And now for something completely different…


OK, maybe not all that different. It is, obviously, a sewing project, but I consider quilting, and really all home dec sewing, to belong to the dark side of the force. However, this project was fairly quick and pretty much painless.

Among the first world problems that have been occupying my brain cycles lately are the following:
1. I don’t have a summer bedspread to replace the duvet with. Normally I just throw a thermal blanket over the bed in the summer and try not to look at it too much. I have tried buying a bedspread, but any bed covering that I would consider to be a step up from a thermal blanket is silly expensive. Like, $1000.
2. I have all these lengths of fabric that are bigger than scraps but either too small or too something else to be good for any project that I can see myself doing. And I mean, I have a lot of them.

Hey, I can solve both of these problems by making a quilt! And now that my industrial machine is working, it might even be fun!

The first thing I did was gather up all my fabrics into a big pile. I took the darker ones and bleached them in the washing machine to lighten them up a bit. Then I took the whole pile and threw it into the machine with some purple dye. Now they all match! But when I looked at the pile, I thought it looked a bit too much like a laundry accident, so I added some off-white linen that was not part of the original stack of fabrics.

If I were buying fabrics for this project, which would have totally defeated the purpose, I would have gotten all linen. As it is, there are some linens, cottons, wools, and rayons. The wools, being a protein fiber, did not really take the Procion dye.

I just tried to type up an explanation of how I sewed the quilt together, but it was hopelessly convoluted. There’s no way you could follow it. If you want to know how I did it, type “Strip piecing” into a search engine and find a comprehensible explanation. Most strip piecing explanations use a very small scale. My scale is 12″ squares.

The quilt is double-sided. Did I mention that I have a lot of fabric?

My industrial machine that I just got working does a zig-zag stitch, which my normal machine does not do. I know, you’re thinking, “Industrial machines don’t do zig zag.” The Singer 107W1 is the exception that proves the rule. Anyway, since I have this new-to-me technology, I wanted to use it, so the quilting and binding stitches are zig zag. The thread is a golden yellow color. The quilting stitches go in a spiral from the outside in. There’s no batting, since this is a summer quilt.

As far as quilts go, this one is no great accomplishment, but it is utilitarian and I like it. And it is finished, which is more than I would be able to say if I had gone for a more artistic design.

Another view

The quilt is double-sided. I’m considering this the back side.

The binding is necktie silk

Detail of the quilting stitches.

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10 Comments

  1. Patti
    Posted June 1, 2012 at 12:03 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Beautiful!

  2. Posted June 1, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Permalink | Reply

    nice! the purples are great, and i agree that adding the white in makes it look a bit more intentional. 😀

  3. jennyklyon
    Posted June 1, 2012 at 12:38 pm | Permalink | Reply

    This is very cool! Great idea with the dye to unify the colors. I love the necktie silk binding!

  4. Posted June 1, 2012 at 2:31 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Very pretty. I was looking at my winter bed spread today thinking it was time I did something about it!

  5. Posted June 1, 2012 at 2:33 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I love the colors, and I especially love your comments about home dec and quilting being the “dark side of the force”!! I am a confirmed garment sewist, and only quilt or sew home dec under a bit of duress. Thanks for the giggle, and I look forward to reading more of your posts about couture sewing!

    Maris

    • Posted June 1, 2012 at 2:35 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Thanks! I hope I don’t offend too many people with that comment. Although it is a negative assessment, it might make home dec sewers feel powerful.

  6. Carolyn
    Posted June 4, 2012 at 9:34 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I saw your beautiful quilt and thought that’s exactly what my grandmother use to do. So see you are making family heirlooms and you didn’t even realize it. And shush, I agree with the dark side comment!

    • Posted June 6, 2012 at 8:54 am | Permalink | Reply

      Thanks! I was totally going for the my-grandmother-made-it vibe. Sometimes I get so tired of looking at overdesigned pieces.

  7. Kathleen
    Posted June 6, 2012 at 1:27 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I love your “just dig in and do it” approach to your quilt. And, with your design sensibilities, of course it turned out lovely! I also got a laugh over your home dec remark: my sentiments as well, although some enthusiasm in that area could come in handy once in awhile!

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  1. […] so I thought I’d jump on the bandwagon. I’ve had this print denim for a while. After my epic quilt project, I feel like my fabric shelves are much more manageable. Like I can actually see what I have. […]

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