Monday, 21 October 2013

Peter Rabbit the Father

I would like to say that all characters are fictitious, all peoples are innocent and no animals were injured in the making of this blog, but I cannot tell a lie. I am Mrs Tiggywinkle the washerwoman, though in a different story all together. Peter Rabbit and his cousin Benjamin Bunny were most definitely not innocent and unfortunately Peter Rabbit's father was killed by Mr McGregor leaving Peter's mother a widow with a rather large family of little rabbits.

Everybody loves the Beatrix Potter stories of Peter Rabbit and all his rabbity, froggy friends. Even those who are all long grown up still love the stories. I loved them, my sister loved them, my daughter loved, indeed still loves them and so does my old friend the lovely Miss T. (Actually Mrs but Miss T sounds more glamorous, and glamorous she is). Miss T's first born was called Peter and he was affectionately called Peter Rabbit when he was little. Now Peter Rabbit is all grown up and he and his wife have just had their own little baby, in this case a little girl.  Cue of course a baby quilt using a Beatrix Potter panel of the Peter Rabbit and Benjamin Bunny story.

This panel is almost as old as the story itself, it came to me via a friend of a friend, possibly even a friend of a friend of a friend. It has nearly been given away again by me a couple of times. When I heard Miss T was sewing again, I almost gave it to her but couldn't bear to part with it.

the original book panel

The panel was actually intended to form a fabric book and a worrying stage was when I cut off the border, the text and the page numbers. The reasonably large squares all of a sudden shrunk drastically in size. And, they were all different sizes. Ultimately I ended up with 6 larger squares and 3 same sized smaller ones.
Sewing them together was kept simple, just some equally old pink and white Laura Ashley fabric from the early 1990's vintage I suppose. I know I have more of this fabric in a green colourway and in blue. I  will find them next week. Miss T is very fond of Laura Ashley fabric too, so I know she will like this nod to our old patchwork class days.

the squares edged in pink Laura Ashley fabric

The backing fabric is a pale yellow cotton, which frayed terribly as soon as it was cut. I cut it into strips and incorporated the text, in a random order and also a leftover picture of Benjamin. I couldn't leave it out.
the backing with text

The quilting is just 3 straight, or rather deliberately wavy straight lines, through the sashing. The binding is a pale blue leaf print from the same era, bought in the patchwork shop in Carrickfergus where my friend and I attended our class.

showing Benjamin Bunny on the back
I hope grown up Peter and his wife and new baby like their little quilt, and I hope Grandma and Grandpa like it too.

the finished Peter Rabbit quilt

Oh, as an aside, my grown up daughter hadn't realised Peter Rabbit's father was killed by Mr McGregor. I hadn't wanted to upset her so had always glossed over that bit. Now at almost 23, she is old enough to cope.

our vegetable garden, but no Peter Rabbit


  1. It's lovely - I bet they will like it! Your veg patch looks very professional and you can tell there are no rabbits:-)

  2. What a lovely quilt, and I love the text in the backing.

  3. love the quilt and your vegetable patch

  4. Oh they're going to love it...I love it!!
    I just don't know why that Mr McGregor got so much air play anyway.......horrible man!! I would have written him out!
    I don't think anyone ever outgrows Beatrix Potter. :)
    Your quilt is gorgeous Helen and will be well loved.
    V x
    P.S. 1990's..vintage?? That was yesterday..wasn't it!

  5. Gorgeous quilt Helen!...I do love anything Beatrix Potter and loved visiting Hill Top some years ago when our daughters were very's such a special place....
    I have some of the Laura Ashley fabric too and it's a great design to mix with other fabrics.
    Susan x


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