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Christmas Blog Hop - Day 4!
Monday 22nd November - Katy JonesTuesday 23rd November - Hadley GordonWednesday 24th November - Carolyn ForsterThursday 25th November - me!Friday 26th November - Kerry Green
Hello - welcome to day 4 of our Christmas blog hop.
I've been thinking about what to do for this blog for weeks and had so many ideas - but the winner is a table runner and place mats - which co-ordinate with my Azure coloured dinner service.
This is such a lovely quick make - using the Big Shot and Bigz dies - 657608 (3" finished square),
657612 (3" finished 1/2 square triangle), 657633 ( 1 1/2" finished strips for the bindings).
I was about to go out to my local patchwork shop to buy some new Christmas fabrics, that I'd seen the previous week, when I thought I'd just look in my stash - and I found these gems by Nancy Haslvorsen
( I doubt that you'll be able to find them now but there are some fantastic modern Christmas fabrics in stores now).
For the table runner
- you will need the following fabrics - fabric 1 is on the left, 2 in the middle and 3 on the right.
Fabric 1 - 60cms for squares, triangles and binding.
Fabric 2 and 3 - 40cms so each for squares Backing 15" x 68"
Wadding 15" x 68" x 2
For each place mat you will need -
Fabric 1 - 30cms
Fabric 2 and 3 -20cms of each
Backing - 15" x 24"
Wadding -15" x 24" x 2.
I started by cutting all the fabrics for the table runner and place mats ( I'm making 12 mats so I had quite a few to do!
For the table runner I cut -
Fabric 1 - 15 squares using die 657608, 24 triangles with die 657612, and binding strips with Bigz XL die 657633 - 4 strips ( you will need extended cutting plates for this die)
Fabric 2 - 28 squares
Fabric 3 - 26 squares.
Make the rows for the table runner using the photo as a guide - ( bottom of the picture is row 1)
Make 2 each of rows 1,2 and 3.
Make 9 of row 4.
Join the rows together.
Layer the back, double wadding ( for heat protection ) and the pieced top, pin and quilt - I quilted in the ditch around fabric 1 squares and triangles. Join the binding strips together, and press in half along the length and attach to the table runner, trim the backing and wadding and then stitch the folded edge of the binding to the back.
For the place mat use the photo below as a guide - you will need to make 2 each of rows 1 and 2 - and the middle row is row 5 - and you only need 1.
Complete in the same way as the table runner.
Now all you need is to make a few more place mats and then add Christmas dinner!
This set is subtle and I think I'll be able to use it all year round - but you can make it as bright and Christmassy as you like. You can also shorten or extend the runner by adding more or fewer of row 4.
So at least now I feel like I've started my preparation for Christmas - only presents to buy and food to plan - nearly there really.
I hope you're enjoying this week of blogs as much as we are.
Click here to enter!
A quick quilt for Christmas
So I was sorting out my sewing room - again - I'm sure I don't really leave it so very messy - but the reward for all my effort was to uncover a fat quarter bundle of Tula Pink's Prince Charming fabric.
Using my Big Shot, and Bigz die 65762, I cut lots of 5" unfinished squares from the Prince Charming fat quarters -I'm not sure yet whether to use the peach as sashing between the squares or to cut it into squares as well. So this evening I am going to lay it out on the floor to see which I prefer - and then I'm going to piece it and either tie the corners or sew buttons on - instead of traditional quilting - which will also save time. I intend to time how long this quilt takes me to make - so that I can encourage you all that it's not too late to make gifts for Christmas!
That's all for this week - next week will be a quilting blog hop - with 5 of us publishing a blog one day of the week - how exciting - I can't wait to see what the others will do - which also means that news of this quilt will be delayed - so you can see completion in 2 weeks time.
Enjoy your weekend.
All I want for Christmas?
As I mentioned before I have been travelling - to Cambodia to visit my youngest daughter and her husband - which entailed 2 flights, one of which was 13 1/2 hours long. So I needed several things to do to pass the time - and my hexagons were so useful - you can use a thread cutter rather than scissors and a small sewing needle appears to be allowed - so I managed to tack a lot of hexagons and stitch a fair number together. I'm still not sure how big this project is going to be - but I'll keep you up to date with my progress.So now onto - All I want for Christmas? - as many of you, who have seen me demonstrating the Big Shot and Bigz dies at shows, will know one of my favourite dies is 657611 - the 2" finished half square triangle - which I can use to cut 32 triangles at time.So how amazing would it be to cut 112 triangles in one go - which is exactly what you can do with the Bigz XL die - 658322 ( you will also need the Bigz XL 25" cutting pads) - there are 14 triangles on this die and cutting 8 layers creates 112 - how amazing is that.If I didn't already have this treasure I would love to have it as a present.I'm sure I can add to the list over the next few weeks - and also maybe come up with a couple of quick makes to give as gifts.Meanwhile I'm going to carry on with my hexagons while enjoying a glass of wine.Enjoy the cosy evenings.Angela.
Hexagon make up bag.
So this is when I reveal what I've made with the scrappy hexagons - well I guess the title has given it away.The finished bag is 7" across, 5" high and 4 " deep. You can see from the photo that I cut the hexagon fabric into shape in one piece about 21" long and 7" across - the sides are 5" deep and 4" across.
I cut a piece of plain cotton the same size and shape for the lining. I place the 2 pieces right sides together and stitched a 1/4" seam across the front and sides and turned it right side out. I then pinned and stitched the 4 side seams.
I used one of the jelly roll strips to make the binding - the front side seams were bound separately and then the back seams and the bag flap were bound in one go.
Fix the flap with your choice of fastener.
I like the crazy scrappy look for a change.
This could make a quick ~Christmas gift - and you could easily change the measurements to make a different size - or even a set.
As you may have realised I'm really excited about hexagons at the moment, but I don't always have as much time as I would like to complete something - so I have used a quick, maybe a cheats, way of doing hexagons..
I also wanted to create something quite different to the traditional pieced hexagons that I'm also working on - so I used a jelly roll for the hexagons to create the scrappy look. I used the Bigz die 658317 to cut the hexagons - you can cut up to 32 hexagons in one go - how good is that!!
I fused some web onto a backing fabric and then placed the hexagons in place and fused them into place - you have to be careful when placing them so that they fit together well and there are no gaps between them.As you may see the blue with yellow swirls needs adjusting to that it butts up against it's neighbours.This is a really quick way to create a hexagon patchwork and when fused in place I stitched around the hexagons with luminous pink ( luminous threads are very popular at the moment) to complete the look. You could make a whole quilt like this if you wanted - but you would probably need to make it in sections as it would be quite difficult to stitch a complete piece in one go.So what am I making - you'll need to look in again next week to find out.Bye for now.
Hello, it's a cold but sunny Autumn day. I am enjoying being at home for a while after a crazy few weeks of travelling. I really enjoyed working at the Knitting and Stitching show at Alexandra Palace - and meeting quite a few of you. I always enjoy demonstrating the Big Shot and Bigz Dies - I love seeing the reaction, when it cuts so cleanly and easily, for people seeing it for the first time.
I managed to purchase some new fabrics for future projects -
they are from the Downton Abbey range by Andover fabrics - and I think they are lovely - I expect them to feature in projects in the new year.
Meanwhile - I have been busy with my pieced hexagons - pictured below - I'm using some fabrics by Tilda. I'm really enjoying the piecing process - which I wouldn't attempt without the hexagon dies,I've used die 658316 (3/4") for the papers and 658317 for the fabric. I have some travelling to do in the next couple of weeks so I'm hoping to have some time to stitch some more hexagons together - I can use the time travelling to stitch - so that the time goes quickly and I won't get bored - we'll see how that works out.That's all for this week - I hope you've up got some exciting new projects lined up for the Autumn.Keep stitching.Angela
Knitting and Stitching at Alexandra Palace
Well I have been so busy recently with demonstrations, of the Big Shot machine and Bigz Dies, not the protesting type!! I have recently been to Finland and Spain and now I'm in London for the Knitting and Stitching show at Alexandra Palace, working alongside Cotton Patch on stand F27.
The show started this morning, closing at 7pm tonight, and continues until 5pm on Sunday 13th October, so come and visit us - I have lots of lovely dies to demonstrate.
I've only had a little while to look at fabrics but I'm already itching to choose something for a new project for the New Year.
Unfortunately because I have been so busy recently the Cuddly Creatures Quilt is no nearer being finished - I think I am going to have to make that the project that I have to finish before the end of the year! Watch this space to see if I manage it!
If you're at the show come and say Hello - I love to catch up with you all and find out what projects you're working on.
How ever you spend it - have a lovely weekend.
This week is another idea for Christmas - a simple present sack, which like last week can be made in any size you like.My sack is about 24" deep and 22" wide, and I've decorated it with snowmen, using Bigz die 658770 - Snowman by Tim Holtz- but again you could applique any shape you like onto it. We have lots of Christmas dies on www.sizzix.co.uk.I fused the fabric before cutting with the die and Big Shot - some elements I didn't include as they were very small, and I used a straight stitch to attach them to the fabric, after fusing them to the main fabric.After stitching all the pieces together I added the eyes and the mouth using French Knots embroidery stitch.
To make the sack fold the fabric Right Sides together and stitch along the side and bottom edge.
Repeat with the lining fabric but leave several inches unstitched on the bottom edge, to allow for turning.
Match the open edges Right Sides together and stitch.
Turn the sack Right Side out and slipstitch the opening in the lining together.
Tuck the lining inside the sack.
Attach a length of ribbon or cord to the side of the sack to fasten.
Quick enough to make one for any number of relatives or for the any Christmas fairs.
Hope you're enjoying our quick Christmas projects.
Jingle bells stocking
Hello again, I love this time of year - I was returning home from work and as I reached the outskirts of Hereford I realised I could smell apples - harvested for cider making, one of the best smells.So as the evenings draw in and the heating is turned on - we can enjoy making little gifts and presents in preparation for Christmas.This week I've made a small stocking and decorated it with bells using a new Bigz die 658765 - Christmas Bells by Tim Holtz ( it will be available from October).My stocking is small - which I will fill with little treats for the grandchildren - but you could make it any size because the technique will be the same.I cut 4 layers of medium weight white cotton fabric in the shape of a stocking ( you can find lots of images on line) 13" long by 10" at the toe.For the Christmas fabrics I chose from the Yuletide range by Makower.I cut 2 strips of Christmas fabric 2 1/2" wide to make a border for the top of the stocking.I used 2 more different fabrics for the bells. I applied fusible web to the wrong side of the fabrics and placed them over the bells shapes on die and rolled them through the Big Shot.Sew the border strips to the top of 2 of the stockingsand press.Fuse the bells in place and stitch - I used a zig-zag stitch but you could use a straight stitch.Stitch the stockings, with the borders, right sides together, and stitch the plain pair together , but leave an opening along the straight side, so that you can turn the stocking right sides out.Clip and snip the curves as pictured below.Turn stocking right side out.Cut a strip of 'border' fabric - 1 1/2" x 5 1/2" to make a loop - press in half along length and then press edges to the middle and stitch in place.Pin loop to the top edge of the back of the stocking.place one stocking inside the other, with right sides together, pin and stitch them together around the top edge.Pull the stocking so that it's right sides out - and looks like the picture below. Pin and slip stitch the opening and then push the lining inside.Now you have the completed stocking.You could make one for each member of your family, or as gifts for friends young and old.I had hoped to have finished the quilt for Oona for this week - but it is in progress - I have stitched some of the animals in place and will keep you updated until I can actually show you the finished article.Enjoy the week.Angela
Don't Make Me Beg!
Hello,Today I am sharing the first of my 'Home Made Christmas' ideas.
My niece, Sally, recently bought a puppy called Bruce. It won't win any prizes for looks or obedience but he really has lifted everyone's spirits with his quirky ways! He is a sheepdog cross with an australian something or other and I am sure he will never grow into his ears! Sally has been trying to train Bruce and when she asked for a bag to carry his treats in, I instantly thought about the Sizzix Bigz die Dog, Puppy because the ears were so similar to Bruces!
This is the initial sketch that I made, you can see that even the best made plans can go astray!
My sewing skills are limited at best and I started with two rectangles of terracotta fabric measuring 36x16cm which allowed for a 1.5cm seam allowance.
Here are the stages of making.The white felt heart was cut using the Big Shot Starter Kit Bigz die but any heart would do, I hand wrote the word and did a running stitch over the top. I am not very confident with the sewing machine so hand stitched this project. My colleague Angela saved me an enormous amount of time (plus sweat and tears!) by machine stitching the strap. Thank you 'sew' much Angela :)