Easy To Make Fabric Card Holder

Easy To Make Fabric Card Holder

Like me, do you need a place to put all those punch cards, restaurant discount cards, gift cards, etc.? So you can take them out of your wallet, but still have them in your purse when you need them?

Or maybe you’d like to give your next gift card in style!

I’ve got a simple tutorial for sewing up a quick and easy fabric card holder for yourself, or to give as a gift, that takes only minutes. And it’s a great scrap-buster.

To make a this simple holder you’ll need to CUT:

One 4-1/2” x 5-1/2” rectangle of outer fabric

One 4-1/2” square of lining fabric

Two 4-1/2” x 3-3/4” rectangles of pocket fabrics

It’s nice to have contrasting fabrics, especially for the pockets & lining, but you can use all the same fabric if you want. I like using scraps or leftover layer cakes.

Fold pocket fabrics in half so they’re 1-1/2” x 4-1/2”

Place outer fabric right side up on your surface and place the pockets on either 4-1/2” end, lining up the raw edges. Sew each side seam ¼” from the raw edges.

Next place the lining fabric (centered) right side down over the top of the pockets & outer fabric. (Note: you’ll notice that the lining fabric doesn’t reach all the way to the ends of the pockets—so just center it.)

And sew just the top and bottom seams ¼” from the raw edges. Then clip each corner to reduce bulk

First turn just the lining fabric right side out & press.

Then turn each pocket right side out (over the lining) and use a blunt instrument to poke out the corners. Press.

To finish it off, topstitch about 1/8 to 1/4 inch from the edge all the way around the parameter.

And you’re done! Just press in half and add your gift card or cards.

Optional: Add an elastic & button closure. Simply sew an elastic hair band between the layers before sewing up the side seams/pockets, and sew a button on the front. Take care to sew the button only on the outer fabric and not through all the layers or the cards won’t fit in the pocket.

Have fun. I’d love to see what you create. Wouldn’t it be fun to send your graduate a gift card in a holder made out of their school or university colors? Or a baby shower gift card in baby fabric? So many ideas!

Hope you enjoyed the tutorial. Until next time, HAPPY QUILTING! …and gift giving!

Jane

Mulberry Patch Quilts

(Printable one page instructions below.)

AccuquiltGo Sawtooth Star: Get Mileage Out of the Dies You Own

AccuquiltGo Sawtooth Star: Get Mileage Out of the Dies You Own

You’ll see in my recent posts that I’m obsessed with learning how much mileage I can get with my Accuquilt GO!Cutter and the dies I already own.

I love the simplicity of the Sawtooth Star block and so I decided to see if I could design some pieced items with it using the dies I have.

Although I don’t own the 8” Go!Cube, I have almost all the shapes (see those in bold print on the list below). The only one shape I was missing was for the “flying geese” part of the star: the #4 GO! Quarter Square Triangle — so I ordered it. Yay!

To make the SAWTOOTH STAR BLOCK, you need four die shapes: GO! Shapes 1, 2, 4, & 5 (I’ve listed all the shapes that come in the GO! Cube below, and highlighted in bold the four you need),

  1. GO! Square-4 1/2″ (4″ Finished) (55708) —GOT IT
  2. GO! Square-2 1/2″ (2″ Finished) (55709) —GOT IT
  3. GO! Half Square Triangle-4″ Finished Square (55710)
  4. GO! Quarter Square Triangle-4″ Finished Square (55711)ORDERED IT
  5. GO! Half Square Triangle-2″ Finished Square (55712) —GOT IT
  6. GO! Square on Point-3 1/4″ (2 3/4″ Finished) (55713)
  7. GO! Parallelogram 45°-2 3/4″ x 3 1/2″ Sides (2 1/16” x 2 13/16″ Finished) (55714)

Next I fired up EQ8 on my laptop and started designing. Here are just a few of the ideas.

A Square Table Topper with borders
Larger Table Topper with 9-patch centers
And a table runner with three stars.

I decided start with the table runner using some beautiful spring fabrics I had in my stash by Robin Pickens for Moda. I seem to love every fabric line she designs!

It’s so fast and easy to cut the pieces with my Accuquilt GO! The precut notches at the corners really help with accurate piecing.
Here are the cut pieces for the stars (I changed my mind on the background fabric)
The pre-cut notches really help with more accurate piecing!
Adding the second star point.
All I needed to add were the corner squares and center square, fussy cut from the coneflower print.

After making two more stars, I changed the original design a bit by surrounding each star with a black inner border and the whole runner with red outer border.

I think it looks good as a wall hanging too.

I adore her coneflowers, so I used more on the back of the runner—it’s reversible.

It was so much fun to make, I couldn’t stop there…so next I tried piecing a simple table topper with only one star surrounded with an inner and outer border for myself.

Somehow the points on stars never looked this good when I used a ruler & rotary cutter! I credit the accuracy of the Accuquilt, not my piecing.

That’s how easy it is to figure out how to get the most “mileage” out of dies you already own (or like me buy one more die) to create dozens of new blocks. I hope you’ll fire up your EQ8 software or get out your graph paper and give it a try!

If you like the table-runner, it’s now on sale in my Etsy shop. The table topper has a found a new home in my diningroom 😉.

I hope you’ll give the Sawtooth Star a try! Until next time, HAPPY QUILTING!

Jane, Mulberry Patch Quilts

AccuquiltGo! Thoughts & Bear’s Paw Block

AccuquiltGo! Thoughts & Bear’s Paw Block

I purchased an Accuquilt Go die cutter awhile ago and have made so many great projects with it, including tumbler block baby quilts and Dresden Plate table toppers. But I wanted to use a combination of dies to create some other basic, well-known quilting blocks.

My original purchase of my AccuquiltGo! included a combination die (above). It has on it a 2” finished square, a couple 2” finished half square triangles (HST), and a 4” finished square.

Hey, that’s all I need to make the basic Bear’s Claw block! Perfect.

I haven’t yet purchased any of the the Accuquilt GoCubes. Mostly because I can’t decide which one to get! They have 6”, 8”, 9”, 12”, and have recently added a 4” GoCube. After doing a little research on the Accuquilt website I realized that each of these GoCube Sets cuts the exact same 8 basic shapes. The only difference is their finished size. The shapes are:

  1. GO! Square-large
  2. GO! Square-small
  3. GO! Half Square Triangle-large
  4. GO! Quarter Square Triangle
  5. GO! Half Square Triangle-small
  6. GO! Square on Point
  7. GO! Parallelogram 45°
  8. GO! Rectangle

That means if you figure out the shapes you need for a block, the shape numbers are always the same, no matter which CubeGo you have—only the finished size changes.

The light went on in my brain! Ah-hah! I get it. I discovered I already owned shapes 1, 2, & 5. So all I need are a few more (shapes 3, 4, 6, 7, 8) and I’ll have all the dies in the 8” GoCube.

  1. GO! Square-4 1/2″ (4″ Finished) (55708) —GOT IT
  2. GO! Square-2 1/2″ (2″ Finished) (55709) —GOT IT
  3. GO! Half Square Triangle-4″ Finished Square (55710)
  4. GO! Quarter Square Triangle-4″ Finished Square (55711)
  5. GO! Half Square Triangle-2″ Finished Square (55712) —GOT IT
  6. GO! Square on Point-3 1/4″ (2 3/4″ Finished) (55713)
  7. GO! Parallelogram 45°-2 3/4″ x 3 1/2″ Sides (2 1/16″ x 2 13/16″ Finished) (55714)
  8. GO! Rectangle-2 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ (2″ x 4″ Finished) (55715)

The white squares were cut with Shape 1, and I decided to purchase Shape #8 (the 2×4” finished rectangle) to cut the grey rectangles.

This pattern was designed by Robin Pickens and is free on her website.

To finish, I used my 1-1/2 (1” finished) strip die and 2-1/2 (2” finished) strip die for the borders and binding.

Don’t you just love Moda fabric by Robin Pickens? I do. These fabrics are from her Dandi-Annie & Dandi-Robin lines for Moda. I had just enough left from a lap quilt to make this table topper/wall hanging..

I decided to be a little more creative with my machine quilting. What do you think?

This table topper (that can double as a wall hanging) is now available for sale in my Etsy Shop.

I can’t wait to try figuring out how to make more items with the Accuquilt dies I already own. And maybe I’ll add a few more dies so I’ve got the equivalent of the 8” GoCube.

Stay tuned. And until next time…

HAPPY QUILTING!

Jane

Mulberry Patch Quilts

How to Bind Your Quilted Wall Hanging with 1-1/2” Single Fold Binding

How to Bind Your Quilted Wall Hanging with 1-1/2” Single Fold Binding

Normally I bind my quilts (baby quilts, lap quilts, bed quilts) using double folded straight-of-grain binding cut between 2-1/4 to 2-1/2 inches wide, folded in half (wrong sides together) and sewn on the quilt. For more info on that process, go to my blog post: How to Bind a Quilt—The Secret to Perfect Corners. Double fold is great for projects that will take need to stand up to a lot of wear and tear.

But I’ve found that single fold binding is perfect for most of my smaller projects, like wall hangings, table toppers, etc. I think it has a better look…not as thick and bulky, but nice and crisp. Plus you save on fabric. Here’s how to do it.

Cut 1-1/2 inch strips straight-of-grain

Whether I’m making double fold or single fold binding, I always cut on the straight of grain (from selvedge to selvedge). The only exception to this rule are projects that have curved edges…something with rounded corners, scallops, or completely round. That’s the only time I bother to cut on the bias. For most of my art quilts, wall hangings, or runners (which all have straight edges) cutting 1-1/2 inch strips on the straight-of-grain is fine.

First, figure out how many strips to cut. Take the measurement of the parameter of your project by adding up the length of the sides, top, and bottom and cut the number of 1-1/2 inch wide strips you need to equal that number plus a few extra inches. It never hurts to have too much.

Sew the strips ends right sides together at a 90 degree angle and sew from one corner (where they meet) to the other corner (I’m pointing to it with my tweezers).

Trim the seams to about 1/4 inch and press each open.

Starting in the center of one side of the project and leaving a long tail (about 6 inches or more) start sewing one side of the binding to the right side of the project. When you’re 1/4 inch from the corner, stop with the needle down, pivot, and sew off the corner edge at a 45 degree angle.

Take it out from under the presser foot and turn to the next unsewn edge. Flip the binding up so it’s parallel to this next edge.

When I get junk mail, I save those laminated cards they often send. They’re perfect for this technique. Any thin plastic card or index card will work. This technique will help you get the feel for how to get perfect mitered corners on your binding. Just place the card across top raw edge of the quilt/binding (top) and bring the binding down across the top of the card and flush with the raw edge of the next edge to sew.

Bring the binding over the card, flush with edge of next portion & pin

I put a pin just below the card to keep it in place and then slip the card out.

Then continue sewing from the edge to the next corner and repeat the process until you come to where you started. Stop sewing several inches from the beginning and take it to your cutting table.

You’ll have a “tail” on each end and several inches (about 8-10”) between where you started & stopped sewing in the middle of one side.

To join these two tail ends, trim the right side tail of your binding so it ends half way between the beginning & the end of your sewing.

Lay that trimmed binding piece over the end you just trimmed.

Place your left tail over the right & fold it back until it’s in line with the right edge of that extra piece of binding and cut it at that fold. Perfect! (The ends of the binding tails will overlap by the width of that extra binding, which in this case is 1-1/2 inches, but this trick works with any size binding and NO MATH or special tools needed! So I always do it. Yay.

To make it really nice, use your ruler & a fabric marker to draw a 45 degree line as a guide to sew on.

Then overlap the binding ends as shown above & sew right sides together on that drawn line.

Double-check to be sure it’s sewn the right way (ask me how I know), and then trim the seam to 1/4 inch and press open. Line up the raw edges and finish sewing the binding to the quilt.

Tada! All sewn. All that’s left it to fold it to the back & hand sew.

First iron the binding out from the right side, all the way around.

Turn the quilt over and from the back turn the raw edge of the binding in half so it meets the raw edge of the quilt (at the corners too)…

Then fold in again, bringing the folded edge over so it covers the stitching and pin. Stop at the corner, pinning as close as you can to a 1/4” from the edge.

To make a crisp mitered corner lay a pin or stiletto across the corner edge of the binding just to hold it in place (see photo) …

…while folding the next edge & pin. See how nicely the corner miters? Continue folding/pinning around the quilt.

Then sew the folded/pinned edge to the back by hand.

Don’t the corners look great? …From the back…

…as well as the front!

Double Star Barn Quilted Wall Hanging/Table Topper

All Done! I’m in the process of creating a pdf pattern for my newest quilted wall hanging/table topper called “Double Star Barn”. I’m thrilled to be able to share it with you in my Etsy Shop and it should be available in just a day or two, so be sure to check Mulberry Patch Quilts if you’re interested.

Would you like to learn how to add “triangle corners” to easily hang your quilt? Check our my blog How to use Corner Triangles to Hang a Quilted Wall Hanging.

I hope these tips and tricks were helpful for your next project. And that the photos helped the explanation.

Until next time, HAPPY QUILTING,

Jane

Mulberry Patch Quilts

Easy Patchwork: Triangle Corner made with a Square, or “Snowball” Corners

Easy Patchwork: Triangle Corner made with a Square, or “Snowball” Corners

It’s easy to make a triangle on the corner of a block, no math involved. I first heard of this technique from an amazing quilt teacher, Mary Ellen Hopkins, who wrote groundbreaking quilting books like “It’s OK if You Sit on My Quilt”, and “Connecting Triangles” among others. Mary Ellen was probably best known for creating the connector and perfect piecing triangles concepts. I was so lucky to have the opportunity to see her at her lecture in Milwaukee just a few years before she passed away (in 2013). Not only did she make quilting fun, her sense of humor and showmanship shined during what I would call her “performance” instead of her lecture.

Here’s how to do this technique. In this example, I’ll add a triangle to the top of a rectangle. I cut a square the same width as the rectangle. On the wrong side of the square, I drew a line from one corner to the opposite corner. Since I’ll be sewing on this line, I like to use a very fine point sharpie or a mechanical pencil with a light hand—just dark enough to see.

Draw a line corner to corner.

Place the rectangle right side up and the marked square right side down on top of it (right sides together) paying attention to the orientation of the angle.

Then sew on the drawn line.

If I’m making more than one I like to sew one after the other (chain piecing) without having to cut the threads in-between until I’m finished.

Then I take it to the ironing board (love my wool pressing surface by the way) and I give it a good press as is to set the seam.

Then I gently open the seam by folding the edge of the square to meet the opposite corner.

Press, then lift the top layer up to reveal the two layers beneath it…
Trim bottom 2 layers with 1/4” seam.
You’ll end up with a beautiful triangle…no math necessary.

This video might make it easier to understand…just hit the play button below.

These corner triangles (made with marked squares) are sometimes referred to as “snowball” corners, or “snowballed”. You can use them to make all sorts of blocks: snowball, flying geese, or star points. Let me show you a few examples.

By adding a second triangle (same angle orientation) to the bottom, I’ve made a simple parallelogram.

Or by adding them to four corners of a square, I can make a snowball block. Here’s one of my baby quilts featuring the snowball. I’ve added color triangles to the white squares & white triangles to the color blocks.

But look what happens when

I added the triangles to only opposite sides of the squares. I sewed grey to opposite sides of each square and it’s the arrangement of the squares that makes the Xs & Os design.
This is the exact same idea, but they form stretched stars in my lap quilt made with red and white scraps. It’s all in the colors & block arrangement that gives the illusion of stars.
And by adding the “snowballed” corners to 2 corners on the same side of some squares it creates these adorable stars on my baby quilt made with 30s reproduction fabrics and bleached muslin,

So give this technique a try. And play with different sizes and shapes. The sky’s the limit! Have fun.

Until next time, HAPPY QUILTING

Jane

Mulberry Patch Quilts

How to Use Corner Triangles to Hang a Quilted Wall Hanging

How to Use Corner Triangles to Hang a Quilted Wall Hanging

I have found an easy way to hang smaller quilted wall hangings or art quilts on your wall…hanging corner triangles. They’re so easy to incorporate into your binding. Here’s how.

After you’ve finished quilting your wall hanging and have trimmed the edges to prepare it for binding, you can add these corner hanging triangles to the back.

Cut two 5” squares. I like to use the same fabric as the backing, but if you don’t have enough, any fabric scraps will work. I like to try to match the background so they will blend in and you don’t notice them when you look at the back. This is especially nice if you’ve made a wall hanging that you might want to use as a table topper too. It looks nice and won’t interfere. But if your item will only be hung on a wall, matching the fabric really doesn’t matter. You can even use leftover charm squares, or muslin.

Cut two squares approximately 5” each.

Fold each of the squares wrong sides together corner to corner and give them a good press with a hot iron.

Pin each triangle to the top corners of the back of your wall hanging, with the raw edges of the triangle matching the raw edges of your quilt.

With your sewing machine baste the triangle edges to the quilt using a walking foot and a scant quarter inch seam.

The raw edges are on the outer edges & the folded edge is towards the inside.

Bind your wall hanging in the usual manner, incorporating the basted triangle edges with the edges of the quilt. Once bound, all you need is a thin wooden dowel cut slightly shorter than the quilt. The thickness depends on how heavy the wall hanging is. This particular wall hanging is 20 x 20 inches square. I used a quarter-inch dowel, but even a thinner one would have been substantial enough to carry the weight.

Just slip both ends of the wooden dowel inside both triangle corners and you’re ready to hang it on your wall with a nail, or hook.

This wall hanging pattern will be available at my Etsy Shop soon!

For smaller art quilts or wall hangings I start with smaller squares (4”) and use thinner wooden dowels. I’ve even found wooden skewers to be long and thick enough for small projects. Experiment to see what size works best for your quilt.

This mini is 13 inches wide.
…so I used smaller squares & inserted a wooden skewer (cut to fit).

Keep in mind, this technique won’t work for large or heavy quilts/wall hangings. They might need more support in the center. It will all depend on the width and weight of the wall hanging.

For larger items, I use sew in a “hanging sleeve” that goes all the way across the top of the quilt back, so the quilt’s weight is more evenly distributed.

If you’re interested in making a full length hanging sleeve, see my blog on hanging quilts.

I hope this was helpful. Until next time,

HAPPY QUILTING,

Jane, Mulberry Patch Quilts

The 15 Minute Face Mask DIY

The 15 Minute Face Mask DIY

Wow! 2020. This has been one crazy year so far, hasn’t it? And I just realized I haven’t posted a thing since it all started.

One reason I haven’t posted is that I‘ve been busy making face masks. I started making them back in March when there was a shortage masks. I got a few requests from family…and then the requests rolled in from all over—our local EMTs, my family doctor’s clinic, friends who are medical techs, nurses, and of course family and friends. It was my pleasure and a labor of love…a way (however small) of helping.

After fulfilling requests for 250 plus masks, I finally think I’ve perfected a pattern that I really like. It’s an accordion pleat style mask that includes a pocket in the lining (for those who want to add an additional filter), a nose wire (to help conform it to the bridge of your nose), different fabric on the front & back (so you can remember at a glance which side goes towards your face) and ear loops.

Now that face masks are more plentiful and easy to find and buy everywhere, I’m not making many masks anymore. But because many cities, counties, and even states in the US are requiring people wear masks inside public buildings—and with this pandemic staying around much longer than we had hoped—I thought I’d share my pattern step-by-step with you in case you’d like to try making some for your family.

There are a lot of face mask patterns & how-to’s out there to choose from. What I like about this pattern is that it includes all the features I want and it’s comfortable to wear. I can use scrap cotton fabrics I have on hand from my quilting stash, and it only takes about 15 minutes to make. Here’s how…

Materials: You’ll need a rectangle of cotton lining fabric cut 9×6”, and some pretty cotton fabric for the front cut 9×7-1/4”. You’ll also need either 1/8 inch or 1/4 inch elastic (white or black), each cut approximately 7”, and a 4-5” length of nose wire.*

Place the lining & front fabrics right sides together & make a mark 1/2” down & 2” from each edge the top (see photo below).

This is the only time you’ll use a 1/2” seam, …sew from one edge to the 2 inch mark & stop/backstitch. sew the other edge to the 2 inch mark & stop/backstitch. (This will leave a 5 inch opening in the middle. Take it to your ironing board & press the seam open.

Open it up & topstitch across the lining seam allowance only, about 1/4” from the seam/hole, which will finish that seam allowance. (Do NOT topstitch the fashion fabric front seam allowance.)

Next place the opposite ends right sides together & sew 1/4 inch seam across the bottom. Then press from that stitched edge (bottom) to the top. As you do this, you’ll notice the seam you just topstitched will automatically “roll” to the back/lining.— see photo below.

Elastic Ear Loops. Take the one of the pieces elastic and place one end inside the top edge of the side seam and begin sewing 1/4” seam, backstitching over the elastic, and continue sewing about half way down the side…

Then reach inside and (being sure the elastic doesn’t twist & that it lays flat) grab the other end of the elastic and place it in the bottom of the seam. And finish sewing the edge backstitching over the elastic. It’s ok to let a bit of end of the elastic hang out.)

This diagram (below) might make that step clearer…note the elastic is inside (between) the two fabrics.

Do the same with the second piece of elastic on the opposite side.

Turn the mask right side out through the hole (pocket) at the top and use your favorite tool to “poke” the edges out and give it a nice press with your iron.

This is how it looks from the lining side.

*The nose wire. I’m using coated speaker wire a friend gave me. It keeps it’s shape and the plastic coating keeps it from rusting in the wash. But you can use floral wire, twisty ties, or pipecleaners.

I like to create the casement for the wire first, leave one end open to insert the wire & then sew it shut. Start sewing from the top edge about 2” in from one side, going down about 1/2”, pivot & continue topstitching parallel to the top edge. This will create a casing. Stop & backstitch when you’re a few threads from the end of the pocket so you have enough room to insert the wire.

Sew from the top down a out 1/2”
Stop to leave a small opening to insert the wire.

Insert the wire into the casing and finish by topstitching starting at the top edge, pivot and topstitch until you’ve closed the opening of the casing.

Pleating. Now it’s time to make the pleats. I like to put three pleats on each side of the mask. Be sure your pleats face down when folded. If you’re making just a few masks it’s easy to make equal folds (pinches about 1/4” each) and either pin or clamp them downward and topstitch about a quarter inch from each side.

However, if you’re making a bunch of masks, I have a much better way of making consistent pleats that I learned from a YouTube video, and no pinning required! You can create a pleater to do the hard work for you. Here’s the link on YouTube created by Hilary Mark Nelson…genius! https://youtu.be/iUgZWfko_d8https://youtu.be/iUgZWfko_d8

His gadget is made from lightweight cardboard (like cereal boxes) and then is taped together with packaging tape. I was lucky enough to have a friend‘s husband make one for me…thanks Rodger!

Here’s what it looks like.
I just line up the bottom, right side up and start folding…
And folding and folding…
I can pick it up, take it to the sewing machine and stitch…no pins needed!!

Topstitch about 1/4” from each edge.

At this point I also topstitch across the bottom of the mask. It’s not necessary but I think it helps the mask keep it’s shape after washing.

A little press with a hot iron and you’re done!

I hope this tutorial encourages you to try making a mask or two for your family and friends.

It’s fun using different fabrics from my stash of 100% cotton fabrics.

Until next time,

HAPPY QUILTING!

Jane

PS: Please note that these are not medical grade masks.

Mulberry Patch Quilts

Quilted Hearts and Twister

Quilted Hearts and Twister

I’ve been wanting to make something for Valentines Day, and when the theme of “Red, White, & Blue” for Project Quilting Challenge #2 (Season 10), I knew what I wanted to make.

The challenge states you can use reds, whites, and blues…any shades…no other colors, but you DON’T have to use all three colors.

  1. RULE#1…Your project should contain ONLY the colors RED, WHITE, and BLUE. It does not have to use all three, but it cannot include any additional colors.

So I decided, with Valentines Day coming up, I’d limit my colors to just the red and white. I went to work scrounging in my fabric stash for every shade of red and white (with no other colors in them) that I could find.

After going through my patterns, searching Pinterest, and having a desire to use my Lil’ Twister tool again, I found a tutorial by Connie Kresin on the cutest little Twister heart pattern and decided that was the one!

I made a quick sketch of the layout of the square colors on paper, and then cut the fabric stash into 5 inch squares. Here they are (below) pinned on my design wall. I realized quickly that it’s best to have contrast between each square (except for the background that’s all the same white with red print).

I sewed the squares together.

Question: do you press the seams to one side (each row in opposite directions) so the seams nest together making the columns easier to sew together? Or do you press the seams open so there’s less bulk at the intersections, making it easier to cut and piece the pinwheels later?

I decided to press the seams open. It takes longer, but it sure makes cutting & sewing the pinwheels easier later.

The next step involves the Lil’ Twister square template. Just line the black lines on the template with where the seams intersect and cut. I twisted them slightly and carefully placed them side by side in a row as I cut them.

Before going on to cut the next row, I like to sew the row together, and even sew the rows together too…less chance of getting them mixed up.

after cutting everything out, you’ll end up with lots of tiny pieces of leftover fabric… I like to trim them to 2-1/2 inch squares to use in another project. I ran out of the background fabric, but if I had more of it I might have used these squares in one of the borders.

This is the fun part! I love ❤️ seeing the pattern–in this case the heart–emerge as I piece it together. Magical!

To keep everything nice and flat, I used Best Press on each row.

All that was left was to add a couple borders, add the batting and backing, and quilt it on my domestic machine (my sweet Bernina 570QE).

Using various reds (Aurifil and Sulky threads), I free motion quilted petals in each pinwheel. And with a walking foot and white thread, did a straight stitch around the heart shape and around the border.

and here it is!

I’m entering this Twisted Heart wall hanging in this week’s Project Quilting.

UPDATE: The voting is now closed. No prizes this time, but it did rank #11 out if 118 entries. Thanks so much for your vote!

Until next time, HAPPY QUILTING!

Jane

Mulberry Patch Quilts

Mosaic Quilts: My Infatuation Continues

Mosaic Quilts: My Infatuation Continues

So after seeing the gorgeous quilts by Heidi Proffetty (see my earlier post) and not having access to a digital fabric cutter (which is really a necessity for her technique), I thought I’d try creating another small mosaic art quilt using the simpler tiny squares recommended by Cheryl Lynch (see previous blog post).

I thought you might enjoy following along with the process.

The first step was to find a very simple, but inspiring photo that I could trace to make the pattern outline. I found a photo that I had taken last spring of a Trillium (my fav woodland wildflower).

I downloaded a tracing app for my iPad and used it to roughly trace the outline of the petals & leaves. Note: There are a lot of tracing apps out there (and I certainly haven’t tried them all), but this one (free) allowed me to upload my photo and trace over it with my finger or my computer stylus. It’s rough, but that’s okay…I can go over the lines again with a black Sharpie pen after it’s printed.

This particular app allows you to fade out the background (photo) so you can print only the lines, which saves printer ink. That’s a nice feature.

After saving the tracing as a jpeg file, I needed to enlarge it at 200% to get it to print to the size of a sheet of copy paper, which was the size I was looking for. Once my outline was printed, I used Cheryl Lynch’s technique of taping it to a piece of core board and then thumbtacking a sheet of Steam-a-Seam 2 over it, uncovering the top of the fusible to expose the sticky side up.

Next, it was time to go through my collection of cotton batik fabrics to see what colors might work for the tiles. I cut them into 3/4 inch squares, using Cheryl Lynch’s mini mosaic cutting guide and found that the more variation you have in the light/dark of each color, the better it looks.

Now for the fun part…placing each individual square fabric “tile” with a tweezers. It’s somewhat like putting a puzzle together…one area of color at a time, but you don’t have to make them all fit…you can trim pieces to fit as needed.

For a project this small it doesn’t take long to cut enough squares of fabric to get started. The variation in the value of each fabric color is the key. You don’t want them to look too flat by having each tile exactly the same color value. I added some bright yellow strips in the center of the flower.

It’s slowly progressing! It takes quite awhile to individually place each square with a tweezers, but it’s surprising how much is accomplished by working on it in 30 minute segments throughout a couple of days. Before you know it, it’s finished and ready to fuse to the “grout” fabric and add the tulle netting over the top …

…adding the borders, batting, & backing …

and do the machine quilting using white cotton thread and a walking foot. I stitched between the rows of mosaic squares in the “grout area”, and outlined the petals and leaves. I added a few quilted veins into the petals of the Trillium too.

Close up of the quilted veins & center of the Trillium

What do you think? Originally the background was all browns and green, but I decided it needed more contrast, so I took out some of the squares and re-did the top portion of the background in blue sky.

I’m excited to report that this mosaic quilt has been featured in the Winter 2019 Issue of Art Quilting Studio…so exciting!

I’m ready to try it again…how about you?

Until next time, HAPPY QUILTING!

Jane

Mulberry Patch Quilts

How to Hang a Quilt on the Wall

The best way to hang a quilt on your wall is to sew a fabric hanging sleeve to the back. Here’s how…

What you’ll need:

  • A strip of cotton fabric that coordinates with the backing (or plain muslin fabric), 8-1/2 inch wide by the width of your quilt
  • Needle & thread
  • a wooden dowel
  • nails or 2 Command Strip hooks

How to make the hanging sleeve:

Cut an 8-1/2” strip of cotton fabric the same width as your finished quilt. This will make your finished sleeve 4 inches wide. (*NOTE:  if you’re going to enter your quilt in a show, most require a hanging sleeve 4” wide; however, if you’re using a wooden dowel to hang the sleeve on your wall you only need the finished sleeve to be wide enough to slip the dowel through—so you can opt to cut it smaller…see note at bottom.)

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Fold under the short ends of your strip 1/4 inch or more and press; then fold it over once more about 1/4” or more and press.  Using your sewing machine, topstitch.

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Next fold the strip down the middle the long way (wrong sides together) and iron to make a crease down the center.

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Open the strip back up and press each long edge to that center creas.

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Now open the strip up again and bring the long edges together (wrong sides together), pin, and machine stitch a 1/4” seam. Now you have a long tube.

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Carefully press that seam open. Be careful not to disturb your original press lines on the edges.  (NOTE: You’ll notice that the sleeve doesn’t lie flat—the front side (without the seam) is a bit wider than the back, so it “curls”.  Don’t worry–it’s meant to be that way.)

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Lay the back of the sleeve (hemmed side) onto the back of your quilt, positioning the top crease about 1/2” from the top (or just a “smidge” under the binding)—and pin. Then pin the lower creased edge.

By hand, with a needle and matching thread, whip stitch the top creased edge and bottom creased edge to the quilt backing.  (NOTE:  Be sure not to sew all the way through the quilt…we don’t want the stitching to show on the front of the quilt.)

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You can also whip stitch the short ends to the quilt…but only the back part…. (NOTE:  Be sure not to whip stitch the front of the short ends—you need the ends open so you can slip the dowel inside the sleeve.)

Again, notice the front of the sleeve will poof out just a bit (see photo below). That’s okay! This is done on purpose to accommodate the width of the wooden dowel (or rod) so that the front of the quilt doesn’t buckle or get distorted when you hang it up.

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The wooden dowel can be any diameter, but I like to choose the smallest diameter dowel that can handle the weight of the quilt without bending out of shape.  For most of my quilts and wall hangings, I use a 3/8 to 1/2 inch diameter wooden dowel.  For my smaller wallhangings, I might even use a smaller one. If you’re hanging a very large bed-sized quilt, or a quilt that is unusually heavy, you might want to consider a larger diameter dowel or even use a metal curtain rod.

Cut the wooden dowel about an inch or less than your quilt back.  Twist an eye screw into each end.  Slip the dowel evenly through the hanging sleeve.  Hold the quilt (with dowel) up against your wall, positioning where you want it and being sure it’s level. Then mark with a pencil where the center of the eye screws are.  Then hammer the nails at those marks, and hang the quilt by putting the eye screws on the nails.

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If you’d rather not use the eye screws, you can cut the dowel almost the same size as the quilt, and hang the dowel ends directly on command strip hooks or nails instead.

That’s it!  Here’s a photo of my latest quilted wallhanging on my wall…

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By the way, this one’s for sale in my Etsy shop.

I hang all of my quilted wall hangings and art quilts this way. Here’s one in my livingroom… and a large landscape art quilt in my diningroom…

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And s photo of the hanging sleeve on the back of one of my smaller art quilts. I used a 3/8 inch diameter wooden dowel for this one…

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This method of hanging quilts works great for most of my quilted wall hangings and quilts. However, I’ve found a different method for hanging my small art quilts.

If you’d like to see that tutorial, just go to my earlier blog HERE.

Most quilt contests require a hanging sleeve that is 4 inches wide, so by cutting your original strip 8-1/2” it will end up being 4” wide. However, if you’re just hanging it at home, you don’t really need to start with your strip that wide. Just be sure your strip us wide enough so when it’s finished you can insert the dowel through it with a little extra wiggle room (don’t make it too tight).

I hope this tutorial on hanging your quilt is helpful.

Until next time,

HAPPY QUILTING,

Jane

Mulberry Patch Quilts