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DCL

There are lots of ways to green your sewing by using every last scrap of fabric. You could make a necklace, an apron, a pincushion, and a lot more, but if you've made all the pincushions you and everyone you know will ever need, why not pass your scraps on to a school?

Kids are back in school, and that means teachers will be looking for cheap or free materials for students to explore art and design. Cereal boxes and paper towel tubes are always a hit, but scraps of fabric as small as tiny squares and triangles left over from quilting can be useful in the classroom.

Fabric scraps can be used in a variety of ways, including in multi-media art projects, for models for science fair projects, for illustrations for book reports and students' stories, or as a teaching tool in lessons about textures, colors, shapes, patterns, and more. Exposure to fabric scraps also gets kids interested in working with textiles at a young age.

Donating to school is simple. Talk to your child's teacher. If you don't have kids or have older kids, ask a friend who teaches at the kindergarten to grade 6 level, or just drop by the office of your local elementary school and tell the secretary you're a sewer/crafter and you'd like to donate scrap fabric to the primary classes for arts and crafts lessons. You may need to fill out some paperwork (some school boards have strict rules about freebies), but it should be fairly painless.

If you're a dedicated or full-time sewer or crafter, you may want to bring in the scrap fabric donations monthly or once per term, but most sewers will probably just want to donate once per year. Some teachers may want you to bring in scraps when you have a certain amount, such as a bag full or a bin full.

Donating fabric scraps is a great green alternative to throwing them away, but if you can also enhance children's education with exposure to new materials, you're helping on a whole other level.