.