Sunday, 16 May 2010

Patchwork is cruel!

I decided sometime last year that I had to make another patchwork quilt. Now, I need another patchwork quilt like the proverbial hole in the head: I already own three, and have made at least that many for other people, including my brother. But once you get going with patchwork, it takes you over. You can't stop at one. Even if you have no need or space for another quilt, you are compelled to keep going. I can't understand it. I have a small theory though: it's about the alchemy that occurs when disparate cast offs become a magical (and useful) whole. And it can be incredibly easy.I can see from these photos that I still have some re-arranging to do as the colour balance isn't quite right.

The criterion here is simple: all of the fabrics must be different. Not one square is to be the same as another. I can't exactly remember why I decided that, I think that I just wanted it to look really home-made. And the nice thing is that I have asked friends for some of their fabrics, so a bit of them is now in there too. I just need five more squares and I'm ready to go.

Above: my first ever patchwork effort: a cushion that I made when I was a child. Yes that is indeed Frida and Agnetha in the centre. Below: I found my old book, Supersewing Without a Pattern by Carolyn Trager (New York, 1976) when visiting my parents the other day. On the back page was a reminder of what the patchwork cushion was originally going to be:

A super Abba patchwork tunic! Illustration by Christine Randall.


What Kate did next ... said...

I am incredibly honoured to be the guardian of a Sandra quilt, originally made for our first baby daughter eight years ago, used by both girls but now happily residing back on Alice's bed (where it 'makes her feel safe'). It's such a special gift and the girls know and love each individual square (the little blue house, the dog, Lisa Simpson, the embroidered flowers).

It fulfils the three criteria of preciousness -- it is beautiful, it is useful, and it also has sentimental value. I am sure it will become a precious heirloom, handed down through the family and it will probably outlast us all!

Thank you Sandra!

Sandra Eterovic said...

Kate! That brought a tear to my eye.

Yes indeed -- must be why we patchwork addicts keep going. You put it so eloquently that I can't help re-reading it.

I always love taking a peek into Alice's room in the hope of seeing the quilt there. I do indeed feel as though a part of me is helping to look after her.
I have always wanted to do a post on that quilt, actually, but never seem to have my camera with me when I am visiting you all!

Thanks again dear Kate x

jaboopee said...

the comment above just confirms how much patchwork is all about a labour of love , i've still not finished daughters quilt but every hand stitch was a wish for her happiness ...and sandra i don't think its too late to make the tunic would look stunning on you this autumn.

Sandra Eterovic said...

I am enjoying this conversation alot! You are right Elaine, it is very much about that labour of love. I wonder how long ago you started your daughter's quilt...?

I might make that tunic, you know, maybe I'll start a new trend. Perhaps I'll even quilt it!!! (Ugh.)