Thursday, February 24, 2011

Squaring the bottom of a bag

Squaring the bottom of a handbag or tote is easy to do. Here are two simple ways.

I like this first way, don't know why, they are both easy. But this is the way I tend to do it.

Put your fabrics right sides together. Pin and sew a 1/4" (or 1/2") on both sides and the bottom.

Cut out a square on both bottom corners. For smaller bags I cut a 2" square, for larger ones a 3".

Match the bottom seam to a side seam. Pinching the fabric together and pinning.

Sew a 1/4" seam in from the edge. Do this to both corners.

Turn right side out. And Ta-Da, your square bottom.

The second way to do this. Is super easy. Match your fabrics right sides together, pin and sew both sides and bottom.

But instead of cutting the corners, pinch the corner so that the bottom seam matches the side seam.

Mark a line where you want to sew. I went in only 1" on this bag, as it's only a 5" bag.

Sew and cut a 1/4" away from the seam.

Turn right side out.

You can see more pictures on this on my Library bag tutorial.

Have fun!

Till next time...

Copyright D. Lucas, 2011 This is my tutorial. You are welcome to use any of my tutorials for personal use. You are not permitted to use my pictures or my words without linking back to the original and giving me credit for them.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Mug Rugs

The mug rugs are running rampant. LOL. Such cute little bits of fabric, pieced together and quilted so quickly. There are swaps and contests galore out in blog land.

Here is one I did for a contest over at Madame Samms'.

They are so easy to make. And PERFECT for practicing your newfound machine quilting skills (which I obviously need LOTS more work on. LOL)

You can make your own design, with scraps from your scrap basket...I just put some of these together till I had a pleasing design.

Sew together. And trim.

You can also use a block from any pattern out there. Here are a few darling ones. The first one comes from Happy Zombie, I love it!

Here's one from Jennifer, I love the pocket!

Back to mine...

If it's not big enough, no problem, just add a few pieces till it's the right size for you.

Then layer it, quilt it and bind it. Ta-da! super easy.

We are having a mug rug swap at the Q&N! Click here to join us. It's a secret one (we LOVE secret's on the forum!), which means we wont know who is making us a mug rug, till it arrives on the doorstep. Lots of fun.

Hope to see you there!

Till next time....


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Prairie Points

I just love Prairie points (or PP from now on) on a quilt. They just put the right finishing touch on it. Especially baby quilts! Or mug rugs! Or even purses. I saw a darling wall hanging of a sailboat, that used PPs as the waves! it was soooo cute!! (Sorry blogger who did it, I have forgotten where I've seen it.)

This one, at the top there, was a Aunty quilt we did on the forum for one of our members' grandchild.

Sandy has asked for a tutorial, and I am more than happy to oblige :) So here we go.

Cut your squares for the PP's the size you want the base of the triangle...the base is the side that is going to be sewn onto the quilt. So if you want a 3 1/2" triangle, then cut 3 1/2" squares. How many triangles you need, depends on how big your triangles are. I divide the finished PP measurement (in this case I use 3") into the length of a side. So for a 30" unfinished top, I would make 10 triangles for that side. Sometimes I use more or less than that number though.

So, here's your square.

Fold it in half diagonally.

And then fold it in half again (ironing makes it look pretty and easier to handle).
Now you have one side (the base) which is raw edges, and two sides that are folded.

Open up the corner where the last fold was made, just a little bit to slip in the next triangle. I like to put it in about a half an inch. Then sew, using a scant 1/4" seam (some people use 1/8"). Stopping about halfway thru the triangle, to put the next one in. (Line the edges up of course, I just stuck the yellow one out to show you.)

Continue on in this manner until all your triangles for ONE side is sewn in a row.

When all your triangles are sewn in a row, it's time to put them on the quilt.

I am not much into pinning and ironing, lol, but this is a time for both.

Iron the backing and top edges down 1/4".

Slip the row of triangles in between. Making sure your line of sewing is not going to show.

At the corner, put the very tip of your triangle right inside the edge of the opposing side.

Lay the top ironed edge over the triangle and pin the row in place.

Here's what it looks like looking down on it from the edge.

You notice that where the two triangles meet, is right at the very edge. You don't want it sticking up further, and you don't want it too far into the sandwhich either.

Sew the sandwhiched triangles, using 1/4" seam. Starting and stopping about 1/2" away from the corner. Taking a few back stitches.

Do the same thing for the next side. Lining up the end triangle with the one that is already sewn on (you want a nice, straight line across that corner point).

When you sew this one down, you can start at your stopping place on the first side, then just pivot at the corner.

Continue till all sides are done.


There is another way to fold your triangles, using rectangles. You fold the two top corners down to meet in the middle, at the bottom edge, then fold in half. But squares are easier for me.

Alternatively you can sew all your triangles together in one loooooong line, and then when you pin it on, make sure that you line the triangles up right, so that where two triangles meet, is right at the corner. So it looks this.

(My two corner triangles actually make a straight line across the corner....this angle must be wrong or, really they do! LOL)


I hope that helps Sandy! And anyone else who wants to do this darling finish. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment, and I'll get back to you.

Till next time...

Copyright D. Lucas, 2011 This is my tutorial. You are welcome to use any of my tutorials for personal use. You are not permitted to use my pictures or my words without linking back to the original and giving me credit for them.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

A smaller bag

Hello All,

I decided to make my library bag in a smaller size. The large one is great for families like mine, who do a lot of reading. But a smaller bag is good for elderly or busy parents with small ones in tow..LOL.

So I thought I'd see how easy it was to scale it down.

And it was easy! This one is 3" smaller height wise and length wise, and 4" smaller on the sides. A perfect size for smaller loads.


Here is another finished scrappy star. I call in Summer star...original yes?! LOL

It was made with scraps from my scrap basket too. You would think my basket would be looking less full...but it seems to be endless.

I was going to add some more 8 pt stars to the border. But I've come up with another scrappy quilt idea instead. So will be using those diamonds that are already cut out, for it.


Have you seen this website maryquilts ? She has some awesome scrap quilt patterns. All for free! I'm thinking a lot of these would be great for our charity quilts. It's given me lots of ideas. Thanks Mary!

Thats all from me today...

Till next time.