Quilting · Quilts · sewing · Uncategorized

The Great Batting Purge of 2020

One of my goals for 2020 was to begin using up the piles of batting scraps that had taken over my sewing room. I had two giant storage totes and a couple of large bags full of batting. There were bits and pieces littering the table, gathering dust and cat hair on the closet shelves, and even hanging from the doorknob. It was a problem of epic proportions, and I had zero interest in finding ways to usefully purge the fluffy stuff from my life.

I set a tiny goal. Use up one small bag of bits and pieces. To start, I sewed two pieces together to make a piece large enough for my Scrappy Cat table runner. But what to do with the rest?

Then it came to me, in the dead of a chilly northern Michigan winter night. I would make a draft stopper for the front door. We’d been keeping things super classy for several years by using an old pillow to do the job. It was time for a change. As a bonus, I decided to use up some corduroy leftover from jumpers I had made for my daughters when they were small. (Note: While I didn’t mind sewing clothes for them when they were little, I really dislike sewing clothing and, aside from a pair of pajama pants now and then, I don’t do it!) I’d cut the scraps into 4″ squares ages ago with the idea of making some sort of quilt out of them. I chose three patterns and sewed together 4 rows of 19 squares.

Yes, 19!

This was going to be a massive draft stopper, a draft stopper of epic proportions to use up an epic amount of batting.

Before sewing the top and bottom row together to form a tube, I added a square to the side. This is a bit confusing to explain, so hopefully the photo will help. Basically, each edge of the square was sewn to the edge of each row, thus forming a long rectangular prism once the bottom and top row were joined and stuffing added. Once I sewed the squares on each end, I sewed the bottom and top row together, leaving an opening in the middle to insert the “stuffing.”

For the stuffing, I cut the less useful pieces of narrow batting into small chunks (creating a lot of lint and starting myself on the path to carpal tunnel syndrome in the process). When I finished I was surprised to see that I had barely made a dent in the batting problem.

What to do?

“Little” dog, Nevy, vomiting at 3 a.m. a couple nights later, provided me with a solution. His bed, which he had vomited on, now needed washed. I removed the cover and found the inner “pillow” in tatters. (Nevy likes his bed properly fluffed at night, and he vigorously attends to the task with single-minded determination before spinning around and settling in! Thus, the tattered bed. How the cover stayed in one piece, we will never know!) Guess whose bed is now filled with more batting? Guess whose batting situation has been reduced to one large tote of mostly useful pieces? (Side note: Nevy left his bed this morning and “Big” dog, Luna, decided to try it out. I think she liked it.)

Here’s the finished draft stopper. (Nevy found it confusing and scary when he first saw it!) How do you use up those itty-bitty batting scraps? All suggestions appreciated!

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