Posted on 17 Comments

The Secrets of The Fabric Bin

Whenever I have visited my grandchildren over the years and when they visit me, I always have a sewing project in the works. So, of course, they wanted a sewing project too. I have always let them select fabrics from my stash and create whatever they want. They loved laying out squares of fabric for a quilt, making fun projects for their friends and had all sorts of different ideas.



When school started this year, Polly decided one morning before school that she needed a bag for her iPad and whipped one up….no need for a pattern…Emmett decided that their new puppy needed a bean bag chair and figured out all on his own what to do.



When she was only 8, Polly asked for a sewing machine for Christmas. Now at ages 13 and 10 they are both adept at the machine. They disappear for a while and return with a finished project.

So, it was with a lot of memories that I enjoyed this exchange with my son-in-law, Rob, when he was organizing the basement.

Rob: As I organized the fabric bin in the basement, I can’t help but be astounded by the resourceful and efficient use of material.



Jinny: It’s so much easier to cut a chunk out of the middle.

Rob: That’s right. And when Grandma is supplying the fabric, who cares!!!

Jinny: Never ending supply. Maybe I’ve been too generous.

Rob: They remember every piece of that fabric you’ve given them. It’s kind of amazing. I also found out that Emmett has been leading a double life and is actually Spiderman…so many secrets in the fabric bin.

17 thoughts on “The Secrets of The Fabric Bin

  1. u are such an awesome grandma, its what my momma did and i do love fabric. best of luck .

  2. Thank you so much for sharing stories and photos of your dear grandchildren. I’ve always enjoyed reading about your visits with them and their wonderful creations. Polly’s striking laptop bag and the puppy has a beautiful dog bed too. I was just looking at one of the fabrics that Emmett used last week. I’m inspired by them both.

  3. I love it!! So much fun with the kids making projects. I have done that with my granddaughters who always wanted to sew when they came to visit. They have been too busy lately to do projects, but at least they know how to start, and they can do it on their own now.

  4. I’ve always enjoyed reading your posts but I love that your grandchildren like to sew and play with fabric. I hope to do the same with mine. Thanks to your post I see lots of red fabric is essential! Thank you!

  5. Good morning Jinny & Happy Friday!
    Thank you!! for sharing these “precious moments” with us. It’s so wonderful to see children, teens and young adults interested in the creative world of sewing, quilting and/or any of the fine needle arts.
    BTW, have you heard from your Ukrainian quilter friend? I continue to include her ( & the entire nation) in my prayers. I am so grateful for countries like Poland that are helping them.
    Have a very blessed day and rest of the weekend.

  6. Loved the efficient use of fabric!!!!!!! Mostly enjoyed my out-loud laugh! Thanks! My boys, now grown adults in their 50’s, also learned early to use the machine and have machines in their own homes. Oh the stories I could tell!
    Continuing prayers for all of UKRAINE. Our quilt guild is now making quilts for some of the 2000 refugees expected (through a local Ukrainian church) into northeast Ohio in the coming months, noting that these are women and children of all ages. Blessings and generosity abound! God is good.

  7. How fun – and funny!!! It may be time to let them see how beautiful, and useful, scrap quilts can be. Thank you for sharing.

  8. Your post brought a smile to my face and an irreplaceable memory to mind. One of my granddaughters, when she was young, cut a hole in the center of a yard of my gorgeous, expensive quilting fabric, pulled it over her head and stated she’d made herself a poncho LOL. She was so proud of herself 🙂 I can remember the girls sitting on my lap at the sewing machine and many other times we would work on handsewing projects, too. Wonderful times we never forget.

  9. Instead of hearing, “did you bring me a present?”, do you hear, “did you bring us any fabric?”

  10. This post made my day. It brought back so many memories of Gram’s scrap bag and adventures in creating. Never let the exploration stop, even if it means cutting from the middle of the fabric. Thanks for the joy!

  11. Just wanted to let you know I spent my day laundering and carefully folding my first order of fabrics from your farewell sale. As I worked I marvelled at the quality and the beauty of the fabrics that have been available only from your shop I am going to miss you Jinny but I hope you will enjoy your retirement and just know that you have taught this old quilter many things since I first found your shop as a newbie several years ago. I have several of your books so I plan to keep learning from you in the future
    Thanks again for being there.

  12. I, too, had to LOL with the other quilters when I saw the fabric cut-outs! Brought back memories of the sheets of construction paper my daughter used in her various projects (until she knew better! 😉
    Please continue to share the posts from the Ukraine and send my prayers for the safety and quick end of and recovery from this senseless mayhem.

  13. I see many fabrics I own also in photos. Kids know that they can take most anything they like from sewing room and use it…they ask first😂….8 year old is now starting to quilt so fun! Enjoy!

  14. What adorable grandchildren. They are lucky to have such a loving grandma. I had to laugh at the cut out fabric. Brought back memories when my granddaughter visited one summer and made her first quilt. She also wanted to make me a secret present. She cut out 2 BIG hearts in the center of the fabric like your grands did. I treasure it and she too got a sewing machine. She’s now a beautiful young lady of 26.

  15. Love your project for grandchildren! I taught Home Economics for many years and when the students finished their projects, they were allowed to “create” with their left over fabrics plus the “fabric box”. It was so fun to see what was made or “invented” . Making a glove was the popular one by tracing their hand and finding out they needed to allow for dept plus the hand pattern. The pillow or sweatshirt was the graded project but I feel that the “fooling around” maybe left a bigger lesson for some than what I assigned. Youth are so creative!

  16. Hi Jinny,

    I wanted to be sure that you saw this exhibition of Indian textiles that is in town until June 4th. I figured since you used fabric from India in your first quilt, you would be interested.

    Enjoy your retirement.

Comments are closed.