Tag Archives: shirt quilt

Quilts (okay, a pieced top) in my past, part V

The last (I think) in a series including part I, part II, part III, and part IV.

grundge duvet

I had a few contractor bags of textiles in storage.  Normally, I would never store textiles in what was essentially a garage, nor recommend anyone to do so, and if I was staying at someone’s house and knew the bedding I’d be using had been in storage, I’d really consider sleeping uncovered on the floor, or in my car.

Of course I am thinking of bedbugs, lice, scabies, mold, crabs, moths, cooties, fungal infections, anal worms, stranger’s aerosolized sneezes and vomits, rats, mice and their hantavirus, cockroaches, and anything that can crawl, slither, hop, or stroll from someone else’s locker full of filth and dead bodies into mine.  But I thought it would just be for a few months – but then it wasn’t…

But we checked on it three or four times a year, and I monitored it for stench and discolorations and chew marks and desiccated insect corpses (there were a few stinkbugs, but I’m used to those mysteriously making their way into our houses old and new anyway).  But everything was fine – even the upholstered furniture.  Everything that could be was washed was, and the furniture sprayed with diluted white vinegar and set out in the warm sun for the better part of a day.

One of the items bagged up for the last few years was a randomly pieced flannel duvet cover I made around six years ago.

grunge duvet close-up1

The fabric is entirely N’s and my shirts and pajama bottoms – most dating from the Grunge era.  Among my eclectic-dressing high school chums, we called a plaid flannel shirt “flaid plannel,” as in:

“What are you wearing to the show tonight?”

 “Oh, a flaid plannel and my oxblood docs.”

(And do I need to remind you that was before docs were made in China?)

The orange and green shirt was a favorite of mine in high school (and paired well with reddish boots.)

grunge duvet close-up2

And the yellow and black a favorite from college (paired with a secondhand and smelly, but awesome, pair of black docs).  Some of the patches have oil paint and darkroom chemical stains.  The grey and black was one of N’s shirts and one of the softest flannels I’ve felt, but also several sizes too large for him as was characteristic of the ’90s.

grunge duvet close-up3

I don’t use actual quilts very often – in the summer I prefer a coverlet (or I need to make a lightweight quilt) and in the autumn, winter, and spring I have to have a down duvet.  On the coldest nights, I’ll throw a wool blanket over the duvet, but down is the only thing that gets warm fast and stays evenly toasty but not too hot, and makes me a happy snoozer.

So this is not really a quilt, but a duvet cover with a pieced top, and since it’s washed more often than a quilt, some of the seams have popped open and are in need of repair.  It’s also a bit too small – I hate that full/queen size in standard manufacturing since queen is bigger than full, they are not interchangeable – so I’d like to add another few inches to the width for better drape even if the feathers don’t fill it out.

Eventually.

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UFOs progess report

My current publicly acknowledged unfinished objects* are closer to being finished.  Let’s not talk about the sweater quilt just now, it is my favorite, but sadly banned back to the sack until I feel it’s ok to spend a little money on the backing – I’ve determined it should be a grey cotton jersey sheet, but damned if I can’t find one cheap.

I am tired of the rug.  I cut up the t-shirts so slip-shod and sheddy that I constantly sneezed as I braided, and my nose filled with buckets [shrew-sized] of lint – I also realized there are good tightly woven shirts that are best for projects such as this, and lousy loose ones – this is made up of mostly lousy.  So I finished with the old balls that I had already cut up, and cut up one additional shirt more since I wanted a little more green in it.  Then I remembered how much it sucks to sew these things up, and I can only do about 20 minutes at a time before my fingers are a bloody mess, my hands cramp up, or I’d rather be doing something else.  The right needle and thread would make my life easier, but I don’t know quite what those would be, and I don’t want to buy anything, so sewing while wearing kitchen gloves and multiple thimbles is sort of doing the trick at the moment.  I’m sure a heavy-duty sewing machine with a zig-zag stitch would work wonders…

(And I think I already mentioned I don’t really like the look of the “country style” home with braided rugs and too much barn red and faded blues…  But then we just bought a house which fell through, and then another which also fell through and both could have used a washable rug in one area or another, so I will continue in the hopes that a third house might not actually fall through and it might still be needed, especially for our dog that isn’t ours yet, and might not exist yet either).

rug ball

rug detail

And the shirt quilt is trucking along at a slow but steady pace.  If I put my mind to it, I could finish the top pretty quickly, but I don’t seem to have any control over my mind at the moment (I mentioned we keep buying houses that fail, right?).  I also know I will soon face the dilemma of not having a suitable backing material and possibly not enough for binding, but I have the cotton batting so my future purchase should be limited to just the fabric.  It seems that should be easy enough, right?  I’d be happy with a solid color or slight pattern – certainly there should be some basic cotton stuff on sale out there somewhere…

science fair quilt

Looks like a poster session at a rag-picker’s conference, eh?  I get to play-act being a professional again, only at my own conference there are no numbers or words (not that I don’t like words, and I have a healthy respect for numbers) or snooze-inducing power-points and sweaty nervous speakers.  Or maybe I am back at a science fair – I won a couple of those once… yeah, that’s right, boost my self-esteem with memories of victories past.  These “blocks” aren’t in any permanent order, or even in a decent layout at the moment – I just sew a bunch and then arrange them at the end.

*Yee hah!  If you only knew the real count of my unfinished sh*t…**

**I need to know about filters and whatnot – anybody know?  I’d hate to think I’d be censored for a “bad” word (godforbid the children!), though I wonder if breast still comes up as something to be censored… hmm… booby titty cans rack jugs dirty pillows.

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