Checking your list and realizing you forgot a few people? No worries! It happens to the best of us and guess what?! No one has to know! With these quick projects, your friends and family will be wondering when you had the time to whip up something so wonderful!
Gather up your scraps and start making!
Make some Mug Rugs to give away at the next Christmas Party. These would make great stocking stuffers!
The season of campfires, apple cider, pumpkin spice and everything nice is upon us! It’s also our absolute favorite to decorate for because you don’t have to stick to pastels like you would in the spring, or red and green and blue like in the winter-time. Instead, you have an entire selection of earth-y tones to choose from and an abundance of ways to use them! We can get spooky with ghouls and goblins or we can celebrate the harvest with pumpkins and gourds. Here’s a few things you may want to add to your fall project list:
The Ghost Pillow Cover
This ghost isn’t exactly spooky, but it is downright adora-boo!
Maybe you don’t have time to stop by the pumpkin patch, maybe you don’t want to deal with ridding of rotten pumpkins when winter hits, or maybe you just want an excuse to sew! Either way, these stuffed ornament pumpkins are the fun way to go! Grab the kit and get started.
Candy Catcher Bag
Make trick-or-treating even better for your favorite little dinosaur, firefighter, witch, or werewolf with a candy bag.
A few years ago, our friend Amy Smart (Diary of a Quilter) came out with a free Patchwork Forest Wall Hanging Tutorial that people are still talking about and making in every which way they can imagine! We love it, especially the free improv method she uses for creating the tree shapes! Every tree is slightly different and that’s what makes it so fun to make and such a cute finished project! So, we’ve collaborated with Amy and are excited to be able to share these new cutting instructions so that you can make the same great Patchwork Forest blocks using precuts! We’re focusing specifically on 10″ squares and fat quarters and hope this makes you even more excited to try out this fun, improv pattern!
First, let’s start with the 10″ squares.
1 Pack Holiday Themed 10″ squares (42 squares)
1/4 yard Brown/Gray fabric for tree stumps
If you think about the ultimate shape of your blocks, they are not square, but are taller than they are wide. so, if you start with 10″ squares, you will cut off a 2.5″ strip to save for border, binding, or another project. Once you’ve done that, you will cut another 2.5″ off the bottom and then divide those into 2 parts, which makes your fabric look like this.
At this point you will want to divide your fabrics into complementary pairs.
When you start to cut your trees, you will stack your 2 fabrics together first, then cut out your tree shape.
When you create your tree shapes, make sure to leave enough room for seams on the sides and at the top. Once you’ve cut your desired tree shape, swap the center fabrics so it looks something like this (Each pair should be cut slightly differently to achieve the improv effect).
To make the tree stump (1.25″ x 2.5″), you will want to sew it to the (2) 2.5″ x 3.75″ rectangles as shown. Here are some great fabric options for your tree stumps:
In Amy’s original tutorial, she shows that you should sew your tree to the short side of the background fabric first, then to the long side. Make sure to place your point past the edge to allow for the 1/4″ seam allowance. There will be some trimming required, but I like to wait until I’ve sewn all the blocks to make sure I’m trimming them all to the same size!
Finished Block Size: Approximately 6.75″ x 9″
If you use your entire pack of 10″ squares, you can make a wall hanging or small quilt that is 7 blocks across and 6 blocks down (42 total). That will make your finished project approximately 43″ X 60.5″ (or bigger if you want to use your leftover 2.5″ strips to make a piano key border! The result is so fun!
You can see that this project makes a really adorable, whimsical project, but I want to assure you that it can also be very elegant and beautiful with different fabrics!
Now, let’s talk about the cutting instructions when you’re making this project out of Fat Quarters!
3-6 Fat Quarters (depending on the variety you would like in your design)
Brown Scrap Fabric measuring 2.25″ x7.5″ (divide into 6 strips that are 1.25″ x 2.25″)
Binding Fabric (1 Fat Quarter cut into 2.5″ strips is plenty)
Cut each fat quarter into (4) 8″ x 10.25″ rectangles (If you’re only going to make one table runner, then you can just use half of each fat quarter and cut TWO of the 8″ x 10.25″ rectangles. If you cut it in half lengthwise to get the two, then you could use the remaining fabric for binding or even a pieced backing)
Finished Block Size: Approximately 7.25″ x 9.25″
The table runner is made up of 12 blocks. The Finished Table Runner size is approximately 17″ by 39.5″
Using 6 fat quarters, I was able to make 24 blocks (I wanted the variety of 6 different fabrics), so in addition to the finished table runner shown, I have 12 more blocks ready to make a second table runner for a gift! Or, of course, you could certainly make a larger wall hanging with your 24 blocks. With some of the remaining fat quarters, I cut them into long strips to make a scrappy backing. This is a fun, carefree, improve project, so have fun with it and make it your own! #holidaypatchworkforest
Go, team, go! I may not be able to tell you the difference between a blitz and a bump-and-run or a guard and a tackle (I Googled those terms…), but I do enjoy the festive atmosphere surrounding a good ol’ game of football. The family gathers around the television, with plenty of snacks at hand, arrayed in their favorite team’s colors. It almost feels like a holiday. I always cook up a batch of my best appetizers and snuggle up in a quilt, right alongside my husband. And if you’re especially full of game-day spirit, a few decorations might be in order as well.
This year I went all out and stitched up some accents in classic football prints and colors to make the occasion even more memorable. No matter what team you’re rooting for, enjoy the end of a spectacular football season with a few of your favorite recipes and a couple quick and easy projects to add to the fun.
This table runner is so much fun in football fabrics! It’s the Flower Fancy Runners Pattern from Missouri Star Quilt Company. Here are the fabrics that were used for this project:
These Micro-Safe Hot Holders for Indygo Junction are perfect for serving any hot dish, like some delicious queso or little smokies and aren’t they so darling in the football fabrics? What are some of your favorite snacks and appetizers to eat while you’re watching the game? Amy Barickman, the designer of the Micro-Safe Hot Holders, has a go-to recipe called Amy’s Super Bowl Salsa that just looks amazing!
Here’s a breakdown of the recipe for Amy’s Super Bowl Salsa.
3 cans corn
3 cans black beans
1 bunch scallions
1 bunch cilantro
8 oz. feta cheese
1/2 c. sugar
3/4 c. apple cider vinegar
3/4 c. oil
Do you enjoy watching sporting events with family and friends? Do you like to add something quilty to the occasion? Leave a comment and let us know!
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).
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.
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
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!
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.
Once the fabrics are chosen, create a “color recipe” for the project.
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….)
Snowballs:1 yard mottled solid
Binding:2-1/4″ straight binding / 2/3 yard
(10) 40″ x 2-1/4″ strips
(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:
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”.
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.
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”.
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…
Many many thanks again to Missouri Star Quilt Co. for letting me stop by today and visit with all of you!
Here’s where you can find out more information about Natalie Barnes / beyond the reef