Tag Archives: fabric

Lap Quilt Made Out of Woven Ties

Lap Quilt Made Out of Woven Ties

Double D’s mom made these ties for him when he was in high school. They dressed up for game days, assemblies, and other events so he wore a tie on those days.  Now, when he does wear a tie, it is always with suits, so these were in storage waiting for me to come up with an idea to use them.

I saw some ideas for tie quilts on Pinterest, but those involved taking them apart, adding interfacing, etc.  I finally saw one idea that was similar to this, but it was just the picture with no instructions. I decided to go with that design, but let me tell you, this quilt was pretty much me winging it, and hoping it would come out okay:) Fortunately, Double D’s were made out of cotton fabric, so washing them wouldn’t be a problem.

To start, I counted up how many he had, and then put them into color groups. There were 20, and the predominate colors were blue and black. I decided to use those two colors for the base, and added a random purple one to make ten lengthwise.  I laid those out, alternating fat end and skinny end.01 Ties laid out

For the remaining ten, I cut each in half.  I started laying the half pieces across the long pieces, again alternating thick and thin ends.02 ties cut for short side

Once I found an arrangement that I thought looked okay, I started weaving the pieces with each other. In this picture there’s a grey tie that I ended up not using.  It wasn’t one that his mom had made, and I couldn’t find fabric information to make sure it was safe to wash it. 03 Woven ties

Finally, this was the end result of the arranging. Since the cut ends had to be finished somehow, I decided to move them farther away from the tie points, so that I could just sew right over them when it was time for binding. I went ahead and pinned everything, just to make sure they didn’t come apart when I moved them.04 All laid out

I did take a picture of the back of the quilt when I finally got it turned over. 05 Back side of tie quilt

From here, I laid a single sheet of fabric over the backs of the ties, and sprayed some fabric adhesive on it. This made the ties stick to the fabric, although I did re-pin everything together when I turned the ties back over.

Now it was time to sew each tie to the fabric. I did so by running a straight stitch down the middle of each tie, starting with the thin ends first, so alternating every other one.  Then I did the same with the thicker ends, finishing with the ten long ties. I like that you can see the backing through the holes in between the ties too.06 ties sewn

Next was pinning the long sides for binding. I mentioned earlier that I needed to have the cut pieces under the binding, but that I still wanted the tie points to be visible. I was really glad I moved the cut pieces down to go under the binding.  Winging it, people!:) I’ve included a close up of the finished binding. I just used the extra on the backing to fold it and pin it. 07 completing the sidesDetail of tie points The short sides were next.  These were a bit of a challenge too, because they were all different lengths. I finally decided to just sew the longer ones on top of the binding.  I still wanted it to look like ties.09 Short side pinned

And here is the finished lap quilt.  I didn’t measure it, so I’m not sure how big it turned out.  Definitely more long than short though.  Also, I’m really glad I decided to only use one piece of fabric for the backing, as this is pretty heavy.  It’s going to keep me warm this winter! Now Double D can see part of his childhood, and they won’t be in storage. 10 Completed Tie lap quilt

Thanks for looking!


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The Low Boy Dresser Saga

The Low Boy Dresser Saga

This story begins back in 2003, when Double D’s uncle gave us some pieces of furniture. One of the pieces included was a low boy dresser that had seen better days.  Double D’s grandfather had replaced the original mirror that was streaked and faded, but other than that, it was pretty rough.  This is what we started with.01 Dresser as is

That red lamp is hiding a dark secret. Basically, something had at one point created a round burn mark that went deep into the wood top. This is what it looked like after some sanding to remove the mark.  Not pretty.Burn mark in wood

So, I finally got tired of hiding the spot with various objects over the years. In 2007, I decided to apply some wood putty over the top.  Let me tell you, it ended up looking worse than if I had just left the mark there. A master wood craftsman, I am not.03 Wood Putty for damaged spot

At the same time, I did put on a gloss polyurethane, and change out the knobs with ones from Hobby Lobby.  He was looking a bit better after this, but that spot was still there, and obviously visible to anyone who picked up whatever object I had on top of the spot.04 Dresser in 2007

That brings us to 2014. I took the dresser in to have a professional fix the mess that I had made, and he did pretty much the same thing as I did with the wood putty, although it did turn out much better than my attempt.  However, I still could see the spot, and I knew it was there.Wood putty treatment

Recently, I saw a pin where someone had revamped a dresser using plaster to create a crocodile skin like finish on the top, and I loved it.  Unfortunately, Double D didn’t want me to do anything to permanently change the top, so I was back to square one.  That is, until I thought about all of those trunks I’ve redone on the inside, and thought that I could probably do something like that.

So, I went to Hobby Lobby, and bought foam board. The board was about an 1 1/2″ too short, so I had to take some from the long side, which I taped to the short side. This made it just right. 06 Foam Board

I got down on the floor, and traced around the top of the dresser from underneath, so I had an outline to cut on.Dresser top traced on foam board

This is what I ended up with, which ended up fitting perfectly.Foam Board cut to fit top

I bought some awesome fabric from Joann’s, which looks like leather. I got black to match the knobs. From there, I stapled the fabric to the foam board, going around each side, and pulling tight to make sure the top would be smooth.Fabric Stapled to board

And here is the finished top.  I am finally, finally, liking this dresser. I think I should have done this 12 years ago, and saved myself some stress.Foam board covered

One more picture of the completed dresser.  He still isn’t totally perfect, since he has missing scrollwork, and the mirror hinges are crooked to make it sit lower on one side. But…it is still prettier than it has been in a long time, and I’m happy with the result.12 Finished dresser

Thanks for looking!


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Operation Save: Grandma’s Improvisational Strip Block Lap Quilt

Operation Save: Grandma’s Improvisational Strip Block Lap Quilt

My mom has had this lap quilt for a long time, just waiting for someone to come along and help the poor thing out.  The thing is, I didn’t know exactly how to help it out until I worked on my brother’s quilt that was missing whole blocks.  It turns out that it really isn’t all that hard, just time consuming. This lap quilt was made by my grandmother, so it is part of my family’s textile history.  I know some think it is better for value to keep quilts as is, but these quilts are utility quilts.  They get used every day, and are well loved.  They won’t be going to a museum any time soon:) Therefore, it had to be fixed so it could be used again.

This is what I started with. There didn’t seem to be a pattern of any sort, with random strips pieced together to form the top. The quilt had 14 blocks that had fabric shredded, although some of them were all in the same area so that I could just replace it with one large block. The ones that were ruined were a satin material, and I only replaced those. The other undamaged satin material I left there, although I can work on it again if they shred too. Don’t mind our kitten, Kaleesi.  She is very curious:)

shredded fabric on lap quilt

Below are some close up pictures of the damaged fabric.

Damage to fabric

Damage to shredded fabric

To start, I got out my seam ripper, and just used that to take apart the blocks of fabric.  The material appeared to have been from a bedspread or something because the batting was attached to the fabric itself. I was left with holes that now needed to be filled.

Old fabric ripped out

I began by cutting thin batting to place behind the material.

Adding batting

Then I cut pieces of fabric out a little larger than what was necessary, and pinned the existing fabric over that. The fabric were scraps that I had on hand, and patterns that I felt went well with the existing fabric.

New fabric ready to be sewn

Next, I was ready to machine sew the new square in place to finish it off, kind of like a reverse applique, I guess. Yay!  Only 8 more to go.

New square for quilt

Finally I was done with all of the blocks.  The last item I wanted to work on was some wording that was on a block.  The block technically had nothing wrong with it, so I couldn’t justify replacing it, but the wording was bothering me.  It just didn’t do the quilt any favors, so I decided to cover it up with a piece of ribbon sewn on.  After I saw the outcome, I was really happy I decided to do it.  Much better.

Covered wording

The final act was washing it. The poor thing was filthy. Some people carry quilts in the car in the winter, just in case we are stranded on a dirt road in a 3 foot snow drift for hours, and I wonder if this was used in that function.  Anyway, after running it through the wash, the cream colored fabric turned out nice and bright.  So much prettier, and no more shredded fabric! She’s going back to my mom, hopefully to be put back into use.

Lap Quilt finished

Thanks for looking!


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