Christmas place mats

Cotton&Color is running a Christmas contest: to sew Christmas-themed place mats (they provide the pattern!). It’s always fun to participate in such a thing, moreover if the resulting finished objects are perfect for Christmas gifts!

So I took the plunge. As I was using directional prints, I sewed each one individually. I also added the appliqué star made of chalk-board fabric – so the place mat owner’s name can be written down, for example-.

Sewing with chalk-board fabric isn’t difficult at all. Only to remember that the stitches can not be ripped out – the stitching holes wouldn’t disappear-, and that it can not be ironed.

I made six them, and I think they don’t need further packing…  just a nice paper bag and that’s all, isn’t it?

Project: Christmas place mats
Size: 13″ x 16 1/8″ / 33 x 41 cm (aprox.)
Date: November 2017
Pattern: 6 Quick & Easy reversible place mats, Cotton&Color
Fabric: The Cookie Exchange, by Sweetwater, Moda Fabrics
Wishes, by Sweetwater, Moda Fabrics
Juniper Berry, by Basic Grey, Moda Fabrics
Grunge, by Basic Grey, Moda Fabrics
Batting: Thermolam TP971F, Pellon

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Moda’s Frivol n. 10: “Sugar”

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This is my Christmas project for this year! I started it in July having already in mind the idea to use it as a table-topper for the Christmas season. I loved the Frivol’s tin, the fabric, and the pattern. And it didn’t seem difficult, so there I went. But this little one was, if nothing, a journey of mistakes and lots, lots, lots of learning.

Firstly, I decided to starch the fabric (it was pre-cut). I use a water-based starch, and, guess what, there was shrinkage. A lot. I mean, I was lucky that I could follow the cutting instructions, because the shrinkage was so huge that I almost didn’t have enough fabric for the pattern cutting requirements. Fortunately, not all the pre-cuts in the tin were needed, so there were a couple of cutting-error victims that went directly to the scraps bin.

Piecing itself was not complicated and really quick. But then came the quilting part. I’d already decided to quilt in the ditch, but I interrupted the first attempt before I had finished the first block. It was a disaster. My walking foot front part is really narrow and it’s really difficult to see where the needle drops, so the resulting quilting was everywhere but in the ditch. I unpicked the stitches, and thought of a second plan.

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Which was eco-quilting the squares. In the second attempt I found I couldn’t rely on following my foot as a guide, so unpicking again it was; and then I marked the quilting lines without removing the safety pins I’ve used for basting. Wonky lines are a short term for what came out.

At the end: I pulled the fabric too much; my machine is really tiny to hold large quilts (and this one wasn’t specially large!), so there are irregular stitches -even using the walking foot!- due to wrongly feeding the quilt into the machine. And the border is, in no ways, square.

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I washed the quilt before adding the binding. I used a 2 1/2″ wide binding strip, but now I think it should have been less, perhaps 2 1/4″.

And I attached a label!!

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Overall, I’m really happy with the results. I learnt a lot from my own mistakes, and now I’m enjoying a new, beautiful table-topper, with all its imperfections.

This quilt was on exhibition in my local quilt shop, that’s why this post is so late, even it was finished a couple of months ago. It was also featured in a short Q&A at Cotton&Color’s blog.

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Project: Table-topper / Wall hanging
Size: 11″ x 14 1/4″/ 27.5 x 36 cm
Date: July 2016- September 2016
Pattern: Sugar, by Sweetwater (Moda Frivol n. 10)
Top fabric: The Cookie Exchange, by Sweetwater, for Moda Fabrics
Border: Galeria, Gail Marie, P&B Textiles
Backing fabric: unknown, a fabric purchased four years (?) ago
Batting: Regular Thermolam TP970, Legacy
Quilting: machine-quilted, Scanfil Organic 4801
Binding: Quilter’s Linen, Robert Kaufmann
Label: Bomull, Ikea

Linking with Finish it up Friday!

The Splendid Sampler™: Block 49

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Block n. 49 of The Splendid Sampler is calledSummer’s Gift, by Karla Eisenach (Sweetwater), and combines a little bit of piecing and appliqué.

I just followed the given instructions, and it turned out a pretty cute block. I had already used this combination of burgundy and black, but I just love it! For the blanket stitch I used Cosmo embroidery floss n. 2224 and DMC n. 310.

Pattern, link party and flowers are found here.