A few weeks ago, one of our readers posted a question on the forum about how she can use her stitched bell pulls.
My answer to her inspired this article
I have to admit – I love bell pulls! I have absolutely no use for them and I have a couple that I’ve stitched and given away, even though I loved them.
Bell pulls, to me, scream out “make me into a quilt” – especially if they’re needlepoint / canvas work ones, where the canvas is completely covered.
Even if you have used other fabric, they can be stitched together to make a beautiful one-of-a-kind quilt.
You can even create this as a project, and stitch bell pulls with the same theme to make a themed quilt (eg: Oriental, floral, fantasy, Christmas, etc).
How To Do It
I’m not an experienced quilter, so please check BellaOnline's Quilting Site for full instructions on making a basic quilt.
The steps to make your bell pull quilt are the same as any other quilt. The difference is that you will need to back the embroidered pieces before you add the layers of padding & final backing. This is to provide protection for the back of your stitching.
First, decide how large you want your quilt to be, and then layout your stitching in the pattern or order you want. You may want to, instead of stitching them directly together, to stitch them onto a nice piece of fabric and space the bell pulls out, leaving the fabric to show between each one. If you decide to do this, choose a plain, rather than patterned fabric so that it doesn’t compete with your stitching.
Once you have your “front” of the quilt stitched together, put the quilt together as you would normally (layers of padding, back layer). When you actually move to “quilt” all the layers together, I would recommend that you hand stitch it. That way, you can choose to either stitch over your embroidered pieces or avoid them. If you decide to stitch over the embroidery, hand stitching will allow you to be as unobtrusive as possible with your quilting – you may even want to change the colour of the thread to blend in more with your embroidery.
You may even want to use a contrasting colour to go around the edges of each bell pull to show where it starts and finishes.
Display With Pride
As with all quilts, you will be able to display it with pride – either on your bed or as a large wall hanging.
This technique can be used for any embroideries you like, but is particularly well suited to canvas work.
Go on – show off how crafty you really are!
Is there anything that you would particularly like to see an article on? If so, please contact me with your suggestions.
© 2007 Megan McConnell