You certainly wouldn’t want to embellish every quilt you make. That Dear Jane quilt will all those tiny pieces barely has room for anything else. The Baltimore Album quilt that you spent so many hours painstakingly hand sewing the appliqued pieces can stand on its own. The favorite family room lap quilt doesn’t need anything but soft cotton fabrics and simple quilting to bring some comfy coziness. Embellisment isn’t for every project.
But, sometimes you’re looking for an adventure, a little trip off the beaten path of traditional quilting. When you get to feeling that way, go for it!
If you want to start slowly and not get too outrageous, try yo-yos, fabric flowers, inchies, or prairie points. All fabric, but these will ease you out of the box a little. Then you can move on to other embellishments.
Here’s a few to experiment with:
All these items have been used on quilts with fantastic results. Some can just be added directly, and some you might want to manipulate or play with first, and then add them. Many scrapbooking embellishments would also work.
After that, you can get really crazy and try some unconventional items such as:
beaded chain (you know, the kind that was used on old pull chain lights – if you are not old enough to remember these we don’t want to hear about it)
colored telephone wire (this is pretty old too – we used to use this to make spirally rings)
The sky’s the limit. Let your imagination run free. Not everything will work, and you might have to pull some stitches, but we quilters are no strangers to seam rippers. Pull those stitches and try something else. Just have fun!