"Buttons and patches and the cold wind blowing,
The days pass quickly when I am sewing"
~Author Unknown

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Christmas in July part three

Each year for Christmas in July, I design or look for a fun extra project for my quilt group to do. I thought it would be fun to put it on my blog as a tutorial. It is a fun and simple pattern. It is a country patchwork mobile. Of course these could also be made as ornaments to hang in a tree.

Think seasons. I created this one in warm colors that work for autumn and winter. Why not make them for spring and summer too? You could use a floral fabric for the tree to create a summer rose topiary bush for example.

To begin...

Sew a series of scrap stripes together. You do not have to cut them the same size. I would recommend you have a little wider stripe at the bottom to make it easier to add your stem.

For my trees, I made sure I had a width of 10 inches. Iron the seams flat and fold the stripes with right sides together.

Now be creative and cut out a shape of a tree freehand. No two trees are exactly alike as are our patchwork trees. With the wide bottom stripe, create a section of about an inch hanging down lower (see photo) for attaching your stem later. Insert a small length of cord (about 7 or 8 inches folded in half) at the top of the tree between the layers for your hanger.

If you would like to use a trim of any kind, be sure to pin this in place between the seams before you start to sew your tree together. Begin sewing on one side and work your way around. You will be turning the patchwork through the section that your stem is attached to.

Turn your piece and stuff. Stitch around the bottom opening with a running stitch which you will pull closed after the next step.

Use a branch about the width of your pinkie and cut it to about 4 inches. Glue the branch about 1 inch deep and along the top. Insert this into the little opening. You will need an extra pairs of hands for this step but while you hold the stem in place pull the running stitch to close the end against your stem. Tie a double knot and snip off the threads. My glue fastened immediately.

For your patchwork house, cut the following pieces:
a - 2x 3-1/2 x 4 inch - roof
b - 4x 1 x 3-1/2 inch - house
c - 4x 1-1/4 x 1-1/2 inch - top windows front and back
d - 6x 1 x 1-1/2 inch - house beside windows
e - 1x 1-1/2 x 3 inch - front door
f - 1x 1-1/2 x 2 inch - front window
g - 1x 1 x 3 inch - house beside front door
h - 2x 3/4 x 2 inch - house beside front window
i - 1x 2 x 1-1/2 inch - house under front window
j - 3x 1 x 2 inch - house beside back windows
k - 2x 1-1/4 x 2 inch - back windows
l - 1x 3-1/2 x 1-1/2 inch - house

The diagram from below is from my newsletter and in Dutch but can be used to see the placement of all the pieces for sewing the patchwork. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask.

In order to create the correct angle for the roof, fold the fabric in half to mark the middle point. Lay your ruler on the point to the lower outer corner and cut the fabric along this edge.

Front of house...

Back of house...

Hang the ornaments on a branch. Use garden rope to hang the branch.

If you make this mobile or the ornaments, I would love to see them so please share a photo.


Anonymous said...

I especially like the little house ornament. I'll have to remember that at Christmas time.

Nancy said...

Well, that is too much like work for me. Very cute though. You are always very creative. Hope some of the ladies do them too.
Love Mom

Carolien said...

Hi Heidi,

Lovely mobile ornaments! On the 'to-do-list'... ;)

Hugs, Carolien

Susan in SC said...

I love the little house and trees! So adorable! You are too, too talented!

vivian said...

love all this creativity.
once i get my sewing room together (one day) I may attempt these.
it would be fun to play with different fabric and color.
thanks for posting this.