Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Making a Move

This week has been a little crazy and it looks like the coming weeks will be just as crazy, if not more so. The main cause of the craziness: We’re moving across the country!

This move wasn’t even on our radar a few months ago, but we’re excited about the new direction that our lives are taking. It will mean a complete lifestyle change for the better, and who can complain about that?

Except that I’m spending more time packing projects than making them. And the few projects I have been working on have been personal projects for friends. I don’t feel comfortable sharing them here; they’re not really my projects to show.

That said, I do have a few things I can share. I mentioned before that during the holidays I was given a gift card to a local craft store. Of course, I couldn’t leave the area without using the card. I picked out five fat quarters.

Five Quilting Fat Quarters

The baseball fabric will be perfect for a certain eight-year-old. I already have an assortment of quilting fabrics with letters on them, which made the numbers fabric an easy choice. The other three struck me as nice basics; they stand out on their own, but could also work as accents or backgrounds with statement fabrics.

I used the rest of the money on the card to buy some materials for my daughter’s science project. Not the most exciting use of a gift card, but it kept me from buying too much extra stuff that would just end up being packed away as soon as I brought it home.

I also finished one simple project this week. A friend of mine introduced me to shelter pet beds. The idea is that you sew together two equal-sized pieces of scrap fabric on three sides to form a pillowcase shape. Or fold one large piece of fabric in half and sew along the edges on either side of the fold as I did; my cut of fabric was about 24 inches long. Then as you’re making other projects and generating scraps of fabric, batting, thread, and even yarn, you simply add those pieces to the pillowcase. When you think it is full enough, sew together the open edge for a simple, low-cost pet bed that can be donated to a shelter.

Toy Racoon Resting on a Shelter Pet Bed
I didn't have a pet handy to serve as a model, so Bandit had to step in.

As I’ve been packing up my sewing area, I was happy to discover that I had accumulated enough scraps to finish my pet bed. I’ll be helping our local shelter, and it’s one less project that needs to be packed! Plus, my children are excited for an excuse to visit the animals.

I have read online that some people are concerned pets will tear open the beds and get sick from eating the scraps inside. However, our local shelter is happy to receive the beds and checks them regularly for wear. If you’re thinking of making one, I would recommend you call your local shelter first to see if it’s something they will use.

What are your favorite ways to use those little “worthless” scraps?


  1. I like this idea of making shelter beds using scraps. I imagine that it may take quite a while to fill it, but that's still better than tossing it all away. You could also add some fiber fill just to be done with project when you've had enough of it. :-)

    I tend to use lots of my scraps but those are the bigger ones that I can't toss. I've sewn them into "fabric slabs" and used them in quilts. I like to sort them into like colors and work with one color at a time. All the colors together would likely make me a little kooky as I'm a visual person. Talk about distraction!

    Good luck with your move. It sounds like you're an adventurous person who will make the most of your new life!

    1. Thank you, Mary! It took some months to fill the pillowcase, but not as long as I expected — and I keep anything an inch square or bigger. I also sort my scraps by color, or at least value. I prefer a slightly structured scrappy look for my own projects.


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