Originally patchwork quilts were an economical way of keeping warm. Old scraps of fabric were used and often the paper templates were left in for additional insulation. My fabric cupboard is testament to the fact that, for me at least, patchworks are not an economy. I don’t think I’ve ever made a quilt without buying some fabric, in most cases far too much. Rather than run out at a crucial stage, I buy ‘a bit extra’ and every time I go into a fabric shop I am seduced by a something. Often by several patterns, which then form the basis for a patchwork to be made at some unspecified point in the future. At the end of every patchwork there are always bits of fabric left, often too small to be of much use but far too precious to just throw away, which are pushed back into the cabinet. I’m not complaining, far from it, I love my fabric cupboard but every so often it needs a bit of a clear-out.
I am now making little patchworks. I’m not sure yet what I’m going to do with them as I don’t know that many miniature people (they’d need to be about 8-10 inches tall) but they are using up the scraps brilliantly and are also an unexpectedly good way to experiment. Each pattern is 6×8 inches with a 1 inch border. So far, I haven’t bought any extra fabric for them.