Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Travel Project

Apologies in advance to those who have seen me wear this a few times and heard the story ! In Helen's blog, she was asking about holiday/travel projects other than half square triangles so I thought I'd share mine - hand quilting a pieced black silk stole. I started it several years ago inspired by the wonderful hand stitched textiles of Austrialian artist Jane Whiteley that I coverted in Perth and some very expensive kantha stitched scarves in Libertys
It was pieced by machine from a wide variety of black silks of different weights and textures interspersed with some strips and stars of purples and pinks. Many of the silks came from old shirts - some of my own, some from charity shops, a lot of the black from a skirt and pair of trousers that no longer fitted! I backed it with a wool 'pashmina' (again a charity shop find ) which dictated its final size - 45 x 200cm. How to join the 2 together was a pit of a puzzle until a friend suggested sewing them face together along the long edges and turning them the right way round , Doh ! so obvious ( anyone else have these 'Homer moments'?) As you can see the stitching is still in progress as it only gets done while travelling! The stole is useful as a lap warmer, to smarten up an outfit very quickly and only requires needle and thread. It packs up quite small as it's only 2 layers of silk and wool and as the stitching is intentionally large the odd jolt is not a problem and doesn't require too much concentration while talking (it generates a lot of interest!) Only problem sometimes is the black fabric in poor light but as I'm mainly using contrasting thread it's not too bad. I love deciding whether I will sew stars or spirals.


It's been stitched on in several countries - a lot done in a snowbound hotel in the Troodos Mountains in Cyprus. It's most recent trip was to Iran but only a few stitches were added. Who knows , when its finally smothered in stitches perhaps the fringe will get some attention!
PS Just have to watch that the needle is removed before wearing! (found out the hard way)

3 comments:

Helen Conway said...

Thaks for sharing this - a very interesting idea. made me think about combining it with another comment about making a cushion - if I got my designing act together soon enough I could kantha quilt a cushion cover and get one of my C&G projects out of the way. Hmmmmm....!

neki desu said...

not only a beautiful stole,but also all the travel stories embedded in it.how's that for a travel brochure :)

neki desu

margaret said...

What a brilliant project - and so useful along the way! Plus it's layers of history - the fabrics used and the places it's been. Somewhere I have a beige, thrift-shop "pashmina" which just needs overdyeing, and there are all sorts of silk garments waiting to be "repurposed" ...