Free Tutorial – Anchor’s Away Quilt

Summer’s not over yet!  Make this fun nautical themed throw for your lake house, cottage or just to get in the summer livin’ frame of mind!  This is another design made with EQ8.  For this quilt, you can create those 45 degree diamonds in the interesting inset with a template or with careful rotary cutting OR you can use your Accuquilt GO and the 2 1/2″ strip cutter to whip them out in a flash.

Dies used in this design:

Anchors Away Quilt

Finished size is 48 1/2″ by 60 1/2″”

Materials

  • 2 yd Blue solid
  • 1 yd Red fabric for Anchor and binding
  • 7/8 yd White fabric
  • 1 yd Blue scraps (or use 4 fat quarters or 8 fat eighths)
  • 3 yd Backing fabric
  • 56″ x 68″ piece of batting
  • 1 – 14″ x 14′ light double sided fusible for Anchor applique
  • Anchor and Diamond Applique Templates

Directions

Cut Fabric:

Blue Solid

NOTE: Cut using the length of the 2 yards

  • 1 — 8 1/2″ X 60 1/2″ strip
  • 2 — 20 1/2″ x 60 1/2″ strips

Red Solid

  • 6 — 2 1/2″ X WOF strips for binding
  • 1 — 12 1/2″ square for Anchor applique

White Fabric

  • 100 — 2 1/2″ X 3 1/2′ 45 degree diamonds

Blue Fabrics

  • 100 — 2 1/2″ X 3 1/2′ 45 degree diamonds

Cutting the Diamonds

You can use the template provided to draw around and cut out the diamonds

OR

You can cut 2 1/2″ strips with a rotary cutter and then measure 3 1/2″ on the sides and use your 45 degree angle on your ruler to cut the diamonds

OR

You can use your GO! fabric cutter!

Dies used in this design:

This is the fastest and easiest way to get this done in a jiffy.  Let me show you how.

I have the Accuquilt Ready Set GO! Cutting System generously provided to me by Accuquilt.  I am an Accuquilt Go Getter and I write articles for their blog about quilting and die cutting.  You can see the system in the background of this picture.  I just pulled some blues from my stash to use in the cutter.

I like to press my fabric first for the die cutter so it is nice and smooth so i get more accurate cuts.

Next I fold or cut my fabric to best fit the die I am using, in this case, it is the GO! Strip Cutter-2½” (2″ Finished) 3 Strips Die (55014 or 55017).  When you place your fabric, make sure it is extending beyond the die cutting points.

Once your fabric is arranged, please the cutting mat over the die and fabric and insert into the machine.

Crank the handle to cut your fabric.

 

You get perfectly cut 2 1/2″ strips.  I used two layers of fabric, so I have six strips.  You can cut up to six layers of cotton fabric so this will work well.

Find your 45 degree line and carefully line up your strips.

When you line them up, make sure that you have the strip beyond the cutting line.

Now your diamonds are cut.  They measure 2 1/2′ x 3 1/2″.  Continue to cut your blue and white fabrics until you have the number of diamonds that you need.

This goes so fast, you will be ready to sit down and sew in no time.  Cookie Cat is helping out.  He likes to sleep in the top of my rolling cart and keep me company.

Assemble the Quilt top:

Start by sewing your diamond inset panel.

Keep in mind which way the diamonds are going for the strip, right or left.  The width of the row will be 2″ finished.  Alternate your blue fabrics with the white fabrics to assemble the striped rope inserts.  There will be nine rows of inserts.

   

In our EQ8 design, we had a repeating block showing 1/2 diamond blocks at the top and bottom. But when we combine the blocks, we can see how a full diamond is formed by the combined blocks.  We will sew using the full diamond shapes where those form.

I just string pieced the diamonds together until I had the columns completed.

I thought I would share the view out of my studio.  It is a gorgeous sunny day as I sew.

Be sure to align the points, the accurate diamonds really helps keep these together.  You will need to stitch nine columns of diamonds.  You should have 21 diamonds in a column or enough to measure 60 1/2″.  Press flat.

Once you have the diamond inset column together , sew the 8 1/2″ x 60 1/2′ blue panel strip to the left side of the insert.

Sew the 20 1/2″ x 60 1/2″ blue panel strip to the right side of the insert.

Prepare the Anchor applique.  Draw the anchor applique on the paper side of the double sided fusible.  you will need to fold it in half to match the template.  Press the fusible to the wrong side of the red fabric and cut out the Anchor.

Arrange the Anchor where you like it and then press it onto the quilt.

Using a close zig zag stitch, sew around the raw edges of the Anchor applique to secure it.

Finish the Quilt

  1. Create a quilt sandwich with the backing, batting and pieced quilt top.
  2. Baste the quilt layers together.  Quilt as desired.
  3. Add binding and finish.

Were you inspired to try this quilt?  Be sure to let me know your thoughts in the comments and share pictures with me on social media on Facebook or  Instagram.  Be sure to hashtage #LoriMillerDesigns so I see it!  And don’t forget to sign up for my blog updates to you get ideas like these right to your inbox.

Looking for the EQ8 Design Instructions?  You can find them HERE.

For more projects and tips and techniques on using EQ8, visit my Electric Quilt blog series EQ8 Lessons with Lori.

For more information on EQ8, go to Electric Quilt 8 Software.

 

Pin and Needles Sew Along

I am very excited to be hosting the first week of the Pins and Needles Sew Along for my crafty friend, Kim’s new Pins and Needles Book Pattern.  You might know Kim best as Retro Mama and she makes and designs the cutest little quilty things.

I like to collect fun sewing theme prints and since you don’t need a lot of fabric, I found some perfect scraps to make this project.  Here is some fun spools of thread and I even found some fabric with pins on it to use.

I used a little stiletto to help guide my binding around the outside edge when I took off the little clips to sew.  It really went together fast.

Instead of a little tape, I fussy cut this pincushion from another scrap of fabric I had and stitched it to the inside pocket.  I used this pocket and a zipper pocket combination.

This pattern comes in two sizes, the small is 3 1/2″ x 5″ and the medium is 4 1/2″ x 6″.  I decided to make two of the medium size books.  One for myself and one to give away as a gift.

For the extra book, I turned it into the perfect mini sewing kit.  I put three small spools of white, black and grey thread in the zipper pocket.

Then I added some pins, needles, safety pins, small scissors and mini clips.

Since I used the elastic closure, it easily closed with the elastic and a button.

I love that you can put your own touch and style on each pins and needle book by adding embellishments, piecing and quilting.

There is so much inspiration on Instagram for this cute little Pins and Needle book, just look for the #pinsandneedlesSAL or #pinsandneedlesbook.

Don’t miss all the fun!  Here are all the terrific makers who are hosting each week.  They will share their own needle books and prizes.  Just post a picture of your finished needle book with the hashtags #pinsandneedleSAL #retromamapattern

Week 1 – July 8-14

Elnora @elnorac
Lori @lorimillerdesigns

Week 2 – July 15-21

Stephanie @sissybellesews
Zoe @zoemayson

Week 3 – July 22-28

Helen @henhousehandmade
Laurraine @patchworkpottery

Week 4 – July 29-August 4

Sarah @princess_ina_pouch
Mary @sunnydaysupply

 

Joining the sew along is simple! Here’s what you need to do:
1) Grab the  Pins and Needles Book Pattern  from @retromama and stitch up the cute Pins and Needle Book.  The pattern is on sale throughout the sewalong.

2) Follow me  @lorimillerdesigns and @retro_mama on Instagram, as well as each of the amazing ladies listed above. Then follow the hashtag #pinsandneedlesSAL to see all the projects, WIPs, and giveaways!

3) Post your photos on Instagram with the hashtags #pinsandneedlesSAL and #retromamapattern to participate and be eligible for prizes. You are very welcome to post WIPs but only completed projects will be eligible to win. Be sure that your account is public during the SAL so we can see your projects! You may enter more than once if you make more than one Pins and Needles Book.

Happy Stitching!

 

Free tutorial – Easy St. Patrick’s Day table runner and napkins

Here is a super easy to make table runner and matching napkins to celebrate St. Patrick’s day.  This easy project can be made in any fun novelty fabric.  Grab 1 ½ yards of a St Patrick’s day print and stitch this up in time for your corned beef and cabbage dinner.  This is a great practical gift idea and a perfect beginner’s project!  You will learn to sew a simple hem and stitch straight lines for the table runner and 4 napkins.

Materials:

  • 1 ½ yards of a St. Patricks day cotton print (42-45 inches wide)
  • Matching thread
  • Sewing machine
  • Pins
  • Iron and Ironing Board
  • Measuring tape or sewing gauge

Prepare the Fabric:

Prewash and dry the fabric. I threw mine in the washer on warm with a smidgen of detergent and dried it in the dryer.  This will help to pre-shrink the fabric before you sew it together and I think it washes better after use.

Next, iron any wrinkles out of the fabric so that it will lay flat to cut out your pieces.

Cut the fabric:

There is a selvage on each side of the fabric which needs to be cut off.  Evenly trim the selvages off the sides.  I usually take ½ to 1 inch off to get all of the selvage.

 

Cut the table runner 16 inches wide and the length of the fabric(approximately 54 inches).

For the napkins, cut 4 squares 13 x 13 inches.

Sew the table runner:

Starting with the ends of the runner, sew a ½ inch double hem.  Here is how:

Fold the material over, wrong sides together ½ inch.

Then fold it over ½ inch again to fold the raw edge into the inside of the fabric.  Pin the hem in place.

Place your presser foot about 1/8 inch from the edge of the fabric and carefully stitch down the hem.

Topstitch the hem with your sewing machine.  Sew as straight as you can.  I used a stitch length of 2.5mm.  I use my hands like this to guide the fabric to keep the edge of the hem next to the presser foot.  Pull the pins out as you go so you don’t have to stitch over them.  Trim your threads.

Iron the END hems flat

Now, sew a ½ inch double hem on the long sides of the table runner.

Follow the same steps as you did for the ends of the table runner, only this time you will be pinning the long sides to sew.

On these ends, backstitch 2-3 stitches when you start and end the sides to secure the thread.

Finishing the table runner

Top stitch again around the entire table runner stitching 1/8 inch away from your initial stitch line towards the outside of the table runner.

When you get to the corner, take two stitches past the intersecting stitch line and turn.  If your stitch length is 2.5 mm, it should be about the right position away from you original line again.  Stitch all the way around. Trim your threads.

Sew the napkins

Now that you have mastered the double hem, you get to try a smaller double hem on the napkins.

On opposite sides of a napkin, sew a ¼ inch double hem.  Here is how:

Fold the material over, wrong sides together 1/4 inch.

Then fold it over 1/4 inch again to fold the raw edge into the inside of the fabric. Pin the hem in place.

Place your presser foot so that you are stitching right down the middle of your folded hem.

Carefully stitch the hem with your sewing machine.  Sew as straight as you can.  I used a stitch length of 2.5mm.  Pull the pins out as you go so you don’t have to stitch over them.  Iron the end hems flat

Now, finish by sewing a 1/4 inch double hem on the remaining sides of the napkins. Follow the same steps as you did for the first two sides.

On these ends, backstitch 2-3 stitches when you start and end the sides to secure the thread.  Trim your threads.

Fold the napkin in half and then in half again and iron.  Finish the hems on the remaining napkins.

That is it, you have created a beautiful table runner and napkins all by yourself!

You will have some fabric left over, you may be able to make additional napkins or save it in your stash for another project.

Variations:  Use any holiday print or just a fun fabric design to create your table runners and napkins.  Mix and match coordinating fabric for the table runner and napkins.  Play with some decorative stitches on your sewing machine instead of just sewing a straight line for your hems.  Have some fun and see what you can create.

Happy sewing!

Free Tutorial – DIY Wrapping Paper or Fabric

Most of you know, I am an EQ8 fanatic and this time I used the quilt design software to create my own wrapping paper and my own fabric with the EQ Printable fabric sheets.   EQ allows you to export blocks and motifs as an image that you can then edit and print using the Photo Layout on the Image Worktable.  Don’t worry if you dont have EQ8, I will include PDF files of my homemade wrapping paper that you can use too.  In addition to the wrapping paper, I used the printed fabric to create a little drawstring bag.

I edited a block with a Vintage Sewing Machine, added some holly, and scaled it onto a sheet of paper and printed it out.

It is an 8 1/2″ x 11′ sheet of paper, but you can wrap some cute small gifts with it.

I also colored a block called Evergreen that was a mod looking pine tree and printed it out.

For this gift, I wrapped the main gift in white tissue paper.  Then I trimmed my diy wrapping paper and cut it in half.

Then I just matched up the print and taped them together in a long strip.

I used the strip and wrapped it around the package like an embellishement sleeve and then just added a coordinating bow on top.  This is a good way to use your cute designs when you are limited to your printer paper size.

Here are the PDF Files that you can use to print that I designed with EQ8.

LMD Holiday Vintage Sewing Machine

LMD Mod Evergreen

Next, I printed my cute holiday vintage sewing machines onto EQ Printable fabric sheets.  I printed two of them and then used them as fabric to create this cute drawstring bag.

DIY Fabric Drawstring Bag

Finished size is approx 6″ x 3″ x 7″

Note: Read through directions first before sewing.  Unless otherwise noted, use 1/4″ seam.

Materials

  • 2 —  8 1/2″ x 11″ printed fabric sheets
  • 2 —  8 1/2″ x 11″ fabric for lining
  • 2 —  2 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ strips of fabric for casing
  • 2 —  26″ pieces of ribbon for drawstring  (1/2″ or less)

Directions

Sew Casing

  1. Make a 1/4″ double rolled hem on each of the short ends of the casings.
  2. Fold wrong sides together and stitch.
  3. Roll the seam to the back so it will be hidden on the back side of the casings and press.
  4. Measure down 1 1/2″ from top of printed fabric and pin the casing down.  Stitch very closely on the top and bottom to secure the casing.  Backstitch at the beginning and end of your seam.  Sew both casings.

Sew Bag

 

  1. With right sides together, stitch the sides and bottom of the bag.
  2. Cut a 1 1/2″ square from each bottom corner of the bag.
  3. Pinch the bag together to box the corner and stitch across.
  4. Place the lining  pieces right sides together. Stitch the sides and bottom of the lining leaving a 2-3 inch opening in the bottom of the lining for turning.
  5. Box the corners of the lining in the same way as the outer bag.
  6. Leaving the lining the wrong side out, slip it over the bag aligning the top edges and seams.
  7. Stitch around the top.  Pull the whole bag right side out through the opening in the lining.  Stitch the hole in the lining closed.
  8. Tuck the lining into the bag.  Top stitch around the top of the bag.
  9. Thread the ribbon through both casings.  Start one from one side and the other from the opposite side.  Knot the end of the ribbons to hold them.
  10. Pull the drawstring to close the bag.

I used EQ Printables Inkjet Fabric Sheets.  There are several types of fabric sheets to choose from.  I really like them and I use them a lot for quilt labels.  The fabric holds the color very well and is pretty soft to the touch when you wash it.  You can get more information about them HERE.

Share pictures of your own DIY Wall Paper or Fabric!  Tag me on Facebook or Instagram @lorimillerdesigns

Looking for the EQ8 Design Instructions?  You can find them HERE!

For more projects and tips and techniques on using EQ8, visit my Electric Quilt blog series EQ8 Lessons with Lori.

For more information on EQ8, go to Electric Quilt 8 Software.

Free Tutorial – Pop Art Wall Quilt

Greetings!  I am making this quilt for my son for the holiday, it is a picture of his cat, Oreo.  Being a 20 something young man, I wanted something a little more grown up but still fun.  This quilt is made by taking a picture of Oreo and editing it using EQ8 Quilt Design Software.  The edited pictures are then printed on EQ Printable Inkjet Fabric Sheets.  You can use the general tutorial with any picture of the same size but what makes it so much fun, is the ability to edit the picture to black and white and then add different background colors.  It makes this quilt reminiscent of the visual art created by Andy Warhol.  If you have not tried using the photo editing functions of the Image Worktable in EQ8, here is your chance.  Let’s make a Pop Art Wall Quilt.

Pop Art Wall Quilt

Finished size is 24″ x 30″

Materials

  • 9 —  8 1/2″ x 10 1/2″ printed fabric pictures
  • 1/4 yd black fabric for binding
  • 1 yd backing
  • 1 yd batting

Directions

Cut Fabric:

Black

  • 4 — 2 1/4″ strips

Print your edited  8″ x 10″ pictures onto Printable Fabric.  (Link for quilt design and photo editing at the end of post)  Be sure to follow manufacturer’s directions when printing.  I used EQ Printables Inkjet Fabric Sheets.  There are several types of fabric sheets to choose from.  I really like them and I use them a lot for quilt labels.  The fabric holds the color very well and is pretty soft to the touch when you wash it.  You can get more information about them HERE.

These are the sheets that I printed.  Then I trimmed them to 8 1/2″ x 10 1/2″ with a seam allowance.

I pieced them into a nine patch.  Arrange the colors how you like.

Quilt the Wall Quilt

 

 

Layer quilt top with the backing, batting and kitties quilt top.

Pin baste the quilt layers together.

Quilt as desired.  I used painters tape to mark horizontal lines and then I quilted about 1/2″ apart with my walking foot with a dark gray thread.

Then I pieced the black binding strips together and bound the quilt.  I need to make a hanging sleeve, but it is finished.

Here is a sneak peek at my work area.  As you can see, my new studio is still in progress but I just had to sew, it has been months of moving and unpacking.

Here is my original design from EQ8.  The colors are not quite as vivid when you print them on the fabric, but they are still eyecatching!

And here is the original picture of Oreo.  He had an issue with his ear, so he always has that rakish, debonair look.

Share pictures of your Pop Art Quilt!  Tag me on Facebook or Instagram @lorimillerdesigns

Looking for the EQ8 Design Instructions?  You can find them HERE!

For more projects and tips and techniques on using EQ8, visit my Electric Quilt blog series EQ8 Lessons with Lori.

For more information on EQ8, go to Electric Quilt 8 Software.

Published – Connect the Curves (Cirque)

Used with permission from American Patchwork & Quilting® magazine. ©2018 Meredith Corporation. All rights reserved.

My Connect the Curves (Cirque) quilt has been published in the  December 2018 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting

 

There are a lot of amazing quilts in this issue and I am so proud to be a part of it.

As usual, I designed this bold quilt with Electric Quilt design software.  I started with a regular drunkards path block, super sized it and then made a few adjustments to create the swirling effect.

I used templates that I created with #EQ8 to cut out all of the curved pieces in my quilt.  I generously received beautiful fabric from

American Made Brand Solids in Connect the Curves Quilt


Stitching the curves on these 10″ blocks is easier than you think because of the size.

I use a 3 pin method and stitch from the outside to the center.  Then I flip and stitch from the other end to the center adjusting the curve if needed.

The individual blocks  come together to create a 20″ wide swirling center.

Does this happen to you? I can piece all day in quiet, but as soon as I start quilting, I get a furry helper.  Cookie, you make it a little difficult to use the walking foot!

I tried some echo quilting around the curves of the center quilting about 1 ” apart to accentuate the motion.

Then I did some free motion feathers and free motion fill to finish up the negative space on the sides.   You know I love the texture!

I hope you enjoyed getting a little behind the scenes view of my process on this lovely quilt.

Happy Stitching!

Published – EQ8 Designing More Quilts

I am honored to have a Chapter in the new EQ8 book, Designing More Quilts from the Electric Quilt Company.  I have been partnering with the Electric Quilt Company to share quilt design lessons on their DoYouEq,com blog for both EQ Mini and EQ8 for a couple of years.  Many of you have made those designs with the tutorials I offer right here on my Lori Miller Designs Blog.

I have the privilege of joining many EQ Experts who share their Quilt Design Tricks in this book.  They include lessons on creating Medallion quilts, panel quilts, baby block quilts and more.

        

I wrote Chapter 3 Creating Modern Quilt Layouts with Alternate Gridwork.  Wow, that’s a mouth full but it includes a chapter jam packed with ideas to use EQ8 to create modern elements like asymmetry, exaggerated scale, negative space and minimalism in your quilt designs.

There are lots of tricks to creatively use borders, horizontal layouts, whole top designs and clever block placement to create beautiful designs.

 

I finish with ideas to use the built-in Irregular grids provided by EQ8 to add to your design toolbox.

It’s a fun lesson if you are exploring modern quilt design concepts using the tools that came with your software.  My lesson is just a jumping off point to highlight design tips you might not have thought of or tools with EQ8 you have not used before.

EQ8 has other books that might be of interest to you.

     

A couple of my favorites are the EQ 8 Block library book (You can peruse all of the free blocks that come with the software at your leisure, it is great inspiration too!)

and the first design book, EQ8 Designing Quilts.

For more information on the EQ8 Designing More Quilts book, you can visit Electric Quilt HERE.

Happy Quilt Designing!