Christmas

Merry Medallion Quilt-Along: Putting it all Together!

Merry Medallion - Putting It All Together!

Yay! Almost there! This week’s tutorial will put everything together, which is a lot of pinning and sewing, but really not very many seams to sew. You’ve already done the hardest work. By the end of this post, you’ll have a completed quilt top – hurrah!!

What You’ll Need

Merry Medallion - Putting It All Together!

– your three low volume half-meter cuts
– and one mid-volume fat quarter

Cutting The Pieces

Before anything else, we have to cut up those fabrics above. I didn’t have you cut these fabrics at the beginning, with the others, because seeing all the other elements together might help determine which of these fabrics you use where. I didn’t decide on my ‘mid-volume’ fabric until yesterday, and the arrangement of fabrics for my border rounds (this isn’t exactly the right term, but these rounds are more than sashing, so we’ll stick with ‘borders’) fell perfectly into place once I laid all the bits on the floor. So, if you look at this quilt diagram:

Merry Medallion Borders

You’ll see each border round marked with a label, numbered from the inside working outward. Choose which fabric will be Border 1, which will be Border 2, etc. Then cut:

Merry Medallion - Putting It All Together!

Border 1:

– With fabric folded (as shown above, the fold on the left), cut four 3.5″ strips across the width of the fabric. Take care that the fold is perfectly perpendicular to your cuts, or you’ll end up with v-shaped strips!
– Without moving the fabric, trim down each of those strips to 24.5″. Note: measure out 12.25″ from fold to end up with 24.5″ strips.
– You’ll end up with four 3.5″ x 24.5″ strips.

Border 2:
– Just as before, with fabric folded, cut four 3.5″ strips across the width of the fabric.
– Without moving the fabric, trim down each of those strips to 42.5″. (Measure 21.25″ from fold, but this will be little more than trimming off the selvedge edges.)
– You’ll end up with four 3.5″ x 42.5″ strips.

Border 3:
– One last time, with fabric folded, cut six 2.5″ strips across the width of the fabric.
– Cut two of these strips in half (along the fold crease), then sew a half-strip to the end of each full-length strip to make four really long strips. Trim each to 56.5″ and press seam opens.
– You’ll end up with four 2.5″ x 56.5″ strips.

Mid-Volume Fabric:
– (8) 3.5″ squares
– (4) 2.5″ squares

Merry Medallion - Putting It All Together!

Prepping Borders

Prepping your borders is easy-peasy and will take less than five minutes. Ready? On two strips of each border fabric, sew an equal-sized mid-volume square to both ends. This is exactly what we did with the diamond-blocks last week. The strips are long enough that you can even chain-piece this step, feeding one end in right after the other.

Merry Medallion - Putting It All Together!

Just like last week, for each border round, you’ll have two plain strips and two strips with mid-volume squares on either end.

Final Assembly!

Here we go! All the pieces are ready and they just need us to slap ’em together. We’ll put everything together in rounds, working from the center star outward, and attaching each round will be exactly the same as the first.

Pin your two shorter Border 1 strips to the top and bottom of your center star. Sew all the way across and press seams towards the border.

Merry Medallion - Putting It All Together!

Then pin your two longer Border 1 strips to the sides of your center star, lining the corner squares up with the previously attached border on each end. Sew all the way across and press seams towards the border.

Merry Medallion - Putting It All Together!

That’s it! Simply repeat that same process until your quilt is all finished, one round at a time – the short geese strips on top and bottom of your center section, press towards border, then the long geese strips on each side, press towards border (take care to make sure your geese are flying in the same direction!). Then Border 2, then the HSTs, then Border 3 – and that’s it! Seriously, that’s really it – you’re done!

Merry Medallion - Putting It All Together!

My only comment on putting it all together is that the math for medallion quilts really depends on every tiny seam of the previous round being perfectly accurate. That sounds obvious, but think about each of those geese being off by a tiny bit, you could work up to a half-inch off by the time you tally it all up. Chances are very good that some of your strips will end up being a little bit off – mine totally were, and a little bit more so as I got to the outermost rounds. I mean, c’mon, nobody’s seams are really that perfect, are they? If you are off a little, it’s probably just a very little, and you should be able to just ease that difference in along the seam – when you pin, make sure that any excess of one side is distributed evenly along the seam, and you’ll be fine!

Finishing (When You’re Ready)

Merry Medallion - Putting It All Together!

I promised you a finished quilt top in a month and you did it! Pat your darn self right on the back. I really, really hope you love your quilt as much as I love mine!! We now have four full months to quilt and bind our Merry Medallions to have them ready by the beginning of December – this series won’t go into these steps, but you can follow these tutorials to complete your quilt, down to the very last stitch:

Merry Medallion - Putting It All Together!

I hope you’ll email me or leave a comment on these posts if you make a Merry Medallion of your own – there’s seriously nothing I love more than seeing your versions of projects. And of course, I’ll be back sooner or later to show you my finished quilt!

Merry Christmas in July, peeps!

Xmas in July Giveaway – Cotton + Steel Tinsel FQ Mini-Stack!

Yay! Fabric Giveaway!

Peeps! It’s a flippin’ giveaway! Woohoo! This giveaway is now closed – I’ll announce the winner shortly!

Ok, so the Merry Medallion quilt is almost finished (last batch of instructions on Friday!) and I hope some of these quilts will start popping up between now and Christmas! I finished mine today, and photographed it ahead of the final tutorial, and I have to tell you: I LOVE IT SO MUCH. So much that I ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO USE ALL CAPS. Seriously, dudes. It is already one of my most favoritest things I’ve EVER MADE. I freaking can’t wait to show you!!

But that’s a couple of days away, so why don’t we pass the time with a little giveaway?! I have to admit, I originally intended on pairing this particular giveaway with another project, but then I went and got a new job (!) and a few of my Christmas in July projects had to go by the wayside. That’s ok, there’s still Christmas in December. BUT, I didn’t want these fabrics to waste away, since I bought them especially for you and everything, and it occurred to me that these four make a might fine starter for a Merry Medallion of your own!

Yay! Fabric Giveaway!

These four fabrics are my favorites from Tinsel by Cotton + Steel, which is my favorite Christmas fabric EVER. It’s just perfect in every way! Here’s a low volume, a red, and a green – and the very same mid-volume (the washi tape print, isn’t it the best?!) I’ve used in my Merry Medallion, as you’ll see on Friday. These four would be a great start to a gathering of Merry Medallion fabrics!

So, to win this little mini-stack of festive pretties, leave a comment and tell me your favorite story about a holiday project. It could be a funny story about the time you tried to make a gingerbread house and it collapsed into smithereens, a touching story about a birthday gift you made that was loved to pieces, or a near-miss story about the costume you just managed to finish at 6pm on Halloween night. Any story, any craft, any holiday!

This giveaway is open to everyone, everywhere, and I’ll close it at midnight (UK time) next Friday, August 7th. The winner will be chosen by Mr. Random Number Generator. Off you go!

Merry Medallion Quilt – Free Christmas (in July) Quilt-Along!

Yay! Christmas in July is almost upon us again, and I’m ready with loads of Very Merry Projects!

Throughout July, I’ll be posting full instructions for a jolly, surprisingly simple, Christmas quilt. I call it the Merry Medallion Quilt!

Merry Medallion Quilt design by Julie Zaichuk-Ryan

HO HO HO!

I designed this because, coming up to the holidays last year, I had a chat with some folks who said they’d have to start months ahead if they ever hoped to get a Christmas quilt done in time for the holidays – and I totally know how it is! I originally planned to make this quilt last year, but started thinking about it way too late, and really, rushing to finish by a holiday deadline (when we all have so many holiday and gift crafts going on already) just isn’t festive at all, is it?

And thus was born the Merry Medallion / Christmas In July Quilt-Along! I wanted to make a second holiday quilt for the house anyway (what on earth is cozier than tucking under holly jolly quilts to watch your favorite Christmas movies?!) and figured I might as well make it possible for you all to join along! I designed this quilt specifically to be easy to put together in an organized, week-by-week fashion, with very simple shapes and techniques, over the five weeks of July – I guarantee you a finished quilt top by the end of the month. That leaves you five more months to quilt and bind it at your leisure for a finished quilt by Christmas!

We will be making a 60″ x 60″ lap / throw-sized quilt. This design is perfect for an experienced quilter who wants a relaxing, stress-free project, or a newer quilter looking for the next step up. And I’ve designed it to be fat-quarter friendly, for the most part, so go dig in your stash and gather the following:


Merry Medallion Fabric Requirements:

finished size: 60″ x 60″

– 5 red fat quarters
– 4 green fat quarters
– 8 low volume / background fat quarters (white in the diagram above)
– 3 low volume / background 1/2-meter/yd cuts (for the long borders between rounds)
– 1 mid-volume* fat quarter or 3 7″x7″ scraps (for border corners, where red dots are shown in the diagram above)

* I may have just made up the term ‘mid-volume’ – I mean a fabric that will give a slight contrast to the border fabrics, but not compete with the red and green in the other rounds.

An important note about red and green fabric requirements: This is a scrappy design, meant to give you a scrappy look even in the center star, but even so, the amounts listed are the minimum requirement. I will provide cutting diagrams to ensure that these amounts will be enough, but I think this design will be even cuter with more prints in the mix! It’s a scrap-happy design, so feel free to gather up all of your red and green scraps or just add more fat quarters to the pile for fun!

To finish the quilt later, you’ll also need:
– 3 1/2 meters/yds backing fabric
– 1/2 meter/yd binding fabric
– Batting (amount dependent on width)


Here’s my initial fabric pull, a happy mix of novelty Christmas fabrics and regular prints – you’ll see my two ‘mid-volume’ possibilities at the bottom left there:

Merry Medallion Fabric Choices

If you’d like to play with color layout and go your own way on fabrics / colors, I’ve made you this handy-dandy coloring sheet to doodle on:

Download Merry Medallion Coloring Sheet Here

We’ll start cutting fabric on the 3rd of July, and I’ll post a new tutorial every following Friday in July. Please join in, I really love sewing with you guys! And if you have any questions, ask away – I’m here to help!

Oh, and if you want to play along, but think my quilt design is stupid, or you have other Christmas crafts to be getting on with, join us anyway! Let’s band together to banish December stress and have fun with Christmas crafting! No matter which project(s) you work on, tag photos on IG with #xmasinjulyalong and/or #merrymedallionqal to join in the festive fun!

Christmas in July Quilt-Along Teaser!

Who’s up for another quilt-along??? Where our last one was long and involved – this one will be quick and carefree. Seriously, I offer an all fun, money-back guarantee!

IMG_6399

I’m just finishing up the details on a very merry red-and-green design, created specifically for simple week-by-week instructions and quick construction. I promise you, if you sew-along, you will have a finished Christmas quilt top by the end of July. That gives you four to five months to quilt and bind it so that you can have a cozy, festive quilt in plenty of time for the holiday snuggling!

I have to admit, I’m slightly worried that no one will quilt-along with me and I’ll be playing with my pretty Christmas fabrics all by myself, so c’mon, join me – it’ll be so fun!!

I’ll post the full design and fabric requirements next week!

The Gingerbread Man – New Embroidery Pattern from Little Dorrit & Co.!

The Gingerbread Man - new embroidery pattern from Little Dorrit & Co.!

Introducing our second Christmas in July embroidery pattern – The Gingerbread Man! An adorable cookie man making his way through a colorful cookie forest, trying not to be eaten all up.

The Gingerbread Man - new embroidery pattern from Little Dorrit & Co.!

If you remember the story, the poor little Gingerbread Man meets a devious fox who offers to carry him across the river – but then gobbles him all up instead!

The Gingerbread Man - new embroidery pattern from Little Dorrit & Co.!

To be totally honest with you, I think the Gingerbread Man story is a little unfair. I think we’re supposed to think he’s smug, like the Hare, who is so overly confident that he manages to lose a race to a slow-ass tortoise*. But the Gingerbread Man just wants to not be chewed alive, which seems fair enough to me, you know?!

The Gingerbread Man - new embroidery pattern from Little Dorrit & Co.!

All the project stats are in listed on the product page. I might be biased, but I think this one is really fun to work up – we planned the stitching out to mimic gingerbread and icing!

Don’t forget to grab yourself a hearty 20% off in the Little Dorrit & Co. shop! Use the code CHRISTMASINJULY at checkout – this offer ends on August 1st, so just a few days left to take advantage!

*By the way, Little Dorrit & Co. has a Tortoise and the Hare embroidery pattern too. Just sayin’. :)

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