04 September 2012
Quilting at the Blue Gum on the First of September.
Convict Quilt (aka The Maria Challenge by Margaret Rowe)
Hunters Hill is celebrating their 30th birthday this month and as part of the celebration we were set a challenge to make a quilt under the same conditions as a convict coming to Australia. This time last year we were each given a 2 lb bag of fabric (the same as the convicts). On my bag was a tag with my convict's name, her sentence (life) and her age (20) and occupation (Milliner). Our challenge is to make a coverlet (no batting) with just the fabrics we have been given, needles, pins, thread (embroidery and sewing), a tape measure and 1 pair of scissors. We are NOT allowed to use - irons, rotary cutters, pencils, paper, ruler, etc.
I was short of one of the border fabrics so I inserted a plain piece of fabric into the border and embroidered the name of my convict, Mary Gildersleeves, plus the name of the ship - Maria I -Sydney 1818. One of the fabrics in my bag had been previously cut on the bias, so I knew that this had to be part of a vine. As each round progressed I put aside my bias fabric, as I knew there was plenty, until I got to the border and appliqued some leaves and flowers to go onto the vine.
All the calculations had to be done in my head and I now find that I have miscalculated the backing by 1/3 of the finished size of the quilt. Right now I am madly sewing together bits of leftover fabrics to make up the missing 1/3. I still have to hand sew the back to the front and the quilt measures 66" square - I think I got a little bit carried away !! Thursday, 13th September is the deadline.