This book is very interesting and a pleasure to look at even if I never used one pattern of the 29 provided for a quilt.
Even the pattern names are fun: Chicken Gumbo, Butter Churn, Flying Geese, Little Farmer’s Daughter and Blueberry Patch.
I especially like Use It Up as the title of the book encourages us to do. The Use It Up pattern included has blocks: overalls front, canning jars, a candle, dog on a sofa and a toothpaste with brush. Of course there are Use it Up, Wear it Out, Make It Do, Or Do Without applique blocks. It is so interesting just to look at all the variety of blocks – quite a conversation piece. A quilter with a multitude of scraps would find a use for many of them.
I really enjoy making patchwork hot pads. They are mini versions of bed quilts and are great projects for a person who does not need nor have time and patience for them. A nine patch pattern is an easy first choice.
Do you want to make one? You will need two coordinating cotton fabrics, (scraps, anyone?) and some padding fabric and paper to make your pattern. Decide how big you want the hot pad to be. Triple the seam size. Make two paper pattern of the same size.
Cut one pattern into nine equal squares – this will be three squares in each direction. Decide which fabric you want in the (A) middle. Since hot pads are subject to kitchen soiling, you’ll be wise to choose darker colors. Cut five of those A squares and four B squares of the second fabric. Sew three squares together A-B-A to make two strips. Sew three square B-A-B together to make one strip. Sew the B-A-B strip to the side of the A-B-A strip matching the corners of each square. Now match the last strip of A-B-A to the other side of the B-A-B strip. The fifth A square will now be in the middle.
Cut a small strip about 2 1/2″ long and 1 1/4″ wide for a strap to hang the pad on a hook near the cook-stove. Fold a narrow edge on each of the two side, lengthwise to the wrong side of fabric. Now fold lengthwise with the folded edges inside. Finger crease and sew the open edge lengthwise. Fold in half and press.
Lay the full pattern block on one of your chosen fabrics and cut a square for the back of the pad. Cut another square for the padding. Trim all four edges to remove a seam edge.
Lay your nine patch face down on the front side of the backing. Sew around three sides. Trim the edges of the seam on the backing. Turn right side out and press the edges with the open side seam edge folded inside.
Insert padding. Make sure the edged fit well inside the cover. Carefully make sure the padding is not visible. Insert the strap inside the seam edge. Top stitch all around the pad making sure you are catching the pad on each side and the strap is securely stitched inside.
Stitching across the middle of the pad on all the seams will further secure the padding in place. You may need a larger needle for this part of the project. This is called stitching in the ditch. A google search will show you what this looks like.
Several years ago I wrote a weekly column of the same title. It was as much fun to write as it was fun for my readers to read. 🙂
It was mainly a nostalgia article each week in a small-town paper. It included such topics as patches on jeans. Styles of clothing after that time include jeans with ready-made ragged holes. I suppose the manufacturers and the consumers are following the “Wear it Out” portion of the slogan. But, why would people want to spend their “money that doesn’t grow on trees” on an item that was half-way there. I prefer to do my own “Use it Up” from start to finish.
However, I am perfectly willing to shop thrift stores and what I purchase does not have holes, missing buttons, nor broken zippers. Clothing with the new tags get my attention.
I even squeeze the last bit from the tube of toothpaste, after-all, I paid for it the same as the first bit. And I rinse out my shampoo and conditioner for the same reason. How about you?
I am always interested in new frugal ideas. Use it up is just one of several frugal ideas that parents tried to teach their children back in the 50s and 60s and they are words of wisdom today.