Thursday, December 20, 2012

Printable Christmas Gift Tags 2012

Hey everyone! Are y'all ready for Christmas yet?? 
It's just around the corner and will be here before we know it!!! I am just about done with my preparations, but I am still finishing up a few loose ends here and there. 
I spent all morning and afternoon helping my mom wrap all of her gifts for our entire family... I love to wrap presents but it can also be a huge undertaking so I thought I would help you guys out with some easy printable gift tags.

To print them, all you need to do is become a follower of my blog first and then click on this link and hit the printer button to print!

Here is a link to the printable tags that I made last year... there a a bunch with different colors and designs so feel free to use any and all that you would like!

ENJOY! Hope this helps to ease a bit of the hustle and bustle that takes over at this time of the year!! :) 

Take care and enjoy the season! Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year too! I will see ya back here in 2013! :)
xoxo, Ashley

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Isosceles Triangle Quilt Along- Making the Quilt

Hey everyone! Are y'all ready to get quilt making? Hope so! I decided to go ahead and combine all of the directions into one post so that everyone can move at their own pace and take things as fast or slow as they would like.

How was the fabric shopping? Did you get all of the supplies needed to make the quilt?

Step 1: Cutting your fabric. You will need to cut your fabric into strips that are 6" x WOF (width of fabric) so if you are using fat quarters you will have 3 strips that are 6"x22", if you are using half yards you will have 3 strips that are 6"x44", etc. Then you can start cutting the triangles.
To cut your triangles, you will use your template (I used the Quilt Sense Kaleidoscope Triangle Ruler). Line the ruler up on the 11" block mark and start cutting triangles by flipping the ruler up and then flipping it down across the fabric and cutting back and forth until you have all of your triangles cut- both your neutral and patterned triangles.

If you are making your quilt identical to mine, you will need 156 neutral fabric triangles and 156 patterned fabric triangles.

Once your triangles are all cut out, you can lay them out in the pattern that you would like. Once you have your quilt top all laid out how you would like, gather up the fabric and keep separated into piles for each row. I like to place labeled post-it notes in between my piles of each row to keep them separated. Now you are ready to start piecing.

Step 2: Piecing the quilt top. Ok... to start- I just wanted to mention again that I recommend using a scant 1/4 inch seam to make sure that seams will lines up correctly. I started my quilt using my 1/4 inch presser foot and realized once I started sewing my rows together that my seam allowance was slightly over 1/4 inch and it really threw things off... So don't do what I did!! :) 

For piecing, I used a couple of extra triangles and kinda played around with sewing them together to get the hang of sewing with isosceles triangles. It's not tricky- just different than what I am used to. So if you are nervous to do it- try it out with some extras and get a feel for it before you start your quilt top. 

Lay your triangles right sides together and offset them by 1/4 inch (just like when sewing bias binding together) and then sew together with scant 1/4 inch seam.

When you open them up, they should look like this.

Next add another triangle. Stagger by 1/4 (you can tell when it is lined up perfectly because the top points of the triangles will match up.) and then sew with scant 1/4 inch seam. Open up, add each triangle once at a time until you have a row complete. Then move onto the next row. 

-One thing to think about as you are piecing is that you will need to nest seams to make sure that things line up and go together well. So as you are sewing row one, have the seam allowance point towards the left each time you add another triangle. Then with row two, have the seam allowance pointed towards the right as you add each triangle and so forth with each row so that when it comes time to press the seams, they will already have a tendency to go in the direction that you are wanting them to.

Once all of your rows are pieced, press each row and the seam allowances in the direction that they need to go. This is where the spray starch comes in! The starch helps to keep those seams allowances behaving while you do your pinning and sewing. 

Now you are ready to start sewing your rows together. Pin a row #1 right sides together with row #2. Make sure that when you are pinning that your triangles are going in the correct direction. With the seam allowances going in opposite directions the seams should nest together nicely and you will be able to line up the triangles nice and neat. Once your row is pinned, sew together with the same seam allowance. Add row by row until you have your entire quilt top completed. Now use the spray starch and press the newly sewn seams... I did not press them open, I pressed them all in one direction.

The edge of your quilt should be a nice and zig-zagged now.

Measure your top and find out how much yardage you will need for your backing and how much backing you will need as well. 

Step #3: Piecing your quilt back. For mine I ended up using 4 yards of fabric even though I could have gotten away with 3 1/2. The reason being that I wanted the pattern on my backing to run up and down as opposed to side to side.

So even though I had a lot of extra that I had to cut off on the sides, I was ok with that so that my fabric pattern went up and down instead of side to side.

Once your quilt backing is ready to roll, press well and get things ready to make your quilt sandwich. I am not going to go into directions for creating a quilt sandwich, but if you need a little more direction of what to do with that, here is a great post with directions...

Once you have your quilt sandwich then you are ready to start quilting. Like I mentioned in my first post, I used my walking foot and straight line quilted along each seam.

Once you are done quilting, you can either square off your quilt top and cut the zig-zagged edges off or leave them be like I did for mine. 

Now you are ready for binding. I did not use bias binding for my quilt, but if you are doing the zig zag edge like I did I would recommend doing bias binding for yours so it bends and moves around the points nicely. Here is a great tutorial on how to make and use bias binding.

Once I had my binding made and pressed, I pinned and sewed it to my quilt front and then hand stitched it to the back of my quilt. I just worked the binding in place on the back and treated each point as a corner and finished off the points just like I usually do on the corners of my quilts. 

It took a lot more time that regular straight edge binding, but I feel like the end result was very worth the extra time. I love how it turned out!

 Well there you have it! Your very own isosceles triangle quilt!

Thanks for quilting along! Be sure to email me a picture and link of your finished quilt when you are all done! Maybe if we get enough I can do a round up post of all your quilts! Also- let me know if you have any questions- just leave a comment and be sure to leave your email so I can get back to you.

Last but not least, I just wanted to give a big shout out to my sponsor for the quilt along- Riley Blake Designs.