Thursday, December 12, 2013

Emergency quilt repair

I have mentioned before that I need to start a new quilt for my son’s bed.  His current quilt is only 4 years old, so I was a little surprised to see fabric shredding on it.  I do make my quits to be used, and this one has been used daily since it went on his bed in Fall 2009. It has had Legos and books and bodies on it as well as under it, and it has been in the sun every time the sun shines in the window, so perhaps I shouldn’t have been surprised after all.  Still a little disappointed though.  I really loved this one.  He still does.


It is a little faded now, certainly not as bright as in this picture, but still looks pretty good except for that shredding issue so we decided it still had some wear in it.  After reading about various quilt repair techniques online that seemed very time consuming and that I thought would stick out like a sore thumb (any new fabric inserted or appliqued over would not go with the now gently faded original fabrics), I decided to do this instead.


The fabric was only shredding at the seam, so I tacked everything down again with variegated thread and fancy stitches on my sewing machine.  It gives the repaired areas a crazy quilt kind of look.  You can see in the second row, far left, that it results in random bursts of pattern on the black back of the quilt, but I can live with it. The quilt is at least stabilized, for now, and can be used a little while longer.

As a side note, all the shredding fabrics were batiks.  There were other fabrics in the worn areas that would have seen the same amount of wear, but the batiks were the ones giving out.  Has anyone else seen this or heard about such issues with batiks?  I’ll certainly think carefully before I use them again in a quilt that will see heavy use.

Now that I’ve bought a little more time, I can spend a little longer deciding on a design for my son’s new quilt.  He would like black with bright colours again, so that’s what I’m working with.  I had thought to make Seeing Stars again with a black background and more colours, but I saw a building block quilt that might be cool too.  I would need to figure out how to place the black among the colours to make that work. I have a resource or two to help with that on my Christmas wish list, so I’ll postpone my decision till after Christmas, in case those resources should find their way under the tree.  I’d like to go buy the fabric before New Year’s though, as my local quilt shop has a storewide 15% off sale through the end of the year.

I’ve already shopped the sale for another project.  I’m off to cut vast quantities of fabric now.  I’ve only made one queen size quilt before, and I’d forgotten just how much fabric and how many pieces they need!


  1. A kaleidoscope in brights with black background would look great! I got my pattern template from 'don't call me betsy's blog'.
    Great idea on the repairs. I'll have to remember that.

  2. So nice to see a well loved quilt and your repairs work well. Interesting about the batiks too - I always thought they were a closer/tighter weave and would last longer?! Have fun with your new project!!

  3. You must be very disappointed even if it is a much loved and used quilt.

    Have you been a good girl all year?? If so, I am sure Santa will bring you the gifts on your list!

  4. I would be so bummed out if this happened to one of my quilts. I like your solution.

  5. The fancy stitches are a great solution for the repairs. It is too bad the fabric is fraying already, it is interesting it is just the batiks. This gives you time to search for the perfect pattern for his next quilt!

  6. I like that idea as well and it works if the worn parts are on the seam line. I'll have to think about doing that with my son/DIL' quilt. They have had it for about 10 years, I think and I did appliqué a log onto it (it's a log cabin quilt). I will be making them a new quilt for their 25th anniversary next summer as well. I will be interested to hear about the batiks. I don't use them a lot, but I do use them for smaller projects and sometimes for appliqué.

  7. You did a great job on the quilt. Those decorative stitches work perfectly. Now he can cuddle it a bit longer.
    I am still not getting your blog on my feed. Going to have to figure it out.


Thank you for visiting. I truly appreciate your comments and will try to reply to comments by email if your commenting staus is not set to "no-reply".

If you have a question, emailing me directly at will ensure I have your address to respond. I promise I will not share your email address and I will not use it for any purpose other than replying to your message.