People know that I use scrap fabric. I am quite giggle-ly when someone tells me, “I am bringing a bag of scrap fabric to guild for you.” Even better when it is a surprise and someone brings a bag, “Not sure if you can use these, but I wanted to let you look at them first”.
I know, not everyone would be so keen to receive a mystery bag of fabric “leftovers”. Quilters aren’t known for a lack of fabric. But if you are a scrapaholic a tote of fabric that comes from the “cutting floor” is treasure. To me it is Christmas. It is a gift and I know I will find a precious gem of fabric that totally fits with a project I am working on. And, I am honored that someone thought of me as a worthy steward of their remaining fabric commodity.
Yes, I know, I am a scrapaholic. It isn’t a negative thing. We are a thrifty, creative group.
If you are new to this realm of bequeathed fabric you can step in with your eyes open an avoid the pitfalls by remembering you are not obligated to keep fabric you are gifted. If you don’t appreciate the fabric, give it a pass and let someone else take a look at it.
If you are ever overwhelmed by your own scrap fabric stash at any time remember the rule “Sort and Distribute”.
I try to sort the fabric as soon as I bring it into the house. Yes, I have left bags of fabric in the car for short term storage until I had time to sort.
If the fabric trims are too thin or the fabric is not of good quality for quilting I discard it.
Fabrics that I can use in current projects get sorted by size and if needed are trimmed into manageable pieces removing frayed threads.
I sort remaining fabrics that I intend to keep by color and size. I add these fabrics to like color scrap fabric I already have in my scrap stash.
If the fabric isn’t right for me I put it in my donate stash so I can pass it on. This does not mean the fabric is ugly or bad quality, it just isn’t right for me.
BTW, this can happen with large pieces of fabric and often the fabric is perfect for a project that someone else is working on.