Mouse Camp Quilt

Yesterday I made great progress on a baby quilt that I’m making for my husband’s cousin. She’s expecting a baby boy in November. Her shower is at the end of the month, so hoping I’m able to complete this quilt on time. So far, this quilt has been an easy and quick project; I’m enjoying it so far! While at the last quilt show, I found a perfect print, Mouse Camp by Erica Hite. The family who’s receiving this quilt loves the outdoorsy/camping theme and this print had it all!

At the time I had no plan in mind, just a yard of fabric with an adorable print repeat. With that, I decided on a Double 4-Patch quilt pattern. My plan was to utilize large squares to show off the mousy print and the 4-patch of solids, or smaller prints. After some calculations and a goal of a 40″ x 40″ baby quilt, I took out some graph paper and put my plan down.

Plan40″ x 40″ Double 4-Patch:

For this pattern, you will need 1 yard of fabric for the main print. (3/4 yd for a tight fit will work too). Cut (3) 8.5″ strips, then sub-cut into (12) 8.5″ Squares.

For the 4-Patch, you will need 4 solids or accent prints, 1/3 yd each. (1/4 yd for a tight fit…but I had some issues with this) Cut (2) 4.5″ strips from each color, then sub-cut into (13) 4.5″ squares. This equals a total of (52) 4.5″ squares. Keep your 4 color piles separate and organize them in the order you’d like if all 4-patches are to remain the same.

I decided to keep all of my 4-patch blocks identical, but you can definitely have some fun with this! Alternatively, you can go with one main print and 2 accents like I did with my Traditional Block Thursday version: TBT – Double 4-Patch.

Fabric cutsMy first step was to create all of the 4-Patch blocks. I chain pieced the top two colors first, then I chained pieced the bottom two colors. After pressing my seams in opposite directions, I pieced the top and bottom rows together. You will finish with 13 4-Patch blocks. I put them up on the design board, along with the 8.5″ squares, alternating the blocks until I was satisfied with my mouse placements 🙂 You will have 5 rows with 5 blocks each. I completed the top by piecing the blocks together by rows, pressing my seams towards the 8.5″ mouse blocks, then sewing the rows together. It’s up on my design board for now ready for the next step!

Mouse Camp Quilt Mouse Camp Quilt_zoomThis coming weekend, I will need to join some of my leftover batting with a zig-zag stitch. Have you tried this? It works great and minimizes wasted pieces! For the back, I selected a woodsy flannel fabric, which should be nice and cozy for baby. I purchased 1 1/4 yard for a whole cloth back and there should be some left over for my scrap baskets. The binding fabric is so lovely! Mainly white with a brown outlined flower print and golden-yellow centers, I purposely bought extra fabric on this so I could have some too! I like 2 1/4″ strips, if you do too, you’ll only need 1/3 yd of binding fabric. If you prefer 2 1/2″ strips, plan for 3/8 yd. From the binding fabric, cut 5 strips to accommodate this quilt size.

Back and Binding FabricI have plenty of variegated green thread from Superior Threads to quilt this blanket. I’m thinking a simple straight-line quilting on either side of all seams to keep the quilt soft.

Check back soon for the completed Mouse Camp Quilt!

Partial Seams Tutorial

Last week I picked back up on my Plus Quilt and pieced together block 2. I photographed my way through it to write up a tutorial for you showing my process and in the back of my mind I was holding on to the idea of an easier way… Luckily, I decided to take one more look at Partial Seams on the web. With my mind refreshed, I read through Partial Seams by Jinny Beyer and then it dawned on me…My block is the exact same layout, it’s just going in a different direction! All of the Partial Seam tutorials piece their blocks clockwise and if I pieced my block this way, I’d have 3 partial seams! However, if I piece my block counter-clockwise I only have 1 partial seam — YAY! Ideas always come to me like this 😉 With this new realization, I photographed my way through Block 3 and here’s my tutorial:

1. Here’s my block, laid out as shown on my pattern’s diagram

block 3 laid out2. I’m going to begin with my top rectangle and start the partial seam here. The red butterfly pins indicate where my stitch will be made. Beyer advises starting this stitch in the center of the middle square. Begin by locking your stitch and sewing off the end as you normally would.

beginning parial seamstarting partial seam starting partial seam 23. Here is the block now with the top rectangle and a partial seam. I went ahead and pressed this partial seam away from the center square (tutorials will suggest finger pressing) and laid out my next rectangle on the design board. I’ve pinned my hanging, un-sewn portion up for visual reference. My rectangles are a little longer so I ensure sewing with the tail on the outer edge. This way I can easily trim these off at the end.

Now sew this next rectangle on as you would normally, right sides together, seam pressed away from the center square.

adding rectangle 24. Now I have my top and left side rectangles in place. Next, I’ve laid out the bottom rectangle. With right sides together, sew this rectangle on next. Press seam away from center block.

adding rectangle 35. Now we have top, left, and bottom rectangles in place. You’re ready to add the last rectangle! With right sides together, sew the right rectangle in place. Press seam away from the center block.

Be sure to move the top, un-sewn portion of the rectangle away as you sew the right seam.

adding rectangle 4sewing rectangle 46. Almost done! Now let’s complete the partial seam that was sewn in step 2. You will fold the top rectangle down so right sides are together.

top rectangle down partial seam markedThe butterfly pin above is to show you where my partial seam began in step 2 and where I will start again to complete this seam. Begin sewing by locking your stitch (just one back-stitch to avoid bulk where we’ve back-stitched previously) and sew off the end. Press the last seam away from center block.

completing partial seamIf your rectangles are long like mine, trim these ends to square up the block and you’ve completed a block using the Partial Seam technique!

complete before trimming

block 3Now I can continue making the rest of my blocks. I’m really loving the color combination of Block 3. Looking forward to showing you the completed quilt top…stay tuned!

Fabric Coaster Tutorial

I have these adorable vintage floral scrap squares that have been sitting in a basket waiting to be used… I decided fabric coasters would be the perfect way to display them. We have an old set of bamboo coasters that needed replacing and even better, the wooden coaster holder will continue to be used to hold the new fabric ones. I drew out my plan on graph paper, originally thinking I wanted a 5″x5″ coaster, but the wooden holder is a bit smaller so I moved forward with a 4″x4″ design. I photographed my process to give you this tutorial that makes 7 coasters…I would have made 8, but I didn’t have an 8th floral square :p

Materials:

1/4 yard fabric for border and backing

Scrap fabric for middle of coaster

Scrap batting material

coaster fabric

Fabric Cuts:

3 – 1″ x WOF strips from the border/backing fabric

Sub-cut strips into 14 – 1″ x 3.5″ and 14 – 1″ x 4.5″ rectangles

1 – 4.5″ x WOF strip from border/backing fabric

Sub-cut into 7 – 4.5″ Backing Squares

7 – 3.5″ Middle Squares for Front of Coasters

7 – 4.5″ Batting Squares

cut fabricStep 1:

Chain piece a 1″ x 3.5″ rectangle to the right of a 3.5″ square.

Snip the squares apart.

Chain piece a 1″ x 3.5″ rectangle to the left of the same square.

Snip the squares apart.

Then press seams open.

border1border 2press seams1Step 2:

Chain piece a 1″ x 4.5″ rectangle to the top of each unit.

Snip the squares apart.

Chain piece a 1″ x 4.5″ rectangle to the bottom of each unit.

Snip the squares apart.

Then press seams open.

border 3_4final seam pressStep 3:

Create the Coaster sandwich – Front and backing right sides together, then batting square on the bottom.

Place layers as shown… It doesn’t make sense I know, but go with it…

coaster sandwichStep 4:

Sew 1/4″ around the coaster sandwich leaving a 2″ opening for turning. Start with a back stitch and end with a back stitch. The front of your coaster is hiding in the middle.

back sidebatting sideStep 5:

Clip your corners, careful not to cut your seam. This helps to smooth out the corners when turning right side out.

Now turn your coaster right side out! Keep the Coaster Front and the batting together as one, while turning the back fabric over to turn inside out. Use a pointy device to push the corners out.

Batting is now in the middle 🙂

Press your coaster to remove the wrinkles and to also press the opening a 1/4″ in.

turn inside outStep 6:

Sew around the top of your coaster 1/8″ away from the edge. Use a small back stitch at the beginning and end to secure. While top stitching, you will go over the 2″ opening, closing it and completing your coaster!

Press again to set the seam and removing any other wrinkles.

completed coaster front and backcompleted coastersFinished coaster measures 4″x4″

Border and backing fabric is Lumiere de Noel by French General for Moda Fabrics. Vintage floral prints unknown.