Tutorial: Clockwise Pinwheel Coasters

I have a tutorial for my Clockwise Pinwheel Coasters! You’ll need:

  • A copy of the templates
  • 11 different scraps of fabric: 8 for the pinwheel, 1 for background, 1 for backing, and 1 for binding
  • scrap of batting

Gather your supplies. I chose a rainbow of fabrics for the pinwheel. Download and print the templates. I like to iron a few layers of freezer paper to the back of my templates before cutting them out – they’re more durable and (I think) the extra thickness makes cutting easier.

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Cut the following pieces:

  • 5″ square of batting
  • 5″ square of backing fabric
  • 2″ x 24″ strip of binding fabric
  • 8 triangles for the pinwheel
  • 4 background A pieces
  • 4 background B pieces

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Lay out your coaster. Alternate background A and B pieces around the outside of the pinwheel.

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Line up the background pieces right-sides-together with the triangles. On the right is Background A lined up with a triangle, on the left is Background B lined up with a triangle and ready to sew. Notice the colorful “ears” peaking out behind the background.

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Stitch the pieces together using a scant 1/4″ seam allowance. Start stitching at the straight edge and stitch towards the “ears.” Press the seams open. Lay out your coaster again.

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Stitch together pairs of triangles. Press the seams open.

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Stitch the squares together. Press the seams open. Make the quilt sandwich (top-batting-backing) and quilt your coaster. Trim. Bind. Repeat 3x more for a set of coasters. Cheers!

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Clockwise Pinwheel Coasters

This spring the MMQG hosted a “get inspired” challenge. The guidelines were to find inspiration and use it to make a quilty project. Inspirations and projects were shared at the April meeting, which I had to miss :(

I spent the first months of this year finding inspiration in everything… board games, sunsets, bookcovers. I noticed Evil Twin beers – their labels are fantastic and so many of them would translate easily into modern quilts. Their logo even looks like a quilt block.

I searched and searched for this quilt block. Whirlygig? That’s a completely different block. Sawtooth? That’s another quilt block, which I think looks less like a sawblade than this one. Sawblade? Pinwheel? 8-pointed star? swirly 8-pointed star? 8-pointed star pieced with templates? It seems like this is one kind of pinwheel block, with the pins wheeling in the opposite direction than normal. Who is the authority on quilt blocks and their names? My searches grew increasingly vague yet wordy.
I stepped away from Google and whipped up templates for what I am calling the Clockwise Pinwheel block. Printed at 100% it will make 4.5″ (unfinished) blocks, a perfect size for coasters.

 

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I made 4 variations: rainbow, half rainbow, two-tone and monochrome. I’ll be making more cool-colored coasters soon so the blue one will not look so lonely. I’ll post a tutorial next week as well. Cheers!

Giveaway Day!

 

It’s Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day! I’m giving away one of my quilt patterns to a lucky reader. The winner can choose from the Macro Plaid Quilt Pattern:

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Or the Two Carat Quilt Pattern:

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Or the Pantry Staples Pattern:

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Leave a comment by Sunday May 10th to be entered to win. I’ll notify the winner via email by Wednesday May 13th. If you need a prompt, let me know what size quilt you usually make. For a bonus entry, follow me on Instagram and leave a comment with your Instagram username.

Can’t wait for your pattern? You can purchase your pattern now and still enter the drawing. If you win I’ll refund your purchase price (or you can choose a second pattern).
Good luck, and happy Giveaway Day!
Update: congrats to Cheri, commenter #30! I’ve sent you an email :)

Kid’s clothes week – wrap up

I finished Kid’s Clothes Week with an Oliver and S Nature Walk shirt (http://oliverands.com/product/OLV-OS022NW.html) in size 4T. I used two Birch organic cotton prints that I had stashed for about 3 years. I think I bought the fabric intending it to be a size 1 Nature Walk shirt. It feels good to have finally put it to use!

Oliver and S Nature Walk shirt

My model refused to wear the shirt. Last week his favorite colors were orange and brown. This week he only likes “bright colors” and is on the record saying “that brown is not bright enough.” Maybe next week he’ll like brown again.

I’m super happy with the results of my Kid’s Clothes Week – I finished FOUR garments. None of the garments adhered to the theme, though. I’ll make that a goal for next time.

Embroidery

I have been bitten by the embroidery bug. I’ve been working on my April Showers sampler.

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A lot of embroidery inspiration has been popping up in my social media feeds lately. I just listened to the recent While She Naps podcast with Rebecca Rinquist. I signed up for the Freaky Flowers swap with &stitches. Sublime Stitching has a Moomin sale and contest going on. Alison Glass has an embroidery sale. So much to stitch, so little time!

Kids clothes week

Kid’s Clothes Week is off to a good start for me! I finished an Oliver and S Field Trip raglan shirt for Ethan that he can wear NOW. It’s the 6-12 month size, and it just barely fits over his big noggin. I shortened the sleeves about an inch. I used fabric I bought at the Textile Center garage sale a couple years ago.

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I also finished a second raglan shirt, size 12-18 months, for Ethan to wear later. These shirts take an hour or less. And I made these two shirts from scraps leftover from other projects.

 

Oliver and S field trip shirt.

 

And I finished an Oliver and S Secret Agent Trench Coat, size 4T, for Isaac. It’s a little big for him right now, but I think (hope) he can wear it later this spring and into the fall.

Oliver and S secret agent trenchcoat, size 4T.

 

This trench coat was a warm-up for making a jacket/blazer/coat for myself. Some day. Soon. I hope. After finishing this I feel pretty confident about my top-stitching and button holes.

April Showers embroidery sampler

I love embroidery. I’m always on the lookout for screenprinted embroidery samplers. My sister gave me a screenprinted Sea Captain sampler for Christmas and it’s awesome. I’m a huge fan of iron-on transfers, and I pay extra for those if they’re an option (vs digital downloads). If iron-on transfers aren’t an option I’ll settle for a PDF pattern but I’ll be cursing the whole time I’m tracing it on to the fabric. I’ve tried everything short of buying a light table and Sublime Stitching’s brand new fine-tip transfer pens. I refuse to breakdown and buy a light table, but I may be ordering the transfer pens soon.

Anywho, in my search for embroidery patterns that I don’t have to trace I’ve discovered that Spoonflower swatches are only $5 and fit perfectly in a 6-inch embroidery hoop. I’ve found a few cute swatch-size embroidery patterns at Spoonflower like this and this. But there should be more.

There is one more now – my April Showers embroidery pattern. I ordered a swatch on Kona cotton and I love it. If you want to stitch one, you can find it here.

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I’m working on a color palette. Blue raindrops? Rainbow raindrops? I’m planning to do french knots for the cloud and satin stitch for the raindrops. I’ll be an expert at both by the time I’m done!

My favorite sewing hack

I recently learned from the Bobbin Doctor that I could use my blind-hem foot as an edge-stitching foot. Just move the needle a couple positions to the left. This goes in the “Doh! Why didn’t I think of that?” category.

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Perfect edge stitching, every time! This made the drool bandanas for Ethan even easier. I’ve been using this hack for cloth napkins and top-stitching pockets, too.

Baby clothes

Ethan has been sporting a few handmade garments lately. I’ll start by playing catch-up.

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A pair of Quick Change Trousers, 3 month size, from Handmade Beginnings by Anna Marie Horner. He outgrew these pants about a month ago.

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A slightly modified Tummy Warmer vest, size 3-6 month, knit using S. R. Kertzer Down To Earth Cotton. This still fits but it’s getting short and snug.

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A sunbonnet by Purl Soho, size 0-3 months. This is too small for him, but I made him wear it for a walk last week because all his other hats are too big. 

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Ethan is sporting drool bandanas most days now. He is teething and drooling like crazy, and these are much easier to make than bibs. I used this tutorial by How Does She. I started with a 12.5″ square, because I have a 12.5″ square ruler.

Two Carat Quilt Pattern

I’m thrilled to release a new quilt pattern today – the Two Carat quilt. It’s a clean geometric design that works equally well with solids and prints. The pattern includes directions for two sizes – baby (36″ x 48″) and throw (60″ x 72″) – along with templates and detailed cutting diagrams. Fabric is used efficiently and there are minimal leftovers. You will not have a pile of half-diamonds left over from this project!

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This is the baby size quilt in girly-girl pinks and blues. The quilt top requires (2) 1/2 yard cuts and (5) 1/4 yard cuts – so a total of only 2 1/4 yards.

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I finished the quilt with simple straight-line quilting 1/4″ from the seams so it is extra crinkly and cuddly. I think this quilt would also look sharp with a baby’s name or birth year free-motion quilted in one of the large diamonds.

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Here’s a second baby quilt with Elk Grove fabrics by Jay-Cyn. This fabric is gorgeous and so, so soft – perfect for a baby quilt! I used 8 different prints for this variation: 2 half-yard cuts of solids and 6 fat quarters in different prints.

The throw quilt uses the same size templates, just more pieces. The layout for the throw quilt includes 2 sets of large diamonds.

You’ll invest more time in the cutting than you will in the piecing. Cutting diamonds and triangles using templates takes a little more time (I think) than cutting rectangles with a ruler, but piecing the quilt top goes quickly. The pattern includes tips for accuracy in cutting and piecing. This pattern is suitable for intermediate or adventurous advanced beginners.

You can find the Two Carat quilt pattern on Etsy and Craftsy.

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