Patchwork Throws In Focus

original_patchwork-quiltFor patchwork quilt and throws, gather together all your patchwork fabric pieces. Try to have them of the same weight if possible. Thick and thin fabrics will not work well together and can give you problems when the quilt needs washing. If using a cotton fabric, it would be an idea to wash the cotton fabric first. Not all cotton fabrics are pre-shrunk.

The best fabric for your first attempt would be a man made fabric, polyester is a very good fabric. It keeps its freshness and doesn’t shrink in the wash. If you intend to have the quilt dry cleaned, the above will not apply.

Patchwork throws are throws with an upper layer of fabric, which is comprised of numerous small pieces of material. These pieces are sewn together in an interconnecting design. Throws like these are popular with people the world over, and textile museums have lots of historical examples of patchwork designs. In the old days, patchwork throws were hand pieced, usually by teams of women, and many throw makers still hand sew to this day. Nonetheless, most modern throws are made using sewing machines.

To make patchwork throws, you have to gather scraps of material. You can get these from old clothes, other sewing projects, or use material supplied from friends and relatives. Based on your preferences, you could include various shapes and sizes, or keep all the pieces the same size. To avoid any problems with the shape/symmetry of the throw, consider how you will form the pieces into a coherent design.

Ideally, you should have a minimum of six patterns. Search craft books and the web for patterns that fit your tastes. Alternatively, invent your own by visualizing how your throw will look.

To make a simple pillow quilt, cut five inch squares that are serged up three sides. Then, lightly stuff these and lay the side of one square over the side of another, before sewing down that edge. Keep adding more squares until a strip is formed. Lie the strip on your bed to gauge how many you require, depending on your bed’s size. Afterwards, create additional strips and sew these together. Remember to blow your machine out periodically, otherwise the machine could become clogged up with lint.

To make a handmade garden flower throw, cut hexagon shapes out for different coloured flowers, then string these on a thread in small stacks. This will keep the bits for every block together. You can add embroidered flower designs, once the layers are basted. It is best to use quilting stitch stencils and mark the design on the middle hexagon. You can complete the throw by hand sewing a quarter inch outline stitch round each of the partial and full hexagons. It is only necessary to use a machine for sewing when you attach the binding.

Creating Fabric Flowers For Your Home

fabricflowersFabric flowers are fun to make and will give you hours of pleasure producing them. Man made fabric polyester is the best choice of fabric to use in this flower making hobby. It’s easy to work with and will retain its colour.

Nursery bought artificial flowers are very realistic, you feel you have to touch them just to make sure they are not real. Once you have made your own bouquet of flowers, put them pride of place in the centre of your dining table. They are much more cheerful than candles. A small bouquet on a small table in your entrance hall will add a welcoming presence during the cold and dark winter months.

Don’t forget, children can help too and whilst the designs will not be realistic looking, you can make some interesting and vibrant designs with a variety of different fabrics. You can even use a button for the centre!

The art of making flowers from various materials began hundreds of years ago. It is believed that the Chinese were the first to master the craft, creating detailed replicas out of silk. The art spread to Europe, probably sometime in the twelfth century. For the first time, the making of fake flowers was done to make money. The popularity of fabric flowers boomed in the Victorian period, when a lavish style of decorating was the mainstay. Today, artificial flowers can be made of silk, plastic, and paper; often they are a combination of multiple materials.

To create fabric flowers, it is a good idea to begin with a pattern. Over time you will get good enough to design your own, but for beginners, start with a design created by someone else. Felt is an easy fabric to work with; it holds its shape and doesn’t fray. It is much easier to work with than other fabrics, such as silk. A basic pattern can be created from paper or even interfacing; interfacing is durable and will last longer than paper. The pattern can then be pinned to the felt, traced, and cut out.

Easy flowers can be made from rick rack, this does require a bit more finger dexterity to put together and a sewing machine for part of the process. You can also make them from old clothing, such as sweaters. These can be easily made and require just a bit of hand sewing. If you have leftover quilting materials, you can create some eye-catching flowers with different patterns and colors, using beads or parts from old costume jewellery to create the flower’s middle.

The only potential difficulties are manual dexterity and a lack of basic sewing skills. However, there are so many possible designs and patterns that it is fairly easy to find something that you can put together in a short amount of time. Once you have mastered the basics, you can move on to more elaborate designs, created with different fabrics. Handmade flowers are durable and can be made to match any color scheme, such as for a wedding or home décor. Creating flowers can give you a feeling of accomplishment and pride. Don’t forget to show them to your friends!

The Crafty Way To Fashion A Rug – Rag Rugs

pegrugLong before recycling was “invented” the cold winter evenings were often spent cutting up clean garments no longer in use. They would be cut up into strips of different colours, these made ready to form a pattern. A great deal of thought went into rag rug. Mum or dad would set to and create a bright oblong rug, the back of this rug was Jute or Hessian (sack cloth). Most people’s homes had rag rugs and it was a bit of a competition to see who had the best one, so it was a serious matter! The rug was placed was placed in front of the fire and always made the hearth look more inviting. It was the fire mostly that attracted visitors, but the rugs still got a mention.

We still like to add a bit of individuality to our homes and what better way than to create your own version of the timeless classic, the rag rug (or peg rug as it’s also known). There are lots of kits available or you could be even more inventive and design your very own rag rug instead.

Rug making has been around for centuries. More than a craft, sometimes a necessity or an opportunity to generate income by selling them. Rag rugs were especially popular in the mid– twentieth century as a decoration. As early as the 18th century they were composed as a fundamental part of recycling. Materials were torn into strips, woven or crocheted, then attached to old sacking.

There is no single method to rag rug making, one may weave, crochet, braid or hand knot the material. Sizes can be a large as a hearth rug, or as small as a doll house. Those who prefer making a rag rug of their own can do so fairly simply.

To create a feathery bedside rug, use a nonslip rug mat for the base. The small holes make this a time consuming process. Generally these are 30 inches by 42 inches. It will require short strips of fabric 5 inches by 1 inch wide. Beginning at one end, stuff the fabric strips into one hole then under the next line and into another hole. After you weave through the two holes, tie a knot. You may have to skip a hole here and there to keep the finish even.

Construct a braided rag rug with king sized sheets. Cut or tear 1 inch strips lengthwise, snip off loose threads. Sew one end of 3 strips together at a time. When all are ready, use a sturdy piece of cardboard with 2 inch slices, one–half inch apart to hold each of the strips. Anchor that end to a sturdy item. Braid snugly, not too tight. When making the rug, coil the braided strips on a base, another old sheet or whatever fits, 23 inches by 17 inches square. Pin where necessary to hold it in place. Sew the braids with a zigzag stitch until all are joined. Trim off the edge of material. Use one last braid around the outside as a finish.

Handmade rag rugs are time consuming, and work. The reward of accomplishment and the art of producing something by yourself is well worth the effort and time.

Here’s a fantastic video from the US, which shows you how to make these rag rugs the traditional and right way!

Patchwork Is Not Just For Quilts – Patchwork Wall Art

patchwork_wall_artFor wall art, the choice of fabrics and patchwork pieces is immense. Once your wall art is in place, it will only need regular dusting. You can go to town with the fabric pieces you use for your wall art. Faux fur, velvet, silk, cotton, leather, faux leather and suede to name a few. You can even add buttons and other accessories to your wall too.

If you down the road of using old garments, you will be able to look at your wall art and remember wearing that particular dress, or you husband in that shirt. No one else will know, well perhaps hubby might.

Bring out the inner artist in yourself, for all to see and praise!

Patchwork wall art, or pictures are fascinating, creative displays of bits of materials in likenesses and abstracts. Patchwork has been a part of lives all over the world since the time of Egyptian tombs. During the Middle Ages layers of quilted fabric netted the soldiers warmth. The Chinese created patchwork quilting 5000 years ago, and the Japanese also used quilting inside armour. Patchwork is simply the method of sewing together small pieces of material to generate a larger piece of material which is then sewn to backing.

Patchwork pictures are designed with layers of cloth, the base layers may be cotton or sheets cut to the size of the finished picture. Abstract art in patchwork pictures is developed by placing the edges of the materials slightly over each other. Fastened with pins to the base, it is sewn with extremely small zigzag stitches. Difficult to change if a mistake is made, one should be patient and go back to see the finished product before a final sewing.

If one is preparing a figurative picture, a background colour is chosen and that material is sewn to the base. Drawing on the artists imagination, he or she cut fabric in the shapes and sizes required. These are pinned, added to or removed, and sometimes changed all together, then pinned again. As with abstract pictures, before the final zigzag attachment, the artist will set the art piece aside to make sure it is a final production.

A technique of drawing with thread, hair or creating letters of a text is a difficult approach. Using a zigzag stitch in different width sizes is the element which finishes that procedure. One of the difficulties arising from patchwork pictures is small bits may not hold the pins, large pictures may require a lot of pins. Some fall out, some are hard to remove. When using extremely small pieces of cloth, a tiny touch of glue may work best.

Using remnants of new fabric or bits of former clothing are ways to apply artistic pictorials. Use coordinating thread to outline certain aspects of the item or person. Try it with your own ideas and see how artistic you can be.