If we cut a cloth a have a bit cloth left, will it sound idiomatic to use "leftover" or will it be more natural to use "scrap" or "extra cloth"?, Actually it a cloth is clised and a part of it is cut off and what's left after using it is used again.


We can make something crafty with the leftover cloth.

We can make something crafty with the cloth scrap.

We can make something crafty with the extra cloth left.

Is "leftover" used in day-to-day conversations? (Like: "leftover food" or is it called "extra food", for example: "We can use the leftover food later on" or "We can use the extra food left later on")


2 Answers 2


To add on to Mike Brockington's answer: with textiles, a "remnant" is some amount left over:

remnant (n): 1.1. A piece of cloth left when the greater part has been used or sold.

In many ways "remnant" is just a fancy word for "scrap"; however, there is a difference in nuance. "Remnant" sounds nice, as if the remaining cloth might still be of some use. A "scrap" sounds like something you should just throw away. As with many things, this depends on context. Some people can do wonders with scraps of cloth.

We can probably sew together something with these scraps/remnants.

If you're not clear whether something is a "remnant" or a "scrap", then saying "extra cloth" is fine.

We can probably sew together something with this extra cloth.

"Leftovers" (plural noun) is normally used with food, but the adjective "leftover" can apply to any kind of extra material

We can make two pies with this dough, and some tarts with any leftover dough.

You can also use the phrasal verb "left over":

We can make two pies with this dough, and some tarts with any left over.

Side note: "Make something crafty" is not quite idiomatic. "Crafty" means clever, bordering on devious. Instead use the verb "craft":

We can probably craft something with this extra cloth.

Because "craft" is a generic term, it's usually idiomatic to be more specific, at least when it comes to simple tasks, using verbs like sew, weld, assemble, carve, construct, mold, mix, cook, and so on


The most appropriate word to use with cloth is 'remnant', though this is not commonly used for food.

Your first example is perfectly fine, from the grammar point of view, but your second should be: "... with the scrap cloth." - note that I've reversed the order of the last two words.

The only way I can twist your third example into something natural sounding is: "... with the extra remnants of cloth."

"Leftover" is more commonly used with food, though only after a meal is finished - "extra" or "surplus" would be better for an event that has been 'over catered' for example.

  • And does "scrap cloth" refer to the "remnants of cloth"? Jun 7, 2019 at 17:38
  • 1
    I'm not sure why this has been downvoted. "Remnant" can be the appropriate word to use with textiles, although it depends on the context.
    – Andrew
    Jun 7, 2019 at 17:50
  • @Andrew - I'm guessing that whoever downvoted this answer hasn't spent very much time in a fabric store. That said, perhaps some of the downvotes could have been warded off with a few credible substantiating facts, such as an excerpt from this blog, for example: Here are 25 scrap fabric projects to help you use those little fabric remnants in a fun way!
    – J.R.
    Jun 7, 2019 at 21:29

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