Victoria Bryant: November 2007 Archives
I just finished the last bite of pumpkin pie, loosened my waistband and suddenly realized that Christmas is around the corner.
This is THE time of the year to make your house glow with color, lights and your own individual style. I have spent a glorious weekend watching HGTV for all the great ideas that they showcase: http://web.hgtv.com/hgtv/web/searchResults/1,8213,,FF.html?searchString=christmas+projects&searchType=Aggregate&GoSearch=Search. In fact, now I am overwhelmed by the ideas. Time and money will always be in short supply, but creativity is never in short supply at Fabric.com. This is not the time to start a Christmas quilt. You will never finish it and you will feel guilty. My advice is to select no more than 3 projects. Do not start anything else until these are finished. I, personally, am a great starter and a lousy finisher. I am introducing a new philosophy in my life- Finish it before you start something new.
I am all about the "free." There are free ideas all over the internet, in magazines, TV shows, etc. I have selected a couple of projects to kick start the Holidays. I fell in love with a table runner and place mats designed by Karen Montgomery for Timeless Treasures fabrics. The pattern can be downloaded for free at http://www.ttfabrics.com/patterns.php?patternID=159. This would be great for a fun breakfast or informal lunch. As Tom Hanks says in "You've Got Mail," to save a business - Go to the Mat. Well, this is the time for all sewers "To go to the Stash." I made this a very scrappy project. For the table runner and 4 placemats you will need 2 yards of flannel fabric (this is the foundation) and 2 yards of Christmas fabric for the back. I used fabrics from the "Let It Snow" collection for the back. Then I sorted Christmas fabrics from my stash for the strips. You will probably recognize fabrics from Let It Snow, Iota Christmas, Holly Jolly and several I have forgotten. From the flannel and backing fabrics cut 7 15-inch squares. Cut your stash scraps different widths and at least 15 inches long. Find the center of the flannel square and draw a chalk line across the middle. Lay 2 strips right sides together along the chalk line on the flannel square. The flannel square is your foundation piece. Sew a 1/4 inch seam and press open. Add your next strip to the raw edge, sew a 1/4 inch seam, press open. This is a flip-and-fold technique. Continue in this manner until the flannel square is covered. Place your flannel square strip side facing the right side of the backing fabric. On the flannel side, mark 4 1/4 inches in from each side and draw a line from each point to create an ormament shape. Trim that triangle off. To create the ornament top- you will need 2- 2 1/2 " x 6 " rectangles of gold fabric for each placemat. Sew right sides together to front and back piece. Press open. Sew 1/4 inch from the edge, leaving an opening for turning. Clip corners and turn. Slipstitch the opening close. Topstitch the placemat 1/4 inch from the edge to finish. It will take about 90 minutes to make 2 placemats.
My second project is from www.allpeoplequilt.com - the Lunch Sack.
Again a free pattern. I love to give presents inside a present. I am using a cotton laminated fabric (BC-989) from Michael Miller's fabric collection for this sack. My sister is a Title teacher and takes her lunch to work and this is waterproof fabric so she will be able to use it all year long. I am going to stuff it with blue and yellow fat quarters. Fabric.com has a minimum cut of 1/2 yard so I can select the fabrics for her and then recut them into fat quarters creating 2 presents- one for me and one for her. I deserve a present, too.
Just some tips if you want to make this project from laminated cotton:
If you are using a very heavy interfacing, I used temporary spray adhesive (NR-369) to hold the laminated cotton to the interfacing.
Use a longer stitch and regular thread is fine.
Do not use heat on this product- I just finger pressed the seams
Do no pin the fabric- it will leave pin marks.
My bag looks a little different from the bag on the www.allpeoplequilt.com website because I used TimTex (NR-237) as the interfacing. This will make your bag very rigid and stiff.
If you wish a bag closer to the one on their website, I would use a craft weight interfacing.
Over the coming weeks, we will have 90-minute or less projects.
Here are some suggestions for you:
1. Christmas pillowcases are great for everyone
2. Christmas pillows- great use for leftover Christmas quilt blocks
3. Flannel pajamas for kids or adults
4. Christmas stockings
6. Casserole carriers (SB-015) a great pattern available in our pattern department
7. Mantel scarves
I am sure that you can think of many more.
Go create something fun and beautiful.