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Behind the Seams: Rest In Power PIMA quilt

One of the joys of making miniatures, no matter how long you've been doing it, there are always new ideas and techniques to try out.

Here's a 'behind the seams' peek of the making of my entry for the Perfection In Miniature Award (PIMA) Competition 2024, and why I chose this theme.

Rest in Power PIMA entry dollhouse miniature quilt by LTW Miniatures

PIMA is run by the Kensington Dollshouse Festival and showcases the very best miniature makers. I don't have a hope in winning, but it's an honour just to be invited to submit an entry. You can see past winners here.

The brief for PIMA as slightly different this year - in celebration of 100 years of Queen Mary's dollshouse, miniature artisans were asked to submit something that represented the past 100 years - so it could be anything from the 1920s to modern day.

The story behind the quilt

Patchwork quilting is a centuries old crafting technique, with a history of telling stories, especially women's stories, through creation. I wanted to maintain the old tradition with more than just a pretty quilt - I wanted to tell a modern story.

Front of my mind was the awful news of 16 year old Brianna Ghey. I won't go into details, you can google that for yourself, but she was a sweet, young girl, brutally taken from this world by equally young people. Transphobia played a part in their decision to target her. And more widely, the rise in transphobic rhetoric in the UK and elsewhere is apparent to me, even as a straight cis woman who can never truly understand or suffer the consequences directly.

So I made the Rest In Power quilt in the colours of the Trans Pride flag, in memory of Brianna.

Sure it's a pretty quilt, with a lot of hours, technique and effort gone into it, but it's more meaningful than love hearts and sweet pastels. As such, 50% of proceeds will be donated to Mermaids. And I urge you to not ignore transphobia when you see it, and not to vote for policies that make life harder for trans people.

The making of the Rest In Power PIMA quilt

Techniques and stats

The Rest In Power quilt is mainly made using the Foundation Paper Piecing technique. I have a couple of kits and tutorials that go into more detail on that - but for this special quilt I went even smaller and even more fiddly. You have to push yourself for PIMA!

Each block was machine sewn, and then the blocks were hand sewn together. Getting the blocks to line up perfectly is the hardest part, as one millimetre out is pretty disastrous in 1:12 scale! I prefer to sew the blocks together by hand as I get better precision this way, but that means it does take a while. I think the results are worth the extra time taken.

  • There are nearly 300 patches in this 1:12 dollhouse miniature quilt.

  • Despite the complexity, I only used 6 different fabrics. I relied on the design for the interest.

  • I tried to time myself - but I always lose track as I can't work on such tiny patchwork for more than a couple of hours at a time. It took a while is all I can say!

Plus of course I made matching cushions, because you know I can't help it!

This dollhouse quilt will be available to buy on the LTW Miniatures webshop as soon as it's finished being on display at the Kensington Dollshouse Festival.

For more 'behind the seams' sneaky peeks, all the latest news, tutorials and the odd cheeky discount, subscribe to the LTW Miniatures e-newsletter.

Have fun mini friends!



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