Sunday, June 26, 2011

Patchwork and sewing machines

This week I bought a new sewing machine, electric no less, for years I used an old Jones hand sewing machine but it was becoming too heavy to lift, so I reluctantly left it behind in Bath. It had history and belonged to my ex-sister-in law Sylvia, she had lived and studied in America and patchwork and quilting was a hobby of hers.  The machine had been taken over to Blonay when she moved back to Switzerland, and she had given it to me, and I carted it to England, and it is on this machine I did a lot of patchwork.  Mainly for the dogs and cats I had at one stage, Moss, Suki, Tiger and James to be precise, the last, two cats that lived to grand old ages.
Sylvia had a quilting frame, and her work was beautiful, tidy and a work of art, she still does them for the grandchildren but her eyesight is not so good now,
So I have decided to start again with the patchwork, hopefully my impatient nature will calm down and I will sew neatly but simply, small squares are the easiest for me.
The following patchwork is Sylvias', she gave it to my daughter who somehow passed it on to me, but she still 'owns' it; she has a very possessive nature.  I see that the animals have been sleeping in the centre, because there are light mud marks that have'nt come off in the wash.  I am not sure about the pattern, too many bits of material have been used but it must have taken her hours...

The penny has dropped about the pattern,  it is based on a kaleidoscope

I can never achieve her quilting skills or patience,  but the use of materials is interesting, though I said she had lived and studied in America, she went on to work in Hong Kong as a lecturer, so that materials often reflect the different places she has been in.  My first introduction to patchwork had been my mother-in-laws patchwork dressing gown,(I had one to) which she had made for my 3 year old daughter, it was cute but made out of Thai batik materials.

Looking on the internet last night I came across Japanese materials for patchwork, strangely enough a bit like the silks in the studio used for the hanging scrolls


  1. I think the quilt pattern was done by strip piecing fabrics then using a template to cut the triangle shapes--very orderly.
    Congratulations on your new sewing machine. I have created a sewing area and fabric storage in this small "retirement" cottage and now finding myself too busy in the garden to sew.

  2. Got too many projects on at the moment, always end up like this ;) shall I start patchworking or wait till all my dyeing is finished. Never dye and cook at the same time the result could be horrendous.