Bed Wraps (Part II)

The ugliest bedspread image that I could find (Just showing it here is bad for my Feng Shui)

If hotels can ditch their nasty bedspreads and add pizazz to their rooms with Bed Wraps then surely I can give this new decor accessory a go! Instead of dreaming up a a big quilt that I won’t finish, I will go for the little idea with big punch.

I get overwhelmed by the big idea. I neurotically try to shop my way out of my paralyzed reaction, but I usually only bring home small yardage (less noticeable to the naked eye and the monthly budget) which will be of little use to the big idea quilt.

My projects are more often experiments or techniques that don’t need a big canvas (like thread painting). My favourite methods don’t have a home on a BIG quilt. They like smaller spaces (like my Skitchbooks).

Small projects make me happy. I finish them. They become my fetes de complete (AKA, Celebrations of Done-ness!) and re-affirm that I am not just in the sport of stitching for the shopping. Crossing the finished line with a few projects is an endorphin releasor. Just Google it! (Creative Key: Completing a project can release the inspiration for the next success.)

I don’t claim to have originated the idea of Bed Wraps; I’ve been seeing them in hotels since early 2000-something. Seeing hotel room samples or photos might provide enough inspiration and guidance for the MYO Bed Wrapper. Just imagine putting your favourite fabrics and threads to work in an afternoon project. I made a reversible quiltlet for Threads: The Basics and Beyond. These are some fairly poor photos of that wrap (I promise better book photos!):

SIDE ONE:

Side 1: reversible Wrap, Stitched over fusible batting

The wavy line quilting on the outer silk panels is seen on the front and back

SIDE TWO:

The second side of the Wrap is stitched separately and then fused to the reverse side of the batting

The freedom to thread-paint on a smaller wrap vs. a large quilt (painting mimics the ribbon motif)

A few Bed Wrapping tips:

  1. Use a folded blanket to gauge the size that you would like the finished wrap to be. Try different proportions and placements. Draping the wrap to at least below the mattress/box spring  “seam-line” looks good. Add appropriate seam allowances to the measurements.
  2. Doodle, Pile & Play; my mantra for making things. Doodle a few sketches. Gather your inspiration materials in a pile.Play with what you collect. Audition and add other fabrics, threads or embellishments to the pile. . Sometimes your first idea will be the best and other times it takes a few tries.
  3. Wraps can be made with any filler: batting, flannel or fleece (or, *gasp* no filler at all!).
  4. Wraps are an ideal place to try out a technique or use a precious fabric in limited supply. Wraps are more decorative than functional and thus need less laundering or occasional dry-cleaning. This gives you the freedom to include frightfully delicate techniques like thread lace, faggotting, raw edge applique or stitched ribbons. You can also use surface design techniques that would incite fear if used on a traditional quilt.
  5. Consistent quilting is less of an issue: stitch as much or as little as you like. When stitching a reversible wrap, careful planning of the stitch placement is important.
  6. Binding options: Consider turned edges, traditional binding, couching, satin blanket binding, or birthed (stitched right-sides together, turned out through a small opening and whip stitched closed) finishes.

These are some jump-start guidelines. There are no rules! I hope to showcase a few different designs over the next few entries. These can be addictive. And, they might inspire a boudoir redux! Maybe a freshly painted accent wall or a pair of His & Her’s coordinated toss pillows would make a nice complement to the new wrap

The most important thing to remember:

Sew What You Love!

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