Fabric Scraps Obsession, Studio

Scrappy Experimentations

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This post is follow to my previous post A Scrappy Existence:

In 2012, thanks to my friend Betty Anne, I expanded my love of fabric scraps from cotton quilting fabric scraps to silk and linen garment scraps. If you check out the Gallery you will see examples of quilts made solely from silk and linen scraps from garment construction.

Recently I have expanded to experimenting with creating pieces from denim and wool scraps.

I have collected denim scraps for a couple years from old jeans in anticipation of a future ‘upcycling’ project. In early 2013 Betty Anne shared her stash of men’s wool suiting scraps and Pendleton wool scraps and samples given to her by a  friend. My first experiment with these scraps was making wool pincushions as gifts for fellow attendees at a quilt retreat last year. I was nervous to expanded working with wool scraps beyond making pin cushions.

It took until early 2014 to get the courage to create a piece/art quilt/wall hanging using the wool scraps. I combined them with denim scraps to create a piece I named ‘He Dresses Up, He Dresses Down’. The center of the quilt is constructed from wool suiting scraps (He Dresses Up) which have a luxurious texture. The center is framed on each side with a combination of Pendleton wool scraps and denim scraps (He Dresses Down…slang for comfortable, casual dress).

'He Dresses Up, He Dresses Down', designed & pieced by Tierney Hogan, 2014
‘He Dresses Up, He Dresses Down’, designed & pieced by Tierney Hogan, 2014

Piecing wool scraps can be a bit challenging. The seams between wool scraps are bulky when wool pieces are sewn together. Instead of pressing seams to one side as you would normally do with cotton fabric quilt construction, you have to press the seams open AND anchor them down to reduce the bulk. I used a red thread zig zag stitch (for contrast) on the front of wool pieced sections to anchor the seams and reduce the bulk.

The quilt is currently awaiting long-arm quilting and I will post the completed piece to the Gallery.

Now – what category of fabric scraps to experiment with next? Probably upholstery scraps – my friend Cindy gave me a box of upholstery samples. I have seen cool bags made from upholstery fabric – I am thinking either a functional item (like a purse/bag) or a wall hanging. Upholstery fabric scraps would not not make for a cozy quilt!

So imagine me in a white lab coat, with crazy-mad-scientist-hair, beakers of fabric scraps in hand, ready to the next wild experiment!