Patchwork is a very old textile craft technique.
That consists of joining several fragments of fabrics with the same or different textures formng designs that are usually very colorful.
You can make colorful pieces with varied home uses, especially bedspreads and tablecloths, which are made from scraps and pieces of clothing in disuse.
If we are going to look for its last origin, its history goes back to places far away from each other in geography and time.
There seems to be evidence of a technique very similar to what we currently know as Patchwork that was used in ancient Egypt.
In Europe we have proof that work was already done with scraps of cloth in the eleventh century.
In the coldest areas of Europe the patchwork became popular and different patterns and models were developed.
In the United States, the tradition of patchwork was mainly carried out by Irish immigrants.
What the patchwork is?
The patchwork is a fabric made by the union of multiple pieces of fabrics of different sizes and shapes sewn together by the edges with the objective of composing very elaborate designs, both geometric and artistic.
Be that as it may, we see that this technique is widely used and is widely spread throughout the world and also for several generations.
Its diffusion is due to the fact that are obtained beautiful works with scraps.
It is always cheaper to get scraps than whole pieces of cloth, it can even be applied on fabrics that are reused and given a new life.
In this use of re-use of materials that would otherwise be thrown away, it amalgamates very well with the principles of sustainability and recycling so in vogue among people with minimal sensitivity to the care of the planet.
You can see its popular and humble origin in the fact that anyone with a basic knowledge of sewing and a lot of creativity can get beautiful results for pieces that always have a presence in the houses.
Once the technique is learned, the same can be used to form a quilt, a cushion, a purse, a tablecloth or a rug, even a tapestry or any piece of clothing.
This idea of its popular origin is reinforced by the fact that the patchwork boom comes from the hand of American women in the wake of the Great Depression, when it became fashionable to patch patched clothing and recycle the economy did not allow to buy new clothes.
Nowadays it is one of the techniques that have been integrated under the umbrella of the current handmade, handmade.
Patchwork allows the personalization of fabrics and knits making them unique pieces.
How do you work a piece of patchwork?
Alternatively, a single shape can be used and repeated in a general pattern until the piece, whatever it is, has the desired size.
The pieces in patchwork consist of many pieces of fabric of different patterns, colors and textures, combined in a varied style, but with an underlying theme.
Each piece is measured with precision and cut with an acrylic template and a rotary cutter which facilitates its union, or with a scissors dressmaker.
There are several ways, to create patchwork, the most common techniques are:
Mosaic blocks are squares that consist of repeated patterns and shapes, but of different colors.
The blocks can be of any size.
Once the grid is established it will not change although the patches of the grid that can be divided can vary.
Once the grid size is decided, patterns and designs are created within it. Once the blocks are built, they come together to form a larger arrangement.
This type of patchwork designs generally consist of pieces usually with geometric shapes that are repeated, which are sewn with a larger design or a final pattern.
Often they present a variety of pieces of different colors, these shapes can be placed at random or following a previously established order to create spectacular color progressions or desirable visual effects.
Being able to create real works of art.
Pieces in strips.
The technique of splicing of strips consists in sewing several strips of cloth together along the piece that is being made to form the desired design with the set of strips.
The sets of typical strips consist of three strips of long fabric of the same pattern, but of different colors.
The set of long strips is cut into individual segments to ensure that each patch is completely identical.
Working with the splicing technique means that you do not need to work with smaller and more complicated pieces and, instead, can produce repeated patterns.
With a little creativity you can get beautiful designs and reflect the personality of the hands that have made, sewn and finished.
Sometimes Patchwork is a technique that is practiced only and sometimes it is accompanied by another technique than quilting or quilting.
What is the quilt technique?
Patchwork and Quilt are two words that are often used with the same meaning, however there is a big difference between the two concepts that we are going to try to explain.
Although these two techniques are used coordinately in a project, they are actually two different processes.
The quilt or quilting is the technique used to introduce cotton or synthetic wadding, for example, to a quilt.
So, any bedspread, tapestry, cushion, etc. done by joining quilts and quilting is a quilt.
For items such as tablecloths a patchwork technique can be used without the presence of the quilt since it is not required to be quilted.
A quilt is formed by three layers:
- The "top" or upper part that is the most elaborate piece since it has been made by joining the pieces of fabric, the patchwork itself.
- The filling that gives it its softness and warmth.
- The lining that ends the quilt at the back giving it a finished look.
The preparation of the set of the three layers is called "sandwich".
The English word "quilting" refers to the stitches, whether decorative or simply utilitarian, that have been made on a quilt to join and prevent the three layers that form it from separating.
Patchwork is a broader term, because it designates a work done by the union of fabric or non-quilted remnants.
Generally, all Quilts are Patchworks but not all Patchworks are Quilts.
I hope you liked it.