Quilt repair isn’t something I normally do.
But, when a good friend mentioned they were going to throw this quilt out because of a few rips, I told her to let me have a look at it first.
Can you find the fix(es) in this pic?
Once you spot them, yes they are noticeable but I hope over time the “new” pieces will blend nicely and give this handmade quilt, with some family history, many more years of use.
As you can see in this pic, a few of the quilt squares had ripped after the fabric had become worn over time. This quilt is several decades old. The batting and backing and everything else all seemed to be in good condition.
It’s a really lovely quilt that holds some beautiful memories. The owner cut out all the squares and had her sister piece and hand quilt it together. She told me that the fabric was left over pieces from various projects. “This striped fabric was from a prom dress I made. The green from some seat covers I refinished in one of the first places I lived in on my own.” I could tell it was pretty special to her.
To repair the ripped squares I went through my stash and found fabric that was as close as possible. I cut each piece to size leaving a 1/4 inch seam allowance on all four sides and pressed those in and did a turned edge appliqué finish (hand stitched).
I’m quite proud of this navy blue piece that needed repair. The new fabric is from Cotton + Steel – a modern print. Yes, the flowers are a little bigger but the navy’s a match and the theme of the squares preserved.
I’d like to think that when the quilt owner looks at her quilt now that she can use it again and spots that piece, she’ll think of me.
As part of the repair, I spent a considerable amount of time fixing some of the hand quilting that had broken over time.
For both the turned edge appliqué and the hand quilting, I used my favourite brand of thread, Aurifil. When you are doing that much hand sewing, you have to appreciate that this thread doesn’t get knotted up and tangled like some other threads that I’ve worked with do.
I was really excited to hand this quilt back to my friend this week. She definitely appreciated the work involved in getting this fixed and is really looking forward to using it again. That makes my heart happy and the work worth the effort.
Have you ever repaired a quilt?
What is the oldest quilt you own? Who made it? Does it hold a special memory for you?