Transform your fabric scraps into treasures with these 10 creative crafting ideas

Jul 28, 2023
We've found 10 creative ways to use up those scraps in your sewing cupboard. Source: Getty

If you’re anything like us, you have a craft cupboard overflowing with scraps of fabric. Yet another trip to Spotlight can be tough to justify while the doors are bursting at the seams, so we’ve collated a list of 10 fun craft ideas to reuse and recycle all those leftover scraps. From quick-and-easy gift ideas to long-term craft projects, we’ve got something to keep those needles busy.

Crochet scrap fabric rug 


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A post shared by Michelle (@michmade)

If you’re looking for a quick DIY project to fill your weekend, this one is not for you. You’ll need a lot of spare time (and patience) but the result is absolutely worth it. This coiled crochet rug can be made to suit any size area, whether it’s a giant living room rug, a bathmat or even mini versions to use as drinks coasters. All you need is some strong twine, a load of unwanted fabric, a crochet hook, scissors and a sewing machine (optional). If you don’t have enough fabric in your cupboard, heading to Vinnies or the Red Cross is a great way to recycle and keep the project budget-friendly.

Camera strap cover

This one is a great way to dress up your camera or even a handbag strap. It’s a little fiddly and requires a combination of hand sewing and machine work but the result will not only look great, but it will also make the camera more comfortable around your neck.

Fabric make-up case

You’ll have a waiting list of friends and family for this one! Make-up cases can have a surprisingly hefty price tag, so this do-it-yourself option will tidy the cupboard and save you money. Whether you’re using it as a make-up case, pencil case or a way to tidy up those kitchen junk drawers, these DIY cases are easy to make and very handy!

Glasses case

Regardless of whether it’s sunnies or reading glasses, it’s always handy to have a spare soft case floating around. With this easy pattern, you can make one for the car, one for the bedside table and another for your handbag, so you’ve always got a case on hand!

Patchwork dress

Whether you’re making a dress for yourself or your granddaughter, this is a great way to save money and a top way to recycle fabric. If you’ve got a selection of fabric left over from other clothes you’ve made, this pattern combines them into an adorable patchwork dress that’s super breezy for those warm Aussie summers or can be layered with boots and a jacket in winter. We love the idea of combining fabrics of all types to really make the dress exciting – think stripes, florals, spots and checks! And don’t let the dress pattern stop you – you could make a pair of overalls for the grandson (or hubby, if he’ll wear them!)

Eye mask

You’ll never have interrupted sleep again with this quick-and-easy eye-mask pattern. The pattern requires only a tiny bit of fabric, some elastic and your hand-sewing skills. They are so simple you could whip up a whole bunch to give away and add some bubble baths or bath bombs for a really special present. If you want a challenge, why not make a set of matching pyjamas too?

Coffee holder

This stylish, cosy and easy-to-make coffee holder makes a very useful homemade gift for friends and family or a handy addition to your own handbag. Bonus, you’ll be cleaning up that sewing cupboard in the process. All you need is a selection of fabric scraps, a piece of backing fabric, a piece of fusible fleece, an elastic hair tie, a button, thread and a sewing machine.



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The original patchwork quilt just got trendier. This take on the original is a lot simpler than sewing hundreds of tiny squares together and is still a great use of those leftover scraps of material. Use square or rectangular strips – as the article suggests – or get really creative and use whatever size and shape you have left.

Pants extenders

This one is for the grandkids, but your children will surely thank you for it. This clever idea will add life to your grandkids’ clothes and is so simple you’ll be kicking yourself if you didn’t do it sooner. With the youngsters shooting up in height every day, this nifty idea is as simple as sewing a piece of material to the hems of their pants, allowing them at least another few months of wear. Plus, it gives the garment a whole new look!

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