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Saturday, January 6, 2018

No spend, reuse, create (and a link party)

I am starting the year with good resolutions and intentions!

The Ongoing Project List:
  1. Starry Bright Sky QAL (2018) - first pattern released a week ago... already more than 200 people joined the QAL and few completed the blocks! so excited!!
  2. Art with Disney QAL (2018) - designed the last 3 blocks (cannot share yet)
  3. On Ringo Lake - probably won't do this
  4. Journaling into my new Leuchtturm 1917 - progress as usual!
  5. the 70273 Project - no progress
  6. Twilters! Bee - waiting for this to start again!
  7. Pantone 2018, Ultra Violet mini - no progess
  8. Project Quilting - maybe participating, not sure yet!

Come and join my new Block of the Month, FREE, Skill Builder QAL!!

Find all the information at

This year I set a "No spend" tracker in my journal for sewing, stationary and personal care.
No spend doesn't really really mean no spend... let me explain...

Deodorant falls into the personal care category... I need deodorant :)
When I finish my deodorant, I go to the shop, buy one new... this day will be a no spend day :)
If I go to the shop and buy 5 different deodorants because I want to try different scents, 4 are not necessary and will count as expenses that I will track in my planner!
So basically, if I have at home an equivalent and I buy more, then that's not good :)

Definining "equivalent" is tricky when it comes to fabric or stationary.
... I don't have watercolors, so if I buy them are they necessary? Can I use another media?
... A pattern calls for a specific color... do I really really need that? Can I replace it with something else I have in my stash?

Basically my idea is just to be honest with myself... because the "no spend" effort will have the following impact:

  • financial: well, I don't spend, so I save money, kind of obvious right?
  • practical: using up what I have will automatically declutter my space, and less things around are fewer things to clean
  • emotional: I feel bad about buying things and not using to their best potential, so instead of beating myself up, I can see how good I am with embracing my creativity
  • environmental: all the things we buy come in packages, boxes, plastic, etc. The more we buy, the more we pollute! I am starting to be more mindful of waste, and while I absolutely far from zero-waste, I am just more aware of the problem, and one of the easiest way to tackle it at my current state, is just not create more!

In the spirit of this, I started looking at my scraps and commited to create improv pieced "made fabric" squares that I will use where patterns calls for specific colors.
I started with dark blue because I can use them in my QAL :)

I tried before (and failed) to stitch up my scraps into usable pieces... but now I have a very good plan!

  1. I pick a color plastic bag (blue in this case)
  2. I grab a handful of scraps and I am not allowed to put them back until I sew each piece to something else
  3. If I need to chop pieces off to make things fit, I cannot reuse the left over again that day (that will create coherence across multiple squares, since colors will repeat organically)
  4. I create squares that finish 6.5'' square, which is the size of the small ruler I have and the size of a small cutting mat (so that I don't need a fancy setup up to just make a block when I have 10 minutes of spare time)
  5. I use a very tiny stitch length (1.2) and press all the seams open, so that the finished piece is very flat and not bulky.
I also added a weekly tracker in my planner, and I decided to make 4 blocks a week: small, useful, attainable goals!!

These are my first 4 blocks... small dent in the scrap pile, but they are beautiful!!


How about you? What are YOU up to?
Link it here and share it with me!!


  1. I really love your scrap blocks. Great inspiration, thank you. You should sew the Bonnie Hunter MQ, it's so much fun.

  2. Nice job on the scrap blocks! I started last year with making fabric, and by November, I was done. Believe it or not, I posted the scraps for sale and a lady happily bought them. It's a wonderful feeling to not have those weighing me down, and knowing someone else will use them, somehow. So keep that in mind as an option, if they become overwhelming.


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