Monday, November 30, 2015

Stuffed Ornaments-Countdown to Christmas 2015

Written by Linda Chaney, mother and Laura Chaney, daughter


Stuffed Ornaments


Today we're sharing the ninth project in our Countdown to Christmas series! You'll need a copy of Contain It! English Paper-Pieced Accessories for the template.

Only one size template is used to make these ornaments. The number of diamonds used in the final ornament determines its shape and size. In addition, the amount of polyester stuffing inside each ornament can change the overall appearance. Add embellishments to enhance your ornament.

Supplies needed: 

Template used in these samples was #50, the smallest of the diamond templates.

Directions:

1.Gather the supplies listed above and review the basic instructions in Contain It! starting on page 9. 

2. Make your templates and cut the following pieces. As always, be sure to label everything!

Use Template #50, which is the smallest of the diamond templates in the book. Decide how many sides you want your ornament to have and cut the stabilizer and fabric pieces accordingly.

Stuffed Ornaments


3. Follow these steps to assemble your ornament:
  • Place two diamonds next to each other. 
  • Sew two adjacent sides of the top half of the diamond together, then the bottom half.  
  • Add the next diamond and repeat the sewing process. 
    • It is necessary to "bend" the diamonds to sew the seams together. 
  • Leave the last seam open, flip the structure inside-out. 
Stuffed Ornaments

  • Stuff, if desired, and close seam with a ladder or whip stitch.
  • Embellish as desired.
  • Use embroidery thread to add a looped to the top of the ornament to easily hang it up and admire it!
Stuffed Ornaments




Be sure to post your pictures on the Prairie Sewn Studios Facebook Page or email them to us at contact@PrairieSewnStudios.com.

Next up:


We'll see you next week on December 7 to make Danish Woven Hearts!


Countdown to Christmas


Want to get each project in Countdown to Christmas in your inbox, including a link to a downloadable PDF for all templates and instructions? Join our newsletter mailing list!


 

Monday, November 23, 2015

Winter Snowballs and a Snowman-Countdown to Christmas 2015

Written by Linda Chaney, mother and Laura Chaney, daughter


Snowballs and Snowman


Today's  Countdown to Christmas post can be made as individual snowballs, or stack them together to make your very own snowman! You'll need a copy of Contain It! English Paper-Pieced Accessories for all of the templates and the full directions.

Supplies needed: 

In addition to using the templates from Contain It! to make these snowballs, the book will also serve as the full set of instructions for prepping the materials and the basics for constructing the snowballs. These can be a little tricky to make, so be sure to also read the below directions carefully. 

Directions:

1.Gather the supplies listed above and review the basic container instructions in Contain It! starting on page 9. 

2. Make your templates and cut the following pieces. As always, be sure to label everything!

NOTE:  If you truly want to build a snowman, just use one set of templates from each size, cut out 12 peltex and 12 fabric pieces for each size, sew just as we described and add the additional base to close off the open space. I suggest using Pattern Pieces #44 (largest), #62 (medium), and #75 (small). Embellish as desired!

Pattern Pieces for Stabilizer and Fabric Templates:

     Small - Template #74 - Inner Pentagon
                  Template #75 - Outer Pentagon

     Medium - Template #62 - Inner Pentagon
                     Template #63 - Outer Pentagon

     Large - Template #44 - Outer Pentagon
                  Template #45 Inner Pentagon

Peltex: 

     Small - 7" x 20" - Cut 11 Inner Pentagons
                                 Cut 11 Outer Pentagons
     Medium -  13" x 20" - Cut 11 Inner Pentagons
                                       Cut 11 Outer Pentagons
     Large -  15" x 20 - Cut 11 Inner Pentagons
                                   Cut 11 Outer Pentagons

Fabric:  

     Small - 2 fat quarters - Cut 11 Inner Pentagons
                                          Cut 11 Outer Pentagons
     Medium - 2 fat quarters - Cut 11 Inner Pentagons
                                              Cut 11 Outer Pentagons
     Large - 2 fat quarters OR 22 charm squares
                           Cut 11 Inner Pentagons
                           Cut 11 Outer Pentagons

3. Follow the directions for cube construction that begin on page 35; remember that all of the 3-D containers are constructed in the same way with these basic steps:
  • Make the templates
  • Cut the stabilizer pieces
  • Cut the fabric pieces
  • Fuse the fabric and stabilizer pieces together
  • Assemble the Octopus
  • Sew the Octopus (hand or machine-see pages 13-15)
  • Complete the container with the outside base

Although the Snowball container may look complex to create, it is a simple structure to sew together. The key lies in getting the Snowball Octopus laid out correctly and constantly returning to the Octopus as one sews.

Examine the One Arm on Inner Base diagram. The sewn side, where the two arrows point towards each other, is the starting point for numbering the sides of each pentagon (1,2,3).

Snowball Arm


An Inner Side (IS) is laid next to the Inner Base (IB).  The next Inner Side is laid along Side 2 of the first Inner Side.  An Outer Side (OS) is laid along Side 3 of the second Inner Side . The joining of the Outer Side to the Inner Side will form the top of the Snowball container. The last Outer Side is laid along Side 3 of the first Outer Side.

Snowball Octopus


This is done for EACH arm of the Octopus - all 5 arms - and should form a Snowball Octopus as shown in the Snowball Octopus diagram.

Snowball octopus in fabric


After the Octopus is laid out, start to sew the arms together. Remember, the first Outer Side is centered on the second Inner Side, forming the top of the Snowball.

Snowball Sew arms together



When all the arms are attached, check to be sure the correct sides have been sewn together.

Snowballs and Snowmen Prairie Sewn Studios


Formation of the 3D Snowball can now be started. Refer to the color bars and arrows connecting sides at the top of the Snowball Octopus.  Start at the Inner Base and sew two adjacent Inner Sides together. These are the GREEN lines in the Octopus Diagram right below.

 Snowball Octopus

Be sure to take a double stitch at the beginning and end of each side seam segment. Continue to the next segment, joining the side seams marked in RED in the Octopus Diagram above.

Snowballs and Snowmen Prairie Sewn Studios

Note that the first photo shows the red Wonderclip on one side seam pointing to the adjacent side seam to be joined; the second photo shows the two seams held together, ready to be sewn). Continue to the next segment, joining the side seams marked in BLUE in the Octopus Diagram Above.

Snowballs and Snowmen Prairie Sewn Studios


Thus far, only Inner Sides have been joined. The Outer Sides have been reached; two Outer sides will be joined with the PURPLE lines in the Octopus Diagram above.

Snowballs and Snowmen Prairie Sewn Studios


Be sure to take the extra stitches in the lip!


Snowballs and Snowmen Prairie Sewn Studios

Continue to the next segment, joining the seams marked by two BLACK lines in the Octopus Diagram above.

Snowballs and Snowmen Prairie Sewn Studios


The last Outer Sides to join together are marked by the DOTTED GREEN lines in the Octopus Diagram above.

Snowballs and Snowmen Prairie Sewn Studios


One side seam has been sewn.

Snowballs and Snowmen Prairie Sewn Studios


Repeat this process, sewing one segment of the side seam at a time, until all sides have been sewn. Squishing will be necessary as more sides are completed!!



It's time to turn The Snowball inside out.

Snowballs and Snowmen Prairie Sewn Studios


SQUISHING is mandatory!

Snowballs and Snowmen Prairie Sewn Studios


Add the Outer Base to the bottom of the snowball (or is it a Space Ball!)

Snowballs and Snowmen Prairie Sewn Studios


Enjoy!




Either way, be sure to post your pictures on the Prairie Sewn Studios Facebook Page or email them to us at contact@PrairieSewnStudios.com.

Next up:


We'll see you next week on November 30 for the next project from our Countdown to Christmas with instructions to make the Stuffed Ornaments!


Countdown to Christmas


Want to get each project in Countdown to Christmas in your inbox, including a link to a downloadable PDF for all templates and instructions? Join our newsletter mailing list!


 

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Crafty Comment Karma and a Poll About When you Quilt

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

Well this post is getting up two days late, but I figure better late than never. It was a crazy week at work as we celebrated International Education Week, and yesterday I needed a day to just be completely AWAY from a computer. But here we are now, so let's get cracking!

Last week we asked about when you started quilting. 


This was such a fun question. I love seeing how much it varies from the very young to the very young-at-heart! Last week we had 148 quilters vote in our poll!

Poll results how old


This week we're asking about when you typically quilt during the day. 


You can mark more than one in case you're one of those lucky ducks who get to sew more often throughout the day.


When do you typically quilt?

Morning
Afternoon
Evening
Late Night
Whenever I have time to squeeze it in!
Poll Maker

And now, onto the link up! 




Monday, November 16, 2015

Curtained Window Vase-Countdown to Christmas 2015

Written by Linda Chaney, mother and  Laura Chaney, daughter

Vase with Curtained Windows


This week for Countdown to Christmas we are sharing a new technique to add a little something special to our regular vase pattern. Following the directions below, you'll be able to make "curtained windows" on the sides of your vase. This works best with fabric that has a figure or a scene that you fussy cut to fit between the curtains on the sides of the vase.


Use a wide mouth/regular mouth quart canning jar inside of this vase to hold live flowers. You'll need the book Contain It! English Paper-Pieced Style Accessories for some of the pattern pieces, and you'll need to download and print the others (be sure the 2" square measures correctly when you print the pattern pieces).

Pattern Pieces



Peltex - 22' X 20"

  •      Cut 1 Inner Base - Template #82
  •      Cut 1 Outer Base - Template #84
  •      Cut 4 Inner Sides - Template #131
  •      Cut 4 Outer Sides - Template #132


Fabric - 4 fat quarters (one for Curtains; one for Outer Sides/Base; one for Inner Sides/Base; one for Window Frames)

ANY FUSSY CUTTING REQUIRES MORE FABRIC AND IS DEPENDENT ON THE PATTERN.

     Cut 1 Inner Base - Template #82
     Cut 1 Outer Base - Template #84
     Cut 4 Inner Sides - Template #131
     Cut 4 Outer Sides, using Template #133 if making Curtained Windows

Directions: 


1. Use Template #133 to determine position of Fabric Scene within the window and cut out.

Vase with Curtained Windows

   
2.  Cut 8 Curtains:

  •      Cut a 17" x 17" square; fold along diagonal and cut off fold(a very narrow strip).
Vase with Curtained Windows

  •      Cut 2 or 3 pieces-  2-1/2" strips along bias edge. 
  •      Subcut 2-1/2" strips to measure 2-1/2" x 7-1/8". These strips will become the curtains.
  •      Cut Window Frames: 8 pieces at 1" x 5-1/8" and 8 pieces at 1" x 7-1/8"

3. Creating the Curtained Window

  •      Lay Fabric Scene right side up; press.
Vase with Curtained Windows

  •      Fold 2-1/2" x 7-1/8 Curtain Strip in half lengthwise, wrong sides together; GENTLY press.        **Remember the fold is on a bias and will easily stretch!


  •     Lay folded Curtain Strip on top of Fabric Scene with cut edges aligned along the left side of the Fabric Scene. The folded curtain edge should be towards the center of the scene.
  •  Lay 1" x 7-1/8" Window Frame on top of Curtain Strip, wrong side up, aligning cut edge of Window Frame Fabric along left side with cut edges of Scene and Curtain Fabrics. Hold in place.
  • Sew 1/4" along left side through all layers of fabric.
  • Repeat above steps for the right side.
  • Press Window Frame Fabric open on left and right sides.


Vase with Curtained Windows

  • Lay 1" x 5-1/8" Window Frame Fabric, wrong side up, along top edge of Curtained Scene Fabric. Sew 1/4".  Repeat along bottom edge.
Vase with Curtained Windows

  • Press Window Frame Fabric open on top and bottom.

  • Place Curtain Window Assembly wrong side up.
Vase with Curtained Windows

  • Place Outer Side peltex on top of Curtain Window Assembly. The peltex should easily align with the sewn assembly. The Window Frame Fabric should extend ~ 1/2" on all 4 sides. 
Vase with Curtained Windows

  • Fuse Window Frame Fabric to peltex.
Vase with Curtained Windows

  •  Turn fused fabric/peltex piece right side up; gently press. The Window Frame should be ~1/4" around all outer edges.
Vase with Curtained Windows

  •      Add embellishments as desired. 
Vase with Curtained Windows

  •      Determine how the curtains will hang on the finished side. Tack them down or use embellishments to hold them back from the picture. 
          "Cathedral" effect, simple fold back in center.

Vase with Curtained Windows


          Double roll effect - fold back twice in center 

Vase with Curtained Windows


          Gathered Curtains - gently gather curtain along width at desired height. 

Vase with Curtained Windows


   
4. Sew Container together just as though it were the Cube.

Vase with Curtained Windows

Next up:


We'll see you next week on November 23 for the eighth project from our Countdown to Christmas with instructions to make snowballs!


Countdown to Christmas


Want to get each project in Countdown to Christmas in your inbox, including a link to a downloadable PDF for all templates and instructions? Join our newsletter mailing list!


 

Friday, November 13, 2015

Crafty Comment Karma and a Poll About When You Started Quilting

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

Happy Friday! Another week gone by, and another busy week at that. Anytime my staff starts joking at work that they haven't seen me all week due to the number of meetings I've had I know it's gotten hectic again. But luckily I have another fairly unscheduled weekend, and I'm hoping to finish up my current Work In Progress of hexagon coasters!

Last week we asked you about how many UFOs you have.


I'll confess. I have 10-15 UFOs. I'm pretty sure some of these projects will never actually get finished. I've actually thought about taking some of the ones I'm no longer SUPER excited about and scavenging the orphan blocks to make something smaller and more manageable. I have visions of lots of table runners, wall hangings and bags made with orphan blocks!

Turns out I'm not alone in having a secret stash of UFOs. With 47 people voting, the winner with 36% of the votes is 1-3 UFOs. I'm majorly in awe of the 8.5% of people who have ZERO UFOs as they complete each project all the way through each time!

How Many UFOs Poll Results

This week we're asking about how old you were when you started quilting. 


I learned to sew as a child at the Bernina sewing shop in Omaha. I made lots of great projects there, including a pillow that I still have in my childhood bedroom! I made a single block wall-hanging for a Girl Scout project, but didn't really get into quilting until college. Sophomore year was when my interest in quilting really took off, and I haven't looked back since.

We want you to vote in our poll



How old were you when you started quilting?

0-5 years old
6-10 years old
10-15 years old
15-20 years old
20-25 years old
25-30 years old
30-35 years old
35-40 years old
40-45 years old
45-50 years old
50-55 years old
55-60 years old
60-65 years old
65-70 years old
Older than 70
Quiz Maker

And now, onto the link up. 



Craft Comment Karma

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Work in Progress Wednesday #51 - Weekend Sewing and Why Nothing Gets Done

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

Getting this Work in Progress Wednesday post up a bit late today, but I HAD to post as I spent a ton of time sewing this weekend. Now since it was all hand sewing (and ironing and cutting and a good deal of mumbling), it may not look like like much progress, but it made me super happy.

I took over our dining/living room for the weekend and spread all of my materials out on the dining room table, turned on the SVU marathon on USA and began work on a set of the Hexagon Coasters and Hexagon Container that we shared a few weeks ago for our Countdown to Christmas series.

I designed, cut and basted all of the coasters. This is the one part I won't hand sew, but will use a variegated rainbow thread to top-stitch them together.

Hexagon Coasters


After I had all of the pieces for the container cut and basted, I moved over to the couch for a little hand sewing. I got all of the sides sewn on to the container and got three of the seven side seams sewn up.

English Paper Piecing Contain It


So funny story about this weekend sewing. It almost never happened, as certain kitties both chose Saturday morning to decide they needed some extra snuggles from their momma.  Both of the pictures below (CatCat on the right and Friday on the left) are from Saturday morning. And I don't move cuddling cats. Eventually they decided they had more comfy spots of sunshine to stretch in and I regained my freedom.

Why nothing gets done


I hope to finish the container and all the coasters by the end of this next weekend!

Linking up with Freshly Pieced and Sew Fresh Quilts. Looking for a new link-up and to vote in our weekly poll? Check out our weekly Crafty Comment Karma link-up and poll each Friday.

Crafty Comment Karma


What are YOU working on this week? 

Monday, November 9, 2015

Holiday Hand Towels-Countdown to Christmas 2015

Written by guest blogger, Christina


Holiday Hand Towels


We have a guest crafter and blogger today for our SIXTH project in our Countdown to Christmas series! Our good friend Christina is sharing her directions to make two different festive holiday towels. These holiday towels make quick and colorful gifts for office parties, teachers, gift exchanges or friends.

Holiday Towel #1

Materials:

  • Basic Sewing tools and machine
  • Thread to match fabric & Bobbin to match towel                                            
  • Cotton dish towel,  18" X 26", washed and hung to dry
  • Two coordinating cotton prints, (Allow additional yardage for directional prints)
    • 5” x 24” first accent print
    • 10” x 24” second accent print
  • Large rick rack, ball trim or lace 
  • Spray starch  
  • Wash Away Wonder Tape 1/4" (such as Dritz)

Directions:

1.  Starch and iron towel.  Measure the towel width and length (18” x 26”, for example).

2.  Fold towel in half lengthwise; press. Fold towel in half width-wise; press.

Holiday Hand Towels


3. Fold lower half of towel up to the center of the towel, aligning the lower hemmed edge of the towel along the width-wise press line made in Step 1. Press along the new folded edge.

4. Measure the towel’s width along this folded edge.  Each towel runs a little different so measure and cut for each one. The measurements listed above (18” x 26”) are used as the example in these directions. Add 2" to your width measurement (2” + 18” = 20”).  Cut the first accent strip 4” x 20”. Cut the second accent print 9" x 20”.

5.  Sew the two accent prints together along their widths, making sure any directional prints are oriented and sewn correctly!

6.  Place fabric on top of towel and center it so that an inch is hanging over each side and the bottom.

Holiday Hand Towels


Turn under fabric raw edges ~ ¼” using the towel as a guide. (These towels are not always even and this makes it look better). Turn these edges under again and press well.  Turn under the top fabric edge 1/2"; press well. Either pin fabric accent to towel or hold the fabric accent in place with wash away tape along the top edge and each side seam. Leave bottom edge open to add trim.

7.  Measure along the bottom edge; add 2” to this measurement (18” + 2” = 20”). Cut trim 20” wide. Turn trim under ~1”on both side edges and hold with wash away tape (This may also depend upon the type of trim used). Center trim along bottom edge, sandwiching between the toweling back and fabric accent top. The trim can be held in place on both sides with wash away tape.

Holiday Hand Towels


8.  Now sew the fabric accent on the towel with matching thread. Be sure to use bobbin thread that matches the towel.  Sew around all four sides pivoting at each corner and back-tacking at the beginning and  end.  Cut threads and press!   Enjoy!

Holiday Hand Towels


Holiday Towel #2

These quick towels are made using toweling bought at the fabric store.  This toweling is finished on the side edges. The one shown is made by Moda Fabrics.

Materials:

  • Basic Sewing tools and machine
  • Thread to match fabric 
  • 3/4 of a yard of 16 1/2" wide toweling (or purchased towel)  
  • Cotton print, 15” x 20” (Directional fabric requires more material)
  • Large rick rack, ball trim or lace
  • Spray starch
  • Wash Away Wonder Tape 1/4" (such as Dritz)

Directions:

1. Starch and iron toweling.  Turn under the top edge 1/4" of an inch; press. Turn under again   ~1/2”; press well and sew in place.

2. Measure the towel’s width along the bottom edge.  Each towel runs a little different so measure and cut for each one. The measurements 16-1/2” x 23-1/2”are used as the example in these directions. Add 2" to your width measurement (2” + 16-1/2” = 18-1/2”).  Cut the fabric accent strip 13” x 18-1/2”.

3. Hem fabric accent along the top and bottom edges of the 18-1/2” edge as follows:  Turn fabric accent under 1/4"; press. Turn fabric accent under again 1/2"; press.  Fold the 13” length in half, matching the turned under edges. Press.

4. Fold the bottom edge of the towel up ½”; press. Open up edge and place wash away tape along fold line on front and back of towel.

5. Sandwich the bottom edge of toweling between fabric accent edges. Be sure to leave an inch of fabric accent at each side and align the fabric accent edges along the towel press line, being sure to cover the wash away tape.  Make sure if print is directional it is not upside down on the front side of the towel!

6. Fold the fabric accent in to match the sides of the towel.  Press. Repeat on opposite side. Remove fabric accent from bottom edge of towel and fold right sides together. Sew a seam along the press line on each side edge. Turn fabric accent right sides out and press.

7.  Sandwich the bottom edge of toweling between fabric accent edges.

8.  Measure along the width of the fabric accent edge; add 2” to this measurement (16-1/2”+ 2” = 18-1/2”). Cut trim 18-1/2” wide. Turn trim under ~1”on both side edges and hold with wash away tape (This may also depend upon the type of trim used). Center trim along fabric accent edge, sandwiching the trim between the toweling and fabric accent top. The trim can be held in place on both sides with wash away tape.

9.  Sew across the fabric accent edge. Be sure the trim and fabric accent on both the front  and back  are stitched through.  Trim threads.  Press.   Enjoy!

Holiday Hand Towel



Be sure to post pictures of your completed towels on the Prairie Sewn Studios Facebook Page or email them to us at contact@PrairieSewnStudios.com.

Next up:


We'll see you next week on November 16 for the seventh project from our Countdown to Christmas with instructions to make very, very cool vases with a curtained window effect! 


Countdown to Christmas


Want to get each project in Countdown to Christmas in your inbox, including a link to a downloadable PDF for all templates and instructions? Join our newsletter mailing list!