Korean patchwork

Traditional Korean Patchwork

Today I had my first class of traditional Korean patchwork.  It is similar to North American patchwork, but it is made out of silk.  I have never worked with silk before, so it is a new experience.

My first project is a mat with six squares in the middle and white border.  The squares were marked on the fabric with chalk and a small ruler.  Everything is measured in centimeters and millimeters rather than inches.  They were 10 centimeter squares, including a one centimeter seam allowance (about 3/8″).

To mark the seam allowances, I pressed along the stitching line with a bone tool, using the ruler as a guide.

This left a faint line which we used to fold the fabric down, very similar to scoring paper.

The squares are joined with wrong sides together, seam allowances folded in, using an overcast stitch in a contrasting thread color.

When they are pressed open, the stitching is clearly visible.

It was very interesting to do something familiar, but with new materials and tools.  My class lasts for three months.  The teacher has a list of projects, so when I finish one, she gives me the next one and we’ll see how many I can finish in this session.


3 thoughts on “Traditional Korean Patchwork

  1. Thank you for sharing this introduction to Korean patchwork! I saw some wonderful work by a textile artist using this technique and wondered how it was done. I love the colors of the silk fabric–where do you get it?


    1. Thank you for your nice comment. There are a few different techniques for Korean patchwork, and this is the most basic. I hope to share more techniques as I learn them. Right now I am living in Korea, so I am learning as much as I can. I can get the fabric at the large fabric markets here, but I don’t know where I will be able to find it once I get back to North America – I have never looked for it there.


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