My husband and I have been watching the TV series The Tudors lately and seeing all of that luscious velvet and gold got me thinking. A few years ago my mother in law gifted me some beautiful blood red velvet fabric that she bought in the 70s. She loved it so much that despite its price tag she had to have it. She loved it so much in fact, that she couldn't bear to cut into it. It sat in the sewing cupboard for years before she generously passed it on to me in the hope that I would make better use of it.
This velvet is like nothing else. It's thick and soft and the colour is deep and dark. I was so touched that my mother in law would give me something that had at one time meant so much to her. So touched in fact, that I couldn't bear to cut into it either!!
And so it was that I found myself sitting in the living room watching The Tudors, admiring Anne Boleyn's rich fabrics and King Henry's drapery in regal red, when I guiltily remembered my own stash of blood red velvet. No one was getting any enjoyment from it while it was carefully packed away. It was time to take a deep breath and make the first cut. Naturally I chose a project that used the least amount of fabric that I could think of! I hope you like it.
Cost: For me, $4.80 because I already had the velvet.
Time: 1 hour
- 1 piece of velvet. My piece was 43cm x 90cm.
- 1 button
- Synthetic silky fabric for the flower
- A candle
- A zipper if you choose to use one
To make the flower we need 5 circles of the satin fabric in various sizes. You could use a pattern but I figured I had enough round things in the kitchen to draw around so I used them instead. Make each circle smaller than the last.
Next take each circle and cut inwards about 1/3 of the way, 5 times. This makes the petals of the flowers. You can measure if you like but it's not necessary - I just guessed.
Now the fun part! Remember playing with candles when you were a kid but knowing that you really weren't meant to? Over the flame of a tea light candle gently melt the edges of your circles as well as the cuts you have made for the petals. Some blackening is OK, but you don't want the fabric to melt too much or catch on fire so be careful. You'll need to be very careful not to hold the fabric near the flame for too long and protect your skin!! You may need to hold the smallest circle with tongs if you're worried about it getting too hot.
Now that you have all of your circles melted around the edges, lay them on top of each other, largest one at the bottom. Place the button in the centre.
It's my preference to stitch each layer of the flower onto my cushion but you could stitch the layers together at this stage if you wish.
Now onto the cushion. I cut two squares 43cm by 43cm and sewed them together (right sides together) leaving a small gap along the bottom edge to turn it out the right way. I then stuffed the cushion and hand sewed the opening shut. Make sure you turn out the corners nicely. You could do a zip, button, or ribbon tie opening if you want the cover to be removable. I figured I there was no way I'd be washing the velvet so I didn't bother!
Once your cushion is made sew on your circles starting with the largest first. I tacked mine on in the centre, leaving the petals free. Keep layering until the flower is complete, then add your button.
Beautiful, luxurious, and would make a wonderful gift. Happy crafting everyone.