Technique Spotlight: How to Make Patchwork

Marking the return of another '70s trend.
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Runway shots from Dior and Missoni's Fall 2018 Collections

Center: Missoni Fall 2018, Left and Right: Dior Fall 2018

Patchwork hit the runways in a major way this fall season, particularly in Christian Dior’s late '60s-inspired collection. Luckily for us, this trend is not only easy to make, but also an eco-friendly option in a world full of textile waste.

How to Make You Own Patchwork

Things you will need:

- Fabric Scraps

- Sewing machine

Learn to make the patchwork trend.

This is a great way to use up fabric scraps!

Step 1. Gather up a few coordinating fabric scraps. 

Feel free to go for a more eclectic look by choosing different prints, textures, and colors, or try varying shades of denim for something more subdued. 

Here, I’ve gone for random shapes, but if you’re a beginner, squares or rectangles will make it a lot easier to sew. 

Step 2. Before sewing, make sure your pieces line up, or else you’ll end up with a bumpy final piece.

Learn to make the patchwork trend.

Attach your pieces together.

Step 3. Attach the pieces by sewing along the raw edges, until you have one big patchworked piece of fabric. Try to make it vaguely in the shape of the pattern piece, but we’ll trim it to the exact shape later. 

*Optional* For more stability, serge the raw edges, or for pieces that can be stiffer, like a tote bag or pouch, iron a piece of interfacing to the back.

Learn to make the patchwork trend.

Iron everything flat to make your pattern pieces precise. 

Step 4. Iron the seams flat, then trim the fabric to the shape you want! Just treat the patchwork fabric as you normally would any other type of fabric.

How to Wear Patchwork

Now that you know what it takes to make patchwork, I wanted to spotlight a few unique takes on this trend. Here's how people are rocking patchwork IRL:

1. The Total Throwback

This skirt in coordinating red floral cotton looks so summery! It's a complete throwback to the '70s, especially when paired with a groovy Volkswagen. The lace trim at the bottom adds a touch of granny chic, which we all love now and again.

2. Comfy and Cute Cubes

The little cubes that make up this patchwork dress remind me so much of a board game! It also shows that you don’t have to be random with your placement; creating patterns with your patchwork can be an effective design element. The use of white space also allows the colorful pattern to stand out.

3. Dapper Denim-on-Denim

Not only is this the most stylish three year old I’ve ever seen, but this blazer shows how chic and understated this trend can look when similarly hued fabrics are paired together. In this case, the denim on denim works together beautifully.

What do you think of patchwork?

Are you into this trend? Will you be making your own patchwork? What other types of DIY projects would you like to see featured? Leave a comment and let's get the conversation started.

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