I have been mesmerized by the beauty of Kantha quilts for quite a while now. Aren’t they just breathtaking, in their simplicity? I also love the reflective slowness of hand stitching. It gives you time. It gives you enough repetitiveness, to let your thoughts wander. It is the perfect task to accomplish, while daydreaming. Daydreaming is so conducive to creativity! We all should do it more! I am inviting you, to daydream with me!
I spent hours on Pintrest, losing myself in the images of traditional Kantha quilts. These quilts are traditionally made by layering old, worn Saris together and stitching through all layers in running stitch, so make the fabric more durable.This way the old clothing will get re-used as a blanket and will get just a bit more use out of it. Blankets like this are still handmade in rural India. The result can be as thick as you like, or a light summer blanket.
Finally, I decided, it is time, I made a “Kantha-quilt-inspired” blanket for myself. I am opting for a light summer cover for myself. Just a little “cuddle blanket”, for on the couch, or out on the terrace. For those not quite so burning-up-hot Pacific Northwest summer evenings ;)
I started by diving through my fabric stash and my closet (which I re-organized at the same time. How convenient!).
I emerged with an old Sari (light blue and gold, yes, I own saris) and a few sarongs (the other two pieces of fabric, also in blue tones). PERFECT!
Saris are amazing. HUUUGE pieces of fabric. I am going to cut mine in half and will have enough material to make two blankets out of it. I will pair each sari half with one of my sarongs. The first one has a very pretty floral pattern on it and I think I will use the print to guide my stitching. The second one is more of a motive sarong. It has lettering and a tree looking print. I am not sure yet, if I just do running stitches, or maybe also incorporate the print into the stitching design. I guess this one will be my second blanket. This will give me some more time to make up my mind. I will take pictures along the way for you. <3
I would be thrilled, if you decided to work along with me on this. This project has no deadline. I plan for this to be great, mindless, in-between stitching. Off and on.
Starting date for me is not until March 15th, this gives you time to grab some fabric, in case you decide to work along. Sarongs come up quite frequently in thrift stores, but a nice duvet cover will work just as well, or, if you rather go with new fabrics, by all means, buy some yardage. Make this blanket a mug rug, lap robe, or a California King cover. It is completely up to you! Mine will be as big as my sarongs are.
Kantha quilting is fairly simple, as it consist mainly of running stitches (also called straight stitch. Here is a link to a stitch glossary). How awesome is that? Anybody can do a running stitch! Lets have some fun with this!!!
Pictures in the collage were found on pintrest, but here are links to the specific places on the web.