How to Make a Car Coat from Two Kilim Carpets
I recently held a sit-and-sew workshop with Susan Khalje in Baltimore, Maryland. We held it in her husband’s oriental carpet gallery, so I had a look around at the beautiful rugs.
That’s where I fell in love with this rug, one of a pair.
As an aside, Susan and I are scheduling sit-and-sew dates for 2019. And if you ever need a beautiful carpet, Susan’s husband, Qadir, is the person to contact.
This rug was one of a pair. Susan gave me the pair of 4-by-6-foot kilim rugs in the same pattern.
The photo isn’t distorted. These rugs were handwoven, so they aren’t symmetrical, which is part of their charm.
Here’s a detail shot.
Whacky me, I got the idea to make a car coat from them, similar to my Pendleton blanket coat. I used the blanket coat pattern. The kilims were about the same thickness as the Pendleton blanket fabric. But they are a little stiffer.
My first stop was to the laundromat, to tumble them in the dryer for an hour. This softened them up considerably.
I figured I couldn’t match the pattern as exactly as a machine-woven product because the rugs weren’t symmetrical. So I laid out the jacket and cut.
I didn’t know how much the rug fabric would ravel, so I zigzagged the cut edges immediately after cutting.
Sleeves were sewn first. I wanted to eliminate bulk anywhere I could, so I sewed the back sleeve seam as a lapped seam.
Note the crooked stitching. Perfectionists beware of this fabric: It was impossible to match a pattern. The weave of the fabric caused the stitching to go wobbly, so after ripping a couple of times, I just decided that this was part of the aesthetic.