Thursday, September 8, 2016

Lovely Little Patchwork Blog Tour

A few months ago, I was lucky to receive an advance copy of Keri's darling new book, Lovely Little Patchwork. I absolutely loved thumbing through the pages and making plans. I even found my oldest daughter sneaking away with the book and pouring over the colorful pictures and delightful projects.

For the  blog tour, I decided to make the Apple Tree Pillow. Autumn is hands down my favorite season. I grew up on the East Coast of the United States and have lived a good portion of my life enjoying the spectacular fall season that the East Cost delivers.  Now, my family resides in the southwest dessert of the United States where fall isn't the splendor to which I'm accustomed.  I make up for that by decorating my home in oranges, yellows, browns, all the cozy colors I can once this time of year rolls around. Now, these colors aren't my typical color palate, but the fall season brings all these colors out in our home.

I loved making the Apple Tree Pillow because I pulled out all my scraps of those warm, cozy fall colors. I even found a great piece of corduroy for the trunk.  I made an alteration to the  pattern and pre-quilted the background linen fabric. I love the texture of machine quilting  and I knew it would only add to the cozy factor of this project. This was very simple to do and didn't increase the difficulty at all. Today, I'll share my process for this change in the pattern.

1. Cut the Background Linen Fabric
I used a Moda Mochi linen. Depending on the type of quilting you do, you may want to increase the size of the background fabric. This will account for any shrinking that may occur as you quilt. I cut my background fabric 1" larger than called for in the pattern. In the end, my background only shrank about 1/4". After quilting, I trimmed my quilted background piece to the size called for in the pattern. Since I wanted my cross hatching pattern to remain centered, I cut an even amount off from each side rather than trimming all from one side.

2. Baste the Background Fabric
This process is the same as preparing any project for quilting. I usually baste pillows on my kitchen island, but you can use any hard flat surface. I use basting spray, so I baste in an area I can clean and wipe down afterwards.

Tape the backing down with the wrong side up, pulling it taught but not tight. Next, place your batting on top of the backing. Lastly, add your pillow top with the right side facing up.
Note: You certainly can use basting pins if you prefer. I just prefer basting spray with pillows because it's quick and makes the quilting process much quicker. 

Pull back approximately half of the pillow top and batting so you see your backing. Clear the area of any threads or lint. Spray the area with basting spray, then place the batting on top and smooth out the batting with your hands beginning in the middle, working towards the outside. Repeat with the bottom half of the pillow. With the pillow top still folded back, spray on top of the batting and place the pillow top on top of the batting, smoothing again using the same method.

3. Mark Quilting Lines
While the project was nice and smooth, I marked the quilting lines for a cross hatch pattern. I used a straight acrylic ruler and a Hera Marker. Start by marking one diagonal line down the middle from corner to corner. Then mark 1.5" from the center in both directions across the background fabric. Next, mark a long diagonal line going from corner to corner, intersecting the previous lines. Continue in the same manner stated above. Having the lines 1.5"apart was a  great measurement because the lines weren't too close together.

4. Remove the Tape and Quilt as Desired
I used my walking foot to quilt my straight lines.  For a cross-hatch pattern, begin by sewing on one of the center diagonal lines. Then, sew the remaining lines to the right. When you get to the edge, return to the center and sew out in the other direction. Then sew on the remaining center diagonal line and repeat the process again.

Your background fabric is now quilted! (I forgot to take a picture at this step, but you can see it in the applique stage below.) I thought of this later, but there is pre-quilted fabric available at big box fabric  stores. I am not sure about the colors available, but if you didn't want to quilt on your home machine, that may be an option for you.

After your background fabric is quilted, continue on with the rest of the project as outlined.  If you'd like more tips for perfect pillows, checkout my blog post here. I've made dozens of pillow over the last few years and am constantly asked to share tips! I always say if you can make a mini quilt you can make a pillow! It's just a mini quilt with an extra layer of backing! Even if you've never made a mini quilt, a quilted pillow is a great way to get a taste of quilting without a large project.

Another project that I made from Keri's book is her sweet Little Red Riding Hood Doll. However, I added a twist to these dolls and made them Christmas Pixie's for Tasha's booth at Quilt Market. The dolls feature her new line of fabrics for Riley Blake Pixie Noel.  Maybe one day I'll get it together and share the variations for these dolls, but sadly I don't think it will be anytime soon.

As you can see Keri's book is full of delightful projects for your home, friends and family. Keri's projects are perfect just as she designed them. I love that you can easily add your own personal flare to make the project your own. You'll love adding this book to your collection and you'll be sure to use the projects time and time again!

Thanks for stopping by and be sure to check out the other fabulous makers who are participating in this fun blog hop!

28.08.2016Sarah Edgar @sarahedgarprettyfabrics
29.08.2016 Heidi Staples @fabricmutt
30.08.2016 Megan Jimenez @QuiltStoryMeg
02.09.2016 Cheri Lehnow @tinkerellen
03.09.2016 Ange Hamilton @alittlepatchwork
04.09.2016 Sedef Imer @downgrapevinelane
05.09.2016 Kimberly Jolly @fatquartershop
06.09.2016 Samantha Dorn @aqua_paisley
07.09.2016 Ayda Algın @cafenohut
08.09.2016 LeAnne Ballard @everydaycelebrations
09.09.2016 Sharon Burgess @lilabellelane
10.09.2016 Lauren Wright @mollyandmama
11.09.2016 Kate May @thehomemakery
12.09.2016 Debbie Homick @happylittlecottage1
13.09.2016 Wynn Tan @zakkaart
14.09.2016 Kim Kruzich @retro_mama
15.09.2016 Jennie Pickett @cloverandviolet
16.09.2016 Veronica AM @VividFelicity
17.09.2016 Nadra Ridgeway @ellisandhiggs
18.09.2016 Amanda Woodruff @acraftyfox_amanda
19.09.2016 Minki Kim @zeriano
20.09.2016 Sharon Yeager @daisycottagequilting
21.09.2016 Peta Peace @shequiltsalot
22.09.2016 Sarah Scott @piccolostudio_sarah
23.09.2016 Kristin Cobb @goobadesigns
24.09.2016 Erin Cox @whynotsewquilts
25.09.2016 Kerri Horsley @sewdeerlyloved


  1. Super duper cute! You always make the prettiest pillows, so loved that you picked this out of the book. Xoxo

  2. Oh, lovely! The apple tree pillow very brautiful. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Thanks so much for the pillow tutorial. I wanted to turn a mini quilt into a pillow and your tutorial was very well written. I sure do like the east coast autumn here in PA!

  4. This is a great tutorial of pillow cover. How should I make the bed linen.


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