what it uses up: 3" squares, 3x8" rectangles (you could use 3" strips for these)
When I originally blogged this quilt top, I explained the process - so you can check that out over here. I'd like to do this one again in a more controlled way - perhaps using only two colours for the larger rectangles (or one) and scrappy in the middle. Maybe for the next colour challenge!
You could use this pattern with any colour or theme of 2.5" squares - and of course, you wouldn't have to use black for the sashing between the sections. I saw it originally on the So Scrappy blog, in blue and white - as you can see, a totally different look - but equally good. Unlimited possibilities!
OR any combination of squares and rectangles where the square is half the size of the rectangle
Easy block to do - plan to create a square from three pieces - a rectangle, which is half the width of the desired square (plus seam allowance), and two square, each of which is half the size of the rectangle (plus seam allowance).
For instance, you'd like some 6" (finished) blocks. Rectangle size: 3.5x6.5"; square size, 3.5"
Or if you want to make 8" (finished) blocks, rectangle size 4.5x8.5"; square size, 4.5"
The block construction is so simple, I don't think I even need to tell you how to go about it!
Perhaps the easiest thing you can do with strips to use them up - make a strippy quilt. This is a small baby quilt size example, but you can make much larger ones if you like. Not only do the strips not have to be all the same width, but it actually looks better if they aren't. And they don't all need to be long enough to go all the way across your width - you can piece them together. I recommend you do so in some rows even if you don't strictly need to, as it adds to the texture of the piece.
5" squares (for the QST units - one each in two contrasting colours - makes 2 units)
I make the QST units by putting two squares face together, drawing a line diagonally across the back and stitching 1/4" from the line on both sides. Then cut them apart, press, and put them back together faces towards and do it again. Web directions for that method can be found lots of places, for instance, here.
You can actually use any size squares you like, but the squares for the QST units need to be 1.25" bigger than the size you desire, so your plain squares need to be 1.25" smaller than the ones you choose for the QST units. If you are unsure, make a single pair of QST units and check what size they are, then cut your plain squares to that size!
Given that my main theme in 2011 has been trying to get to grips with my scraps, in terms of organisation and reduction, I thought it would be nice to have a lot of the ideas in one place. This blog probably won't feature anything that doesn't appear in my main blog (except maybe some links to and/or discussions about other people's tips for dealing with scraps), but everything will be in a single place, as a reference for how to get those scraps under control and perhaps even use some of them up!