Friday, 27 December 2013

Mini Candlewicked Quilt

I am culling my books as I seem to have amassed hundreds over the years, particularly from the 1980s and 1990s when candlewicking and heirloom sewing were the "IN" thing.  However, while I was rifling through the pages of each book in case there was something that would convince me to keep it, I noticed that a lot of the diagrams were either exactly 1/12th scale or near enough to 1/12th  that a little tweak on the computer  

 would fix it.  One book which fitted nicely into this category was "Traditional Country Needlecrafts" by Sue Millard published in 1993. This book is still readily available on the internet. Full of lovely, soft, romantic needlework projects which I never got around to making, it was destined for either the charity shop or the bin until I spotted some diagrams which could be adapted to dolls house size very easily. In particular, there was a double bed sized candle-wicked quilt with the added advantage of  full-size diagrams meant for tracing onto calico and which could be used as inspiration for the tiny squares.  This is one occasion when a magnifying glass or one of those "Mag-eyes" which fit on your head is a must!!  Another absolute MUST with this project is an embroidery frame or hoop to keep the fabric taught while you are stitching.

Here is my first lot of equipment showing the book, embroidery hoop on a frame, pattern for the quilt top which I have traced onto an ivory coloured linen hankie which has been stretched over a piece of cream voile and a piece of thin wadding in the hoop.  First of all I scanned the pattern in the computer and tweaked it so that it was the correct size for my mini bed, printed it out on a black and white printer and then copied it onto the hankie using dressmaker's carbon paper.  I couldn't find the sheet of yellow which would have been better so I used the orange colour.......would you believe it but when I was searching through the Christmas decoration box, I found the yellow but it was too late then.  I have no idea why it was there, maybe I had been carbon-copying some decorations or something many moons ago???? It is now in the drawer with the other sheets so next time I know exactly where to look.

This is the diagram as it is printed in the book.

Here is the book, the b&w printed page (notice how I have enlarged the diagram to make it the size that I needed for my dollshouse double bed), the fabric in the hoop and theads.  In this case, I am using a ball of very fine cream crochet cotton - J & P Coats size 100.

A close-up  photo of the design for the candlewicking in the hoop.  I have an ivory linen handkerchief on the top, a piece of cream voile beneath it and a piece of thin wadding at the bottom. 

This is the full-size design from the book which gives detailed drawings of each square.  Obviously in the tiny 1/12th scale, a lot of the embroidery is going to have to be omitted and the designs used for inspiration only.  Once I have finished the quilt, I will post a tutorial on how to make it.

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