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Houston Bog Coat Challenge posted: 8/5/2003
by Cheryl Moncrief Printable Page
Category: Specialty Method: All
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View several of the Bog Coats resulting from this Challenge

In my Quilt Guild of Greater Houston Wearable Arts Bee, we have a yearly challenge, and we had a Bog Coat challenge a couple years ago. Our group was started in the late 1970's, when it was still innovative to "wear" your quilts. We have about 25 members, and meet once a month. Our favorite part of the meeting is usually show and tell. We have a wonderful sharing community. We have workshops occasionally, and take "field trips" to quilt shops and sometimes do programs of a wearable show for other groups. Some of our other challenges have included: the "ugly" fabric challenge, pattern challenges, a chosen fabric(s) challenge, a black and white challenge, and a challenge to use both leather and a conversation print in a garment.

A Bog Coat is simply a rectangular piece of cloth that, by using a couple of specifically placed slashes, or cuts, becomes a garment. This type of garment may well have been among the very first garments ever worn. The thinking is that various cultures made this type of garment from animal skins before cloth was developed. Apparently, the first of these was discovered in a bog; hence the name.

I like to make this type of garment because it is a pattern-less project that can be made to fit any size, whether I sew for small children or adults. There is only one seam, and it can be thought of as a whole cloth quilt. Bog Coats are extremely versatile; they can be made in almost any fabric, for almost any occasion, and for nearly all climates. But the main reason is that design possibilities are endless!

Directions and Pattern for making your own Bog Coat.

To design your own bog coat, I recommend using a paper template of the coat (not to scale, of course!). Mark the cutting and folding lines, as well as the neck area, so that when you sketch you will be able to work on placement for your art.

Start with a goal: What would you like to do? A stitching technique? Fabric manipulation? A texture? Do you like to work with contrasts? What about balance or symmetry? Or do you have wonderful fabric to showcase? Do you like piecing? Do you want to design for a certain purpose (casual, dressy) All of these are possibilities: remember not to use every idea in one project!

2003 Cheryl Moncrief

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