I'm a sewing enthusiast in Beacon, New York, with a love of all things retro. This site is all about tutorials, tips, inspiration, and lots of spirited discussion about sewing as it relates to fashion history, pop culture, body image, and gender. My first book, Gertie's New Book for Better Sewing, is now out from STC Craft/Melanie Falick Books! Also look for my line "Patterns by Gertie" from Butterick.
The home dec sewing has begun! And I discovered a way I can make it more interesting: by using remnants of my favorite garment fabrics. I once saw an exhibit of quilts at the Folk Art Museum, and some of my favorites incorporated scraps of fancy dress textiles: silks, velvets, and the like.
This past weekend I made a dress out of this amazing magenta rose-motif brocade (it's for a magazine article, more to come on that in the future!) and I had a little over a yard left. I thought about putting it aside for a blouse, but then I realized how luxurious it would be made into a throw quilt. And so the piecing began!
I added some length to the brocade I had by piecing together some scraps. And then I remembered this vivid pink dupioni I have in my stash, and that became part of the mix as well, just in a corner (I love little quirky details like that in quilts.) The finishing touch? A silk velvet backing, also from the remnant stash.
I sandwiched cotton batting in between the layers and basted them, and now I'm in the process of hand quilting it. I was inspired by these quilts from West Elm, which are made from vintage saris and have prominent hand stitching in a contrasting color.
I loved the idea of a humble running stitch on these luxe fabrics. So I'm using some Coats Button and Craft thread (the same stuff Alabama Chanin uses for handstitching) in ivory.
I absolutely love how the hand stitching looks on the velvet.
I'm planning to bind the edges in the velvet, I think.
I also found out that my throw looks pretty great with a pink chandelier, so I'm going to start convincing Jeff we absolutely need one. I'll let you know how that goes.