One of the things about quilting is that you tend to end up not only with lots of fabric scraps but also a huge stash of uncut fabric too.
Whether you’re trying to clear out your stash like I am or just want to get some not-so-pretty fabric out of your eye line, there are so many exciting ways you can use your fabric, be that proper scraps, fat quarters or even yardage to make an amazing stash buster project!
In the last few weeks, I’ve been busy making all sorts of quick projects to clean up my sewing room.
As well as stash buster projects I’ve been re-organizing my fabric and selling on some of my unwanted stash online too.
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- 3 Ways to Sell Fabric Online & Declutter your Sewing Space
To inspire my fellow quilters I have pulled together some of my favorite projects I’ve created to quickly bust my stash.
Note: for some of these projects I have separate tutorials which I have linked to in the description (or click the photo), for others, I have talked about them in greater detail in a youtube video which you can find below.
If you’re not familiar with the term, a charity quilt is a quilt that is donated to an organization or individual in need.
There are so many different ways you can get involved with making charity quilts. You can donate your time by joining a local group or long distance by sending completed quilts to charities that donate quilts overseas.
One of the great things about charity quilts is that they are a perfect way to use up your fabric stash!
By piecing together smaller pieces of fabric, you can create a beautiful and unique quilt that will bring comfort to someone in need.
Not sure how to get involved? Check out the link above or click here.
The quilt above is one I made for Quilts for Care Leavers here in the UK using a simple 4-patch design and some grey and white fabric that had been in my stash for ages.
I talked a bit more about how I made this quilt in the video that goes with this post which you will find below, but most charities will take any kind of quilt pattern from simple to complex. This one came together super quick!
Last year I made 3 fleece-backed quilts for Linus too.
Orphan Block Quilt
An orphan block quilt is a great way to use up those unfinished quilt blocks that you may have sitting around to make something truly unique!
We’ve all been there…we start a quilt project with the best of intentions but then life gets in the way and we never quite finish.
I made the crazy orphan block quilt above using blocks and sections from quilts I never finished – I’m calling it ‘The Quilts That Never Were’.
I talk more about it in the video below.
My husband has claimed it for himself.
I actually started it to test a (new to me) quilt-as-you-go method and it grew from there – with the random backing fabric and all those orphan blocks it was an amazing stash buster!
Fabric Cube Footstool
This is a project that I recently completed and I absolutely love it!
A fabric footstool is a great way to use up those larger pieces of fabric and strips of fabric that you may have lying around.
I’m going to be honest my ‘footstool’ – which as well as using up fabric for the outside also was stuffed with all my batting scraps and fabric trimmings – is kind of bigger than I intended so I’m calling it an ‘ottoman’ now thanks to one of my youtube subscribers who suggested that is what it was!
As well as a footstool I actually made two other sizes of fabric cubes – a baby toy and a doorstop….the doorstop was kind of by accident but we won’t mention that!
Fleece Heart Cushions
This particular project uses fleece scraps (primarily the trimmings from quilt backs for me) and batting scraps.
If you’re looking for a quick and easy project, these fleece heart cushions are the perfect thing.
They would make a great Valentine’s Day gift or a sweet addition to any room in your home – my kids actually came up with the idea for these so it’s great for kid’s rooms too..
This is a project that’s great to work on with the kids too. They can use the scissors to make the notches around the rounded part of the heart or help stuff the pillow.
Fabric Gift Bags
The holidays are the perfect time to use up those fabric scraps!
Why waste money on expensive throw-away wrapping paper when you can use your beautiful stash to make re-usable gift bags that are the perfect fit for whatever gift you have?
You can make them any size you want and they are a great way to add a personal touch to your holiday gifts.
Plus, they’re reusable so your recipient can use them over and over again – I often get more thank you’s for my gift bags than the gifts inside!
I have a no-measure fabric gift bag tutorial here which is my favorite way to make these – it’s quick and there is no math!
In sewing circles you often hear about making dog beds from fabric scraps but what about cats?
I had some larger orphan blocks that I had used for free motion quilting practice and I wondered if I bound them if my local cat rescue would like to use them. I know my cats love sitting on our quilts!
So I called and asked and they said yes. They use them in the cages to make the kitties more comfortable.
This is a great way to use up those smaller pieces of fabric that you may have lying around. You can piece them together to create a one-of-a-kind quilt top that will bring comfort to a cat in need.
I don’t have a tutorial for this one – I just asked my local shelter what size they would like – they said around 40cm x 40cm or a little larger – quilted my large orphan blocks and bound them.
Small Stash Buster Projects
Even though these are small projects, they have a big impact on your sewing spaces by using your scrap stash to make new projects that clear out space for new fabric.
Bookmarks, journal covers, and coasters are all easy to make and don’t require a lot of fabric.
So if you’re looking for a quick project, or one you can do on a regular basis to keep the scraps and stash at bay one of these might be perfect for you.
These are so easy to make and you can use any fabric scraps that you have lying around – even the tiniest ones!
You can make them as long or short as you want and they make great gifts too!
Another great project for using up fabric scraps. These little covers are perfect for protecting your notebooks and journals.
I gave a lot of these as Christmas gifts last year!
These quilt-as-you-go coasters are so easy to make and they’re a great way to use up those smaller pieces of fabric.
Plus, they make great gifts and protect your furniture.
Quilt-As-You-Go Wall Hanging
I really enjoyed this project and it’s great for decorating a blank wall.
It’s a simple quilt-as-you-go wall hanging using fabric strips and a scrap of batting.
The frame is optional.
Mini Bean Bags
Easy to make and so much fun! These little bean bags can be used for games and make a great project that you can get kids involved in.
These ones were made from an old pillowcase and an old pair of jeans.
My son picked out the vehicles he wanted and I cut around them very roughly.
Then we cut a piece of denim to match – sewed them right sides together (leaving a turning gap) and stuffed with fabric trimmings before roughly machine stitching closed with a quick top stitch.
Do they look a bit messy? Yes! Did we finish them quick? Yes! Does my son love them? Yes!
Even More Small Stashbuster Projects
Here are even more smaller sewing projects to hep you clear that scrap basket and small pieces in your stash.
- Scrap Fabric Owl Soft Toy – Free Pattern Templates & Tutorial
- Quilted Key Fob Tutorial
- Easy Scrap Fabric Flowers
- Baby Color Book from Scraps
Quick Quilts for Stash Busting
Not feeling any of the projects above?
The best stash-busting project for a quilter will always be a quick quilt.
Here are some fun scrap quilt ideas to try if you are looking for some more inspiration for your leftover fabrics:
- Easy 9 Patch Quilt – Quilt in a Week!
- Rainbow Raindrops Baby Quilt – Free Applique Quilt Pattern
- X Marks the Scrap | Free Quilt Pattern for Scraps!
- How to Make a Quilt-As-You-Go Denim Quilt (also uses quilting scraps!)
- How to Make a Modern Scrap Quilt – Improv Style!
- Scrap Fabric Quilt Block Tutorial for Floral Scraps!
Don’t let your fabric scraps go to waste! There are so many creative and fun ways to use them up. By piecing them together, you can create beautiful and unique projects.
Want to Watch the Youtube Video?
I hope you enjoyed these ideas and that they inspired you to get creative with your own stash-busting projects!
What are some of your favorite ways to use up fabric scraps or bust your fabric stash?
Let me know in the comments below!
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