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Monday, 11 June 2018


of the quilting kind!

Last January, I started work on my blue and white quilt. The design was inspired by the Modernist style of house we had moved to, and I wanted the quilt to be something to keep and cherish for ever. It's a rare thing that I'm totally happy with something I've made, so excuse me if I sound big headed, but I loved, loved, loved this quilt when it was finished, just over a month ago. It was the sort of thing I would have coveted had I seen it in someone else's home. My quilt combined all of my favourite things, simple but considered design with a lovely texture created by painstaking hand stitching. It included much treasured fabrics, some of which I'd dyed myself, others that were vintage finds, as well as those that were just right for this quilt. The only thing the quilt needed was a wash…

So I washed it. And the ••!!%%ºº** colours ran! Horribly so. Not just a bit. My almost perfect quilt was a mucky mess of red and blue splodges. Like someone had chucked a pot of paint at it. Was this some kind of karmic rebuke for being too pleased with my efforts?

Any way all I could think about when I pulled it from the washing machine were the wasted hours (hundreds of them!) spent hand quilting. I was beyond disappointed. So much so, that I didn't rant and rave, I just dropped the thing on the floor and walked off. I couldn't bear to look at it. And I certainly didn't want to blog about it.

 A few glasses of wine later, I went back and took another look, it was just as bad as I'd remembered. However, I decided to see if I could salvage the quilt. Eventually, after six sachets of Dr Beckmann's Colour Run Remover, this is the result. There are still splodges but they are not as heartbreakingly bad as before. 

So the quilt is now on the bed, and I'm training our new cat, Calypso (sadly Willow died) to lie on the worst splodges. For a cat, she's amazingly co-operative and very good at covering up the most offensive stains. She also loves having her photo taken, and will roll onto her back at any given opportunity to have her tummy rubbed! She's not fussed who does it, just as long as someone does.

I'm getting used to the quilt now but could kick myself for not thoroughly pre-washing all the fabrics. I pre-washed most of them, but not the vintage kimono silks, which bled terribly, as did the hand-dyed red fabric (although I thought I'd pre-washed it sufficiently).

Clearly not, talk about learning a lesson the hard way!



  1. I can imagine your total horror and misery - how awful for you! From the photos the stains look insignificant now and it is an absolutely stunning quilt.

    1. Thanks Catherine! Most of all, it was anger at myself for not properly pre-washing the fabrics to begin with.

  2. Regardless, it's beautiful.
    Why kick yourself over something you have no control over?
    Roll with the punches.
    What's 'perfect' anyway?
    I think your cat has it right.

    1. Thanks Janie! Cats always have the right idea, I should try to be more 'cat'.

  3. I’m so glad you were able to remove the worst. It’s a gorgeous quilt and will only get more lovely as it is used, washed more, faded more, etc. Take Heart!

    1. Thank you Cynthia! Fade is definitely the word. When I used the colour run remover I was shocked at just how much colour disappeared from the kimono silks.

  4. What a horrid thing to happen to such a lovely quilt with all the time-taking work you put into it. Thankfully you were able to remove most of the staining with perseverance and the colour remover.
    Your cat is most obliging in the photo shoot.

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