Scrap Quilts for Modern Quilters

“God’s Eye” by Maria Shell

I don’t know about you but I don’t get much quilting or sewing done during the summer. I want to be outside as much as possible! Between hikes, kayak trips, and beach days there’s not much of my spare time allotted to indoor activities.

However, September is a new chapter. Even though my kids are grown, there’s a return to order about back-to-school time that permeates my activities. And, so, I return to quilting—and I realize how much I miss it!

Scrap Lattice

I think a nice scrap quilt will get me back in the swing. I love Heather Kojan’s “Scrap Lattice” project from Modern Patchwork September/October 2018. This quilt is truly yummy and shows just what you can do with a random selection of blue and mostly blue fabrics in a variety of sizes and shapes. Or change the color to suit your own taste! (I’m a purple lover and have quite the collection of pieces large and small so I may go in that direction.)

“Scrap Lattice” by Heather Kojan

“Scrap Lattice” by Heather Kojan

I’m drawn to her pieced background of neutral solids, too, although I don’t have quite the stash of scraps Heather has, unfortunately. I may use yardage, which the materials list provides a note on, in a light solid or subtle print. I really like Heather’s pieced binding, which I plan to create as well, and her modern vibe.

One of the things I love about scrap quilts is each one is different. Even if you follow a pattern, so many of the color and fabric choices will be yours alone.

Picadilly Circus

“Piccadilly Circus” by Jo Kramer and Kelli Hanken

“Piccadilly Circus” by Jo Kramer and Kelli Hanken

Piccadilly Circus” by Jo Kramer and Kelli Hanken is a fun and bold quilt from Quiltmaker September/October 2018. The strippy stars in the center have so much energy and I love the Half-square Triangles on the outer edge, arranged Flying Geese-style. The rainbow palette reminds me of a quilt I made for one of my kids years ago.

Monaco

“Monaco” by Nancy Mahoney

“Monaco” by Nancy Mahoney

Another bright, happy quilt project is “Monaco” by Nancy Mahoney from Quiltmaker July/August 2018.

A quilt that really got me thinking and assessing my scraps is “Fowl Play” by Diane Harris from Modern Patchwork July/August 2018. Although not ‘truly’ a scrap quilt, this quilt is made with varied light- and dark-valued strips for the background which would lend themselves to a comparable stash. Add a few fat quarters in bright prints or solids to tie the design together—as Diane did in this successful quilt—and you’ve got it made!

Fowl Play

“Fowl Play” by Diane Harris 

“Fowl Play” by Diane Harris

For those of you who love sewing bits and bobs together to create your own ‘fabric,’ check out Modern Patchwork March/April 2018 for “Master Class with Maria Shell—Artful Improvisation: Making prints out of solids.” Try Maria’s method of making striped fabric for a riff on traditional scrap quilting … or maybe you have a treasure trove of cut strips in a variety of widths and colors you can grab from your scrap basket. (Lucky you!) Working improvisationally is sometimes a close cousin to quilting in a scrappy style. (A detail of “God’s Eye” by Maria Shell is at the top of the page.)

Owl Eyes

Another project from the same issue I love is “Owl Eyes” by Jen Carlton Bailly. Jen made a version of this very modern quilt in a scrappy style with William Morris fabrics. Her placement of the ‘scraps,’ however, was clearly intentional—just look at those dark blue shapes that jump out!—and your eye is guided all along the surface with a delightful result. This quilt shows that working with scraps can be planned or not.

“Owl Eyes” by Jen Carlton Bailly

“Owl Eyes” by Jen Carlton Bailly

Kathryn Wagar Wright wrote a thoughtful article about creating artistic scrap quilts. It’s a really good read and I highly recommend it.

I hope I have inspired you to try one of these quilts to get your quilt juices flowing!

Happy quilting,
Kristine

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