Sari Bari

I can’t remember how and when I came across with Sari Bari but since then I really liked what they do. They recycle old sari and rescue women in India.

When I saw they are looking for donations of quilts for fundraising auction, I signed up. The mission was to make a quilt with recycled sari. Well interesting challenge I thought.

And a bag of sari arrived. Some are huge prints, some are very worn out and some are bit stained. All were still holding nice waxy smell.

It took me a long time to get enough encouragement to start because I knew these fabrics don’t behave anything like quilting cotton. It would drive me mad if I tried to rotary cut because straight lines won’t stay straight even for a second. The reason is they are all made with really fine yarn and loosely woven. So, instead of rotary cutting I just ripped which will happen along on the grain more or less.

Yes I could use some stabiliser but that will lose nice soft texture which I didn’t want to happen at all.

In order to mix up large prints, I chose improv piecing for this quilt and I worked mainly purple and green fabric within the given ones.

All straight ripped fabrics were stitched as straight as possible. I didn’t trim excess fabric in order to avoid pieced parts to become smaller and they were just folded over.

It didn’t end up in a bad shape. The top was well over two meters on all sides which I measured against my body very roughly.

Finished top. Yes it's very wavy.

Since there were quite few more sari left after finishing the top, I made backing as well. The picture below is a fully stretched backing, ready for quilt sandwich which took me a good few hours to make each seam straight.

Baking made with sari

Sari is so soft and I didn’t spoil it.For that reason quilting was quite loose.

The first thing I did was stitch in ditch so the seams would stay straight as I wanted. After that was done, each space was small enough not to make too much shifting/puckering.

Since sari cotton was so light, entire quilt was so light too. It felt like a half of weight of previous quilt.

I added those small hexagon applique to cover some torn parts I found after I finished the top and added more as decoration.

I quilted along the prints on some parts. Not much geometric shape but more doodling.

After trimming super uneven edges and binding with a perfect match of green and purple fabric, this quilt became a good king size. I haven’t done proper measurement yet but it fitted on our bed perfectly.

Finished quilt

As a result of quilting, all the seam on the backing became wiggly naturally but only minor puckering happened which was a relief.

The back of quilt

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2 Comments

4o shades of green.
May 4, 2019 10:15 pm

Hi Tomomi, I am also making a Sari Bari quilt. Would you consider exhibiting your quilt along side mine at the River of Dreams quilt exhibition and we could tell the Sari Bari’s story.
Regards
Amanda

Tomomi
May 5, 2019 7:59 pm

Hi Amanda, yes that will be interesting!

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