The Pink Chalk Team selected 5 favorites in 3 categories, and… this is the exciting bit… my Patchwork Christmas tree softie tutorial was selected as one of 5 in Category 3: Deck the Halls (Holiday Decorations). My trees didn’t win the competition but I enjoyed participating. Congratulations to the winner!
- fabric scraps for front, back and binding
- embroidery floss
- 14 ¼ inch elastic band
Cut pattern out, place on the facing fabric and draw around it.
You can use any marker as the line will not be visible after you add the binding.
Using matching embroidery floss, stitch around the edges of the designs or in whatever pattern you like.
I only stitched on some of the designs.
And I used a variety of stitches as well as colours.
When finished, make a sandwich with the backing, batting and the facing fabric. Pin to hold together.
Stitch around the eye mask one quarter inch from the marked line.
Now you have the sandwich stitched together, it is time to trim the fabric.
Cut around the stitching line leaving a bit less than one quarter inch allowance.
Cut a 20 inch long bias strip.
Stitch the binding in place.
Fold the bias tape around the other side of the eye mask when done and pin.
At this stage insert the elastic band.
Pin in place.
Stitch by hand and you’re done!
These are called quilted Christmas ornaments and you can make them in different ways.
I followed Random Rambling’s tutorial but there are others you can follow such as Project wedding or the one on Make Stuff. Plenty to choose from. You can watch a video which clearly demonstrates how to make a ball from beginning to end. You don’t have a polystyrene ball? Use a CD instead of a ball to make this ornament!
I have made a number of them and I can say that:
- using 2.5in squares instead of 3in squares for a 3 inch ball achieves better results
- high contrast fabrics and colours work better
- they make great Christmas presents
- they are great craft projects to make with children
- they are a good way to relax and get into the zen zone
In this part we’ll be finishing the bunting.
Firstly we will be making flags with the message MERRY XMAS.
Download the lettering and bunting templates (pdf), print it and proceed to fuse it to the flags as you did in Part 1. You will need to transfer R and M twice as there’s only one copy of each letter in the download.
Cut 9 flags and fuse the letters to the flags.
Cut 9 triangles of one sided fusible interfacing and iron to the back of each flag.
Then draw the inside lines of each letter to make it 3D as per pattern.
Stitch around each line and around the edge of each letter as per picture below).
Now you will need to add some backing to each flag. Cut 13 triangles in a matching fabric or calico.
Place front and back flags right sides together and stitch around 2 sides leaving the top open to turn inside out. Trim the pointy end of the triangle before turning inside out.
Turn inside out and push the corner out with a pointy blunt instrument. Iron flat.
Top stitch each triangle around 3 sides leaving a one quarter seam allowance.
Trim the open end of each triangle.
The triangles are ready to be placed on a string.
Making the string
The strip of fabric we need to place the triangles in is 140 inches long.
The width of the strip is 1 ½ in wide.
Fold the strip of fabric in half and iron, then fold each side inside again and iron.
Fold the strip in half and pin it in the middle. Use this mark to place the first flag.
After pinning the first flag, continue to place a flag on each side leaving 3 ½ inches separation between flags.
After all flags have been pinned, top stitch along the strip.
Fold both ends of the string to make a hook as per picture.
This tutorial is in 2 parts. The first part will only deal with the applique of Christmas designs and the next tutorial will deal with the stitching of the lettering and putting everything together. The bunting is about 140 inches long.
- Download free Christmas vectors (zip) from Spoongraphics for your applique
- Download bunting pattern (pdf). When cutting this pattern add 1¼ all around for seam allowance
- assorted scrap fabric in white and red for the applique. Use fabrics that will have enough contrast so the design shows through
- assorted scrap fabric in white, green and red for the triangles
- lightweight fusible interfacing for the flags
- black thread
- felt scraps in beige
- stranded cotton in beige
- double sided interfacing for the applique
You can choose how much of the design you want to applique. Below you will find a close up picture of each flag where you can see what parts of each drawing I chose to fuse and applique.
Tracing and fusing the applique
Trace the applique on to the double sided interfacing. I only used interfacing for cotton fabrics. The felt pieces weren’t fused, just pinned in place and stitched by hand.
Cut each shape roughly leaving some space around each shape and fuse to the fabric, then to the triangles following the manufacturer’s instructions. I used Heat’n Bond, the light variety.
After ironing, cut each shape and place on the flag. Place all shapes together and fuse at once.
Draw the eyes, the snowman buttons and any other lines you will be stitching along.
After the fabric is fused, cut the felt pieces and stitch to the design. See the picture below for an example. Notice where I have drawn some lines on the reindeer legs.
Now iron on the lightweight fusible interfacing to the back of the triangle. The interfacing will make the bunting sit better but it will also act as stabiliser for the applique.
Now the fun part starts. Using black thread stitch all around the applique edges as in the original paper sketches. Don’t worry if your lines aren’t straight, mine are pretty rough. This is the first time I’ve used this technique so it was expected. Go around each line at least twice. I used the darning foot but didn’t lower the dogs so I could move the fabric enough. I found that I didn’t have so much control with the dogs down.
You will end up with a lot of threads at the end of it. Just cut them close to the fabric.
All done. I must admit I was a bit scared it would turn out to be a disaster but I quite like the result.