24 February, 2012

Seminole patchwork journal cover

Last year I came across this stunning pillow using Seminole patchwork, done by Lucie Summers. I'd seen Seminole patchwork around but it always looked so not my thing, bright colours, completely symmetrical and repetitive, that I'd dismissed it out of hand. When I saw it reinterpreted like that I fell in love and took some books out of the library and bought myself an ebook from The Book Depository. I finally got the chance to try it out myself when I came to cover the journal that Helen gave us last month at a modern quilt gathering she had. And even better, I got to use up some of the scraps I'd generated, and bitched about, with the last MBOM block. Of course, it took a heck of a lot more fabric than just those scraps, and I generated some more, but what the hey! Like someone said for the MBOM block, we need to be less precious about cutting that fabric up!


It was very time-consuming because I was just winging it, and so I had to add bits on and take them off and make up more, but I got there in the end and learned a lot in the process! Things to remember for next time - think a bit more about colour placement for overall effect, use more thinner strips, make the straight strips wider to start with so the finished strip is too.


But what a fun process and I'm definitely going to do some more. In fact, Hazel was so taken with it this morning that she asked if I could make a cover for her and could she choose the fabrics this afternoon and it could have a heart on the top like so, with another one inside, and then another one underneath. But the patchwork had to be just like this, though in a different colour. Or as my SIL Kate would say (after a trip to Thailand) "same same...but different"

I also need to work on my journal cover construction techniques. After seeing about a gazillion online and in books it would seem I couldn't actually find one when I needed to! (ETA: I found this great tutorial at Bloom via Pinterest, source of all things good. Will definitely use it for the next attempt, especially since it will remind me to put in a bookmark ribbon!)  I may go back and hand-sew the top and bottom middle bit so the seam isn't there and fix that, but annoyingly I didn't extend the batting far enough because I was worried it would add extra bulk. Otherwise I'm very proud of my pretty-much-entirely-winged-journal cover because I don't often do that! It was so hot and humid with pouring rain here yesterday I basically just said "screw it" and sewed instead of doing the things I was meant to. No such excuses today!


  1. OOOh now I want to make another one myself :) can't wait to see what everyone else has done

  2. I'm definitely doing some more. It was way more fun covering a book than I'd realised! And now that I've found the good tutorial on constructing one I'll be happier with the result too - always so nice of someone to take the hassle out by figuring things out for you. Sorry I didn't make it tonight, I took an antihistamine this morning and I'm so tired this evening I can barely keep my eyes open!

  3. I've never heard of Seminole patchworking - is it paper pieced? It looks amazing anyway - you make such lovely things.

  4. Thank you! (and so do you btw) It's a Seminole Indian technique where they sewed strips of fabric together and then cut them up and rearranged the smaller bits into patterns. This blogpost has some good examples: http://patcherymenagerie.blogspot.co.nz/2008/06/seminole-patchwork.html

  5. Neat!  That came out so nicely.  I don't know that I'll be tackling book covers anytime soon... I think I'd want to make the book that went inside it, too.



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