Saturday Quilting Bring & Share (251)

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring & Share and Happy Easter too! Bring along your project(s) and share in the latest news and inspiration along with other members of our Worldwide Quilting Community. It’s great to encourage blog writers by getting a conversation going via their comments boxes so don’t forget to join in when a post gets you thinking 🙂

This week I’ve been concentrating on the March block for the English Country Garden QAL. This QAL certainly provides variety month by month as it is a quilt-as-you-go project so each block is brought to completion before the next one begins (or that’s the plan…) To complete

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Saturday Quilting Bring and Share (249)

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring & Share. Bring along your project(s) and relax in the company of quilters from around the World – after all it is International Quilting Day 🙂 There’ll be plenty of sharing of ideas going on – use the links below to visit a few quilty bloggers and join in the sharing by adding to the conversations in the comments boxes.

I’ve tried to stay focussed through the week but I did get a bit fluttery yesterday when I suddenly felt overwhelmed by all the projects on the go! Progress has been made on a few. Once I’d overcome the overwhelm (if you know what I mean?) I followed my DHs advice (up to a point) and got stuck into one (or two) projects. First up, I made a large piece of wadding from several offcuts of Quilters Dream Green. That felt good! Next I made a label for the Sixty Slice quilt calling my version the ‘Sixty Degree Summer’ quilt and pieced that into a pieced backing. I forgot to take a photo of the backing before getting the quilt sandwich clamped to my basting table…

Hand sewing has been going on steadily through the week, yesterday I stitched together the fourth and last of the hexie flowers I intend to applique to an Irish Chain quilt.

As I’ve already started machine quilting the quilt I think I will attempt to machine applique the hexie flowers to the quilt sandwich. Any advice? Is this plan likely to lead to a puckered disaster? Would I do better to carefully hand applique the hexie flowers to the top layer and then machine quilt on and around them?

So that’s more than enough sewing room action for one weekend really: pin basting the Sixty Degree Summer quilt; and attaching the flowers to the Irish Chain quilt. But, and here I open the window into my overwhelm, there are several other projects scattered across my sewing room. There are this months Rainbow Scrap Challenge string blocks to make – so far all I’ve done is sort out the green fabric strings from the box.

Then there’s the English Country Garden QAL – I’ve cut out the fabrics for the March block but got no further.

(And of course there are blocks up on the design wall ready to be stitched together into ANOTHER quilt top) 😀

On Thursday I received some happy post, a complimentary copy of the latest edition of Love Patchwork & Quilting as one of my designs is in the magazine 🙂 You can find out more about Issue 96 by visiting the @lovequiltingmag bio and clicking the link to buy print and digital copies, or to subscribe. Next week I’ll share more about the design and my limited experience of having designs published in magazines.

Time for a bumper batch of links to celebrate International Quilters Day:

Wow! Linda has pushed herself hard through a design process and produced a really spectacular quilt. It all began at the end of January in a workshop on Zoom run by Maria Shell. It’s well worth reading this summary blog post to see how Linda finished the quilt but you might then take a trip through her earlier posts to follow the ups and downs of the design process.

Carole is enjoying the transition from Winter to Spring, she says she’s ‘Breathing Again‘. Enjoying Spring flowers, birds visiting her garden and an outdoor lunch with a show and tell with friends.

Another brilliant tutorial from Yvonne. This time she walks us through making accurate, consistent Square-in-a-Square blocks. So much helpful information and a cutting chart too. Definitely worth saving a link to this tutorial 🙂

Nancy enjoys searching in thrift stores for fabrics suitable for quilting. She has found a great selection of shirts, blouses and bed linen to bolster her stash. Nancy takes a needle with her when she’s hunting for fabrics – just to make sure the fabric weave is loose enough to make hand quilting comfortable.

Leanne’s latest edition of ‘Let’s Get to Know’ features Bernie of Needle & Foot. I have followed Bernie’s blog since around 2015 and always look forward to receiving a notification in my inbox letting me know she’s published a post.

Cynthia is a queen of scrap quilting. She’s been dealing with an over-flow of brown scraps. Some may think ‘meh’ about the colour but I think Cynthia’s Courthouse Steps Blocks will gain a few more thumbs up for brown!

Earlier this month Michelle shared her thoughts on binding quilts and got a lively and informative discussion going in the comments section of her blog. In that post she also shared a link to a binding tutorial post she wrote back in 2016 – well worth a couple of clicks 🙂

Laura Hopper has been a guest on the Suzy Quilts website sharing her skills of organizing and storage. In this post Laura shares some tips that should help us think more clearly about Quilt Fabric Organization.

Jen is helping to ‘keep it real’ by giving a tour of her basement sewing space. It is a windowless laundry room but with a bit of ingenuity and good grace Jen is making it a productive and happy place.

Cheryl shares a baby quilt tutorial which could be a great scrap buster – lots of strips cut into half square triangles.

Funny how we can make loads of quilts to give away but put off making things for our own homes! Laura has taken time to get round to making a cover for her sewing machine – it was worth the wait! She’s chosen bright colours to compliment her sewing room.

Linking with Alycia for Finished or Not Friday. She’s on roll finishing quilt tops!

Happy Stitching!

Allison

Saturday Quilting Bring and Share (246)

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring & Share 🙂 Bring along your project(s) and enjoy sharing in what’s been inspiring and occupying other members of our Worldwide Quilting Community. Do use the links to click and visit other blog sites. Please do leave messages to encourage those who are sharing and add your thoughts and knowledge to the discussions – I learn so much from reading through the discussion comments at the end of an interesting blog post.

In our garden Primulas are basking in the sun.

Well! The over-riding theme of life here in the UK continues to be ‘waiting’. Thankfully the waiting is now tinged with a sense of anticipation. On the pandemic front we have a ‘roadmap’ out of restrictions with a caveat to not rush ahead of the timings set in place. On the day to day, Spring is showing itself in all sorts of ways now. We are enjoying a succession of dry, sunlit days and frosty nights. Flowers are much in evidence – yesterday I saw a hedgerow full of the white blossoms of Blackthorn – birds are loudly proclaiming their territories, some are gathering nesting materials and the hours of daylight are lengthening rapidly. We have been waiting for the soil in our garden and allotment to dry out enough to be workable, perhaps this afternoon we may be able to start the digging and weeding? (Added to post – ground still heavy and not quite ready for weeding by hand – still waiting in hope). Yesterday we bought some garden supplies including new poles in anticipation of the beans we haven’t even sown. Yes! Waiting is definitely being combined with a sense of hope after some very dark months.

My big sewing news this week is the release of my latest pattern. The ‘Use it all up 9 Fat Quarter Quilt’ pattern arose from my attempt to tackle one of those attractive but difficult to use FQ packs on several fronts: 1. To actually lift it off the shelf and break into it; 2. To make maximum use of the FQs- minimal left overs for the scrap bins; 3. to make a reasonable sized quilt from a minimal number of FQs and additional yardage. I made a quilt top measuring 67″ square using nine FQs with 2¼yds of extra fabric. I gave the

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Table Top Sewing Basket Tutorial

Hand sewing projects have the great advantage over machine sewing of generally being mobile activities. Even if ‘mobile’ only means moving from room to room or sofa to armchair within the home! Which is basically as mobile as sewing projects can be in current Covid restricted circumstances! Of course being mobile, even in this limited sense, does raise the need for some sort of container to carry and store sewing notions.

I had the perfect container hidden away on a shelf in my sewing room – a little fabric basket just the right size for the threads, needles, scissors and other bits and bobs I need for English Paper Piecing and applique projects. As well as being a useful container for carrying all the notions the basket also serves as a way to keep them all safely in one place – rather than thread spools rolling off the coffee table and my scissors getting lost between the sofa cushions!

Realising how useful the fabric basket has been to me over the past few weeks I decided I would make one as a gift for someone who is about to recommence home sewing after a long break. I’m really chuffed with the little basket and matching pincushion I made from a fat quarter and a few smaller scraps.

My word for 2021 is SHARE and in that spirit I thought I’d post a tutorial should you feel inspired to make a Table Top Sewing Basket 🙂 I certainly wouldn’t claim that this is an original idea. I first made a fabric basket back in 2014. I can’t remember the tutorial I followed. If  ‘make a fabric basket tutorial’ is typed into a browser the choice is overwhelming! Overtime I’ve adapted that first tutorial, introduced ideas from other basket tutorials and tried different combinations of materials. So this is a hi-bred of several tutorials and plenty of experience 🙂

To make a basket with a 4½” (11cm) square base that stands 4½” high you will need:

  • One Fat Quarter cut into: one (1) 5¾” x 20″ rectangle; two (2) 4¼” x 7″ rectangles
  • Contrast fabric: one (1) 1¾” x 20″ rectangle.
  • Lining: Two (2) 9½” x 7″ rectangles.
  • Medium weight iron-on interfacing (optional): one (1) 5″ x 19″ rectangle.
  • Wadding: one (1) 9″ x 22″ rectangle.

Step One – Preparing the Outside of the Basket

  • Using a ¼” seam, stitch the contrast fabric rectangle to a long edge of the 5¾” x 20″ rectangle. If either of your fabrics are directional be sure to orientate them correctly with the contrast fabric at the top of the basket! Press seam open.
  • Fuse the iron-on interfacing to the back of the pieced rectangle.
  • Lay the pieced rectangle face up on top of the wadding. Baste the two layers together. Try using masking tape to keep the wadding slightly stretched and in one place whilst lightly pinning the pieced rectangle in place.

  • I could write ‘quilt as desired’ and imagine the howls of frustration 😀 so instead I’ll just say that I generally choose to use a walking foot to stitch gentle wavy lines along the length of the piece. But if you are keen to practice free motion quilting stitches then a project this size is ideal! Keep the stitching lines about ½” – ¾” apart to help give the basket a bit of extra rigidity.
  • Once quilted use a rotary cutter to trim away the excess wadding.
  • Cut the quilted rectangle into two (2) 7½” x 9½” rectangles.

Step 2 – Making Boxed Corners

  • Place the two quilted rectangles right sides together. Use a ruler and pen to mark a 2¼” square in the lower left and right hand corners.

  • Line up the seams and pin. Stitch the two pieces together using ¼” seam. A walking foot is useful for getting through all the layers. Use strengthening back stitching at the start and end of each seam AND over the drawn lines.
  • Use scissors to cut out the marked 2¼” squares.
  • Fold one cut corner so the side and base seams are lying together.

  • Pin in place and sew along the opening using a ¼” seam, back stitch the start and end of the seam.

  • Repeat with the opposite opening.
  • Turn right sides out.

Step 3 – Make the Lining

  • Place the two Lining rectangles right sides together. Use a ruler and pen to mark a 2¼” square in the lower left and right hand corners.

  • Stitch the two pieces together using a 3/8″ seam. Leave a 2″ opening in the bottom seam. Use back stitching at the start and end of each seam AND over the drawn lines.
  • Use scissors to cut out the marked 2¼” squares.
  • Make boxed corners in the same way as for the Outer Basket.
  • Finger press the seams open and leave the lining wrong side out.

Step 4 – Make the Tab Handles

  • Place a 4¼” x 7″ rectangle wrong side up on an ironing board. Fold the shorter sides to the centre. Press to crease the folds. Fold along the centre line to make a 1¾” x 4¼” rectangle. Press the folds.

  • Top stitch close to both long edges of the rectangle.

  • Repeat with the second 4¼” x 7″ rectangle.

Step 5 – Constructing the basket

  • Place the Outer Basket inside the Lining, right sides facing with the side seams against each other.
  • Fold a Tab Handle in half widthways and slip it between the Outer Basket and Lining layers so it is centred on the side seams. Allow the raw edges of the Tab Handle to protrude ¼” above the rim of the basket. Pin securely in place.

  • Repeat with the second Tab Handle on the opposite side of the Basket.
  • Pin the Lining and Outer Basket together all around the rim. (This might be a bit of a tight squeeze as the Lining is shorter than the Outer Basket).
  • Stitch a ¼” seam inside the rim – a walking foot is useful for stitching through all the layers.

  • Use the gap in the bottom seam of the Lining to turn the basket right sides out.
  • Hand or machine stitch closed the gap in the bottom seam of the Lining.
  • Roll and pin/clip the rim of the basket so the seam is uppermost.

  • Top Stitch ¼” below the rim to hold the layers in place and create a neat edge.

I hope you enjoy making, using and/or gifting a Table-Top Sewing Basket. Any questions? Pop them in the Comments box and I’ll do my best to help.

One last tip: Best not to use a bag wadding such as Bosal In-R-Form for a small basket like this one. I did once and turning the bag right side out was very difficult – a bit of a Call the Midwife situation if you know what I mean? :-O

Linking with Alycia for Finished or Not Friday and with Denise for her Put Your Foot Down linky.

Allison