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Use It or Lose It by Mary Ellen

Hello all, Mary Ellen here.

Do you have lots of “stuff” in your sewing room or craft room that you haven’t used in ages? Me too. I saw a series of posts on a paper crafter’s web site. She is going through her stash a little bit at a time, and either using the trove of supplies or putting them aside for donation or the trash-losing them. In each of her posts she gives ideas for how she is using some of the supplies, and sometimes also explaining why she is losing some of the other supplies. She has challenged her readers to play along with her, and to share how they are using or losing the overflow in their own stashes. I thought this might be a fun thing for us quilters to try also.

So here we go. The category for this week’s “use it or lose it” will be scraps. If you are playing along with me, you will need to concentrate on your scraps this week: either use them in a small project or two, organize them so you will be able to use them more easily in the near future, or lose them (donate them or trash them). If you are a member of our quilt guild, you can make a small project for the auction (not much time left!), or some small items to sell in our boutique (you’ll earn some cash for yourself!). If you’re going to lose it, put those scraps in some bags to donate to our quilt show scrap pool. You’ll be helping yourself divest a bit, and helping our guild make funds for our activities. If you’re not in our guild, and haven’t heard of a scrap pool, see below the post for an explanation of how we do it.

I’m going to take a few photos as a do this for myself this week, and I’ll share them here. I’d love to hear from you if you decide to take up the “Use It or Lose It” challenge.

1) Get lots of scraps donated by members. Set some parameters for the minimum and/or maximum size scrap you will accept. 2) Put those scraps into a child’s plastic swimming pool at your organization’s quilt show or get together. 3) Charge those interested in playing in the pool a fee and give them a zip lock bag. They pay the fee (I believe ours is $1 for a gallon zip lock.) and can dig through the pool to choose as many scraps as will fit into their zip lock bag. It’s amazing how much fun quilters have fondling all those fabrics and finding just the right scraps for their projects.

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