Sewing With Fabric Scraps


If you have been following this blog for a while you may have seen me mention some fabric scraps I bought from my favourite RTW brand at the end of last year. Once a year, Palava (the only RTW brand I still buy!) sell off some of their fabric scraps in an effort to stick to their zero waste commitments and contribute a portion of the money to charity. As well as buying fabrics which otherwise would have been a waste product headed for landfill, they are also more ethical fabrics such as Tencel and Organic Cotton.


I know I am gushing a bit, but I really think this is what we need more of from fashion brands. They have made a choice to select sustainable fabrics, sew them up in fair conditions in British factories (they can actually answer #whomademyclothes?) and then try and stick to a zero waste commitment whilst raising money for charity?! If only more high street shops made the same efforts to protect the environment and their workers!!


Anyway, I bought three scrap packs last Christmas and have made tons of stuff already – I blogged about these Tailor’s Hams and these slippers. And it wasn’t very long ago that I showed you this colourblocked Stevie I used another scrap to make. I have another Stevie planned with some more of these Palava scraps, I have a skirt in the works and I have a plan to applique some of the scraps onto garments too – if only there were more hours in the day!

They say necessity is the mother of invention and I am so pleased working with a small scrap forced me to come up with this colourblocking! 

You might be wondering why I am reminding you of all this, well it’s because this year’s scrap packs are on sale now! I have placed an order for four packs and I can’t wait to receive them (although I will have to wait until Christmas Day as we can’t really afford for me to be buying tons of fabric for myself!). I was sent a scrap pack to make something with for Palava and as expected the fabric did not disappoint!



When I am working with scraps, I tend to let the fabric, size, and shape dictate what they should be. Large pieces could be the front of a top, medium pieces might be a clutch bag, small pieces can become slippers. When I saw the long thin pieces of the gorgeous flying duck fabric I immediately thought of trying to make a tie! And if I am making my husband a tie then obviously I have to make my little boy a matching bow tie – we all know twinning is winning!


I followed this FREE pattern and tutorial to make a tie for my husband, and it was really enjoyable to make. I used the duck fabric again but chose to use some of the smaller ruffled feathers scraps for the lining pieces – doesn’t it just look so cool?! Once the edges at the ‘point’ of the tie are turned up 1/4inch and ironed, the lining pieces are hand sewn to each end of the tie. I then sewed the three tie sections together to create one long piece – the fact that ties are made in three sections make them great for using in scrap projects like this! Once it is a long piece, then it is hand-sewn together up the centre back. After a good press it looks incredibly professional! The tencel is an excellent fabric for ties, it looks and feels quite a lot like silk but it’s a much more eco-friendly fabric and best of all, it’s washable!


To make the bow tie, I followed this tutorial and it was really simple to make. It is made just from rectangles and would be a great project for the beginner sewist. I folded the rectangles in half (right sides together) and sewed up the long edges. I then turned them right sides out so that all of the raw edges are enclosed in the tubes. I pinched the centre of the bow rectangle until it looked how I wanted it to and then I stitched it by hand a few times so that it would hold its shape. I then used the little rectangle to hold together both the bow and the neck strap. Finally I sewed up the short edges of the neck strap and stitched some Velcro onto both edges of the strap.


I am so pleased the scrap packs are back this year, I am not saying that because Palava asked me to write a blog post. I genuinely love them and have spent my (husband’s) hard earned money ordering four more packs which I am excited to open on Christmas day!


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