10 great scrap-quilt patterns for beginners

Aren’t scrap quilts wonderful? They’re an all-time favorite and present a terrific opportunity to play with fabric.

If you’re a beginner, the idea of a scrap quilt might be somewhat daunting. Not to worry, we’ve got you covered! Read on for a collection of scrap quilts that are beginner-friendly, with pieces that are mostly squares and rectangles for easy cutting and sewing. A few are small enough that even if you have a small scrap basket, you’ll have enough fabric. For the larger ones, we’ve included precut-friendly quilts so that you can add in a bundle or two of precuts if your scrap collection is still growing!

These larger quilts from Oh, Scrap! may look a bit intimidating, but they have NO triangles and are precut-friendly. Lissa’s tips for scrap quilting will keep the momentum going when you’re ready to move on to more complex patterns.

Scrap quilts from Oh, Scrap!
Splendid Scraps and Stair Steps from
Oh, Scrap! by Lissa Alexander

These little beauties would look fabulous in any color scheme, and they’re perfect patterns if your scrap basket is on the petite side!

Windowpane quilt
Windowpane from
Small and Scrappy by Kathleen Tracy

Playing Checkers quilt
Playing Checkers from
Simple Whatnots by Kim Diehl

If your scrap pile is somewhat limited in colors, Kate Henderson has you covered. The color schemes in these quilts call for just two or three colors, making your fabric choices easy-squeezy.

From Scrappy and Happy Quilts
Pink Daisy and Mellow from
Scrappy and Happy Quilts by Kate Henderson

Got Layer Cake leftovers? These quilts are perfect! The Wrapped in Love quilt comes in two sizes—make it a mini if you don’t have larger scraps.

Quilts from A Piece of Cake
A Piece of Cake and Wrapped in Love from
A Piece of Cake by Peta Peace

Precut-friendly and cheerful! Piece and Quilt with Precuts is a skill-building book that will take you from scrap basket to finished quilt in no time.

From Piece and Quilt with Precuts
Gridwork and Dot ’n’ Dash from
Piece and Quilt with Precuts by Christa Watson

What are your main roadblocks when it comes to scrap quilting?

  • I don’t have enough scraps
  • The idea of combining several (or many!) colors intimidates me
  • Scrap quilts don’t seem beginner-friendly

Tell us in the comments!


92 Comments (leave a comment)

  • Great little quilts there . How to pick such great color combinations is a mystery to me

    —Betsy on June 22, 2018
  • I love how brave some quilters are when making scrap quilts. I just haven’t been able to let myself do it.
    My retirement goal is to create a gypsy wife quilt and really be free in my choices.
    This book looks like a great way to practice

    —Denise K on June 22, 2018
  • I never seem to have the right fabrics, or enough of the right colors, I think my color sense is off. I’ve got lots of scraps, but they are a mixed up mess. I think I just need to dive in and do them.

    —Stephanie Woodward on June 22, 2018
  • I can not figure out what colors to combine.

    —Pat on June 22, 2018
  • The idea of combining several (or many!) colors intimidates me

    —Kaye Walker on June 22, 2018
  • When I make scrap quilts I don’t have the accent or unifying background.

    —Fran Claassens on June 22, 2018
  • Scrappy us the best !!! I just don’t have enough scraps or time 😉

    —Lois Capper on June 22, 2018
  • Scrappy is the best !! Just don’t have enough scraps….or time 😉

    —Lois Capper on June 22, 2018
  • My problem with scrap quilting is not one of those listed. I love scrappy quilts and tend to save every little scrap so all my scrap bins tend to overflow.

    —Rilla Burnham on June 22, 2018
  • I learned long ago that trying to work from a colored-in pattern is much harder than working from black/white and gray-scale designs. The color pix are beautiful but they also are ‘selling’ fabric no matter whether it is ‘scraps’ or new lines.

    Joyce Finch on June 22, 2018
  • Combining colors.

    Kimberley Taft on June 22, 2018
  • I am color challenged. It’s only lately since I’ve watched Jenny at Missouri Star take layer cakes and put them together have I even thought of doing a scrap quilt.

    —Barb W on June 22, 2018
  • I love the look of scrappy quilts, but I over think it and become to anal about the placement of the fabrics. It’s like trying to make a perfect scrappy quilt.

    —Carol W. on June 22, 2018
  • Finding a pattern that is fast and easy.

    —Mary on June 22, 2018
  • I love scrappy quilts but do not always trust my judgement in putting this look together. I would love some help!!

    —Ddonna on June 22, 2018
  • The idea of combining several (or many!) colors intimidates me. i have tried several times to put together a scrap quilt but about half way through the process of sorting through my fabrics pieces I get bogged down and start getting too matchy matchy and give up.

    —Sandy on June 22, 2018
  • You are right, I’m afraid of combining multiple colours in one quilt😁😁😁😁

    —Geetha Rani on June 22, 2018
  • too many scraps, never enough ideas to use them up!

    Joyce Finch on June 22, 2018
  • I LOVE scrap quilts, but they do take a long time to cut out prior to sewing. I’m just now getting more comfortable w/just putting one next to another w/o worrying about anything but contrast.

    —Angeliasue on June 22, 2018
  • I haven’t been quilting that long, so my scraps are limited and won’t mesh well since my first quilts have been baby or patriotic.

    —DanyseF on June 22, 2018
  • My scraps don’t seem as pretty as the ones in the samples! But, I sure have lots of them! I need a scrap fairy to press and sort them as they are mushed into three large totes!

    —Kathy G on June 22, 2018
  • I certainly have enough scraps as I throw nothing away but, getting them all together in a quilt is just intimidating. I have noticed that designers build around a central theme and scrap from there, like Kim Diehl in her checkers quilt. I love the scrappy look and will jump in and try one this summer. Love Martingale Publishing and the wonderful quilting books of great ideas.

    —carolee jackson on June 22, 2018
  • I love scrap quilts. It just takes a while to collect enough scraps from other projects to create a scrap quilt. I do collect scraps from other Quilter’s that they would throw away. Crumb quilt blocks make wonderful quilts.

    —Stephanie L. on June 22, 2018
  • It takes a lot of time to organize, press and cut scraps into usable pieces. My theory is that scraps grow when they are exposed to air, moisture (pressing), and light, so your scrap pile is always bigger than when you started. I can never get them used up!

    —Jean Weness on June 22, 2018
  • Combining colors in scrap quilts is hard for me.

    —Mary Lou on June 22, 2018
  • Even though they multiply when I start using them I never have enough of the right one.

    —GramsR on June 22, 2018
  • The scraps I have seem to multiply whenever I open the container but I never have enough of the right one,

    —Bev on June 22, 2018
  • My main roadblock is deciding which scraps to use!

    —Karen D Martin on June 22, 2018
  • My main roadblock is that I have too many scraps, and I need to organize them to make them more easily accessible. I don’t like totally scrappy, so I have organized SOME of those scraps into cool brights, warm brights, cool batiks, warm batiks, and neutrals. That helps a little, but I guess I need to stop dreaming about the joys of scrappy quilts, and start organizing so that I can actually USE more of the scraps.

    —Carol on June 22, 2018
  • I love scrap quilts. Putting everything in there doesn’t frighten me, it’s that I don’t have enough scraps to make it sing! I love how that one fabric that just has no place to go, it’s either too loud or too soft just fits right in there in a scrappy quilt. It’s quiet voice is amplified so it is a jewel, or it’s loudness is toned down, and it fits right in.

    —Susan Burney on June 22, 2018
  • I don’t know how to combine colors and/or patterns.

    —bookboxer on June 22, 2018
  • I LOVE SCRAP QUILTS. I JUST NEED TO GET STARTED ON SOME.

    —SUE GOODIN on June 22, 2018
  • No road blocks. I love scrappy quilts.

    —Kathy O on June 22, 2018
  • the scrap quilts do not seem to be beginner friendly I have oh scrap and some of her patterns I feel are too scrappy.

    —beth d. on June 22, 2018
  • Both, the idea of combining several or many colors intimidates me and scrap quilts don’t seem beginner-friendly. Do I add yardage to make it cohesive or do I decide that it is strictly a scrap-only quilt?

    —Jolie on June 22, 2018
  • I love scrap quilts, but they are much more work than a planned quilt. I agree the scraps must multiply in the dark. I have made 3 quilts from Successful Scrap Quilts and my bag is still full of cut pieces.

    —Peggy on June 22, 2018
  • I spend more time trying to make a pleasing combination than in sewing. 🙁

    —Elaine Davis on June 22, 2018
  • I think the hardest part is choosing the color arrangement. I’ve just started cutting up my scraps into squares, triangles and strips if there is enough.

    —Sue on June 22, 2018
  • My only roadblock is – too many scraps, too little time.

    —Judy Maggio on June 22, 2018
  • I don’t have enough scraps right now. I just started keeping the leftover fabric from my projects.

    —Diane Pfeifer on June 22, 2018
  • I make mostly scrap quilts. I think they are more interesting than 2 color quilts. They are much more work and are harder to make, but that is where the creative part comes in. If someone is intimidated by combining colors, they can use all shades of one color. That is pretty too. I have tons of scraps. That pinwheel quilt is so cute. 🙂

    —Kay Menefee on June 22, 2018
  • I have alot of small pieces of fabric and would love to make a scrap quilt. My grandmother’s quilts were made from small pieces of fabric. She did not have money to be buying alot of fabric. I so want to make a scrap quilt.

    Martha Followill on June 22, 2018
  • I really love the look of scrappy quilts, but it always seems that my scraps don’t look great together.

    —Verna on June 22, 2018
  • Way too many scraps to choose from.

    —Karen Johnson on June 22, 2018
  • I LOVE scrap quilts. I have tons of scraps, love mixing the colors and really don’t have any problems. In fact, I have 3 large tops in progress right now. Would love the book anyway – always up for more ideas. So many scraps, so little time!!!

    —Linda Ahn on June 22, 2018
  • I love the look of scrappy quilts, and certainly have enough scraps. However, the idea of combining them into a quilt is very intimidating!

    —Kathi Benchley on June 22, 2018
  • I think "scrappy" means random, just pick from the pile, but "scrappy" quilts seem to be really color conscious. However, I am saving "chunks" (the cut-offs) to "strip" either for binding or maybe small "scrappy-quickie"–maybe. Thanks,for pictures/ideas, etc.
    Carol

    —C on June 22, 2018
  • Combining lots of colors is a bit intimidating but I have SO many scraps that I think "Oh, Scraps" just went on my want list.

    —Barbara Duval on June 22, 2018
  • I have made some very complicated quilts in my life. Now with tons of scraps and selecting colors is so hard. Seems like I always end up buyingmore fabric, which leads tomore scraps. That being said I love the scrappy look. Reminds me of summers in Minnesota and time spent on Grandmas porch.

    —Rita on June 22, 2018
  • I have a ton of scraps but I just can’t get started. There are some great patterns in this book.

    —Marsha Nelson on June 22, 2018
  • I have a ton of scraps but I just can’t get myself to start one. This book has some really nice patterns.

    —Marsha Nelson on June 22, 2018
  • Most of my scraps are from novelty prints or black outlined motifs on white backgrounds. These fabrics tend to look to busy together in scrap blocks. I need to get better at combining fabrics with a more saturated color signature.

    —Teri N on June 22, 2018
  • As others have posted, I think I have scraps. They are out of order and time to devote to organizing doesn’t seem possible.

    —carol on June 22, 2018
  • I think it’s hardest to decide where to place the colors and what colors to use. I always revert back to planned quilts with a few colors.

    —Sue O'Quinn on June 22, 2018
  • I feel that I have to be very controlling in my fabric placement.

    Linda Niederstadt Zakrzewski on June 22, 2018
  • I’ve been quilting for 3 1/2 years, and for some reason I still don’t have a good variety of scraps!

    —Kathleen M Tharp on June 22, 2018
  • Unfortunately I have sooooooooooooooooomany scraps I could probably make all of these and still have leftovers! I love to use them up but keep finding a new piece to go with an old scrap! How does that happen????!

    —Marion Lisko on June 22, 2018
  • My main roadblock is deciding which scrap quilt to make!

    —Margaret Hynes on June 22, 2018
  • I often see beauty in other’s selections, but not in mine. Perhaps there are "scrap" rules.

    —Ann Parazin on June 22, 2018
  • I have always admired the “natural” unplanned look of a scrappy quilt, but have always struggled with the confidence to dive in and sew because I struggle with color combinations and find it hard to visualize the end result.

    —Sharon on June 22, 2018
  • I have trouble picking the colors. The ones shown seem to be so effortless but I still struggle.

    —debby on June 22, 2018
  • Not enough time to try all the great scrap quilt patterns!!!

    Carolyn on June 22, 2018
  • My fabrics have different looks and don’t look good together.

    —Barbara on June 22, 2018
  • Combining brights with civil war reproductions or 30s with modern or baby fabrics with patriotic. Then there are plaids and strips, florals and solids and batiks it is hard enough to pick colors but genre of fabrics must go togeather too.

    —Barbara on June 22, 2018
  • Main road block right now is no sewing machine. I have to do all me quilting by hand and majority of my scraps are in storage.

    —Nancy on June 22, 2018
  • I find some scrappy quilt instructions not beginner-friendly.

    —beth d. on June 22, 2018
  • No roadblocks here. Sometimes I buy fabric to cut it up to make more scraps.

    —SandyMay on June 22, 2018
  • Most scapegoat quilts aren’t made from scraps but from charms or jelly rolls. I like to use just scraps

    —Peggy S on June 22, 2018
  • It seems like so many of the scrap quilt use tiny teensy squares and triangles. Just not into that, mainly because I don’t have the time or patience.

    —Geri on June 22, 2018
  • I am afraid that my scraps won’t play nice together and I won’t like the finished product.

    —Maria L Zook on June 22, 2018
  • I love scrap quilts! When I first started quilting I didn’t at all, but once you’ve made a few quilts and have scraps, it’s the best!

    —Jaxine Andersen on June 22, 2018
  • The idea of combining many colors still intimates me even after many years of quilting

    —Donna M on June 22, 2018
  • I would love to make scrap quilts but I wonder if my scraps will look pretty when I am done. I would hate to start a scrap quilt and then look awful. Can’t take it apart then?

    —Althea Klosterman on June 22, 2018
  • I don’t have enough scraps that seem to go together. Or, maybe I only think so because my color sense is off.

    —Judy Palmer on June 22, 2018
  • I I’ve done a little bit. I like to hide things in baby quilts, including some fact about the baby.

    —Chris on June 22, 2018
  • At first I did not have very many scrapes, then years later I don’t have enough of scrapes that work together. Now I have made scrapes quilts to the moon. The scrapes have taken over and the colors or size do not fit the idea. There is not enough space to sort and keep scrapes in order either.

    —Linda on June 22, 2018
  • I have so many scraps and so many patterns, I don’t know which to do next. I’m working on my 29th quilt this year which is a scrappy batik quilt. BUT, the more I use, the more there seems to be…..do they multiply while I sleep?

    Barbara Winkler on June 22, 2018
  • My biggest problem is that I have a thousand ideas running around in my head and have trouble focusing on one pattern at a time . I usually have 2 or 3 on the go at once

    —Angela Clarke on June 22, 2018
  • I spend too much time fretting over color choices.

    —Linda Haan on June 22, 2018
  • love these

    —Rosa Sparling on June 22, 2018
  • I love scrap quilts but it doesn’t always work for me. Sometimes too many colors are just that too many.

    —Christi on June 22, 2018
  • I love scrappy quilts, I love all colors in one place . I am in LOVE with Kim’s color choices

    sawsan on June 23, 2018
  • my biggest hurdle is where to begin. i have scraps but find the idea of a scrappy quilt quite daunting.

    —Suzanne Keal on June 23, 2018
  • Wish I had better color combination sense. These are lovely.

    —Rhonda Maxfield on June 23, 2018
  • I love scrap quilts. They are so homey. Even those made with fancy batiks can be cozy. I think the key to scrap quilt planning is sorting the scraps into piles that either coordinate or contrast. The rest is easy!

    —Linda Towers on June 23, 2018
  • I love scrappy quilts and I’m a fairly new quilter. I find it has been a little intimidating to look at a pattern and see all of the different fabrics it calls for. It has taken me awhile to decide my favorite color combinations, but now that I have, I’ve started buying fat quarters, charm packs and one yard cuts of the fabric colors I love, trying to build up my stash. I’m hoping this will help me create some beautiful scrappy quilts.

    —Patty Lutz on June 23, 2018
  • I don’t have enough scraps.

    —Jo Barr on June 23, 2018
  • I love the scrappy look, but finding all the color combinations with my fabric is intimidating! Even more daunting is the placement of everything with the pattern. Need to get one of these books to help motivate me into starting one

    —Tammy on June 25, 2018
  • At first I was hesitant about mixing all the colors together but after making my first few scrap quilts I throw absolutely everything into the mix!

    —Sue F on June 26, 2018
  • My problem is that my scraps are not organized at all.. just leftovers stuffed into a plastic bag after each project/quilt is finished. How should they be organized for a way to design a scrappy one? Sorting by color seems reasonable but most of mine have multiple colors in each scrap. Sometimes I think I will just grab a piece and sew it to the next one no matter the color or shape, but that would be a crazy quilt, right?

    —Marta on June 27, 2018
  • I have been making scrap quilts for over 35 years and I believe we all are challenged by our scraps! I just spent 3 days organizing my scraps I use to make reproduction doll quilts. ( i have so many quilts I have no more friends, family, charities let to give the big ones too!!), Here are my tips for using your scraps by organizing. (1) Get them out of your bags and press them!!(2) Now chose different sizes to cut your scraps up into such as 2.5″, 3.5 ", 4.5″ etc strips or squares. (3) Put them in clear boxes, sorted by color, and label them. You have now "filed" your scraps into a very easy filing system and you are ready to use. Need 2″ finished half sq. triangles? No problem, you have strips or squares to now cut what you need for your chosen quilt. My last organizing job, took 3 days but I now have 7 boxes of organized scraps at my fingertips ready to make dozens of quilts in little time! So go to it ladies and have fun!!

    —carolyn barnett on September 14, 2019
  • I live in Brazil, but I am crazy about everything in the books published.
    I bought all books of Kim Diehl,Jo Morton , Mary Ether….
    I love them all.
    Patchwork is the most important thing to do for my interior peace.

    —Eliane deMello on January 31, 2020

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