Monday, February 27, 2017

Easy Flip and Sew Placemats

Hello, sewing friends!
Thank you so much for stopping by for a peek inside my sewing studio today.
I love having visitors.
Today's project is a byAnnie pattern:  Easy Flip and Sew Placemats

This is an instant gratification sew for beginning sewers to experienced sewers.
These are a great way to spruce up your home décor for the new season
- OR -
to make as a heartfelt gift for the new homeowner or newlyweds.

Besides your sewing machine, here are the supplies you'll need to get started:
  • Soft and stable or timtex or peltex
  • Two coordinating fat quarters (this is for two placemats)
  • Miscellaneous coordinating fabric scraps for 2" x 4" pieced strips
  • Rotary cutter and ruler
  • Binder clips
To start with, the pattern calls for the back piece to be cut larger than the soft and stable.
The reason for this is that after all components are assembled,
the extra backing will be folded over to form a self binding.
I used my #BabyLockSashiko 2 machine to stitch a pattern on the backing fabric.
So I cut my backing the same size as my soft and stable,
and I used a traditional binding instead of a self binding.
I did the stitching on the back piece before I sewed or cut anything else.
This is optional - you don't have to add anything to your back fabric.

Then I cut the background fabric for the front.
That "bare" strip of soft and stable is where my pieced panel will go.
I laid everything out on the soft and stable before doing any stitching.
The instructions call for nine of the four inch wide pieces.
A 1/4" seam is to be used throughout the pattern, but when I stitched the pieces together,
my strip ended up short, so I had to add a tenth piece.
I probably made an error in cutting or stitching.
If you make, or have made, these placemats please let me know if you used nine or ten pieces.
I would like to share that information with my readers.
I used the guide on my walking foot to keep my rows lined up as I stitched parallel rows of decorative stitching on the front background panels.

It is not necessary to quilt the background pieces,
but I like the way it looks.

Are you making any changes to your home décor to welcome the new season?

Have a happy sewing week!

Monday, February 20, 2017

Accent Pillow with Sashiko Stitching

Pillow Front:  Fabric Line is American Jane Hop, Skip, Jump
Good Monday afternoon sewing friends.
I'm so very glad you stopped by today.
Here's a new, little accent pillow that I stitched up for my home.

Pillow Back
I'm swooning over that fabric.
Look close, those are paper doll images!!!
I purchased one of the little, 2 1/2 inch pre cut packs, a half yard of the red daisy print,
and 2 yards of the fabric with the paper doll images.
This 12 inch accent pillow only required a fat quarter of the backing fabric,
but I love the paper doll images so much I was compelled to buy 2 yards.

I pieced 6 of the pre cut squares in each of six rows to make the pillow front.
Then I layered batting to the wrong side of the pieced front,
and used my new Baby Lock Sashiko machine to add hand-look quilting stitches.

The ruffle is made from 3 strips of 4 inch x WOF red daisy print strips
folded in half, wrong sides togher.
Using my Bernina ruffle foot (#86) (set to pull one ruffle every six stitches)
I sewed the ruffle to the right side of the pillow front while simultaneously ruffling the fabric.
Now on to the back side of the pillow.

For the closure, I used a zipper that was longer than I actually needed.
That's how I always choose my pillow zippers - it makes for a super easy zipper install.
I also cut my backing fabric slightly larger than needed - it will be trimmed away later.
After matching the raw edges of the backing fabric with the edge of the zipper,
right sides together, I used my zipper foot to stitch the fabric to the zipper.

Then I opened up the backing fabric and pressed along my stitch line.
Instead of a straight stitch to topstitch the fabric to the zipper tape, I like to use a decorative stitch.

The stitch number is 1359 on my Bernina.

Then I stack all my layers together:
1.  Backing with zipper, right side up (open up the zipper a few inches)
2.  Pieced front and batting with ruffle attached around edge, right side down
3.  Muslin square - this gives me a lining to my pieced front
I basted all the layers together and turned it right side out
to make certain I did not catch the ruffle in the stitching,
which I did and I had to unpick my basting and sew two corners again!!!
Better to catch that now than in the final stitching.
Notice how my backing piece and zipper are larger than the pillow front.

At this point, I flipped it over so I could see the zipper.
I used my serger for the final seam,
so before serging I trimmed the zipper ends to reduce bulk.

That way the cutting blade does not dull so quickly
if it does not have to cut through those zipper teeth.
My serger gives the inside a nice, clean, finished edge
and helps keep the fabric from raveling in the wash.

Thank you for your visit today.
I look forward to hearing from you, so please leave a comment so I know you've been here.
Are you beginning to sew any home dec projects to transition to the new season?

Friday, February 10, 2017

Heirloom Tissue Packet

Hello sewing friends!
I'm teaching a monthly Serger Club at our local Bernina dealer this year.
Once a month we meet to learn new techniques that apply to a take home project.
Our project for March is an Heirloom Tissue Packet.

Our technique focus for March will be heirloom techniques.
We will learn how to sew entredeux to embroidered insertion,
how to sew entredeux to fabric,
how to sew lace insertion to lace insertion,
and how to sew lace insertion to fabric.
Sewing classes on heirloom techniques are hard to come by in our area,
and heirloom classes using a serger are pretty much unheard of.
I'm so very excited for our March class.
I purchased the entredeux, embroidered insertion, lace insertion, ribbon, and
gingham fabric for these samples from Chadwick Heirlooms in Virginia.
And of course, since I'm a Martha Pullen licensed serger instructor, we will use a
Martha Pullen pattern for these tissue packets.
I experimented with different fabrics for these two samples.
The gingham is lightweight cotton and the cherry fabric is regular quilting cotton.
The gingham version actually holds more tissues than the cherry fabric version.
The quilting cotton is more "structured" than the gingham and does not allow the
packet to accommodate as many tissues as  the gingham fabric allows.

See how much wider the cherry version has to open to accommodate the tissues?
I love both versions, and I will definitely sew up some more of these sweet packets.

Have you experimented with heirloom techniques or patterns and supplies?
I would love for you to share your experience in the comment section.

Thank you for visiting today.