Saturday, November 16, 2013

Christmas One Block Wonder Table Runners

  Well it's the Christmas season, my favorite time of year and I thought I would perhaps try out some Christmas OBW table runners... 

  I found some beautiful poinsettia fabric at Joann Fabric and add along fabric from the same line to work as backing and binding.  I made sure I got 6 repeats+, I ended up buying 2.4 yards of the poinsettia and 2 yards of backing.

  I am getting better at this and had hardly any waste when cutting this time around.  First I squared off my fabric

Then found a reference point.  (Sorry if you can't see my dinky arrow)

I moved my ruler along the fabric finding the reference point and cutting until I had 6 pieces of fabric cut. 

  I then ironed out the crease and carefully laid the fabric one on top of the other lining up the pattern.

  I don't pin because I haven't had great results with it instead I cut a couple strips then re-adjust and trim if needed.  It worked out really well.  I cut 3" strips. 

  I used my large equilateral triangle ruler to cut out the triangles.  It was a little to big and bulky but it worked.  It is daunting and scary to cut the triangles or even the strips but just take your time and it will work out.

  It's amazing the beautiful kaleidoscope patterns the fabric makes.  Here is the same stack of triangles laid out three different ways. 

  I sew each stack of triangles in three.  This way you are less likely to mix everything up.   I first do a quick lay out in front of me to see which way I want the triangles to go. 

I sew 2 sets of 2 together and set two aside.

When I set the 2 aside I point the point that will go towards the middle downwards to help me later.

After I get quite a few through my machine I take them off and organize them into the right pile. 
Then I add my third triangle.

 Since I just run a whole bunch through my machine at once it works out good because there all connected.

When I cut them apart I keep the pairs connected.

  This is all about being organized, it is easy to get things mixed up so anything I can do to ease my frustration I do.  I would also recommend only starting what you can finish in one sitting.

  You could also just do each kaleidoscope at a time... but then you got so many strings always taking the sewn pieces off the machine... But I'm sure there is a million ways of doing it this is just mine.

  Now that I have my piles of sewn together sets of three I go to the ironing board.  This is where I cut them apart and stack them neatly.

Design wall time...  I lay my pieces out on the wall, which is an ugly flannel sheet pinned to the wall.  (The fabric sticks to it, somehow)  It is quite a busy design but very beautiful.
  Since my fabric is already sewn into threes it doesn't take long to finish the job.  Row by row I sew them together.  Not all my centers match up but your dealing with a lot of triangles! 
  Next I was off to top stitch them.  I was excited to use some of the Christmas designs we have.  On one I did poinsettias to match the fabric and on the other a holly design.  I did end up taking the time to do the crazy binding.  For a great tutorial on how to bind 120 degree angles click here. Using the red binding really frames it out nicely and finishes it off.  Finished they are 14.5" x 49" with a couple hexagons left over.