Tiny foundation piecing pincushions with free template

I am not very experienced with foundation piecing but last time I made some foundation piecing blocks I quite enjoyed the process and discovered a handful of its benefits, one of them being that your blocks look perfect or almost. With that in mind I thought that foundation piecing would also be a good way to make rather small blocks with little fuss and have them look really good.

Having finished my Farmer’s wife quilt sampler recently I thought I would just reduce some nice blocks to about 5 inches square and try them out. So I went to the Yahoo! FWQS group where you can get all the foundation piecing templates for this quilt under Files, got the template for Windmill and Waste not, reduced them to about 5 inch squares and put them into a page for you to download.

For this project you need small fabric scraps big enough to cover each individual piece and have at least 1/4 in around each of them, including the outer edges. For the pincushion use polyfill or batting scraps.

Foundation piecing

I made a foundation piecing tutorial a while ago but I will go through the process again.

Cut your template leaving 1/4 inch around the edges.

Then fold along the printed lines. Use a piece of plastic or thin cardboard to help you.

Now cut the pieces. To waste as little fabric as possible measure each piece on the largest sides as well as the length. You will end up with squares or rectangles. Sometimes like in this case you can cut a square and then use it in both triangles. My squares, pink and orange, were around 3 1/2 inches square. Then I cut both squares on the diagonal.

The process is always the same. Start with your piece number 1.

Place it on the wrong side making sure that you have 1/4 inch seam allowance all around.

Pin the piece.

Now trim the piece. To do that, fold along the line you pressed earlier and then cut leaving 1/4 inch allowance.

Now the stitching starts between piece 1 and 2.

Align both pieces, right sides together, and pin together and to the paper.

Turn paper around and stitch between piece 1 and 2 along the line.

Time to trim piece 2.

Turn over and fold the paper between piece 2 and 3.

Trim leaving 1/4 inch allowance.

Add piece 3 aligning your piece with the previous trimmed piece.

And so on. The process is the same. Trim, add next piece, align, stitch, trim, and so on.

You place on the back of the paper and stitch following the lines on the front.

Once you have both pieces, stitch them together using a 1/4 inch allowance.

And there you have it, a 5 inch block.

Press well.

Pincushion

After making the block what to do with it. I always do something with my samples, be a potholder, a pincushion, even a quilt! At 5 inch square I chose a pincushion design I can donate for a good cause or give as a gift.

Cut the back of the pincushion using the block.

Stitch around all sides leaving a 1 inch opening to turn inside out.

Trim the corners.

Fill the pincushion with polyfill or some batting scraps.

Close the opening using a ladder stitch.

There you have it!

This is the second block on the pattern sheet.

Doodle Stitching: the holiday motif collection is out! And I’m in it!

Doodle Stitching: the holiday motif collection was out last month and now that I’ve seen the book I can say it’s a truly beautiful book with heaps of embroidery motifs to use and 21 full projects, including my own!

This is the second book I contribute to and it is particularly special because this is a book by Aimee Ray, my favourite embroidery designer.

So if you like embroidering, or even if you’re a beginner, head out to Amazon, look inside the book and read the great reviews the book has received so far.

If I had to choose one word to define this book it would be adorable.

You can see more of this book on Lark crafts website.

 

Make a quilt: 17 free tutorials of my quilts

In this post I’m putting together a number of the quilts I have learned with and the techniques I’ve experimented with. You will find traditional quilts along side improv patchwork and textured quilts.

Improv quilts

Improv/free form quilt series

Each of these six blocks are in themselves a mini quilt and could be turned into a larger quilt as well.

Semi-improv 9-patch quilt tutorial

A traditional block taken a step further by splicing it and rearranging it into making a different block.

Improv patchwork back of quilt

This is a good way to get into improv quilting. Just make a strip of random pieces of fabric stitched together.

Improv patchwork Christmas back of quilt

Doing an improv back of a quilt is a way to loosen up after you complete a highly structured quilt like the zig zag quilt on the other side of this back of quilt.

Free form, free motion patchwork trial

This mini quilt was my first attempt at free form or improv patchwork. It is done in a kind of log cabin way from the inside out.

 

Free form patchwork mini quilt – visual creative process

I liked my first free form mini quilt so much I made a second one. This time the quilt is assembled out of different pieces.

 

Textured quilts

Textured 4-patch quilt tutorial (16 textures)

Some traditional and some new textures in this quilt.

Textured quilt sampler (25 textures)

Most textures in this quilt are traditiona such as pin tucks, shirring, pleats but also there are more uncommon fabric manipulations such as fabric origami.

 Charm pack quilts

“Doubly charming” charm pack quilt tutorial

Made with charm packs this is a very quick but beautiful quilt .

“Doubly charming” charm pack back of quilt tutorial

Made with the left over charms, this back of quilt could very well be a quilt top on its own.

Disappearing nine patch quilt

This is a very easy quilt made with charm squares. The fabric is also beautiful.

Disappearing nine patch variation quilt top

Disappearing nine patch was fun to do so I made a second one using a variation of the block using the same charm packs. I think the prairie points make this quilt look girly and cute.

Père-Noël zigzag quilt tutorial

This zigzag quilt comes with a twist: it uses rectangles to make the zigzag lines. Very easy to do and finished with some embroidery touches.


Scrappy quilts

Wonky log cabin tutorial

Use bright fabrics to make this quilt more fun and add to the wonkiness.

 


Sampler quilt

A traditional quilt made with fat quarters though it could well be made with fabric scraps. I made this quilt because I wanted to improve my patchwork skills. I think it worked.


Coin quilt

You don’t know what to do with all those fabric scraps in your scrap bin? Make a coin quilt. Try different colour combinations, even alternating white and colour rectangles, different thickness, etc for a different look.

Paper pieced scrappy flower hexagon quilt

This quilt is in progress and a long term project where I can use all the small scraps from other projects.

I have made a couple more quilts, including my biggest project: Farmer’s wife quilt sampler but this sample should be enough to choose from.