I made a quilted heart top according to the top in the illustration of Sage the treehugger, which can also be used as travel mat.
A top worn by my inner archetype Sage
Sage, the treehugger is one of my Inner archetypes. She is the one recharging herself, while wandering the woods.
So I was searching for a heart shaped leaf as reference in the woods and found a perfect leaf of lilac sage (Salvia verticillata).
Heart shaped leaf of lilac sage
Lilac sage is the wild form of sage, which is growing in the outskirts of the woods surrounding Vienna.
- Cloth for front side (lightgreen), back side (sage), leaf stalk (grey) and border (lightblue)
- Pure cotton batting, washable
- Lightgreen cotton yarn for quilting & sewing needle
- Lightblue sewing silk & sewing machine
I wanted a light green surface and a sage backside for my heart. The only light green cloth I found was one of my sheets, still in use. Stubborn as I can be sometimes, I I cut the heart leaf out of it nonetheless. But don´t worry: I will insert a pink heart into the sheet and it will be prettier than ever.
The process of making
At first I made a scribble of the leaf for the pattern: 8 cm x 5 = 40 cm / 9 cm x 5 cm = 45 cm and a paper pattern in original size.
Preparing and cutting the hearts
Before I cut the sage heart I had to find a workaround for the vertical seam in the pant leg, I wanted to use.
To avoid to have this seam in the center of the heart I created a leaf stalk in grey linen, which turned out quite nice.
Then I cut the sage and the light green heart.
Quilting the leaf heart
Between the top and the backing lies the batting,
Bast the three layers (backing, batting and top) together.
The quilted veins
This is the back side of my reference sage leaf with its beautiful veins.
The next step: I transfer the veins pattern with tailor´s chalk onto the hearts and quilt the veins and the stalk with running stitches through all 3 levels.
Handmade and perfection
I am often falling into the perfectionist-trap while making something with my hands.
Isn´t one important attribute of handmade, that it does not look like a “perfect“ industrial made piece? Why then I am trying to imitate this kind of machine-made perfection? Because I assume that this is, what “the people“ want? Because I want to achieve the best I can? I don´t know yet, but I want to change this stringent habit.
Searching for the right color combination
Yellow was my first try for the border, but finally I went for a more subtle color combination in light blue.
This subtle combination came closer to the initial image in my mind.
Though the heart-shape is quite rounded, I did not use bias binding for the border as I had learned in fashion school, because it is a very wasteful way of cutting cloth. Using straight band cut from the edges of my fabric did the job well enough.
I sewed the binding first on one side with the sewing machine and then I attached it with a running stitch in light green yarn by hand.
The bands (for tying the top on the left and the right side) are attached additionally, when sewing on the border with the sewing machine.
If I am using the heart leaf as a travel mat I roll it and tie it.
So it does not take much space in my backpack. It is already part of my standard equipment, if I am going for a walk.
And if I want to feel like a fairy in between I wear it as a top🧚♀️
I feel better each time while and after visiting this place above. Even happy becomes happier. I feel blessed to live close to such beauty. I love the Wienerwald so much.
Of course you could google leafs as reference or just draw any heart shape on your cloth, but then you would have missed out on the most precious experience of wandering and searching the woods. And this would be a pity.