This is a story about "cast offs". A cast off is a small piece of fabric that is left over from a previous quilt or pillow project. Someone taught me very early in life to be thrifty and frugal. It may have been my mom, grandmother or my late stepfather, Eddie, but I can't remember. Anyway, I can't seem to throw anything away . . . ever!
The projects pictured below are all produced from cast offs. I love working with "Thimbleberries" fabrics because they were all designed to coordinate with each other. Has anyone other than me ever noticed this? The "Thimbleberries" designer is Lynette Jensen and she is one of my idols in life. I just love her fabric designs and have built up an extensive collection. You will notice that most of my creations are inspired by the "Thimbleberries" colors.
Another one of my crafting idols is Eleanor Burns. Eleanor is a well-known quilt designer and has been featured often on HGTV's show "Simply Quilts". I love to watch her demonstrate quilting processes. She makes me laugh. While using her rotary cutter, she will demonstrate how to cut strips, squares, etc. and she will take the unused scraps of fabric and whip them backwards over her shoulder with a sound effect. This is an "Eleanor Burns" cast off!
So, now that you have been educated about "cast offs", if you follow my blog regularly, you will notice that most of my projects are created from these little pieces of fabric that I just couldn't part with.
Below is a pillow I designed from cast offs. It has an embroidered heart in the center.
The image below is a button bag I just threw together using Thimbleberries cast offs. I was scheduled to babysit my grandkids Jack and Norah in Newmarket one day last week, so I grabbed a small stash of fabric, some matching quilting and embroidery threads, buttons, my pin cushion and scissors, then off I went. When the kids were either sleeping or occupied with playing, I laid out my pieces of fabrics and matched up a few that I thought went well together. I hand-pieced all of the patchwork, embroidered a little "buttons" sign and attached it with blanket stitching. My style is to create as I go (I rarely use patterns) and this is what I ended up with!
My next door neighbor Joe, gives me all of his empty cigar boxes and I repurpose them into decorated boxes for buttons, recipes, keepsakes, coupons, etc. This is my latest creation using "cast offs". I made yoyo flowers with button centers and hand-embroidered the words. The cigar box is painted black to match my fabric choices.