Fabric Scraps – Crumb Piecing

Hello Everyone!

I decided to organise my left over fabric scraps so it was easier to find what I need and also to use them and not always buy new fabrics. Don’t get me wrong fabric shopping is a very fun and addictive thing to do and the best retail therapy. But scrap fabric projects is very fun too and it is impossible to throw away fabric. One way to use left over fabric, especially small pieces is crumb piecing. If you search crumb quilts in Pinterest, you will find many tutorials and projects. Here is how I made my first Crumb Pieced mini wall hanging:

Crumb piecing is very easy, start by sewing small pieces together in pairs. Trim one edge straight and add the pairs together. Continue on until you have a piece that is big enough for your project. You can be as organised as you like with colours and shapes, just don’t overthink it. Have fun with it too.

I take the time to press all seams apart as I go. I think that looks a lot nicer and much less bulky. For me it is well worth the extra time. When the project is big enough, trim the edges to the size your want, in this case 10″x14″.

Since I decided to make a mini wall hanging, I made a quilt sandwich with batting and backing fabric (left over from other projects). I basted the layers together with pins and hand basting along the edges since it was such a small project. Quilt as desired.

I make hanging sleeves on my wall hangings by adding casings along top and bottom edges on the back. On the top I have two pieces that are about 1″ shorter than half the top edge. On the bottom edge I have long pieces that is about 1″ shorter than the bottom edge.
If you want the finished sleeve to measure 9″x2″ like the bottom one in my project, cut the fabric 9 1/2″ x 4 3/4″. The last measurement will vary with the width of the finished binding. I add a binding that is 3/8″ finished size, but if you want a finished binding that measures 1/4″ you cut the piece 9 1/2″ x 4 1/2″. Fold the piece length wise with right sides together and stitch the two short ends with a 1/4″ seam allowance.
Turn to the right side and press. Pin and baste to the bottom edge keeping raw edges even.

For a 3/8″ binding, cut 2 1/2″ strips (left over fabric) and join with a diagonal seam to avoid bulk. Fold the strips length wise, wrong sides together and press. I like to hand stitch my bindings so I pin the binding to the front of the quilt.
Start by leaving at least a 5″ tail and pin a few inches from a corner.

Stitch with a 3/8″ seam allowance and stop 3/8″ before the edge of the quilt. Fold the corner like in the picture. Stitch the next edge from the top. Do this for all four corners.

Join the binding with a diagonal seam as shown in the pictures. Remember to leave a big enough “gap” between the “tails” and that the tails are as long as the gap.

Fold the binding to the back. Mitre the corners by folding one side at the time. Hand stitch in place with a slip stitch using a thread colour that matches the binding.
Then slipstitch the folded edges of the hanging sleeves in place with a thread colour that matches the backing or the fabric used for the hanging sleeves. Make sure the stitching isn’t visible from the front.
If you don’t like the hand stitching part, sew the binding to the back of the project and fold it over to the front side and topstitch in place.

Add a label of your choice. I usually use the monogram letters on my sewing machine on a scrap piece of fabric from the project with a light weight interfacing on the back. Fold the raw edges in and hand stitch in place.

The wallhanging is finished. Of course you can make anything with the crumb pieced fabric, for example a zipper pouch or a mug rug. I have written a few posts on using scrap fabrics, you can find them here and here. You can also go to my tutorial page and download a few projects that is suitable for scrap fabrics.

Until next time happy sewing and take care!


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