Tutorials - an oldie, a newbie and rearranging...

Tutorials - an oldie, a newbie and rearranging...

 After my post last week with the free Jam Jar pot holder pattern I received a number of requests to show how I made the little hanging loop, so yesterday as I was beginning work on a UFO finish for November it occurred to me that I could photograph the steps to make those loops for you, because they'd be appearing again in my UFO anyhow.

Back in 2016 I released twelve 'gentle domesticity' applique and stitchery designs, but up until now I have only used three of the blocks in actual projects, so browsing through them yesterday I got to thinking about various ways they could be displayed in our home. I also decided that these blocks would become part of my monthly UFO challenge for the rest of this year and into 2022. Will you be joining me? Originally I wrote that this would kick off in November, but after a heavy morning of cleaning and rearranging the living/dining room I retreated to the sewing room to go through my UFOs and choose one to start on immediately.

I barely have any of the fabrics used in the applique left, so I'll be mixing and matching what remains from that year with what's on my shelf now. 

Beginning with the "Take Time to Breathe" block, my idea was to finish it as a mini quilt for the sewing room or a pillow for the bedroom. A few borders later and it was ready for hand quilting...

This was also the perfect time to make some hanging loops like the one I made for 'Jam Jar'. 

Hanging loops like this can also be used to secure button closures so whether my UFO is completed as a cushion or mini quilt, I will use the loops.

You can make these loops any width you like, simply double the width + 1/4" when cutting the fabric. Choose how long you'd like the loop to be and add 1" in length - you can trim it to the right length after the loop is made.

My loops yesterday finished at 3/4" wide, so I began with 1 3/4" wide fabric strips. 

Fold the length/s of fabric in half across their width, wrong sides together, and sew an 1/8" seam along the bare edge. Gently press the seam open before turning right side out and pressing flat so that the seam lies along the middle.

With the right side of the hanging loop facing you, fold the top to create a point...

...and press the point flat.

You need to secure the little point section with some hand stitching, or you can machine a line across the edge of the back fold instead.

I hand stitched mine, though looking at the photo now I think I'll unpick the front and do it again with ladder stitch instead. A girl can get sloppy when she's tired! 

This is how the hanging loops will be positioned if I choose to finish "Take Time to Breathe" as a mini quilt...

...but if I decide on a pillow they will be used to secure two large buttons at the back opening.

If you'd like to stitch this design it's HERE in my shop and includes detailed applique and embroidery instructions, as all my patterns do. 


I also wrote last week that I'd be (slowly) going through my old tutorials to update the pattern sheets and then re-sharing one every Wednesday till the end of the year. I'm choosing those which might be excellent projects for gift giving, and in my mind these Farmhouse Produce Bags stand out as a favourite.

Made from tea towels and scraps of lace, a few buttons and cotton twill for ties, they are not just pretty but very functional. 

The tutorial is HERE along with the pattern sheet to download the words for tracing. 

Yesterday, as I mentioned earlier, began with a big morning of rearranging the living/dining area. Due to our east facing home being hit with the scorching morning sun I always change the layout of furniture to suit the season. 
From late autumn to early spring I have the dining table at the window so we can enjoy a warm sunshine-y breakfast together, but from mid spring (now) till the middle of next autumn the table is moved to the opposite side of the room as breakfasting in front of the window is no longer pleasant and the curtains need to be closed for a few hours until the sun has moved over.

You'll notice in these photos just how bright this area is even in the afternoon, but I'm very happy with the layout now and also thrilled to have my computer desk right where the cool air of the air conditioner can find me.

 Once everything was done, and my short tutorial photographed, I sat down with a nice cup of tea and two Marie biscuits to stitch and begin watching the new season of All Creatures Great and Small (on Britbox). I love this show, and must admit not as much stitching got done as I'd planned...but the afternoon rest was lovely, and I really did 'take time to breathe'. 

I shall leave you today with this photo of Cully May. She starts school next year (in Australia our school year runs from late January to mid December) and is already preparing by attending a local kindy each Monday until Christmas. Her teachers cannot commend her highly enough - "what beautiful manners" - "she's so clever" - "her handwriting is beautiful" - "she's so kind to others". That's the fruit of all Blossom's mothering, and I'm so happy our 5yo is already showing this fruit in her life.

Bless you lovely friends, and I pray we shall all live by the good fruit of the Spirit day by day, giving others the opportunity to see how living for Jesus smooths our rough edges, tames our thoughtless tongues, and grows deep abiding kindness and grace in our hearts.


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