Hi, everyone. I hope for you Americans that your July 4th weekend is off to a good start, and that the rest of you are having a great weekend! My kids rode in a parade this morning, and then Monday will be full of another parade, a helicopter candy drop (my son's favorite), a BBQ, bounce houses and slides, and fireworks.
As you can guess, I'm part of AccuQuilt's Blogger Program. I was graciously sent a new Accuquilt GO! Baby Fabric Cutter and three dies of my choice to try out. One of the dies I chose is the apple core.
I thought it would be a fun design to use on a little Halloween wall-hanging/table topper. If you're anything like me, you have good intentions of making stuff for the holidays, but then time gets away from you and you're rushing to finish. Since I won't have any sewing time for Halloween (or Christmas for that matter) with a new baby, I thought I better get a jump start on some of my plans.
So, here we go. To make the wall-hanging (that doubles as a table topper) above, you will need:
- 4 fat quarters of fabric of your choosing (you won't use the entire fat quarter, but 4 gives you a good variety of prints)
- 2 strips of border fabric, cut at 2.75/3 inches (width of fabric)
- backing fabric
- binding fabric
- AccuQuilt GO! Baby Fabric Cutter
- apple core die
Fold your fat quarter(s) to cover the die, getting close to all edges to eliminate waste. (I was able to cut through six layers of fabric without a problem. You only need to have four apple core pieces from each fat quarter.) Place the die foam side up, the fabric on top of the die, and the cutting mat on top of the fabric.
Enlist the help of little ones to see how easy it is to cut through the fabric.
On, my first cut through I didn't put the fabric as close to the edges of the apple core as I could have so I had a little more waste than I had planned. But it was still minimal and probably the same amount I'd get if I were cutting this shape out by hand. I've heard some people trace the die image with a Sharpie to help them see it better. I probably should have done that as I can see how it could help; although I didn't have a hard time seeing the outline of the shape at all.
Repeat the cutting process three more times so you end up with 16 apple cores.
Now it's time to pin! If you've sewn curves before, you may not need pins, but I still found them helpful. The apple core die has notches to help you see where to align the convex and concave parts of the apple core shape.
Insert a pin where those notches meet.
Next, line up one corner and pin.
Repeat with the other corner.
Your fabric will be gathered; it won't lie flat.
Now, just to be safe and ensure that your pieces don't shift as you sew them together, add pins between the left side and middle, and the middle and right side. (Tip: When sewing curves, it's always better to use more pins than you think you'll need.)
You're ready to sew! Piece your apple cores into rows. Then press them. I should have taken a picture of this part, but I didn't. For this shape, it's easiest if you press the convex parts of the apple core out and the concave parts in. Once your rows are pieced, sew them together to get a 4x4 layout.
Next, square up your block.
Add the border fabric to the top and bottom of the block, and then to the left and right sides. (Oops, I took a picture of the block sideways so my border is shown as being sewn to the sides first and then the top and bottom.)
Baste, quilt, and bind.
And put it on your table, or hang it on your wall.
I have to admit that when Carolyn contacted me to see if I would like to participate in AccuQuilt's Blogger Program, I was so excited! When the box arrived on my doorstep, I couldn't wait to check it out. Cutting is my least favorite part of quilting (and basting isn't much fun either), so any ways of easing that step is something worth looking into. I am looking forward to trying out the other dies I received, and I already have a list of other dies I'd like to buy!
If you're interested in some free patterns, click the image below to sign up for AccuQuilt's newsletter.
Stay tuned for a chance to win your own AccuQuilt GO! Baby and three dies. Have a great weekend everyone!