Monday, November 6, 2023

International Scrap Sorting Day

So the MQG deemed November 4, 2023 as International Scrap Sorting Day, and I decided it might be a good time to do just that. Though my solid scraps have been separated into their own bin for a few years now, all my print scraps have gotten tossed into an appropriately-named scrap basket, willy nilly. And when I've wanted to use any of them, I either rummage through them or dump the whole thing out and search that way. Not ideal, but it's obviously worked for me.

In tidying up the studio a bit in preparation for the big day, I discovered the majority of my red scraps already separated, for a reason I couldn't remember. Inspired by Cheryl's @cheryl_arkison post, I dove in to make a Quilted Storage Box from Cheryl and Amanda @crazymomquilts book, Sunday Morning Quilts. I chose not to use the suggested cardboard inserts, and though the shape is less box-like than it might have been, it works great. 

One new bin was all I had time for, so I looked around the studio and found several baskets and bins I could repurpose, for now at least, for scrap sorting. Below they're shown with THE long-time scrap basket.

Eventually, it was time to dump out the scrap basket and get to work. 

For some reason, I was in the mood, and it actually only took 90 minutes! I was surprised at the time, and also, surprised by how many black, gray, and brown scraps I had!

I had forgotten, until I started sorting, that I did also have a fabric basket already full of most of my low-volume print scraps, so I was able to add that to my collection of containers. And I was short a container for my small supply of purple and pink scraps, which I've since added to a corner of my blues.

One final note that pressing my scraps was not part of my plan for scrap-sorting day. MAYBE for another day, but most likely that'll be done when I want to use them. I also don't plan on cutting them down to particular sizes, as I usually do improv with my scraps, so I'm more likely to use the irregular shapes. And honestly, I'm itching to do just that, but as you know, I'm smack dab in the middle of a big project, and will look forward to using some of these scraps in the near future. Meanwhile, what I've done feels good, though it IS bittersweet to say goodbye to the big wicker basket, as it's served me well for a long time. And I'm curious to see how this new system will work for me.


  1. Hopefully the wicker basket can be repurposed for a new function since it has been such a good friend!

  2. I went through my scraps and organized them when I moved into my new quilt room. It has been a game changer. I sure like your fabric bins, but I hope you hang on to that basket, it's a beauty!

  3. I'm impressed with your amazing sorting ability! And that's a good call by MQG to set aside a day for scrap sorting. Increasing our awareness, right?
    I started last week on my own, sorting scraps by color using quart size baggies. For me the size is less threatening and they stack well into my see through bins. I fold the scraps a couple of times if they are bigger and layer them into the baggies. Then I can see better what is there without having to rummage around much. I can get a bit obsessive with color and this helps.