So yesterday afternoon I was sitting around trying to think of what I could pack that I won't need this week and doing pretty much nothing. I got kind of sick of doing nothing. So I got my scraps together and started cutting.
I decided to do a block quilt using two sizes for most of it. I've decided on squares of 4.5" and 2.5". I thought it through and remembered seam allowances. :) The little squares can make up one bigger square. It turns out these two sizes work together well for cutting up oddly shaped scraps. Just the big one would leave too much fabric and just the little one would take forever!!! Since I don't have a rotary cutter, this has been a practice of patience and creativity. First, I cut out pieces of cardboard in 4.5" and 2.5" squares. I decided to try my xacto knife first. That actually worked pretty well. (BTW, I love my knife - it's a fiskars that is so sturdy - I'm never worried it'll slip).
It was much easier to push down the cardboard over the fabric and cut than hold up the fabric and get it to stay still against the cardboard so I could get a straight cut. But when I got to the bigger pieces of fabric, it started to hurt my fingers to cut that many squares and keep pushing against the mat.. So I decided to tr scissors a little differently. I marked on each side how wide my square was, then cut the whole piece into long strips. I stacked the strips and cut them at the same time. The pieces are a bit irregular, but all very close to 4.5" square. That saved my hands some pain and me some time.
I started some time after 4pm yesterday, stopped for dinner and to play with my cats. I finished somewhere around 11pm with 161 large squares and 152 small squares. I really want to make a queen size quilt. So I need at least 400 blocks (either 1 big square or 4 small), but I'm shooting for about 500. I sorted the scraps from my cuts into two piles - usable and unusable. The usable pieces are at least an inch in both directions. I think I'm going to make a border out of these scraps. Or maybe just some extra blocks. I was also thinking I could use some of them like the Living and Dyeing striped quilt from my inspiration post. I'm not sure where they'll end up, but they'll be in my quilt one way or another. Here's my pile of stuff. I used plastic bags to sort and count my squares.