How to Make (Just About!) Any Quilt a Scrap Quilt

One of my favorite things to do with a pattern, is to turn it into a scrap quilt. It doesn't work for all patterns but most block-based quilts can be made scrappy. 

Rainbow Modern Postage Stamp Quilt - Kitchen Table Quilting

So how do you do this? First, you need to figure out what you need to do to make a single block. Many patterns (including many of my block-based patterns) have this information included. It is useful for making a test block, but it also helps you break the quilt down into units for making the quilt scrappy.

Look at the quilt, figure out how many blocks you need to make, and that will help you determine how many scraps you need. Just multiple the requirements for a single block by the number of blocks to figure how many pieces you need.

I will give you a few examples.

The Ruth Quilt

The Ruth Quilt is great because it uses small-ish squares. In the pattern, the squares in the corner of the block are all cut from the same fabric and the remaining squares around the center square are cut from the same fabric.

The Ruth Quilt (Muted Version) - Kitchen Table Quilting

But, what if we used different fabrics? In my scrappy version, I used light value prints for the corner squares, a dark value print for the center square, and medium value prints for the remaining squares. The finished quilt has a similar effect to the original quilt, but it's made completely from scraps (except the sashing).

A Scrappy Ruth Quilt - Kitchen Table Quilting

The Carly Quilt

This quilt works well with so many different fabrics. It has a more modern look using fewer fabrics.

The Carly Quilt - Kitchen Table Quilting

Or it has a fun, scrappy look using scraps. For this quilt, I made sure that my background fabric was distinct from my scraps so that the shapes didn't blend together. I also tried to avoid using any larger scale prints since they can look a little strange when you just get a little piece of them.

The Carly Quilt - Kitchen Table Quilting

The Iris Quilt

Ok, this one isn't actually block based, but since it uses smaller pieces it does work with scraps. The original version of the pattern has you strip piece long strips of fabric which makes a nice, quick quilt using a jelly roll.

The Iris Quilt in Tula Pink - Kitchen Table Quilting

The pattern also has instructions to make your quilt scrappy. It isn't quite as fast as strip piecing, but it is a great use for those leftover jelly roll pieces or binding strips. Using a single, non-scrappy fabric for the sashing and for the background fabric helps the quilt from looking too crazy. It's just the right amount of crazy.

A Scrappy Iris Quilt - Kitchen Table Quilting

The Frances Quilt

This one is easy to make scrappy. The original version that I made had a rainbow radiating out from the center. I love this pattern because it is so simple to put together.

The Frances Quilt Pattern - Kitchen Table Quilting

Then I also made a scrappy version. For this one, I had a few leftover pieces from fat quarter bundles and a couple of charm packs that coordinated well together so I combined them to make this quilt. It is bright and happy and was a great use of two different square sizes. 

The Frances Quilt Pattern - Kitchen Table Quilting

The Freya Quilt

This is my most recent pattern. I love it as a scrap quilt because it can really use up what you have on hand. The pieces are small and it uses a lot of them. The pattern is written to work with jelly roll strips.

The Freya Quilt in Lady Bird - Kitchen Table Quilting

But it is also great for scraps. I had mostly dark scraps in my bin so that's what I ended up with and I love how it turned out (I will be sharing more photos of this quilt later this week, I just got it photographed!).

A Scrappy Freya Quilt - Kitchen Table Quilting

These are just a few examples, but you can make almost any quilt scrappy. I try to make a scrappy version of each of my new patterns if I can make time for it - they are a great way to make good use of those leftovers and they are always the favorite quilts at my house!

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