Thursday 17 January 2008

When you have too much material

Yesterday I finally can began my projects again after Christmas. My 'sewing group' started , so I had to unpack what I cleaned away from the living room tables, chairs and floor, just to find something to take with me there. I decided to finish a quilted shopping bag there, it needed just to be put together, and the lining with a zipper pocket, and the handles. This means I had done the fun part already, the quilted sides and bottom. I had it almost done, but the school's sewing machines are not too sophisticated so I wanted to fasten the zipper at home. The picture shows what was made before Christmas.

My big problem is storaging everything so that I can a) remember b) find what I have. It would be easy enough to pile up neat little folded pieces of cloth on shelves, sorted by color or purpose of use. But my pieces are not usually square but irregular, and they have a tendency to heap up and fall over. There are so many recycled pieces which I never bother to iron unless I choose to use them, and they are impossible to store neatly. I'm the second youngest of six children, and so I'm used to getting handovers. Everyone knows I quilt, and so they ask if I'm interested in some pieces they want to get rid of when clearing their closets. This way they don't need to throw anything away, because of course I take it, and so I have some more material to sort, store, remember, find use for. And I have no way to clear my closets, because I need to use what I have. And usually I have no time or energy.

Last autumn I remembered again a very useful technique to get rid of lots of material, even the ugly ones. It's called chenille or slash cut . I make 5-6 different layers of old shirts, jerseys, bedsheets, whatever, on a bottom layer I have sewn together from old jeans or other heavy material.

Then I paste the layers together. After that I draw some guide lines along the bias for stitching. The whole thing will be stitched in parallel lines about 1,5 - 2 cm apart, an easy way to get rid of useless rests of sewing thread.

Finally all top layers are cut between the stitched lines, the edges finished and the whole thing washed in the machine.

This is how far I made it yesterday. More pictures after the weekend when I have more time to finish this little bedside rug.

1 comment:

  1. This looks like a very interesting technique that I may have to try. I have bags of old fabric samples that I have no idea what to do with. This looks perfect.


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