When I no longer need an item of clothing, I cut it apart at the seams and use the pieces to make quilt squares. I only use 100% cotton, that has been washed many times and will no longer shrink. I store all the same colors in a box for each color. This cuts down on spending, and I make a one of a kind memory quilt.
I do the same, I also save old jeans and make teddy bears, baby and regular quilts, purses, clothing. I also had my sofa upholstered in old jeans because my dogs lay on it more than us and it's washable and durable.
I made a single bed quilt cover with old my old clothing. I hand sewed all the squares and backed it with a single bed sheet. It took a while, but was something to do when I was watching TV or just sitting. The quilt brings back lots of memories of clothes worn over many years.
For you younger quilters, using worn out clothing used to be the only way to put together scraps for a quilt. Every bit of fabric that came into the house, no matter what the original purpose, was used and then reused at least twice in most American households from the very first log cabin at Jamestown back in the very early 1600s until the 1960s or so.
Women didn't go down to the fabric store and buy fabrics especially for a quilt, they repurposed it from textiles they'd worn out in larger items. Sometimes a patch in a quilt had gone through three or four other lifetimes, lol, as clothing, kitchen towels, potholders, and finally either the rag bag or the scrap bag for a quilt.
Combining the colours and patterns of the fabric scraps into blocks was an art as well as a way of meeting household necessity. The Log Cabin pattern is a perfect example of this kind of quilting. Often the quilter would carefully add a new strip to each block as something in the family wardrobe wore out-many grans and mums 'earmarked' a certain item for a future quilt on the day the item was purchased as ready-to-wear, or sewn at home. It could take years to piece together a quilt back then.
If buying 'yard goods' for home sewn clothing, the sewer almost always bought enough to make several garments or household items, and always bought those 'yard goods' with an eye to several repurposings of every inch of that store bought fabric. Linens for the house, if not made from flour sacks, were often bought with the eventual repurposing in mind as well.
Think about the history of quilting when you are buying those jelly rolls and fat quarters, lol, and then think about this tip posted here in 2007 that has brought the art of quilting full circle to its beginnings-a frugal way to create beauty and warmth in our homes:)
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