Quick, Easy and Reversible Placemats!

Quick, Easy and Reversible Placemats!

If you’re like me, every once in a while you need a break from those big projects to work on something that will give you instant gratification (and add a little pizazz to your house)! It’s even better when you can use that fat quarter bundle you’ve been wanting to cut in to. Check out the process below for these quick and easy reversible placemats I’ve been making lately!

First thing’s first, choose a fat quarter bundle from your stash (or shop for one at Missouri Star Quilt Co. HERE) that you know will look great on your dining room table. We chose to use the lovely Garden Splendor Fat Quarter Bundle by Wild Apple for Robert Kaufman.

You can choose to use the same fabric for each side, or mix and match fabric from the same collection. It’s also fun to pair an Autumn themed fabric with a Christmas or Winter themed fabric. Then all you have to do it flip the placemats over as the seasons change!

Cut your fabric to 14.5″ x 20.5″, place your two fabrics right sides together and pin them in place.

Next, take them over to the sewing machine and sew a quarter inch seam around the edges, leaving about a 3″-4″ opening so that it can be flipped inside out.

Trim off the excess fabric from the corners, remove your pins, and flip the placemat inside out. Make sure to poke the corners out so they are pointy. (Tip: “The Purple Thang” and the MSQC ModBlock Bamboo Creaser Tool work great for this!)

Work out the seams around the edge with your fingers so that they are not rolled inwards, and iron those wrinkles away.

Finally, finish your beautiful placemats up by sewing a quarter inch seam all the way around the edges.

Watch the full process in a past Facebook Live Video HERE.

Insider tip:You can do the same exact process to make a cloth napkin just by cutting your fabric differently! Simply cut your fabric to approximately 16.5″ x 16.5″ instead of 14.5″ x 20.5″.

 

 

DIY Easy Baby Gift Ideas!

DIY Easy Baby Gift Ideas!

I love welcoming new bundles of joy to the world with homemade gifts from the heart. I just found out recently that I’ll have a new niece or nephew by this fall, my cousin’s pregnant, and so is one of my best friends! They seem to come in threes, don’t they? As you can imagine, I’ve already started dreaming about all the fun gifts I can make. 

DIY Easy Baby Gift Ideas from Missouri Star Quilt Co.

A baby quilt is always a wonderful option (we even have baby quilting kits and tutorials to help), but if you’re looking for something extra to go with it, or something a little quicker, here are some projects you’re bound to adore.

Soft Book Multi Panels at Missouri Star Quilt Co.

Small children have surprisingly strong grips! Keep them turning pages without tears with soft, fabric books. Choose from Safari Expedition, McAnderson’s Farm, Sweet Dreams Little One, Travel Around the World, You’re My Little Chickadee, and many more! Check them out HERE

Elephant Cuddle Family Kit

Stuffed animals are always a big hit with little ones, but they’re even better when they’re made with love instead of store-bought and when they’re made with extra plush Shannon Cuddle like these in the Elephant Cuddle Family Kit!

Fam_Animals

Old MacDonald had a farm e-i-e-i-o. And on that farm there were the cutest Farm Fun animals you’ve ever seen! These stuffed animals are so easy to make. Simply cut out the pieces from the fabric panel, stitch them together, and stuff. You’ll have a gift they’ll love completed in no time! 

Dudley and Dolittle Kit

 

Dudley and Doolittle are two life-size sea turtles that can’t wait to be squeezed! Wouldn’t they be the perfect addition to an “Under the Sea” themed nursery? We think so!

 

 

 

 

(setup)MyBubba_v1_RE copy

Tummy time just got a lot more fun! Stitch up a soft, snuggly buddy for baby made with Cuddle fabrics by Shannon in tan or aqua.

3 swaddles

If you don’t have time to make something this time around, check out our Swaddle Blankets from Shannon Fabrics! They’re beautiful, great quality, and affordable!

Happy making!

Summer in the Park Tutorial Reboot Featuring Lee Ann Perry!

Summer in the Park Tutorial Reboot Featuring Lee Ann Perry!

Lee Ann Perry Tutorial Reboot
Hi! My name is Lee Ann. I’m a wife and mother of four. When I was expecting my third child, I saw some rag quilts on Etsy and thought they were adorable—but expensive. I mean, $65 for a little baby blanket?  
So I bought my first sewing machine and a set of fat quarters by Kaffe Fassett. I learned how to make my first rag quilt by watching a tutorial by Vanessa Vargas Wilson on YouTube. I was pretty happy with the result but my husband teased me a bit. ”Why spend $65 on a blanket when you can make it yourself for $300?”
But, I fell in love with sewing!  Putting colors together.  Feeling the fabric run through my fingers. And the finished project was an item that was both USEFUL and beautiful. I made several rag quilts before getting bored and wanting to learn more. That’s when I found the free video tutorials online by MSQC.
One of the first “real” quilts I made was from a pattern called Summer in the Park using a jelly roll, a line by Tula Pink, the Birds and the Bees.
Watching the videos made it easy for me to follow along—or watch a half dozen times if necessary, and sometimes it was! The finished quilt was so worth it.
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But, like many quilters, I don’t ever make the same thing twice! You’ve got to change it up a bit.
Recently I came back to this pattern and changed only two things.
In the tutorial, Natalie uses a brightly colored jelly roll and combines it with a jelly roll of white strips. When sewing them together, she sews two strip sets, 1) white, print, white, and 2) print, white, print.
So to change it up, I chose a jelly roll of Carolyn Friedlander’s Carkai. Instead of white, I used a darker CHAMBRAY fabric.  I also changed how I sewed my strips together. ALL of my 3 strip sets were sewed as: print, chambray, print.
 
The 3-strip-sets are then sewed to each other, right sides facing, into a “tube.”
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Now comes the really fun part—cutting the tubes into squares. You lay your tube down and cut triangles—when you open it up, they will be perfect squares!
The best ruler for this is the Triangle Square Up Ruler, 9 1/2” by Quilt in a Day. I don’t happen to have that ruler (mine only goes up to 6 1/2”), so I had to make do with my big square up ruler for squares. I put the point of my ruler right up to the seam but did not cross it. Then, I made sure both of the 8” marks touched the bottom seam before making a cut.
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Continue cutting the tube, swiveling the ruler around the opposite way to maximize the number of cuts you can make.  I was able to get five finished 8” squares from each “tube.”
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When sewing the squares together, I made sure to nest the seams to make perfect points.
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I sent this quilt off to MSQC for machine quilting.  My local lady is great but she will not back anything with fleece.  MSQC does — Cuddle/minky too!  This is my first quilt backed with fleece and it’s pretty much the best thing EVER.
After it came back, I had to choose binding fabric.  I always “audition” a few colors first.
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After letting this quilt and the different options sit on my table for a few days, I ended up going with the same chambray I used in the quilt blocks.
My favorite binding tutorial is The Ultimate Quilt Binding Tutorial by MSQC.  No binding tool required!  I used to have one but I don’t use it anymore.  This method is the easiest!  But, I must confess, I had to watch this video EVERY SINGLE TIME a quilt needed finishing for at least the first ten quilts I made.
Here’s the finished result of my “reboot”.
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And now that I’ve spent a few years piecing quilts…I’ve decided a $65 rag quilt is more than fair!  A bargain, really! But, I wouldn’t trade learning a new hobby for ANYTHING.  Quilting has become my quiet place and saving grace in my busy life.
lee ann perry pinnable
Thank you, MSQC for asking me to write this blog post and for teaching me how to quilt in the first place!
You can follow my quilty adventures on Instagram at leeannjperry.
New Bonus Tutorial: Intro to English Paper Piecing with Sue Daley

New Bonus Tutorial: Intro to English Paper Piecing with Sue Daley

Video Tutorial: Intro to English Paper Piecing with Sue Daley!

Happy English Paper Piecing Week! Jenny has teamed up with English Paper Piecing guru, Sue Daley, to bring you an entire series of helpful tutorials and tips. Tune in all week for great projects and instruction to show you how fun and easy English Paper Piecing can be!

Video Tutorial: Intro to English Paper Piecing with Sue Daley!

First on the docket? An Intro to English Paper Piecing tutorial! Click on the button below to watch!

Watch the Latest Tutorial from Missouri Star Quilt Co!

Prairie Flower Tutorial Reboot – Featuring Guest Blogger Natalie Barnes

Prairie Flower Tutorial Reboot – Featuring Guest Blogger Natalie Barnes

Make a Prairie Flower Table Runner with Natalie Barnes!

Hi there, everyone!  It’s Natalie Barnes, here.  Proprietor of beyond the reef pattern company, licensed designer for Windham Fabrics, and author of A Modern Twist (Martingale/TPP).   

Table Runner Tutorial -- Prairie Flower Pattern

I’m just so excited to be here at Missouri Star Quilt Co.’s blog!  This year, I had the great opportunity to participate in the Missouri Star Quilt Co. Birthday Bash with Windham Fabrics. I just fell in love with the work that MSQCo. has done with Hamilton, Missouri!  Every detail you could possibly want or imagine is available for your visit. They have beautifully organized each and every one of the different shops, provided great dining and food options, and even created a retreat center!  For me, with a background in interior design/architecture, I loved seeing the buildings being restored to their original grandeur, and it was fascinating to hear about the local history that MSQCo. is keeping alive!  Thank you, Jenny, for making all of this a reality.

Natalie Barnes visiting Missouri Star Quilt Company!

There’s no getting around it.  As quilters, we are precise.  And we are organized.  Each and every one of us, organized.  Well.  In our own way.

Personally, I fall into the “controlled chaos” method of organization.  If you look at Amy Ellis’ charts and graphs manner of calculating yardage, you’ll see another way.  Or Angela Walters’ ribbon candy quilting.  Precise.  Organized.

We know exactly where a 1/4″ seam lies on any sewing machine we come across.  We always know where our sewing scissors are and where we keep (read: hide) the rotary cutters.  We know how much yardage we need for binding, and like Mama Jenny, we know that there are twelve (12) 5″ squares in a fat quarter, and fifty six (56) 2-1/2″ square “snowballs” or “dog ears” in a fat quarter, as well.  

Precise and Organized.

That’s what I’m going with.

Until someone calls and says, “You’re hosting Tuesday’s luncheon”, and we go into a sort of….well….you know the drill.  How many 10″ square napkins can I get out of two yards of fabric?  What is the standard size of a placemat?  Can I just turn them right sides out and quilt?  Will anyone notice they’re not bound?  I need something to go with the runner I have on the dining room table!!!  Oh.  Wait.  Food.  She said luncheon, didn’t she

That drill.

Jill Marie Landis, writer, best girlfriend, and inspiration for my pattern company, beyond the reef, would say, “If I walked in to Natalie’s house before a party, and didn’t find her just stepping out of the shower, I’d think I was in the wrong home.”   

“But the placemats are done”, I would reply, “and they match the runner”!  

One day it hit me.  Make the table runners in pairs, run them along the short side of the table, and voila!  The table is coordinated.   Table runner as placemat.  Two for one!

Table Runner Tutorial -- Prairie Flower Pattern

 

And with the amount of resources that Missouri Star Quilt Co. gives us, a quick review of the youTube channel is all we need to select a fool proof block large enough to use for our runners doubling as placemats.

This project is made using the pattern “Prairie Flower“, and Hand Maker Fabrics – my very first line of fabric, I’m proud to say – by Windham Fabrics.

Table Runner Tutorial -- Prairie Flower Pattern
Once the fabrics are chosen, create a “color recipe” for the project.

Table Runner Tutorial -- Prairie Flower Pattern

The Blossoms will be made using the three medium value prints.

The Leaves will be the bright/dark prints, and they are scrappy – the more the merrier.

The Center of the Blossom will be the grey print, and the snowballs will be a mottled solid.  (Palette by Marcia Derse for Windham Fabrics)

Select a favorite print from Hand Maker for the backing – and use a contrasting binding.  This will give you two runner “looks”  from one set of runners!

For the two 13-1/2″ x 67-1/2″ runners, 1 x 5 blocks each, cut a total of:

Blossoms:   (40) 5″ squares

Leaves: (40) 5″ squares

Centers: (10) 5″ squares

Snowballs: (160) 2-1/2″ squares

Remember, your piecing accuracy is only as good as your cutting accuracy.  Here’s my first hint – – take time with this step, and enjoy the process.  Using the 2-1/2″ ruler and the 5″ ruler from the MSQCo. shop is really time efficient.  There’s no stopping to confirm the dimension is 5″ not 6″  (admit it, you know you’ve done it.  I’ve also cut tons of 3″ squares, thinking they were 2-1/2″, too.  Precise 3″ squares.  I’ll admit it….)

Table Runner Tutorial -- Prairie Flower Pattern

Snowballs: 1 yard mottled solid

Binding: 2-1/4″ straight binding / 2/3 yard

(10) 40″ x 2-1/4″ strips

Backing: 2-1/8 yards

(leaving 4″ top and bottom for machine quilting / placing two runners

side by side when machine quilting)

Use Mama Jenny’s proven method of ironing the snow balls from corner to corner, and settle in with a good wholesome “lots of dialog” movie and start stitching until all of the snow ball corners complete.  

Here is Jenny’s full tutorial:

Table Runner Tutorial -- Prairie Flower Pattern

Here’s another little hint – press open your snow balls and be sure they align with the corners of the 5″ square BEFORE trimming the fabric from the back.  This will help keep your 5″ squares “square”.

Table Runner Tutorial -- Prairie Flower Pattern

Once all of your pieces are completed, head to your design wall, or other flat surface, and lay out the pieces, until you are satisfied with the look of your runners, and the colors are dispersed evenly throughout your project.

Finally, it’s time to pop in the second movie, and begin sewing your 5″ squares together to form your runners.   

Table Runner Tutorial -- Prairie Flower Pattern

Now that the tops are complete, it’s time to let Angela Walters do her magic.  Angela is an author, instructor, lecturer, Robert Kaufman Fabrics licensed designer and Owner of Quilting is My Therapy in Liberty Missouri.    If you’re looking for a private long arm quilting lesson, or even want to purchase your own Handi – Quilter long arm machine, head to Quilting is My Therapy. Having a machine quilter is the closest I can come to having four hands!  It gives me time to cut, sew, and prepare the binding for the quilt as it’s being quilted. Thank you Angela, for taking time to quilt this project!  

Once the quilts have returned, I like to reconnect with my project.  So, I use “natalie’s quilted binding” – by sewing the binding on to the wrong side, and turning it to the front.  Then I use a pearle 8 cotton and a running or quilting stitch close to the folded edge of the binding to attach or “quilt it’ on to the front of the quilt.  Finally, I look for a consistent area in each block to add in some big stitch pearle cotton quilting.  It adds a different texture, and, well, it’s just my “finishing touch”.

Table Runner Tutorial -- Prairie Flower Pattern

Precise and Organized, I say.  That’s how Hand Makers get things done.

So, give me a call.  Schedule a luncheon.  The table will be set, and I’ll be ready!

And if you’re looking for a new recipe, here’s my mother’s version of Waldorf Salad….just in case it’s your turn to host next month’s luncheon…

Waldorf Salad Recipe from Natalie Barnes

Many many thanks again to Missouri Star Quilt Co. for letting me stop by today and visit with all of you!

HappiestDays.

Natalie Barnes

be.do.create

Table Runner Tutorial -- Prairie Flower Pattern

Here’s where you can find out more information about Natalie Barnes / beyond the reef

www.beyondthereefpatterns.com

www.instagram.com/beyondthereefpatterns

www.facebook.com/beyondthereefpatterns

www.pinterest.com/beyondthereefca

twitter@beyondthereefca

 

please post your projects using Hand Maker fabrics by Windham Fabrics using

#handmakerfabrics

we’d love to see what YOU make!!