Thursday, December 18, 2014

Silent Night Center Piece

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Silent Night table topper at Freemotion by the River
Last week I took part in the Sew Mama Sew giveaway and in my post I showed you this piece that wasn't finished. It is now finished and ready for the holidays.
Island Batik center piece on the deck at Freemotion by the River
I used the Silent Night grouping of Island Batik fabrics.....beautiful metallic batiks. I used 3 different colors of thread for my free motion quilting. I just did my favorite stippling on my 15-91 vintage Singer.
Closeup of quilting at Freemotion by the River
Most of the time I attach my binding to the front of the quilt and then machine stitch it down on the back. Occasionally I will have a piece like this where the binding is black and the front border is white.
Attaching the binding to the back
I don't want to stitch with white thread on the front and have it show on the back black binding so. I attached the binding on the backside and then stitched it down on the front. I used black thread and you can see that it is right up against the binding. Sometimes it shows a little but it looks nice on the front.
machine sewing on the binding
I really like my battery operated candles that look so real. I really like this design and plan on working with it again next year.
Table topper for the holidays at Freemotion by the River
Silent Night Batiks from Island Batik at Freemotion by the River
Be sure and read the new post at Insights From SewCalGal - in 2015 there will be another Free Motion Quilting Challenge with lots of great information and challenges. I really enjoyed it in 2012.....wow.....where does the time go! I will never give up my stipple quilting but I always like learning new techniques. Check out this post with Cindy Needham and her new quilt stencil, videos and a downloadable book.

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Happy Holidays from Connie

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Fabric Baskets Tutorial

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Fabric Basket Tutorial at Freemotion by the River
Guess what I have been making the last couple of days......more fabric baskets! On the right side of my blog it shows my most popular posts and lately my basket posts from last year have been popping up a lot. I decided it was time to make a few more and try some different sizes.

You can find  Tina's tutorial at Seaside Stitches. I did two different posts last year where I showed the way I enclosed the seams - Fabric Boxes and  Fabric Box Tutorial. I thought I would update it for you as I have done some more sizes. You can find smaller sizes on these posts.

Here you can see how the basket would look if you have the seam showing on the outside or....put the seam inside.  Either way is nice and these are fast and easy to make. A perfect last minute gift.
Choose which way you want the seams to show  Freemotion by the River
I was going to show my tutorial with the Who's Who owl print but.....I forgot to take photos of a couple steps. Here is the first step, it shows better with these fabrics.
Sewing together the fabrics for the basket
No problem, I just whipped up another one in these beautiful red batiks called Season's Greetings by Island Batik.
Basket made with Island Batik fabrics Freemotion by the River
 Cut 2 - 16 inch squares of fabric and your batting the same size. Put the 2 fabrics right sides together on top of the batting and sew a 1/4 inch seam around the outside.
Island Batik fabrics for the basket at Freemotion by the River
Start the seam in the center of one side. I like to back-stitch at the beginning and end so it won't pull apart when I turn it. Notice that I also stitched to the edge of the fabric - when you turn the piece right side out this will make it easier to fold the fabric in the opening.
Stitch around the fabrics
Turn the piece and press. Just sew the opening closed.....that section will actually get cut off.
Opening in seam
Quilt as desired.
Quilt as desired
Now it is time to put the basket together. Fold the piece in half. Whatever fabric you would like to show on the inside when finished is the side we will mark the corners on.
Fold fabric in half
For this basket I am marking the corners at 2 inches.
Mark the corners at 2 inches
Stitch along the line you marked. Then trim leaving about 1/4 inch seam allowance.
Stitch on lines and then trim
Here you can see that I have sewn 2 of the corners. I hope the photos make it easier to see what I am doing.
Photos showing steps
Now do the other 2 corners.
Stitch the last 2 corners
At this point if you turned your basket right side out you would have the little flaps just like the baskets that Tina from Seaside Stitches showed in her tutorial.
Basket before corners are cut off  Freemotion by the River
Did you check that out? Now flip your basket wrong side out again and cut off corners.
Trim off corners
Flip the basket right side out. You can see the exposed seams, we are now going to enclose them.
corners are cut off - Freemotion by the River
Fold each corner as shown and stitch about a 1/2 inch seam. This will enclose the edges. I like to back-stitch at the beginning and end.

Notice how I stitch the line at the bottom.
Enclosing the seam - Freemotion by the River
It might be easier to see here, stop at the end of the seam. Stitch slowly, you are going through a lot of thicknesses. You might want to change to a 90 or 10 needle.
Enclosing the seam - Freemotion by the River
Now just fold over the flaps and hand stitch them down. I tried doing it on my sewing machine......you know I don't like hand sewing.....but I didn't like the way it looked. Add a cute button to one side and you are done!
Hand stitch the flaps down on the basket
Just for giggles - would you like to see what the basket actually looks like after we cut the corners off? Pretty neat isn't it!
Parts that are cut out Freemotion by the River
All of these baskets are made with 16 inch squares of fabric. The difference is in what size you cut the corner triangles.
  • 2 inch corners: basket is 4 1/2 inches tall and 6 inches inside
  • 2 1/2 inch corners: Basket is 5 inches tall and a little over 5 inches inside
  • 3 inch corners: Basket is 6 inches tall and 5 inches inside
Different sizes of corners for tutorial at Freemotion by the River
What do you think of this size?? I am using Silent Night batiks in it. Maybe I an put a skinny bottle of wine in it! Notice this was a 18 inch piece to begin with.
The basket one the left is a 18 inch square with 3 inch corners and the basket on the right is a 16 inch square with 3 inch corners. The 18 inch basket is about 6 inches tall and 5 1/2 inches inside.

Notice the blue basket has the cute little owls on it......tutorial coming soon for a wall hanging made with this fabric........anyway.......beware of using a directional fabric. My little owls are upside down on one side and sideways on two sides. It isn't that noticeable with this fabric.
More basket sizes at Freemotion by the River tutorial
I could just keep making them but......I'd better stop. I quilted the small Christmas table topper and will get that posted.  I have a wall hanging tutorial to get written for Inspired by Fabric, I redid my little sleeping bag pattern and made several.....need to get that posted, something for Fat Quarter Shop next week and......a big box of batiks showed up.......I have 4 quilts to make for Spring Market for Island Batik! I'm not allowing myself to start on them until I finish up my other projects. I have the box of beautiful batiks sitting in the living room and every time I walk by I get a big grin on my face!
Beautiful Island Batik fabrics at Freemotion by the River

Freemotion by the River is now a Island Batik Ambassador

If you would like a printed copy of this post just click here.


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Happy Holidays from Connie

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Linky Tuesday

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Linky Tuesday at Freemotion by the River

Today is Linky Tuesday!
Wonky Star Tutorial
Last week Sugarplum Patchwork shared a wonky star tutorial and showed us a beautiful holiday banner. Thanks so much for sharing and be sure to grab a featured button.

What kind of links can you add? Anything you would like to share.
  • Quilting, fabrics - work in progress or finishes
  • Scrap-booking - that is what I originally was doing when I started this blog
  • Recipes - I don't cook much but Builder Bob is also Chef Bob and loves to cook
  • Crafts of any kind - Counted cross-stitch, Primitives, etc.
  • Giveaways, DIY - Do it yourself projects
  • Tutorials and more
Join and have fun!
  • Please use the direct link to the specific post - not your main blog - need help? Click here if you need help.
  • Please take the time to visit other links, everyone loves new visitors and comments!
  • If you follow me, let me know and I'll follow you too
  • Grab my button or add a text link to your post or blog if you would like
If you would like to add a button to your blog you can copy the code which is below my buttons and add it as a gadget on the layout page of your blog. Here is a tutorial on how to do it.


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Happy Holidays from Connie

Monday, December 15, 2014

Vintage & Classic Bear Paw Blog Hop

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I am taking part in Fat Quarter Shop's Vintage & Classic series blog hop today and the block being presented is the classic Bear Paw which is one of my favorites. This is going to be a table runner and was stitched on my vintage 15-91 Singer sewing machine.
Fat Quarter Shop
I used some of the Heart's Content batiks I had left over from my Spinners quilt that I made last month......yes, I still need to get the pattern finished.
Hearts Content Batiks
I also had some other batiks, here I added in a purple batik and a dot background. I will make more blocks and probably make a lap quilt.
Bear Paw batik blocks at Freemotion by the River
You know how much I love working with batiks and they are perfect for classic blocks!
Here is one section of the block, it contains half square triangles.....they are so much fun to make.
closeup of a section of Bear Paw block
Kimberly has created a neat YouTube video that will show you how easy it is to make this block. This is really great if you are a visual person.

You can also find the FREE Bear Paw block pattern here or you can purchase the quilt pattern from Fat Quarter Shop here, it includes measurements for 4 different sizes.

Be sure to visit Fat Quarter Shop's blog today and see who else is taking part in the blog hop!

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Happy Holidays from Connie