7 things to make with your fabric scraps

May 22, 2024
7 things to make with your fabric scraps
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We all have them. You've just finished cutting out your new dress/top/pants and you have leftover fabric and offcuts - but what do you do with them?

Fear no more! The scrap queen is here to help you with tips and tricks to get the most out of your fabric milage. 
First lets talk sorting. 

Working with leftovers becomes much easier when you have a system in place and keeping it simple is the key. I have three 'buckets' to keep my scraps organised for potential new projects.

  1. Larger scraps (approximately 40cm or larger) - my quick rule of thumb is "can I make a tote from this?"
  2. Medium size scraps - "can I make a zipper pouch from this?"
  3. Ity-bity scraps

Image credit: Patchwork Posse

Once you're sorted we can start on some fun projects! Let's start with the larger sizes...

Tote bag

They make a beautiful statement shopping bag, library bag, or last minute gift. My preference is for an external pocket in contrasting colours for a bit of pizazz! This pattern is the Stash Pocket Tote by Matchy Matchy and is designed to be a scrap busting queen. Mix and match your leftovers to create a look that is 100% unique! 

Alternatively my other go to is the Victory Pattern's Madrid Tote Bag and it's free if you subscribe to their newsletter. 

Bucket Hat

Sunsmart doesn't have to be dowdy! Make your look cohesive from head to toe by making a sun hat that draws complements whilst keeping your skin safe. This is the Merchant & Mills' Bucket Hat and it's FREE!

If your fabric lacks structure you may need to stiffen it with interfacing - but I'm sure you have leftovers of that too, right?

Now moving on to the mid-size scraps...

Oven mitt

Image credit: Cacon

I love the bright colours and hand stitching details of the Cacon Catcus oven mitt -so why not make my own? There are multiple shapes and (free) patterns depending on what your skill or asthetic. 

  • traditional hand shape
  • long rectangluar strip with hand pockets at either end
  • small trivet styles

Have a google and see what takes your fancy!

This idea is especially great for using up any boiled wool left over from that fabulous winter coat, non-synthetic wadding or old wool blanket that the moths ate last year. Make sure you have an insulating fabric between your hand and the hot dish - if you don't have any leftovers you can always buy small quantities of heat safe material from your local mainstream fabric store. 

Draw string bag

Image credit: A Cup of Thuy

Brilliant for present wrapping and generally just keeping things tidy, you can't go wrong with a simple drawstring bag. If you've never made one before I recommend that you check out this tutorial and skip down to Part II for the basic instructions. Feel free to jazz it up with your own iron on designs or fun fabric labels!

Zipper pouch 

Image credit: Noodlehead

A classy gift that you can make in under hour? Noodlehead's Petal Pouch is my #1 go to palette cleanser between large sewing projects or for the present in a pinch. The gentle curve gives it such a lovely shape. For a more vanilla - 4 rectangles and a zip (30 min version) - click here for the Melly Sew's tutorial.

I use them for my laptop power cable, sewing repair kits, holding electronics and in my handbag. Add a little notebook inside or face product and it's sure to bring a smile to your bestie's face!

Frame it!

Image credit: Hummingpea

You heard me - pop the most beautiful leftover into an embroidery hoop and surround yourself with instant art! Print out your favourite inspirational quote on some cardstock and sew it on (with that blunt needle that you're about to replace). 


And for the scraps so small but you just couldn't let go...

Image credit: RosieTaylorCrafts

Make panels of perfectly aligned tiny little squares of fabric to use for any of your larger projects! Use @rosie.taylor.crafts technique of ironing little squares onto fusible interfacing (in a grid) and then sewing down the columns and rows - it's patchwork with all the hard work taken out! Check out her reel on IG here.

Textile recycling (aka. guilt free scrap removal system)

Image credit: Upparel

And if it's small enough to be done with or you no longer have the love/energy keep a cardboard box handy and when you're done filling it with fabric scraps, add your old (clean) socks and package it up for a textile recycling company!

UPPAREL collects your scraps right from your doorstep and operates Australia wide. Check if your local council have initiatives with Who Gives A Sheet or other similar companies.


We can't wait to see what you make with your scraps! (Don't forget to add the proud tag of #scrapbusting)

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