Thursday, February 16, 2012

Upcycling Fabric for Quilts

I had bought some shirts for $1 at the local thrift shop and decided to use them to make a QAYG quilt for the homeless. I used the larger pieces to cut out for the backings first and I cut them 15" square and then trimmed them down to 14.5" when they were finished. That meant I needed less sashing strips to join the blocks and also less stress on the sewing machine to sew through the blocks.
I used pure wool or fleecy fabric for the batting as these quilts become very warm with all the seams of fabric. I used knit fabrics from t shirts and tops that were no longer fashionable and cotton or poly/cotton shirts for the backings squares and the extra was used as the string pieces, combined with a few leftover strips of quilting fabric.
I wanted to use clothing that people were virtually throwing away to make something functional to donate to the homeless as the organizations often think the QAYG quilts made from prettier fabric are too nice for the homeless to use on the streets and they prefer the plainer quilts.
I was happy with the exercise but found that de-constructing the garments took time that I could have spent in sewing so I will most likely continue with the way I usually make the QAYG quilts, using leftover sting pieces of fabric from trimming the backings etc. This quilt won't be an heirloom but it will keep someone warm. Really most fabrics are suitable for these quilts as long as the fabric doesn't fray.
I also received more beautiful donations from Lesley Lowe and 3 of her friends from Kyabram. The ladies have been very busy and have made quilt tops for me to finish as well as beautiful knitted teddies and other toys, tote bags, knitted baby clothes, beanies and scarves. There is also a set of QAYG blocks which will be lovely for a quilt to donate to a male.
Lastly I have also finished off another crocheted blanket and a knitted baby jacket so not a bad week despite the heat. I'll show the finished quilts on my other blog when I quilt the lovely tops that Lesley and her friends have donated.
The generosity of quilters always amazes me as these ladies have spent so much time and money using their skills to help others.
Thank you all for your continued support.
Hugs, Jan Mac


willywagtail said...

I was interested to see that you have included knit fabrics. They look good. Cherrie

Little House on the Hill said...

What a great way to make donation quilts. They look wonderful and it is heart warming to know Australians care. Cheers Pauline

The Little House on the Hill