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  • Writer's pictureSarah Matthews

Quilts with Camels

Updated: Feb 14, 2018

Welcome to the first Hector’s Handmade blog!

After the busyness of the Christmas period, the New Year is a time to look at different projects and make the things I always want to make but never get round to.

So, with that in mind I started 2018 with quilt making. When I was growing up, my Mum made quilts, or eiderdowns as they were probably known then, although there were no ducks involved, for my and my sister's beds. I’m sure they were filled with polyester (the quilts not the ducks!). I look back with fond memories of the cute pictures appliquéd onto them. There was an apple, a pear, a snail, a toadstool, a flower and a butterfly to name but a few. I want to replicate this image in my mind but first I wanted to try my hand using my lovely camel ‘Cecil’.

I started looking for template layouts and square sizes but found there were so many options to choose from, so I decided to go it alone and use sizes that worked best for me. Crafting is fun but it should also be practical, especially if you are looking to sell your items. I researched the acrylic templates that you can buy, to enable me to cut out squares quickly and accurately. Before purchasing anything I made a cardboard template to check the sizes. Although quilts are generally made in inches, I work in centimetres and I also wanted to stitch using the foot edge as a guide and, with the needle set to the right-hand position, this gave me a 0.5cm seam allowance, which perfectly fits in with my centimetre measuring!

Now onto the fun part of fabric selection :) I’d already purchased a range of coordinating fabrics on a recent shopping trip, so it was just a question of which ones I wanted to use.

I had in mind to use all the coordinating fabrics together but decided to keep the first one simple and crisp and therefore chose to use just the red spotty material along with a white to appliqué the camels onto. I chose a 3 x 3 square layout and using the cardboard template, my long acrylic ruler and rotary cutter I cut out the 9 squares required.

Next onto the camels for appliqué. Again, keeping it simple I just used the red spotty fabric. To make my camels I used an appliqué fusing paper on the back of the fabric and cut the shape out with scissors, having first drawn round my template.

The camels were then ironed onto the 5 white squares and stitched using a regular zigzag stitch.

To make up the quilt panel I stitched 3 squares together in a row and then stitched the 3 rows together, taking care to line up the joining seams, pressing the seams open as I went.

With the front panel complete, I cut a piece of quilt wadding to match the size. Then on a clear spacious work surface I laid out the previously ironed backing fabric. Smoothing all the layers flat I then cut the backing fabric so that it was 5cm larger than the quilt panel and wadding. All the layers were then pinned together, with as many pins as possible. The backing edge was then turned into the quilt edge and then turned again to bind the quilt edge mitering the corners in the process. The binding was then top stitched down as close to the edge as desired. To finish the quilt I used the ‘stitched in the ditch’ method along the square seam lines and gave everything a good press.

I have to say I’m really pleased with the results and took the design on a stage further to

include a name panel along the top.

Enough of quilts for now, although I still have in mind to replicate the quilt my Mum made for us. Watch this space …….

Next month onto something environmentally friendly.

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Feb 17, 2018

Love it !

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