Monday, August 29, 2011

Paper Piecing Tutorial

Today we are going to make a very easy peasy heart mini block. You can make this into a little pillow, mini quilt, potholder..and the list goes on!
What do you need?

*scrap fabric
*copy paper - for your printed pattern
*old credit card or something of that shape & weight
*rotary cutter
*cutting mat
*extra fine seam ripper
* add a 1/4" ruler
*glue stick

How do you do it?
1.) Print out this pattern - you can download it here. Keep in mind that your finished project will be a mirror image of your pattern. Now because this is an easy pattern, all the piecing will be done on the same page. With more complex patterns, you would have to cut apart main sections to complete and then sew together.

2.)In paper piecing we work in numerical order, so the first section we will do is #1. Pick a scrap piece of fabric that is at least 1/2" wider then section #1. Place the printed side of the paper down on the table. Add a dab of glue stick to the wrong side of the fabric and adhere right side up on the back of the paper - centered into section #1. It helps to hold it up against the light to make sure you have placed it correctly.

3.)Now before we begin sewing, decrease your stitch length somewhere between 1-2. This shorter stitch will make it much easier for you to tear the paper off later. You will not be removing paper until the very end.

4.) With the printed side of the paper facing up, fold back the line between #1 and #2. Using your add a 1/4" ruler, trim the seam allowance to 1/4". You can discard the excess fabric or save for another project. Unfold the pattern.

5.)We will always be sewing on the front side of the paper and laying fabric down on the back. Now find a fabric scrap that fits at least a 1/2" larger than section #2. Place this fabric down on section #1, right sides together with raw edges matching up. Hold or pin in place and turn the paper back over with printed side facing up. You will now stitch right on the line between section #1 and #2.

6.) Gently press the fabric open with an iron.

7.) Repeat step #4 for the section 2 borders. Find a suitable piece of fabric for section #3 -remember that your fabric can be scraps, but they must be 1/2" larger than the printed area. This is the most common step people have trouble with because they use too small a piece of fabric. It is much easier to cut away excess that to start over or to rip the itty bitty stitches..

8.) Place the #3 fabric right side down on section 1&2 - rights sides together with raw edges lined up. Again making sure that when fabric is folded back over it will completely cover the #3 section with room to spare. Hold or pin in place and flip over to the printed paper side. Sew on the #3 / #1&#2 border. Press fabric open.

9.) Now repeat those steps for the remaining sections...More pressing...
More cutting..
TADA! All done - whew! That was easy, right? Now you can gently remove the paper from the back. Use your tweezers to help remove small pieces in the stitches. Your project is now reading for finishing. I think this would be an adorable little sachet pillow.

There are so many fun things you can make with paper piecing. You will love and be amazed at the easy precision. You can find more free paper piecing patterns at my blog over at All Things Belle and ones to purchase on my Etsy store.

Thank you so much for joining me! I hope I have removed some of the mystery of foundation piecing and have you excited to go try it.

Linking up to: A to Z

Sunday, August 28, 2011

My Craft Channel Entry - Video on Freemotion Sewing

After trying to directly upload my video here for the last hours..
I concede.. Blogger seems to hate me right now..

My Craft Channel was looking for a fresh face to do some crafty videos for them. Can I tell you how excited I was to enter??

Here is my little video clip of beginning freemotion sketching. Hope you enjoy! I would love to see your projects if you try this!!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Back to School!

Is it just me or were we totally gypped of summer this year? Well at least in Utah it took forever to be done with the snow and now it's already time for school. I'm so excited for Isabelle; this is her first year of preschool. She has a wonderful teacher, her best friend in her class, and so much eagerness to learn.

I've searched high & low for some traditions that we could start. My husband doesn't quite get the importance of this, but for me it's those extra touches that I hope my girls will remember and do for their children. I personally remember the very important first day of school pictures, picking out a new backpack, and wrapping my new books with paper grocery bags - what great canvases for drawing!

This year Isabelle is going on a "Backpack Date" with Daddy. As I type, they are at Toys R Us picking out whatever her heart desires. I know she wants The Little Mermaid, but I wouldn't be surprised if she came home with an Iron Man one! ((Just found out she has a Dora backpack and Disney Princess lunch pail!))

Here is my little academic star in a tee I embroidered for her. I think she looks so sweet! The embroidery is from SWAK. I've bought a few files from them in the past and I'm always super happy with the stitch out. Machine embroidery on knit can be interesting to say the least, but I had no trouble with this - thank goodness!

I also made her a bulletin board for all her important papers and artwork. Do you want to see what I did? It's super easy and fun for the kiddos!

What do you need?
*Magnetic board ( I got mine from Target on clearance)
*Enough fabric to cover the board
*Pretty trim for border of board
*white felt
*tear away stabilizer
*scrap fabric
*hot glue

What do you do?
1.) Hot glue fabric down on magnet board only on border. Stretch it tight so it fits nice and smooth.
2. Cut any excess fabric off from the sides. Beautify that border up by hot gluing trim around the edge.
3. Stitch out your apple applique on white felt.
4. Cut apple out from felt, leaving about 1/4" border.
5. Hot glue apple applique on to a magnet.
6. Enjoy!


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Guest Posting At Mauby's Today!

Want to learn how to paper piece?? You can make this heart so quick with my tutorial. Come on over to Mauby's, where I am guest posting for the day!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


I promise this is the last blog makeover for sometime. I'm sooo excited about it!
Do you love it?
Is it easier?

Spill it...

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Defeat or Glory

My wetsuit is ready to be shipped.
My campsite is cancelled.
I've accepted hours to work Saturday afternoon.
I am not doing my first open water Triathlon this Saturday.

The Baby has some kind of awful stomach bug.
The kind of bug that you don't want me to blog about.
And Hubby has been working nights.
I think I could could count the number of hours I've slept on one hand.
There is no way I'm dragging us on a camping trip to do a Triathlon.
It would be miserable and dangerous for me.

It's been hard to let this go. I feel like I've failed. I hate sucking up a $200 loss with no glory picture.
I am not a silver lining kind of gal. I leave that to my Bestie and Mom.
But there is one...

I am stronger now.
I am leaner now.
I am faster now.
I am eating clean now... and so is my family.
I am motivated now.
I am healthy now.

Would I be any of those had I not been working my butt off to compete?
Without a doubt.. nope.
There are a lot of reasons why I jumped on the healthy path,
but one of the biggest is to be role model for my girls.

And I will do that this weekend by letting go of something that is important to me,
for something is that is more.. the health and happiness of my girls.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Granny Baby Blanket

I am soo loving this baby blanket! I will be doing a class on this at Kamille's later this fall. I think it will be so wonderful for the little fall baby in your life. It is made with a superwash merino wool - it is soft, yummy, and washable!

The class will be perfect for the crochet beginner to the advanced. There are only a couple stitches you will use - after this blanket you will have the double crochet (dc) stitch down to an art!

Hope to see you there!

Friday, August 19, 2011

The Not So Spooky Doll Quilt

A couple weeks ago, cutie pie Isabelle was putting her dolly to sleep using one of our kitchen towels. I know! How could she not have a slew of handmade doll quilts? Well to cut me some slack, it's really been only in the last month that she has really shown much interest in her dolls and imaginary play.

The same week, the amazing Rhonna Farrer had a Design Team call. She makes the most amazing digital artwork. Most people I know use her designs for their digital scrapbooks or print them out for cards and other paper projects. I really wanted to find some ways to incorporate her work into some fun sewing projects.

It is really easy! There are a number of ways you can print on fabric, but I wanted some immediate gratification so I went one of the easier ways. I uploaded her images into Photoshop and rearranged them to maximize the number of images on a letter sized paper. Then I printed it on ink-jet printable fabric - you can find these at most craft stores, they are sold near the fabric section.

After the images were printed and heat set (follow the directions on the package for your particular brand), I cut them out and arranged them on a piece of muslin fabric. Once I was happy with the layout, I rubbed a small bit of glue stick behind each circle and adhered it to the quilt. The rest was pretty traditional quilting. Lots of obvious black free motion stitching and bright, contrast binding. I mixed in small postage size pieces of scrap fabric.

I love it! Isabelle was whopping and hollering the whole time I made it. I was informed that it is "just a little spooky" - perfect for her. I can't wait to give to her to play with at Halloween. And I am much happier that her dolls will now have their first proper quilt!

If you love the look of this but don't have any ankle biters with dolls, it would be a perfect accent for a Halloween mantle display or hung up as a mini quilt.

If you have no desire to quilt, you can use this same technique and make into a card or scrapbook layout. Simply print the images on paper and use a black sharpie to make the thread lines.

Hope you enjoy!


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

From My Bedroom Door

Monday, August 15, 2011

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

What's Your Pet Peeve?

This year my mom & I finally went to Quilt Market. It was such an amazing experience, I had no idea how many celebrities I would meet. While we were there, I fawned all over the "Quilting Arts" booth. I loooove their magazine and special editions. And I met Pokey! She was so warm and personable. I ended up filming with them a little bit about my adoration for art quilting. I think it was that exchange that finally pushed me to submit to their magazine.

This morning I submitted my quilt, "Ode to the Commode". The magazine opened a call for submissions about pet peeves. And well mine is having to go potty and only finding a cardboard roll where there should be some toilet paper..

Fingers crossed Pokey will find this as amusing as we do. Even though Thomas was the joke in this quilt, he loves it and wants to display it prominently in one of our bathrooms. Maybe it will serve as a reminder? One can only hope...


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