The other day someone commented to me, that they thought my idea of using up my scraps before I purchased any more fabric, was an entertaining though for them. Now this is not a judgement towards this person, on the contrary, I found much truth in her insight that “scraps” tend to spawn more scraps. Isn’t it funny how that works?
However with the said, I am normally, one of the most frugal quilters you will ever meet. I was raised to cut up old clothing (regardless of the fiber content) for quilt pieces. Old falling apart blankets can and should be re-sandwiched into another quilt instead of purchasing new batting.
Old sheets make great backings or new sheets purchased at the local 5 & Dime work brilliantly at a fraction of the fabric store prices. We only purchased what we needed for each project and any left over scraps would get put away fro the next project. The women in my family lived by the creed: Use it up, wear it out, make do or do without! The women in my family were masters of recycling. The truth of the matter is I never purchased fabric from a fabric store for the purpose of quilting until 5 years ago when I made my underground railroad quilt.
The whole time I was picking out fabrics, I was thinking that it was down right ridiculous that I, or anyone, would spend so much money to make a quilt. So the comment that was made to me the other day, which was very well meaning, caused me to think of how frugal can a person be when quilting in todays world?
So I am going to set a challenge for myself for the rest of the year and there will be only 3 exceptions. Here is my challenge to myself:
- To only quilt with the fabric that I have on hand.
- If I feel that I have to purchase anything pertaining to the quilt, such as batting or backing, I will do so a frugally as possible. This means that I will have to either purchase “new” fabric that is on sale for 50% off or more or I will have to visit my local thrift store for 100% cotton sheets.
My exceptions are these:
I already have plans in place to make 3 quilts by December and they will be from store fabrics. These quilts are for my new grandson, who is due to be born in January, and one each for my grandson Marcus and my soon to be grandson, Reid. I would like for both 6 year old boys to have quilts of their own so they do not feel left out when their new brother arrives.
However, I will purchase only the fabric that I need for each project, no extra yardage cut, and I will purchase all the fabric that I need at discounted prices. I will not pay full price for anything.
I will also keep a running total on everything that I purchase and it will be visible on my “Quilting Challenge” page. As I purchase anything for quilting, I will add the date, what the item is, and how much I paid for it. I will do this for the next 6 months with the start date being immediately and the end date being February 4, 2018.
With that said, I will be purchasing fabrics for sewing clothing for my husband and myself during the next 6 months. Again I will be purchasing exactly the yardage that I need for each project and I will be saving all scraps to re-fill my shoe boxes for next years stash of fabrics.
So there is my challenge to myself, lets hope I can achieve my goal for very little money and very little left over fabric.