Monday, 9 May 2016

Vintage Patchwork Picnic Blanket

We needed a picnic blanket and I needed something to occupy my time whilst my iron was broken. Using the cheats method of making half square triangles seemed to do the trick.

The fabric used for the HST was upholstery and curtain remnant fabric that was given to me by a friend, no piece was bigger than a4 so it lent itself to patchwork.

I pieced the HST randomly so they were all going in different directions, I like that it sends your eyes on a crazy trip trying to find patterns. And it makes for quick piecing, no messing and checking which ways which, just pick two and sew them together, then sew your twos to twos, then fours to fours etc etc. I'd love to try this technique in solids or low volume prints for a really modern look.

I added the centre embroidered square because I only had 8 HST blocks. I like the effect though, I love it when a disaster turns itself around. 

The embroidery was from a really old project in fact it was one of the first things I wrote about in 2014 . Its been gathering dust in my sewing area since it was finished.

I applied it to the red floral fabric using a zig zag stitch. Technically I should have turned all the edges under and made it really neat, but at this point I wasn't loving how it was looking.

In fact I still don't I only really finished it because I'm working on my quilting skills. Speaking of which, I quilted around the centre square and did a triangle sort of thing on the edges, I'm not sure if you can see in the pictures and I'm not sure what to call it. It was really quick though and I think it makes a nice effect. I didn't use batting because I don't have any, and didn't think it was worth the purchase [can you tell I'm not a quilting purist?] Instead I used a piece of heavy upholstery fabric. I think it works well because this quilt isn't intended for snuggling just for eating off. The upholstery fabric also means its pretty heavy so hopefully won't fly away.

I backed it with this fox print fabric that I won in a giveaway on Marie's blog. Whilst I love the print its not the sort of thing I would use for clothes but I think it makes a pretty nice quilt back. 

I stitched the binding by hand, which didn't take long as the quilt is only about one metre square. Not big enough to sleep under but big enough to eat off.

So here's my verdict, I don't love it. In theory I should, I loved the idea of using the HST so that the floral prints would end up looking like a crazy wild flower garden. And I love that I had to use an embroidery at the centre and that the embroidery fits with my wild garden idea. But I just don't like it.  I showed it to my sister and she commented its not in my usual quilt style were I tend to go for a very modern look like here and here.

In fact when I've gone for a slightly more "twee" look Its still not looked quite as vintage as this.

So now I think I need to make a new picnic blanket in my style and work out what I'm going to do with this one!

Anyone want a picnic blanket?

Much Love




  1. It looks super in the photo, try hiding it for a day or two, sometimes when I come back to something I wasn't keen on it looks better when I haven't looked at it for a while - absence makes the heart grow fonder type of thing!!!!

    1. Thats a good idea, Its currently sat in the linens drawer so maybe next time I pull it out I'll like it more x

  2. Thanks for your comment Frankie, feeling a bit better now and I will be glad of a rest at work tomorrow. Number two child was off today!!! pesky blighters. I love this quilt, such depth of colour. Jo x

  3. I LOVE your quilt, the colours in the HST's are vibrant and the central embroidery is so detailed and beautiful. I hadn't read that post before so had a look and was very impressed with your embroidery skills. But you never filled in the banner! How about PICNIC?


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