Paula’s “Love It or Leave It” Challenge

We’re going thrift store shopping together! The last day of October is the first day of guild retreat and we will meet at 9:00 in the lobby. You will look for some “textile treasure” that excites your imagination. We’ll car pool and take a brief road trip (about seven minutes) to a large nonprofit thrift shop and spend an hour or so browsing for treasures—fabric or otherwise. (Bring cash for your purchase because it will make it easier.)

The central square was an orphaned block I purchase at our guild store at our 20013 quilt show. I added my own ideas: cut corners, beads, text and asymmetrical borders.

The central square was an orphaned block I purchase at our guild store at our 20013 quilt show. I added my own ideas: cut corners, beads, text and asymmetrical borders.

Your challenge is to find something you love and to repurpose it as something you love even more. If you are reading this ahead of retreat, check out your local thrift stores and flea markets for something that is special to you. There are treasures and bargains everywhere. As quilters we know quality fabric when we see it and we have imagination to transform it into something new. The more you look the more likely you will find something you love!

Back in class, we’ll use a large design wall and each of us can show our treasure and describe our thoughts about possibilities. If desired, each participant can ask for group brainstorming thoughts.

Then we grab our fabrics to start cutting and sewing. Bring lots of fabric for this adventure. I’ll provide some Triangles-on-a-Roll papers to aid in your quilt design. By lunch we may have some show-and-tell to share with each other. In any case, we will have fun as we exercise our imaginations while staying within a budget.

I discovered this vintage beauty (with matching pillow cases) at a local flea market this year. I resold it to a quilt lover.

I discovered this vintage beauty (with matching pillow cases) at a local flea market this year. I resold it to a quilt lover.

Consider the possibilities!

I see “lurking creativity” in each of us! Keep yourself open to possibilities and trust your gut. Here is a list of things I have used to spark my imagination in the past.

Orphaned quilt blocks and quilt tops (of course)

Feed and flour sacks

The central Bluebird Brand flour sack was a gift waiting for the right blue fabric to come to me. I found the blue silk/cotton fabric at a thrift store dress on sale for $2.

The central Bluebird Brand flour sack was a gift waiting for the right blue fabric to come to me. I found the blue silk/cotton fabric at a thrift store dress on sale for $2.

Pillow tops

Curtains

Doilies and dresser scarves

Handkerchiefs

Cotton shower curtains, tablecloths and bed skirts

Vintage fabrics

Skirts and dresses

Shirts and slacks

Cotton or silk scarves or neckties

Cotton tote bags

Felted projects

Beaded items

Use your imagination and have fun as you browse.

The supply list is tricky for this class. Bring as much fabric as you can tote. Since we do not know what we are working on, bring the fabrics you currently favor and we will make do with what shows up that day.

Sewing machine, cutting and ironing tools are all good ideas. A portable design wall is the most important tool for this class!

 

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One Response to Paula’s “Love It or Leave It” Challenge

  1. Lila says:

    Love seeing the way you use these found treasures! I especially like the bluebird, you gave it a perfect home!

    Hope you and the others had a great hunt and a great class!

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