Leftover Fabric Ideas and Fabric Scrap Projects


If you sew, you’ll end up with extra pieces of fabric and scraps that might be large or small.

These are some ideas for your leftover fabric, and some fabric scrap projects that the members of the Artisan Shopping Directory suggested when I asked them what they did with their fabric scraps.

What to make with leftover fabric 10 ideas to save for later

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patchwork dress

1. Scrappy kids’ clothes.

Martina, owner of Hoppidi HandmadeOpens in a new tab., uses her fabric scraps to make more of the clothing for kids that she sells on her website.

Using leftover fabric to make scrapwork will can give you a one-of-a-kind garment that even you might not be able to replicate!

2. Junk Journal Tags.

Cindy, owner of The Scrapologist,Opens in a new tab. shows how to use fabric scraps to make tags for junk journals in this video.

tissue holder

3. Make small projects.

Cathy, owner of Serendipity SewnOpens in a new tab., says “I make several things with scraps. Pocket tissue holders, lip balm holders, snap pouches, keychains. I don’t throw anything away. What I don’t use I donate to a friend who makes quilts for ill children.”

red scarf tied in a knot

4. Make scarves.

Jane, owner of Shop Poe PoeOpens in a new tab., says “I make various styles and sizes of scarves for women in my shop. One fabric will start as a long skinny scarf and then eventually smaller items in that fabric will be made, i.e., short skinny scarf, ribbon hair tie, small scrunchie scarves. Also, I have a children’s shop which hair bows are made out of extra small scraps. Eventually the fabric is gone.”

To see the full directory of all of our verified members, click here.

small dog wearing a dog coat with a flower on it

5. Donate the scraps or make little flowers.

Cindy, owner of Burrito Wrap Dog Co, says “I used to donate a lot of my scrap fleece to a local thrift shop. When the kids were little the teachers would welcome left over scraps of fabric.

“When I make some of my dog coats I cut out matching flowers that have a snap in the middle. They are easily removed when the coat needs washing. I always add extra in the order so that they will last the life of the coat. With my cotton fabric, I make the usual bows for dog collars and use the fabric for button covers.”

A lot of members donated fabric scraps or sold them online to let other people use them for projects.

Mary, owner of Lil Fox Designs, says that a local hotel gives their old pillowcases to anyone who sews who wants to pick them up to fill with their fabric scraps. They then donate the stuffed cases to local animal shelters to use as dog and cat beds.

6. Use unusable small scraps to mop up greasy spills.

Sally, owner of Tumbletree LaneOpens in a new tab., says “Unusable fabric scraps go into a container in the kitchen and get used as ‘fat soakers/moppers’ (like paper towels), then get tossed out.”

This is a good way to use scraps that are too small to sew into other projects, and it fits in with a zero-waste kitchen.

Improv crazy quilt

7. Make a scrap crazy quilt.

I made this crazy quilt with fabric pieces that were left over from other projects.

You can read about it and see a photo tutorial here: Improv Crazy Quilt Photo Tutorial

scrap quilt in rainbow colors

Shauna, owner of Lola and Ellie, also makes scrap quilts. You can check her Etsy shop for quilting kits and supplies.Opens in a new tab.

embroidered heart shaped patch inside a wedding dress

8. Make patches to embroider.

Catherine, owner of Memory Thread Co,Opens in a new tab. says that she started making these embroidered patches to use up her extra fabric.

You can sew these into special garments or onto quilts that you make yourself.

quilted placemats

9. Make quilted placements.

Karen, owner of Tahoe Quilts,Opens in a new tab. Makes scrap placemats with her extra fabric.

10. Make coasters.

Pam, owner of Lyon HandwovensOpens in a new tab., says that she’s been making clothesline coasters to use up the long, skinny pieces of fabric that she ends up with.

You can see how to make those here: How to make clothesline coasters.

Click here to sign up for weekly new product announcements, sales, and discounts from our artisan members.Opens in a new tab.

Pencil pouches

11. Make Pencil Pouches

This little pencil pouch is made with about one fat quarter of fabric total. If you have some larger scrap pieces you can use four different ones to make each section of outer fabric and lining for a patchwork effect.

Click here to see more details about the pattern and making the pouch.

There are a lot of things that you can do with fabric scraps, and you don’t need to throw anything away. Use them up until they’re too small to sew, then use the teeny tiny pieces to stuff things!


Kara Buntin

Kara Buntin has run a profitable home-based business since 1999, and has a background in art, theater design, and cake decorating. She's a top Etsy seller with over 53,000 sales on Etsy and her own website, and helps other home-based business owners with their business goals and SEO. She founded the Artisan Shopping Directory website to promote the artisans who are members of her EShop Success marketing program.

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