A Seriously Scrappy May

I decided to get serious for this month’s ScrapHappy day.  There’s not much fabric that’s scrappier than the long bits cut off the sides is there?

I’ve been saving them for a while.

I like the ones with writing and colour swatches on best but not all selvedges are printed equal and some are just too narrow to be useful.

I decided to do a little quilt as you go piece so took a scrap of fabric leftover from the shirt I made Mr. Tialys and a piece of wadding and drew  round a large embroidery hoop to get a circle of the right size.

Then I laid a couple of selvedges right sides together across the middle and joined with a quarter inch seam through all the layers which is where the ‘quilting as you go’ comes in.

Keep pressing each strip open and adding another, the circle slowly starts to fill in.

I put the whole thing into the large emboidery hoop and trimmed the excess selvedges and wadding very close to the wooden edge, leaving some of the backing longer to glue down onto the surround.  You can see the quilting and pretty fabric so I didn’t want to cover it up with another back.

The result is an unusual wall hanging for my sewing room which has the added appeal of reminding me of past projects I made with the fabrics formerly attached to those selvedges.  I deliberately framed it so the selvedges run diagonally (in case you were wondering) because I think it looks a little more interesting than if they were running horizontally.


And all from a box of cut off edges.

As you can see, I have quite a few more.

I’ve got an ‘ongoing’ scrappy project to tell you about too. My suggestion to my Wednesday afternoon sewing friend was that we could make a pixelated sewing machine wall hanging out of 1.5 inch squares.  Unsurprisingly, she seemed a bit dubious, even slightly unenthusiastic you might say, but went along with me anyway bless her.

We’re doing the mini version you’ll not be surprised to hear.  Even that takes 388 neutral squares and 275 (or thereabouts) coloured ones.  I found the pattern on Craftsy (now Blueprint).

The idea was sparked off by me finding a packet of 1.5 inch squares I’d cut at some stage from a charm pack of batiks.  I have no idea what I was intending to do with them but whatever it was obviously didn’t materialise.

I rummaged through my scraps to make up the number of different colours I need but must confess I had to use a couple of new fat quarters in order to have enough neutrals for the pixielated background.

The 1.5 inch squares are arranged 5 x 5 to make a 5.5 inch square block and then joined together in horizontal rows of five blocks.

I’m not gonna lie, as my daughter says depressingly often, keeping those tiny squares joined accurately is, frankly, a bit of a nightmare for me.  I’m using a 1/4 inch foot on my machine but I still have a few wonky bits. Pixelation might be somewhat enhanced in my version.

I’ll be doing an update next Scraphappy Day but don’t expect it to be finished (or unwobbly).

If you like the idea of using your scraps (of anything, not just fabric) click on Kate or Gun(first two names in the list  below) and join us on the 15th of every month – or just those months you feel like joining in.  Here’s a list of both frequent and occasional Scraphappiers (?) if you want to see what everybody else is doing.

Kate,  Gun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Nanette, Lynn , Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy, Debbierose, Tracy, Jill, Claire, JanKaren,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancy, Alys, Kerry, Claire, Jean, Johanna,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawn, Gwen, Connie, Bekki, Pauline and Sue L.


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  1. #1 by nottaholiday on May 15, 2019 - 07:43

    what a great reminder to projects past… love it. I can see this maybe as a panel in a zipper pouch. Love those fossil fern scraps too.

    • #2 by tialys on May 15, 2019 - 10:21

      Now I know you’re a hidden craftswoman. Zipper pouch suggestions! Fossil Fern recognition! I say ‘hidden’ but you might have another blog for all I know.

  2. #3 by Wild Daffodil on May 15, 2019 - 07:48

    Your circular wall hanging is genius – a beauty in its own right, but also a great memento of past projects.
    Good luck with those pixels!

    • #4 by tialys on May 15, 2019 - 10:18

      Thank you, I need it!

  3. #5 by thecontentedcrafter on May 15, 2019 - 07:53

    Brilliant! I really like not only how it looks, but also the memories it holds for you. Now I wonder what other ideas you can come up with for your selvedge scraps…………… The pixilated idea – my eyes hurt just thinking about it!

    • #6 by tialys on May 15, 2019 - 10:18

      Sometimes I don’t know why I start these things. They just seem like a good idea at the time.

  4. #7 by nanacathy2 on May 15, 2019 - 09:39

    I love the use of the selvedges- far too good to waste- I like ones which stimulate me into making a picture. Oh my the sewing machine project- good luck!

    • #8 by tialys on May 15, 2019 - 10:17

      I think I’ll need it judging by my efforts so far – maybe it’ll look better from a distance. I’ll show you next Scraphappy Day.

  5. #9 by The Snail of Happiness on May 15, 2019 - 09:43

    What an interesting use of selvedges… I honestly would never have thought of such a thing.

    • #10 by tialys on May 15, 2019 - 10:16

      There exists, in the land of crazy crafting, a dress made from selvedges. I doubt it gets worn but it’s amazing. http://tinyurl.com/4fxf5u

      I might run to a zipper pouch in the fullness of time.

      • #11 by The Snail of Happiness on May 15, 2019 - 10:44

        flippin’ ‘eck – that dress is mind-blowing – how many metres of new fabric went into collecting all those edges, I wonder. So, now you have a taste for it, perhaps that’s what you could make your next pair of jeans out of? (ducks to avoid flying objects!)

      • #12 by tialys on May 15, 2019 - 10:55

        Good idea. I think they’d go down very well in rural France 🤣

      • #13 by The Snail of Happiness on May 15, 2019 - 12:00


  6. #14 by katechiconi on May 15, 2019 - 10:22

    Gorgeous, both of them! I too have a bag full of selvedges, but I’m saving them for Annett, who said over a year ago she was going to do something with selvedges. Shame I haven’t got round to sending them… and clearly you don’t need any more! That sewing machine is really cute, and I think a bit of wobble simply enhances the lovely hand-craftedness of it. In any case, there are no quilt police around on ScrapHappy Day 🙂

    • #15 by tialys on May 15, 2019 - 10:29

      Most of the ones I have left haven’t got writing on but I guess I could still use them if the fabric is pretty enough. I’m thinking I might make a zipper pouch or a small hoop that I could send to somebody instead of a birthday card for instance.
      I have my own Quilt Police in the form of Sandra (Wednesday sewing friend) – she will notice a mistake from 50 paces and tell you too. I usually ignore her or tell her I’m aiming for perfection but don’t beat myself up if I don’t attain it. At least that’s what I think I’m telling her as I have to say it in French – another area where I don’t expect to ever achieve perfection. 🙄

      • #16 by katechiconi on May 15, 2019 - 11:03

        I wonder how you say “The people who mind don’t matter, and the people who matter don’t mind” in French…. I think if I ever had a huge collection of selvedges I’d make a small rug out of them; they’re tightly woven and more hardwearing than ordinary fabric and might stand up to a bit of foot traffic as a mat for the bathroom or kitchen.

  7. #17 by Nanette on May 15, 2019 - 11:04

    I love selvedge projects and yours is clever and eye catching. And love your sewing machine. And remember, if you can’t see your mistakes from a galloping horse, don’t worry. 😉

    • #18 by tialys on May 16, 2019 - 14:13

      I hear Kate is saving her selvedges for you so I look forward to seeing some masterpieces from you in the fullness of time.

      • #19 by Nanette on May 16, 2019 - 23:58

        Hmm, not me, but I remember seeing somewhere she was saving them, don’t remember for whom though. Maybe you’ve inspired me though 🤔

      • #20 by tialys on May 17, 2019 - 09:50

        Oops! She said ‘Annett’ not ‘Nanette’. Sorry for the confusion – you will not be getting yards of selvedges in the post after all 🙄

  8. #21 by KerryCan on May 15, 2019 - 12:33

    I’ve seen selvedges sewn up to make quilt blocks before but I really like the way you did yours up in the embroidery hoop–a perfect scrap happy project! Your sewing room must be very fun, with these creative pieces to decorate it!

  9. #23 by Dartmoor Yarns on May 15, 2019 - 12:49

    Nice wall hanging. It reminds me of books on a bookshelf and feels as if it has a similar function of giving you a happy reminder of projects past, just as books on a shelf give a happy reminder of stories you’ve loved reading.
    Have to say though I don’t think I’d be able to build up the enthusiasm for pixelated sewing machine either :-/

    • #24 by tialys on May 16, 2019 - 14:10

      I’m finding it difficult to build up any myself actually.

  10. #26 by mlmcspadden on May 15, 2019 - 13:58

    Great use of the selvedges. I keep thinking about saving mine….but always it seems after I’ve already cut them into bits. Maybe one of these days.

    I really like the pixellated pattern you’re working on as well!

    • #27 by tialys on May 16, 2019 - 14:11

      Not all selvedges are worth saving really but, if they are, they will generally catch your eye before cutting.

  11. #28 by Laurie Graves on May 15, 2019 - 15:42

    Phew! Getting to 45,000 words on my novel by June seems like child’s play compared with what you are doing. Hats off!

    • #29 by tialys on May 16, 2019 - 14:10

      Hmm. I don’t know about that. I don’t think I’d swap projects with you 😉

      • #30 by Laurie Graves on May 16, 2019 - 15:58

        Funny, that’s just the way I feel when I look at the wonderful things you create. Phew! So far afield from what I can do.

  12. #31 by Lynda on May 15, 2019 - 17:26

    You inspire me! I’ve just barely enough to begin a project(s) like those you have done here. What fun!

    • #32 by tialys on May 16, 2019 - 14:05

      I think a smaller hoop would look cute too if you haven’t enough for a large one.

  13. #33 by Born To Organize on May 15, 2019 - 19:37

    I love what you’ve created with your selvedges. This is really clever. I also clicked over to that incredible dress. WOW! I also thought to suggest a zippered pouch or a fold over clutch, but you’ve already thought of that as well. Brilliant and so much fun.

    • #34 by tialys on May 16, 2019 - 14:05

      I might make a couple of mini hoops next. They’d make quite cute birthday card/gift hybrids I think.

  14. #35 by claire93 on May 15, 2019 - 21:41

    love your circle framed piece of selvedges – a lovely reminder of projects past.

    • #36 by tialys on May 16, 2019 - 14:03

      Plus a good use for the embroidery hoops I bought for I don’t remember what. It definitely wouldn’t have been embroidery though!

      • #37 by claire93 on May 17, 2019 - 10:11

        maybe for a Mandala crocheted dreamcatcher??? I’m keeping my hoops for one of those!

      • #38 by tialys on May 17, 2019 - 11:17

        I have special hoops for those – do you remember I made a Mandala wall hanging a few months ago? https://thetialys.wordpress.com/2018/08/06/hot-crochet/
        I’ll send you a hoop if you like as I bought a few at the time – ‘in case’.

      • #39 by claire93 on May 17, 2019 - 22:42

        ah yes! I remember now! I wouldn’t say no to a hoop lol, but I’ve got so many projects on my “to do” list, it’ll be a while before I get around to crocheting a mandala.

  15. #40 by magpiesue on May 16, 2019 - 02:29

    Now that’s a project for selvedges I might actually make someday! I’ve seen whole quilts out of them, and plenty of zipper pouches but so far have been able to resist the temptation to save one more thing. 😉

    • #41 by tialys on May 16, 2019 - 13:59

      I know, there has to be limits and, for myself, I try to dispose of dressmaking leftovers pretty ruthlessly.

  16. #42 by kathyreeves on May 16, 2019 - 03:38

    Pixelated? You are one brave woman! I love your selvedge wall hanging!

    • #43 by tialys on May 16, 2019 - 13:58

      Brave or foolish. I’m beginning to suspect the latter.

  17. #44 by anne54 on May 16, 2019 - 04:47

    I am so impressed with quilters ~ you never throw anything out! And Kate’s Scrap happy Challenge is Perfect to get those scrappy thoughts buzzing. I love your hoop, and can see why you would be reluctant to throw out those selvedges.

    • #45 by tialys on May 16, 2019 - 13:57

      I wish my husband would be as impressed that I never throw anything out! 😉

  18. #46 by CurlsnSkirls on May 16, 2019 - 18:12

    What a wonderful idea, and so beautifully executed!
    ps/Am reading The Little Prince now and thoroughly enjoying it.

    • #47 by tialys on May 17, 2019 - 09:52

      I bought a vintage copy from the U.K. which turns out to have been printed in the 70s in New York. It’s a small world. Not as small as the little prince’s though 😊
      I’m glad you’re enjoying it – the illustrations are delightful aren’t they?

      • #48 by CurlsnSkirls on May 17, 2019 - 16:57

        Yes, lovely illustrations! My library copy says “English translation copyright 2000 by Richard Howard” but the original 1943 copyright for the remainder (drawings). 😊

  19. #49 by Joanne S on May 17, 2019 - 22:34

    Very nice use of selvages! I save them ,too and have used them in various sewing projects (zippered pouches, 1-hour baskets…). I’m very interested in your pixelated sewing machine mini quilt. Can’t wait to see the progress and finished project. 🙂

    • #50 by tialys on May 18, 2019 - 08:47

      I’ll be interested to see how the sewing machine turns out too because it’s a lot harder than I thought it would be to keep those squares perfectly lined up which, if I’m honest, they’re not going to be. Hopefully, it will still look good effective though.

  20. #51 by dezertsuz on June 2, 2019 - 14:28

    Both are such wonderfully creative uses of scraps. I don’t save edges, but I’ve noticed some cute ones lately that tempted me, and Art Gallery makes a nice wide one. That would be a great show-off piece for them!

    • #52 by tialys on June 3, 2019 - 12:21

      I love Art Gallery fabrics but they are hideously expensive over here.

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