Friday, November 30, 2012

Holly Jolly Tree Skirt

Holly Jolly Tree Skirt Pattern

As promised, here is more info on the tree skirt pattern I was working on last week.  Sorry for the delay – my family and I spend a few delightful days in Disneyland this week – a much needed break!

Holly Jolly Tree Skirt

This is a pieced (no templates!) tree skirt that is made using 6 of your favorite Christmas prints.  It has a backing and is quilted and bound just like a regular quilt.  (I have a step-by-step tutorial for doing the binding on these tricky points – it’s not tough at all!)

Holly Jolly Tree Skirt

Three ribbon ties help to keep the skirt in place around your tree:

Holly Jolly Tree Skirt

The finished tree skirt measures 54” in diameter across the widest point. 

Right now I have pdf patterns available for purchase in my pattern shop as well as my etsy shop.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Binding Tutorial for Quilted Christmas Tree Skirt Pattern

Please note: this is not a comprehensive tutorial for creating and adding binding to a quilt.  There are many wonderful online tutorials that cover all details for making binding (my favorite is here.)  These are simply the steps I use to add binding specifically to my Christmas Tree Skirt.

To purchase the Holly Jolly Christmas Tree Skirt pattern, go here, here or here.

1)  Create your binding.  For this project, bias binding is recommended, but a straight-grain binding will work fine.  

2)  Begin attaching binding, starting on one of the outside edges of the tree skirt.  When you come near the first point on the skirt, stop sewing 1/4" before you get to the seam line.  Back stitch and remove tree skirt from machine.    

Binding Tutorial for Christmas Tree Skirt

3)  Fold binding strip back so that it is in line with the raw edge of the next section you will be sewing.  The fold on the binding strip should align with the seam on the skirt: 

Binding Tutorial for Christmas Tree Skirt

4)  Fold the binding strip back on itself, lining up the raw edge of the skirt with the raw edge of the binding strip:

Binding Tutorial for Christmas Tree Skirt

5)  Starting at the edge of the fold, back stitch a bit and then begin stitching the next section of binding.  

Binding Tutorial for Christmas Tree Skirt

Repeat steps 2 through 5 for each of the outside points of the tree skirt.

6)  When you get to one of the points at the tree skirt opening, stop sewing 1/4" from the point.  Fold binding strip back so that it is in line with the raw edge of the next section you will be sewing.  

Binding Tutorial for Christmas Tree Skirt Pattern

7)  Fold the binding strip back on itself, lining up the raw edge of the skirt with the raw edge of the binding strip:

Binding Tutorial for Christmas Tree Skirt Pattern

8)  Starting at the edge of the fold and back stitching a bit, begin stitching the next section of binding.

Binding Tutorial for Christmas Tree Skirt

9)  The center opening of the tree skirt is the trickiest part because of the concave angles and the small space in which to work.  When you get to a point, stop sewing right at the point.  Leave the needle down and raise the presser foot.  This will help with the pivot.  Rotate tree skirt so that your next part is lined up:

Binding Tutorial for Christmas Tree Skirt

10)  Leaving the needle down and the presser foot up, pull the binding strip around so that it lines up with the raw edge of the next section of tree skirt.  The binding behind the presser foot may bunch up a little, but don't worry about that.  Just make sure that the binding ahead of you lies flat and is lined up with the raw edge of the skirt:

Binding Tutorial for Christmas Tree Skirt

11)  Lower presser foot and begin sewing next section.  Repeat at each concave point in the tree skirt center opening. 

12)   When you get back to your starting point, join ends of the binding.  Now that your binding is attached to the front of the tree skirt, I recommend that you hand stitch it to the back.  Machine stitching it is possible, but might prove to be challenging around some of those concave points in the center opening.  

Have questions?  Leave a comment or shoot me an email!  The pattern for the Christmas Tree Skirt is available in my pattern shop and my etsy shop (both are pdf versions).

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Just Take a Deep Breath

I’m taking a brief break tonight to surf around blog land for a minute.  For the last few nights I've been up late finishing some Christmas projects for the quilt shop I work for.  One of them (which I just finished tonight) is a tree skirt pattern using these fabrics:

fabric for tree skirt

I’m so happy that BOTH the tree skirt and the pattern are done!  I’m ready for a good night’s sleep!
Tonight my boys and I watched Up while I hand stitched the binding on the tree skirt.  Now I just need some nice sunshine tomorrow so I can get some photos. 

fabric for tree skirt 2

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Fallen Leaves Table Runner tutorial –more burlap!

I have another quick and easy burlap project for you – and this one is even easier than the last one
This is my “Fallen Leaves” table runner:

"Fallen Leaves" table runner tutorial

I began by cutting a 12” by 40” piece of burlap.  I chose 12” because that is slightly thinner than the width of my bookcase.  You can choose whatever size you want – a square one would be great! 
I also cut two 14” pieces of jumbo yellow ric rac.

Then I drew some simple leaf shapes onto a piece of paper.  I found that I liked the leaves that were 3.5”, 4” and 4.5” long.  I placed my Heat n’ Bond lite over my leaf drawing and traced several of each size onto the paper side of the fusible web.  

I ended up with 17 leaves total.

I cut out around each leaf (not right on the line, I left about 1/4”) and pressed each one onto a piece of fall colored fabric (I used the scraps from this Thanksgiving banner).  I then cut out each leaf (right on the drawn line) and removed the paper backing.

I spread out the burlap, placed the ric rac and scattered the leaves around until I liked the way it looked. 

 "Fallen Leaves" table runner tutorial

I pinned each one in place just to hold it there while I moved it all over to the ironing board.

applique leaves

Then I ironed all of the leaves in place.  This burlap had kind of an open weave and I was concerned about the adhesive from the leaves getting through to the ironing board, so I put a piece of paper beneath the burlap.  No problems whatsoever. 

applique leaves

Then came the fun part!  I used my free motion quilting foot and using a brown thread I quilted around each leaf 4 or 5 times.  I allowed the lines to be a little messy to give the “scribbled” look.  It was so much less stressful than trying to get a nice, exact line around each curved edge of all 17 leaves.  What a headache that would have been.  And it would have taken me twice as long.  This was FUN!

"Fallen Leaves" Table Runner tutorial

"Fallen Leaves" Table Runner tutorial

The last step was to stitch on the ric rac.  Here is the finished table runner- already at home on the top of my bookcase!

"Fallen Leaves" Table Runner tutorial

If you make one, I’d love to see it! 

Linking up to Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Finish it up Friday!

Christmas Star Table Runner + Kits

In the past month or so I’ve had several requests for the pattern for the Christmas Star Table runner so I recently added it to my pattern shop and my etsy shop.  If you’ve never tried applique before this is a good beginner project.

Christmas Star Table Runner - pattern

On etsy I also have a few kits available.  They include the pattern and all of the fabric needed (background, backing, stars and binding.)  I’m also going to add a few “scrappy stars” kits with a different fabric for each of the 12 stars. 

Tomorrow I’ll show you my Thanksgiving table runner that I mentioned in this post.  It is also a great project for beginner appliqueing (is that a word?)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

“Give Thanks” banner tutorial

Last week I was working with these:

burlap and fall color fabrics

I’ve never worked with burlap before.  I love the look of burlap, but it’s kind of squirly to work with.  And it makes my nose itch and my throat burn.  And it made a mess of my cutting mat.  But – there are so many cute ideas out there for burlap projects! 

Today I have a tutorial on the Fabric Mill’s blog for a Thanksgiving banner.  It was easy and SO fast to put together. 

give thanks banner with burlap

I also made a table runner using burlap (you can see a bit of it in the photo) and I tried a new type of free motion quilting.  More to come on that!

Thursday, November 8, 2012


Look what Heather recently finished!


She used my strip tube tutorial and the fabric is Pure from Sweetwater.  I love the blues and browns together.  I think I need to track down a jelly roll of Pure and make one of these for me!  The quilting on this quilt is great – go here and see her other photos.  She has several that really show off the quilting. 

Thanks for letting me show off your quilt Heather!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Two From the Stash

Sometimes when I finish a quilt project I have enough leftovers to possibly make another small quilt. So I keep the pile of leftovers together in a stack and save them for later. If they are smaller pieces I put them in a ziplock but for larger leftovers I can just fold them and stack them.  In my closet I have a whole shelf that is filled with stacks such as these.

This last weekend I pulled out two stacks of leftovers and put these two quilt tops together. The squares are cut at 6”.

This first quilt top measures 45” x 56” and is made from the remnants of the first queen sized quilt I ever made and one of the first quilts I blogged about!  I added some Kona Tarragon as well. 

Relief Society quilt top 1

This second quilt top measures 45” x 62”.  The fabrics from this one came from several different projects.  As I cut these squares and arranged them on the design wall I became a little worried about how this one would end up, but once I started getting the rows sewn together I decided I really, really liked it. 

Relief Society quilt top 2

Both of these quilt tops were used as part of a service project tonight at our church.  Our Relief Society had the goal to tie four quilts to give to some patients that visit a local dialysis center.  I wasn’t able to go tonight so I didn’t get to see the completed quilts, but I’m so happy to have been able to still participate in my own way!

linking up:

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Friday, November 2, 2012

November + Fabric Stack Friday

Remember how I was complaining about snow a week ago?  Well now my calendar tells me it’s November, but the thermometer outside tells me it’s August.  The kids are outside playing 4-square in shorts and t-shirts.  And I love it! 

I had a free hour this afternoon while my son was napping so I thought I would get a jump start on my November bee blocks

This month Amanda asked for some 8.5” square-in-square blocks using black, navy, teal, gray and white.  Here’s what I found in my scrap bins:

november bee blocks

And here are my two finished blocks:

november bee blocks 1

It’s nice to have something on my to-do list crossed off so early in the month!

Have a nice (sunny?) weekend everyone!

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