How to Use those Practice Pieces

Lori Kennedy Machine Quilting

Good Morning, Quilters!

Practice! Practice! Practice!

You “hear” me say it all the time…I write it all the time and I hope you hear me–

“YOU can do this!…It just takes practice!”  

Then I tell you–practice on fabric you love-because subconsciously your work will be better….

Now what do you do with all those beautiful quilt sandwiches on pretty fabric?

Last week I recommended creating The Big Practice Sandwich HERE

And several of YOU recommended making zipper pouches.

Reader, Colleen Lang sent photos of her practice sandwich zipper pouches.


Colleen Lang, Zipper Pouch

I was inspired!
Colleen Lang, Zipper Pouch

Over the weekend, when I should have been dusting…

I pulled out some quilt sandwiches and Zippers I purchased from Craftsy

I did a quick Google search for “zipper pouches”–there are hundreds…

Lori Kennedy Quilting, Tula Pink Scissors


In one short morning, I completed three zipper bags….

Next time, I plan to try a boxy version from BERNINA’s We All Sew HERE

Speaking of BERNINA….

Lori Kennedy, Zipper Pouch


Check out these fabulous BERNINA Ambassadors:

Sandy Fitzpatrick Machine Applique, Machine Quilting
Beth Ferrier Machine Applique, Piecing
Cheryl Sleboda Heirloom Sewing Techniques, Technology in Quilting

Lori Kennedy, Zipper Pouch

I know YOU will be inspired…

And you’ll probably end up with more practice pieces!

Happy Stitching!


PS…All information, tutorials and images (except where noted) are the property of Lori Kennedy at The Inbox Jaunt and are intended for personal use only.  Feel free to re-blog, pin or share with attribution to The Inbox Jaunt.  For all other purposes, please contact me at  Thanks!

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47 thoughts on “How to Use those Practice Pieces

  1. I am so impressed! Your bags are lovely. I have seen your stack of practice samples so I know you have a lot of bags in your future. What a great idea. I don’t have as many as you but I was thinking of sewing machine covers and placemats but I really love the bags. They would be so nice for a quick gift and easy enough to make a bunch!

  2. I’ve turned some of my practice sandwiches into placemats. I even turned a little 4″ one into a coaster for my tea mug.

  3. nice but my practice does not look that good…I cover them with fabric front and back and do straight line quilting and make a placemat or pot holder…

  4. Any of my practice samples I want to keep for reference, I clip an X with scissors and the hang them on a large ring….like wallpaper samples or upholstery fabric samples in a store. Then I get them out when working on quilt to help me select which design I like.

  5. “Over the weekend, when I should have been dusting”, made me laugh out loud. Last time I really dusted (except my sewing machine) was when my daughter and partner visited and that was only because he’s allergic to house dust. Love your little pouches, so preetty and they do go together quite quickly. Thanks for sharing your methods, much appreciated.

  6. I have a retreat coming up in a few weeks. This could be a perfect group project!! (Or for our fall retreat) It’s too bad I most often read your posts at work, Lori. Because I want to do something quilty RIGHT NOW! It makes really hard for me to focus on what I’m supposed to be doing 😉

  7. My test fabric – looks nothing like yours!!! Otherwise I’d be all over this. But it does cause me to be more mindful when practicing – I do loathe using up any materials that aren’t going to be put to use later on. THANKS for this great post, Lori. ***smiles***

  8. They are precious..Hang them on your second Christmas tree and watch the family grab! I am a long lost cousin, right? !!

  9. I love that you are sharing ideas of how to use up our practice scraps (and your zippered pouches are soooo cute!!)! I hate seeing anything go to waste! I make pet beds out of my practice pieces. If the practice pieces are small, I join them using a narrow sashing method of QAYG. I make them like an envelope pillow cover and stuff them with flatish pillows made from scraps from my cutting table and re-purposed fabric. Donate to local SPCA. I took a couple of them to my quilt guilds for sew and tell & now several people are bringing me their scraps. I’ve lost count of how many I’ve made!!

  10. What a wonderful idea! Just need to get some zippers.

    I bought your book from Martingale. It brings everything from the tutorials together very clearly and love the spiral binding. Great job!

  11. I needed a computer bag and made one using the samples I used for a quilt design. Bags are another great idea. Love your blog.

  12. I have been making Humbug bags with my practice sandwiches. They are addicting and cute. They can be any size and any zipper style. Google “How to make Humbug bags” and you will get lots of videos and directions for lots of bags.

  13. Like your idea of the zipper bags. On a yard of a solid color piece of fabric, make a sandwich and stitch one or two lines around block size squares. I then stitch a different “design/stitch” in each practice square. When blocks are full, bind and give to hospital lady that coordinates items for under-privileged babies/children. The older kids love to trace around the designs with their finger. This also keeps them occupied for a period of time.

  14. I make my practice pieces into pet pads. I trim around the best parts and use scraps to bind them. They reside on most of the furniture, are easy to wash, and are a constant source of inspiration – samples that are always close at hand. Thanks for the daily ideas – I just discovered your site a couple weeks ago. Ordered the book – should be here Friday. Can’t wait!

  15. I LOVE this idea!! I have so many practice pieces and I look at them and say “and now what”. Well, now I know what!! Thanks Lori…love your work and thanks for sharing so generously.

  16. Bags are beautiful!!! Great idea! I use some of my pieces to lay on the furniture for the cat to sleep on. I can then just throw them in the wash and my furniture stays scratch and hair free!!!

  17. Thanks for giving me another idea for these practice pieces. I may be obsessed with these little zippered pouches. I have made wine bags in the past with some of the bigger pieces some of which I have sold! I am patiently awaiting your book which will finally be available in Canada by the end of the week. It will go nicely with the Craftsy classes. Thanks again for teaching me so much!

  18. How nice, to have something to show. I am ashamed to say that I am always practicing with my mouse as I surf the web and thusly, I have nothing to show. Now, that is sad. I must get out sandwich doings so as to prove my industrious nature.

  19. Lori, I just received your book!!! Thank you so much for the inscription, you are the best. The book looks like the perfect reference book and so pretty! LOVE the spiral, saved me $5 because I always have this done. Best of luck to you and hope you sell millions!

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