Tag Archives: William Morris Fabric

Trading Paint & Brushes For Needle & Thread !

Trading Paint For Cotton, Rocking Dog

Trading Paint For Cotton

Rocking Dog hopes you are having an enjoyable bank holiday weekend. I have finally finished an epic painting conquest, although I feel an even bigger challenge lies ahead. The challenge being to obliterate every last trace of Churlish and Brassica off me! Is there anyone else out there who manages to get their tummy covered in paint? And no I wasn’t wearing a crop top (heaven forbid!) Thankfully I did get out of my painty attire for a little while in the week to be with a chirpy group of Young Carers for a graffiti session. I was rubbish with a spray can and I won’t be coming to a wall near you anytime soon! Matt the graffiti artist was lovely, very enigmatic, and we kept on asking whether “Dismaland” was his masterpiece!

Meanwhile back at the ranch with paint drying peacefully, it was time to enjoy a little sewing after a lot of domestic dross (including dealing with the fallout from a major pipe leak). I had some patchwork strips left from my latest quilt making escapade, thus decided to make a window seat cushion. What could be lovelier for a guest than being curled up on a swaddled window sill, reading a good book, sipping coffee and…… looking out on my forlorn, wayward garden!

Because i’m not very good with zips I made a simple envelope cushion. Together with its feather filled cotton liner I made it in less than an hour. Backing fabric was ticking leftover from my quilt, whilst the liner was made using some lining fabric from a deconstructed curtain. Feathers came courtesy of some surplus pillows, and ribbon and button from my substantial haberdashery hoard.

TO MAKE YOUR OWN CUSHION, cut main fabric to desired measurements. If you are planning to use a cushion pad, check dimensions of the ones on offer. John Lewis has a good selection of feather and synthetic filled cushions and pillows.

Cut your backing fabric to the same WIDTH as your main fabric. However as this is an envelope style pillow you need to allow more LENGTH, for the overlap and neat seams. On my cushion I allowed an extra 300cm or so. Now that you have your long strip, decide where you want your opening (do you want it central at the back or towards one end?) I placed my cushion pad opening towards one end. Cut fabric accordingly. Therefore my cushion had one long and one shorter piece to form its backing.

Take this backing fabric, make some seams by folding over 15mm fabric, pressing and folding again down ONE short side of EACH piece of backing fabric. Sew these seams. You will still have two separate backing fabric pieces. Sorry, i’m not very good at this directions lark!

Put your main fabric face side up on a flat surface. Then lay one of your backing pieces face side down onto the main fabric (the neatly seamed edge will be towards the centre of the fabric), followed by the other backing piece (again neat seam central). Pin all the pieces together accurately edge to edge. Now you are ready to sew!

I like to sew my cushions by sewing the long seams first, followed by the short edges. I find it helps to avoid any puckering, especially if the measurements are slightly “out”. At the points where all the layers come together to create your “envelope” go over the stitches a few time with your machine. This will strengthen the seams when the cushion pad is “pumped up” or removed for washing etc..

Neaten seams with scissors and cut each of the corners diagonally close to the stitch line. This will help make your corners look perky when you turn your cushion cover right way out.

Yes, the exciting bit! Turn your cover right way out, use a chopstick or pencil to poke out your corners. Press your cover and fill with your cushion pad. If wished, hand sew a ribbon to each backing piece and tie neatly. VOILA!

On a bit of a roll, I decided to turn my attention to a beautifully hand embroidered Coronation tray cloth (thank you for the thoughtful gift Sorrel). I applied the same method as above to make a cushion. I used some
William Morris fabric from material mountain as the backing fabric. These bits of soft fabric furnishry are now waiting for me to wallpaper and finish their kingdom. Is anyone else like me and totally underestimates how long a DIY project is going to take?

Please show and tell if you make, do or sew any Rocking Dog projects. Have a great week.

Leftovers, Rocking Dog


Overlap, Rocking Dog


Press & Sew, Rocking Dog

Press & Sew

Envelope Complete, Rocking Dog

Envelope Complete

Oh The Mess!, Rocking Dog

Oh The Mess!

Practical Fastening, Rocking Dog

Practical Fastening

Tray Cloth Reinvention, Rocking Dog

Tray Cloth Reinvention

Mr Morris Derriere!, Rocking Dog

Mr Morris Derriere!

Tactile Stash, Rocking Dog

Tactile Stash

A Bed Without A Quilt………

Selection Made, Rocking Dog

Selection Made

“A bed without a quilt is like a sky without stars”. The bedroom I am looking to decorate with the fabulous Curators Gallery wallpaper will hence have a lovingly made quilt. I am not the worlds greatest sleeper, so this project will keep me sewing joyfully into the wee hours over a few nights.

The fabrics are all ones from my own notorious material mountain. I have chosen to use a plethora of William Morris and vintage Sanderson prints, all of which came from charity shops, flea markets or are nostalgic family remnants. I am including a Liberty print that was an off cut from curtains made by mum for the family kitchen. There are also squares of Designers Guild Geranium fabric which came from curtains that hung in one or two of our lounges along the way. The colour tones are subtle and the patterns influenced by nature, perfect for room scheme I have planned.

In the past I have been helped with simple patch-working using a You Tube tutorial from Professor Pincushion. It is a great resource for anyone making their first quilt and the instructions are clear and easy to follow.

So far I have selected my fabrics and cut the selected fabrics into 22cm squares using a rotary cutter (dressmaking shears are fine). I have then gone onto lay out the squares onto a clear flat surface to achieve a good pattern mix. The rows of squares have been carefully gathered up and each row bulldog clipped with a row number.

Tomorrow the sewing will begin sewing the squares into strips and ultimately sewing the strips together. Cotton batting will be added together with a backing fabric, decorative buttons and edging bobbles. Voila!

I make it sound so easy!

To see some wonderful patchwork quilts take a trip to The American Museum in Bath.

Past Patchwork, Rocking Dog

Past Patchwork

Fabric Stash, Rocking Dog

Fabric Stash

22cm Square, Rocking Dog

22cm Square

Neatly Piled, Rocking Dog

Neatly Piled

Pattern Mix Up, Rocking Dog

Pattern Mix Up

Ready To Sew, Rocking Dog

Ready To Sew