Kantha is a word for quilts from India and Bangladesh made from layers of fabric, stitched together usually with rows of simple running stitches. The quilt itself is upcycled – a product of rescuing and using tired, worn out fabrics. The best looking pieces are used for the top and bottom, whole or pieced, and old saris and rags are layered in the middle. There can be as few as one middle layer and as many as fifteen (in my experience). Some designers like Ellen use the kanthas (or rallis as they are called in Pakistan) for clothing. That means there is ‘cabbage’ left behind – the scraps of fabric left over after a garment is cut from whole cloth. What to do with these little jewels that have hundreds of beautiful hand stitches holding them together? One solution is to build a new fabric by stitching them together so that something new can be fashioned.
This class will provide you with some kantha scraps to build your own cloth for either a bucket bag or a vest or an artwork for the wall. You will construct the fabric without making bulky, overlapping seams.