Friday, October 10, 2008

Fabric Coasters

Last year I was at a professional seminar and one of my colleagues who is an avid quilter was making these coasters. I thought they were really cool, so knowing how bad my memory is, I asked her to show me how while I shot video of her demonstration using my trusty Canon Elph cam. They come together really easily. I hope the video explains the process well enough for you to duplicate. 

Peggy used 5" squares. To make one coaster, do the following. To make a set of four, quadruple it. 

You need 5 squares of your favorite fabrics, one square of lightweight fleece or batting, and one square of white or other color fabric. Fold 4 of the fabrics in half, wrong sides together. Lay them down, as in the video, on top of a sandwich of white fabric, batting, and then your chosen fabric. Stitch all around the square. Turn it right side out, and you are done.  Just follow the video to clarify these scant instructions. Enjoy!

A major issue for me is precision piecing. I have a hard time keeping a consistent scant quarter inch seam. This makes for big problems when you are putting together a quilt square with lots of segments. Well, with the help of some friends, my problem may be solved! 

My friend Maureen gave me a Bendable Bright Light for my birthday so I can see the quarter inch seam guide better on my Janome 6600P. That is one solution. Thank you Maureen! 

The other idea comes from my new friend Janis Shipley. She told me about a Sally Collins DVD on Precision Piecing. I tracked that DVD down and learned a lot from it. Sally just lays her Ott Light down on the bed of the sewing machine to see the presser foot area better. 

THEN, I learned something else from the DVD. When Sally cuts out her fabric, she places her Omnigrid ruler line to the inside of the fabric. The effect of this is she is cutting the fabric a scant bigger than called for! Ah ha, no more stitching a scant quarter inch using your quarter inch foot! If you cut the fabric a scant bigger, you can simply use the quarter inch foot seam guide as it was meant to be! Yea!! I hope this works for me. 

I don't like moving the needle over to account for a scant quarter inch because it seems inaccurate from day to day. Of course, I try to be really accurate when cutting fabric, but I know I mess up at times. I am counting on Sally's idea to end my quarter inch seam woes.


Leslie said...

I will have to look at your video tomorrow. I loved your cat clock. You will have to how ;you included him in your blog. Love you, Leslie

Emera said...

Great work.