Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Circle Time

A few weeks ago I was at my LQS and was talking to a woman about table runners.  She mentioned that she had a small, circular table and was always looking for table toppers that would fit.  Once she mentioned it I realized that I don’t see many around blog land.  I loved the idea of making a circle shaped table topper using the same vases and leaves from my rectangular runner idea

I played with different sizes of circles and different sizes of vases and ended up with this:

Sprouts Table Runner and Topper pattern
[pattern is available here and here]

It measures about 27” in diameter.  Even though it was intended for a round table, I think it still looks great on a rectangular one. 

For this red version I used several different applique stitching techniques, but they are all still done on a machine.  I first appliqued the vases, using one of the “blanket stitch” settings.  I added the detail lines to the pot using just a regular straight stitch, and just eyeballing where the lines should go. 

Cute applique vase and leaves

For the leaves I used a straight stitch, carefully stitching close to the edge of each leaf.  Then I went back and added the detail stitch down the center of each leaf.  The stems were created by first drawing in the stem with a light pencil line, then going over that with a tight zigzag stitch. 

Cute applique leaves

When it came time to do the binding I was a little concerned about how it would turn out.  First of all, it requires bias binding.  Ok, no problem.  But I wanted to be able to do the binding completely on the machine – that’s where I was concerned. 

Sprouts table topper pattern

The bias binding sewed to the front of the topper just fine.  I folded it around to the back, used a generous amount of binding clips and began sewing.  It went beautifully!  As long as I took my time and didn’t try to rush too much (it’s hard to be patient when a project is SO close to completion!) then it went smoothly. 

Sprouts table topper with red binding

It is interesting how the change in just the stitches can alter the feel of the finished topper.  If you haven’t seen it yet, you can take a look at a more artistic feel to the same project here.  Tomorrow I’ll show you the small pink version of this pattern which uses a different set of stitches. 

The Sprouts pattern is still on sale for 20% but just for a few more days!  Add the pattern to your cart here and then use the code “springsprouts” at checkout to receive the discount.  Offer good until Feb 1, 2013.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

A Taste of Spring

sprouts table runner and topper pattern

[pattern is available here and here]

Happy, happy sunshine!  Today our bad air blew on outa here and was replaced by blue sky, sunshine and (just a bit) warmer weather.  A welcome change! 

This past week, to fight off the winter blues I created a new table runner to go with my new table.  Our old table was a large square so all of my table toppers were large and uh, well, square.  I’m a little sad to not be able to use some of them any more on my table but a few of them were pretty worn and faded and needed to be retired.

Sprouts table runner

For my new runner idea I pulled out some Kona white and a stack of blue & green fabrics and sketched up some different vase shapes. 

This is one of my favorites:

Sprouts table runner (pattern)

All of the vases and leaves are appliqued on using Heat n’ Bond lite. Love that stuff.  Then I did some straight line stitching around all of the edges.  I used my free motion quilting foot and the same “scribbled” look that I used on my burlap Fallen Leaves table runner

For the stems I used a regular ol’ pencil to lightly draw a line and then I used my same free motion quilting foot and green thread to “draw” over the pencil line two or three times. As my youngest says, “easy peasy!”

Sprouts table runner (pattern)

Once I got that done, I thought the leaves and vases needed something else.  They seemed to be lacking a little detail.  So I added a line of stitching down each leaf, sometimes adding a little curve to the line to give the leaf some dimension. 

leaf applique on Sprouts table runner from A Bright Corner

I also added some detail lines to each of the pots.  I love what these extra lines add.

vase applique on Sprouts table runner from A Bright Corner

I had so much fun making this runner that I made two more – a red one and a pink one.  I’m not yet sure if I’ll be keeping both of those.  I also wrote a pattern for this project that includes instructions to make two sizes of runner as well as a circular table topper.  The pattern includes my step-by-step instructions, templates for the applique pieces (leaves and vases in two sizes) and diagrams for layout options. 

The pattern can be found here and here.  And to celebrate the departure of January 2013, get 20% off the pattern when you purchase from here and use the code “springsprouts”.  Coupon expires Feb 1, 2013. 

I’ll show you more of the pink and red versions tomorrow!  Oh, and the shop/blog I work for is having a giveaway this week for a $25 gift certificate.  Giveaways are always nice, aren’t they?

Friday, January 25, 2013

Warming Up + Fabric Stack Friday

It is SO.VERY.COLD here.  My youngest son asks me daily if summer will be here soon.  I’m running out of things to tell him.  I suppose I could make a paper chain type of thing to help him visually understand just how many more cold days we have left, but I’m afraid that it will make me cry to see how long that chain will be. 

I bought this stack of Noteworthy fat quarters last week with no particular use in mind.  They were just so happy and warm looking.  They sit on my sewing table and cheer me up each time I go in there. 

noteworthy fat quarters

I’m considering using the FQ and this block pattern to make myself a “you can make it through February” quilt! 

noteworthy fat quarters

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Crib + Throw

jack's blocks quilt pattern

The Jack’s Blocks pattern is now available in a Crib size and a Throw size! 

The quilt shop I work for  recently got in this new fabric called Robotex by  Mint Blossom (Northcott).  It’s a great line for boys – full of robots, tools and gears.  I made a crib size version of Jack’s Blocks using the Robotex line and some Kona Ash for the sashing.  And of course I couldn’t resist using a stripe for the binding. 

quilt binding

The crib size of Jack’s Blocks finishes at 42” x 55” and the throw size is 55” x 68”

The pdf pattern can be purchased here and here, and if you have previously purchased Jack’s Blocks and would like these two new sizes let me know and I’d be happy to send you the new pattern. 

Jack's Blocks quilt pattern

Sunday, January 6, 2013

More Jumble

I was talking to a friend today about the Jumble quilt pattern and she got me thinking…

So I did a few calculations and figured out that the pattern is layer cake friendly and from one layer cake you can make either TWO throw size quilts or ONE twin size quilt!  For anyone who may be interested, here are some details. 

First of all, here is how I suggest cutting each layer cake square (10”x 10”)

If you take a look at the quilt pattern you’ll see that for each quilt block you need the following pieces:

1 (white) 3.5” square
4 (white) 2” x 6.5”
8 (white) 2” x 2.5”
8 (white) 2” x 5.5”
2 (fabric A) 2” x 3.5”
2 (fabric A) 3.5” x 6.5”
2 (fabric A) 2” x 6.5”
4 (fabric B,C,D,E) 2.5” square

In the diagram above you are able to cut all of the “fabric A” needed pieces from the 10” x 10” square.  You’ll have to add more fabric for the 2.5” corner pieces (a coordinating solid would be cute!)  and for the white (background) portion of the blocks. 

If your layer cake has 42 squares in it, you’ll be able to make a quilt that measures 72” x 84” – that’s a generous sized twin.  If your layer cake only has 40 squares, you can purchase one coordinating fat quarter to make up for those other two squares, or you can just make a slightly smaller quilt – say 5 blocks across and 7 blocks down.  That would need only 35 layer cake squares and makes a quilt that is 60” x 84”.  Still a nice size. 

jumble quilt top

I’ll add these layer cake cutting instructions to the pattern soon.  Pattern is updated!  I love finding uses for pre-cuts!  Thanks for the idea Deby!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Jumble - free quilt pattern

Jumble quilt on quilt ladder

Free quilt pattern anyone?  I wrote up the instructions for the Jumble quilt - you can find the free pattern here (view it, download it or print it!)  If you make a Jumble quilt I'd love to see it!

Jumble Quilt Pattern

Friday, January 4, 2013

Jumble Quilt

This quilt was one of my 2012 finishes but I’m just now getting around to blogging about it.  In September it was my turn to choose a block for our Imagine at do. Good Stitches group.  I came up with the Jumble quilt block:

Jumble Block

After finishing some other projects for friends and family last month, I finally was able to piece all of these Jumble blocks together and finish the quilting. 

jumble quilt on chair smaller

Here is the finished quilt:  (It measures 48” x 60” )

finished jumble quilt

For the backing I pieced together what I could find in my closet which included some Kona solid, and a couple of Riley Blake prints leftover from other projects.

I tried a new type of quilting on this one – not sure what too call it.  It’s similar to this circuit board design, but a lot “looser.”  Hm.  Guess I’ll call it “Loose Circuit Board.”  Ha! 

It was a little slower than just doing a meandering stitch, but I liked the finished look of it.  It went well with the quilt. 

jumble quilt back smaller

jumble quilt detail smaller

Now I just need to get her boxed up and mailed off to Threading Hope!

jumble quilt hanging smaller

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Whirled Quilt Block tutorial

It’s my turn again to choose a block for our do.Good Stitches group.  We'll be using black, gray and white fabrics:

Our block for this month is called Whirled:


It’s an easy block that has very little waste – love that! It’s quick to make too. 

The finished block measures 12.5”

For ONE block, you’ll need two pieces of your main fabric that measure 5” x 14”

step 1

and two 5” squares of white, cut once diagonally:

step 2

Step 1: Lay out the 5” x 14” strips.  Measure in 4.5" from each end.  Using a ruler that has a 45 degree marking, cut a 45 degree diagonal line between the two points.  This will give you four identical trapezoids.

**note: The direction that your diagonal line is cut will determine the direction that your Whirled block will "spin."  I prefer the look of the block when the fabric is cut as shown in the photo below.**

step 3

Step 2:  Using a 1/4” seam, sew one white triangle to each main print trapezoid as shown:

step 4

Repeat for next three triangles/trapezoids.  Carefully press (don’t pull on the bias edges) seam away from white triangle:

step 5

Step 3:  Sew two of these larger triangles together (1/4” seam again).  Press seam as shown below:

step 6

Step 4:  Sew the two block halves together (yep you guessed it – 1/4” seam again.)  Press the center seam to one side, again being careful not to stretch or pull the bias edges of the block.

step 7

There you have it!  One Whirled quilt block that measures 12.5”.  These were a rushed version of block instructions.  I’ll have a printable version in a day or so as well as some better photos.  These photos were the best I could do at 10:30pm :)

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