Forest for the Trees Quilt

This quilt has been on my mind for months, and I’m so excited to share it as a Ruler of the Month quilt! Many times, when you see a quilt like this, it has been either foundation paper pieced or the pieces have been cut with a template. With 100 trees in this quilt, I didn’t want to use a tedious method to make these blocks! So, I re-purposed the Creative Grids Strippy Stars tool to make this quilt using strip piecing methods! Strip Piecing is much faster than foundation piecing or cutting templates, which means this quilt goes together much faster. And, because of the way the Strippy Stars template is designed, you also avoid sewing any unsupported bias edges. Which means that your blocks will stay square!

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If you’re not familiar with the Strippy Stars tool, or want to get reacquainted, you can watch my video on this fabulous tool here:

I sell the Strippy Stars Tool in my shop. You can also find the Stripy Stars Tool at the Fat Quarter Shop and you can find the Strippy Stars Tool on Amazon. I love this tool so much I’ve actually made two other patterns using this ruler. The Patriot Mini and Pocket Advent Calendar are both available on my site.

And while I could have left these 100 trees in a grid format, that feels far too orderly for a forest quilt. So, I made sure that the trees got a random, staggered look to them. Much more fun and modern than a grid of identical tree blocks!

The Forest for the Trees quilt is a great winter quilt, with so many fabulous pine trees. But, I also love it as a cabin quilt! This past year my family visited the mountains two different times, and had a fabulous time staying in different cabins. This quilt is the perfect cabin quilt!

You can choose to make all your trees from the same fabric, but I loved making this tree quilt with an assortment of different Art Gallery Fabrics green prints. From blenders to solids to florals and geometrics, the different designs give an overall scrappy feel without being overpowering.

I hope you love this quilt as much as I do! I’m offering it for free for a limited time… use the form below to join the email newsletter list, and I’ll send you the pattern for free.

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Halloween Gnomes Quilt

I wanted to play with the Gnome die on my Accuquilt GO! machine, but I wasn’t ready to start on Christmas quilts yet. So, I thought I’d try stitching up a gnome using Halloween fabric. I made one, and immediately fell in love with how it looked! I knew I wanted to make more, but I wasn’t sure what I’d do with them.

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Even though I wasn’t sure what I was going to make, I cut out hats, bodies, beards, feet, and noses from Halloween fabrics. I used Art Gallery Fabrics Spooky N Sweeter fabric as well as other Art Gallery Fabrics that coordinated. I fused Heat N Bond Lite to the back of all the fabrics before cutting.

For the background, I cut fabric 6″ x 10″. After seam allowance, this leaves a 5 1/2″ x 9 1/2″ block which is an odd size. But, I wasn’t worried about combining these blocks with blocks of a different size. I also didn’t worry about the position of my Halloween Gnomes. Some are closer to the top and some are closer to the bottom. I just kept them at least a 1/2″ from the edge to make sure there was plenty of room for seam allowance.

I did want to combine the gnome blocks with some other blocks. I had made two spider projects for Accuquilt – the Spider Cluster Table Runner and the Dangling Spiders – and I had some leftover spiders cut out. So, I added spider appliques to some of the blocks. You can find the Accuquilt Spider Die here.

I picked out a total of 30 blocks – 5 rows of 6 blocks each – and used 1 1/2″ strips that I had leftover from making the Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner as sashing to put them all together.

I’ll be quilting it using large black stitches on my Baby Lock Sashiko machine, which will complete the Halloween look on the quilt. And, I still have some leftover gnome blocks that I’ll make zippered pouches with, just for fun.

If you’d like to make a quilt like this, or play with any of these designs, then you’ll want to get the Accuquilt dies I used. I used the Accuquilt Gnome Die as well as the Accuquilt Spider Die.

Spider Web Table Topper

If you’re looking for a fun and unique Halloween decor piece, look no further than this Spider Web Table Topper. While the lace-like technique used to put these pieces together is perfect for some spooky fun, it will work perfectly in seasonal decor of all kinds – just change out the thread color for a completely different look!

You can watch this short video below to see how it works. I’ve also included written instructions below to outline the steps.

Start by cutting 4 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ squares from Halloween fabrics. I used Spooky and Sweeter by Art Gallery Fabrics, and cut a total of 48 squares. You can cut more squares for a bigger table topper, and you can cut your squares bigger if you like. This project is completely customizable.

Pair up the squares, right-sides-together. Stitch around all 4 sides, leaving a 2″ gap on one side.

Clip the corners. Turn right side out. Use a turning tool to poke out the corners so that they are crisp.

Press flat. Top stitch all the way around the edge of the square, locking your stitches when you meet up with the beginning point.

Install the 5mm Bridging Plate onto your Baby Lock machine. It is as easy as removing the Bobbin Plate and replacing it with the Bridging Plate.

Thread your machine like you normally would. Select a decorative stitch (I chose 3-11) and set the width to 7mm so that it is wider than the 5mm Bridging Plate.

Switch to your N foot. Place one square on either side of the Bridging Plate, and carefully feed under the needle. Keep an eye on the spacing under the needle to make sure that it is catching both sides with each stitch.

Continue, making 8 rows of 3.

Stitch the rows together in the same manner to make the completed table topper. When you get to the gap, lift up your presser foot, advance the project forward under the presser foot, and then continue.

That’s it! The table topper looks upscale but it is easy enough for a beginner to make. The secret (as always) is having the right tools!

I stitched up this whole project on my Baby Lock Aria. If you’d like to learn more about the Baby Lock Aria or find a local dealer that carries the Baby Lock Aria, check out the Baby Lock website. You can also ask your dealer about getting bridging plates for your machine.

Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner

When summer turns to fall, all the candles and pumpkins come out. If you’re ready to put out all the fall decor, add this Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner to your fall decor this year! Fun to make using all of your harvest-toned scraps, this Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner can be stitched up in a day. It is simple enough to quilt on your domestic machine, bind, and get on your table the same day you start!How to use the Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool

Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool

This Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner is part of my Ruler of the Month series. Each month I pick a ruler, show you how to use it, and offer a free pattern so you can try out your new ruler skills! This month I’ve done something different. The ruler I chose is a ruler I have featured as the Ruler of the Month before – it is the Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool.

The Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool makes faux-curved blocks. You still do all straight cutting and piecing. But, because of the way that the pieces are stitched together, it makes a curved-looking design. A great way to make curved shapes without sewing any curved blocks. And, this is a fabulous way to use your favorite scraps to make a new project!

We’re using the 4″ Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool. If you don’t already own it, you can buy the Curvy Log Cabin Trim Tool in my shop – and I offer free shipping in the US on all orders!

If you’ve never seen the Creative Grids Curvy Log Cabin Ruler in action, you can watch this video to see how easy it is to make these “curvy” blocks that go together as easily as a Log Cabin block!

Scrappy Pumpkin Table Runner Pattern

This pattern is beginner-friendly. All the steps for making the pattern are broken down in this full-color pattern with lots of diagrams. If you prefer to read the text of a pattern, look at the images, or a combination of the two, you will enjoy the Scrappy Table Runner Pattern.

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Mini Quilt Advent 2021

We’ve launched the Mini Quilt Advent for 2021 and I’m so excited! As a quilter, this is the Advent Calendar I always wanted. Everything in this Advent Calendar is unique, and designed to inspire you to create!

We’ve only made a limited number of these Mini Quilt Advents, so head over to Katrinkles to pre-order your Mini Quilt Advent now. Once you’re done there, head over to my shop to pre-order your fabric bundle, either the Mini Quilt Advent Two Fabric Bundle or the Mini Quilt Advent Fat Eighth Fussy Cutting bundle.

This Advent Calendar comes in a beautiful felt box with an engraved wooden button on the front. The button has a quilt block on it (of course). In the felt box, there are 12 numbered envelopes – one for each of the 12 days of this Advent. Each day you open a numbered envelope, and inside you’ll find a custom acrylic template and an exclusive mini pattern. The pattern shows you how to use this template to make a 3″ finished quilt block that you can use as an ornament, coaster, garland, or combine with the other blocks to make a mini quilt or table runner. All 12 mini quilts can be completed with just 2 half-yard cuts of fabric. OR you can fussy-cut a variety of fabrics to make your mini quilt blocks.

As part of this Advent Calendar, I’ll be sharing a video each day starting December 1st showing you how to stitch up the mini quilt for the day. The templates build on one another so that each day you may just use the template for that day, or you may combine it with templates from previous days to make your mini quilt block. And these templates are designed to mix-and-match, so the designs on the patterns are just a jumping off point!

These bite-sized mini quilts are simple enough to make that you’ll be to find time to sew them, even in the busy holiday season! The Advent Calendars and fabric bundles will ship in early November, and the daily videos will begin December 1st.

The Mini Quilt Advent will sell out. If it sells out before you order yours, make sure you add yourself to the waitlist.

Don’t wait! Head over to Katrinkles to pre-order your Mini Quilt Advent now. She also has custom Advent Calendars for Knitters and Crocheters. If you’ve been extra good this year, you might deserve more than one Advent calendar. Or, you might have a yarn-loving friend in need of an Advent Calendar.

Once you’ve secured your Advent Calendar order, head over to my shop to pre-order your fabric bundle as well. I can’t wait to get your Advent Calendar to you!

Pocket Advent Calendars

I’m so excited to share with you my new Pocket Advent Calendar Pattern! There are so many things I love about Christmas, and Advent Calendars are absolutely one of them! A little gift every day as we lead up to the big day? Count me in!! I’ve designed two different versions of this Pocket Advent, and included instructions for both in the same pattern. The Wall Hanging Pocket Advent is 22 1/2″ x 28″, with 4 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ gusseted pockets. The Mini Pocket Advent is 12″ x 12″ and has 3″ x 3″ gusseted pockets. The gussets make the pockets so much roomier to fit in fabulous gifts!

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To make the Pocket Advent Calendar, you’ll need the Creative Grids Strippy Star Tool. This is one of my absolute favorite rulers. It is inexpensive, easy to use, and makes stars in so many sizes – and so easily! The Pocket Advent is at least the fourth time I’ve used the Strippy Star Tool. Get your Strippy Star Tool at the Fat Quarter Shop.

Learn how easy it is to use the Strippy Star Tool in this video:

You can add numbers to your Pocket Advent however you like. You can put tags on the gifts with numbers on them, you can embroider numbers on the pockets, you can cut vinyl numbers with your cutting machine to add them… I chose to use these Tim Holtz Number Charms to add the numbers to my Advent. They already have holes in the top, and were super quick and easy to stitch on.

The 12″ x 12″ Mini Pocket Advent fits perfectly on this 12″ wire frame. This allows you to stand the Mini Pocket Advent on a side table or on the mantel.

My versions of the Pocket Advent Calendar were made using Maureen Cracknell’s “Cozy and Joyful” fabric for Art Gallery Fabrics.

You can purchase the Pocket Advent Calendar here:

The Mini Pocket Advent, it turns out, is perfect for tucking in leftover Halloween Chocolates!

Custom Fabric Letterboard

Have you ever wanted a letterboard that fit your decor perfectly? One that wasn’t just made from plain felt? Do you have a favorite fabric that would make a perfect letterboard but no idea how to make it happen? Well, here you go! Step-by-step on how to make your a custom fabric letterboard out of your favorite fabric!

I do want to mention that it is the texture of the felt that helps keeps plastic letters in place. Using a quilting cotton like I have here makes them more likely to slip out if the board is hanging up. But it is still perfect for flat-lay photos.

To make your custom fabric letterboard, you’ll need:

1/2 yard of main fabric
1/2 yard of fusible fleece
1/4 yard of border fabric
Cheap or old letterboard
Hot glue and hot glue gun
Rotary cutter and ruler
Marking tool
Plastic cards such as gift cards or hotel key cards

Start by taking apart the old/cheap felt board. Usually they are just glued together, so it is pretty simple to do.

Once you have removed the frame and felt, you’ll have a wooden board with grooves on it. If you have access to a woodshop (or access to someone who has access to a woodshop) they could probably make one of these base boards for you. But, for most of us, just buying a cheap letterboard and taking it apart is easier.

Cut your chosen fabric 1-2″ wider than your board. You want to give yourself a little room. Keep the length of the fabric, don’t trim this down. You can trim it down at the end.

Then back the fabric with fusible fleece.

Then, start tucking the fabric into the grooves. I found this was easiest to do with a plastic card – you could use a gift card or a hotel key card or a store loyalty card. Just something sturdy that will help press the fabric down into the crease.

Keep going, inserting the fabric into each crease. I found that holding the previous crease in place with one card while pushing in the next crease was most successful.

Keep going, inserting the fabric into all the creases.

You may find, if you always start from one side, that the fabric starts to “creep” in that direction. To prevent the creeping, alternate the directions in which you make the creases. Crease one from right to left, and the next from left to right.

When you’re done, trim off the excess around all four sides.

Glue down the edges with hot glue.

Use a fabric marking tool to mark a border around the letterboard. I went with a 1/2″ border, but you can choose what feels right for you.

Measure from this border line all the way to the back, with a 1/2″ overlap. Then double your measurement. This is the width you need to cut for your border strips. Cut a strip this width. Fold the strip in half so that it is just as long, but half as wide (as you would for quilt binding).

Cut a length of this strip as long as the side. Glue this strip to one side of the felt board, with the fabric fold right on the line you drew marking the edge of the border.

Wait for the glue to set, then wrap the strip around to the back. Glue in place. You’ll need to glue down both layers. You can trim the corners on the back to reduce the bulk.

Repeat for the other side. Then repeat for the top and bottom. If you like, you can fold the edges of the top and bottom in to create more finished corners.

That’s it! Your custom fabric letterboard is complete!

Make a custom fabric letterboard in whichever fabrics suit your mood! Once you know how to make it for yourself, it will be hard to make just one!

Pizza Pillow

If you’re looking for some fun and whimsical decor, whip up this fun pizza pillow! It is super fun to make, and super comfortable to lay on!

These steps will give you the basics of how this pizza pillow comes together, but you’ll need some basic sewing skills (or a friend with some basic sewing skills).

You’ll also need a giant circle pillow, fabric for your crust, cheese, and pepperonis, matching thread, some plain white fabric, and fusible web.

Use a water soluble pen to draw a slice on your pillow.

Cut into the pillow. Once you’ve cut the lines on the top, you can remove the stuffing and cut the bottom layer to match.

Use the wedge and remainder of the circle as templates to cut the crust pieces.

Measure the edges of the wedge to determine how large your strips need to be. Cut two from the white and two from the crust. These create the depth on your wedge and circle pieces.

Re-create the casing piece for your wedge. Make it 1/2″ larger than the original wedge. This makes up for the seam allowance that will get used up on both the wedge and the main pie.

You can use a can lid to curve the edges to prevent sharp corners.

Put fusible web on the back of the pepperoni colored fabric. Draw circles, and cut out.

Cut the cheese the same size as the top crust, then measure in and trim off the extra.

Fuse the cheese to the crust.

Fuse on the pepperoni, Make sure to fuse them onto the slice as well.

Overlap the slice (which is a 1/2″ larger to make up for the lost seam allowance, and place the pepperonis accordingly.

Applique stitch on the cheese and pepperoni.

Now add the strips to create the depth for the wedge and main pie.

Finish up the casing as well. Fill the casing. The outer layer you can either stitch up by hand or add a zipper to make it easy to remove and wash.

Cricut Embroidery Hoop

When I first started playing with my Cricut Maker, I was super excited that I could use it to cut fabric. But then I learned that when they added the rotary blade, they also added another tool to the Cricut arsenal – the water-soluble pen! This pen can be used with any of the Cricut machines with a pen adapter (so the Explore and Explore Air certainly qualify), and is perfect for drawing lines to make your own embroidery designs!

I used this Jen Goode Butterfly design that I thought would be perfect, but you can use whatever line-art style art you like.

Use the water soluble marker to have the Cricut machine draw on your fabric.

Then you can stitch on your design.

When you’re done, just rinse of the ink under the sink and let the fabric dry.

Super simple, and super cute!

Quilting made easy with Riley Blake and Cricut – Part 3 of 3

Welcome to the 3rd part of this video and quilting series! Over the past weeks I have been working on making a Christmas Quilt using Riley Blake Fabrics and the Cricut Maker. In Part One I showed you how I selected the fabric and pattern. In Part Two I showed you how all the pieces were cut. And today… today we are piecing the Half Log Cabin Throw quilt top!

Quilting Made Easy with Riley Blake and Cricut PArt 3 - Learn how to piece the quarter log cabin quilt pattern!

 

To finish up this series I’ve created another video. This video is long, but oh-so-comprehensive! I’ll be holding your hand and taking you step-by-step through how to make this quilt. It is always more fun to make a project with a friend, and I hope you’ll stitch along side me as we make this quilt together!

We’ll make the units, put together the blocks, build the rows, and stitch up this quilt top. When we get to adding the borders, I’ll give you some tips on how to get a nice smooth border with no ruffles!


If you’d rather read along, I’ll lay out the basics of making the quilt here. Remember that a full set of PDF instructions is in Design Space that will also help you in making the quilt.

We’re going to start by laying out all of our fabrics. The inner border, outer border, and binding fabric can be put aside. Label the other fabrics by fabric number to make it easier to grab the right fabric as you lay out the block units.

label your fabrics when quilting

Using the PDF instructions, grab a square of fabric one and the smallest rectangle in fabric 8. Place them right sides together and stitch.

(BTW – all seams in this quilt are 1/4″.)

stitch first two pieces

Then press your seam towards the dark.

press first stitch

Add the next size up of fabric 8. Stitch and press. Repeat with the same size of fabric 1, and then the largest strip of fabric 1. You’ll have your first block unit complete!

finished first block

Repeat the process for all the block units – you’ll be making 6 of each. Check the PDF for all the fabric combinations. If you watch the video, I’ll show you how you can save time making these units by strip piecing.

next block

Once you have all your block units, lay out block A. Stitch the top and bottom units together. Press the seam to the right. Repeat with the bottom two units, pressing the seam in the opposite direction. Then stitch the top and bottom together. You can press the middle seam up, down, or spin the seam (watch the video and I’ll show you this technique)! Make 6 of this block (Block A).

putting it together

Now you’ll follow the same steps as Block A, but to make Block B. Which is the same, but with different fabrics.

Block B

Once your blocks are done, stitch them into rows! You’ll have 4 rows, each with 3 blocks. 2 of the rows have a block A flanked by block B on either side. The other 2 rows are block B flanked by Block A on either side. Press the seams of the first row in one direction, and the seams on the other row in the other direction.stitch the rowsThen stitch your rows together (alternating the A row with the B row), and press all the seams in one direction. Your blocks are all together! Now it is time to add the borders! I want to share my special border-adding tip with you.

First we’ll be adding the side borders. Measure both sides of your quilt, then measure the center of your quilt from top to bottom. This tells you the height of your quilt on both sides and in the middle. Add these 3 numbers together then divide by 3. That is the size you should cut your side borders. This will keep you from having wavy borders.

Pin the border in place. First by pinning each end. Then pinning the middle. Then pinning along each half so that the border is smoothly in place. Once it is pinned, you can stitch.

pin on border

Repeat the process of measuring the top, bottom, and middle to cut the top and bottom borders to size. Pin them the same way, then stitch. Repeat all these steps to cut, pin, and stitch on your outer borders. Once your borders are on, your quilt is done!

stitch on borders

This quilt has been so much fun to put together – I hope you enjoyed it, too! I’m considering putting together a bonus video to show you how to quilt this lap sized quilt on a domestic sewing machine. But if you prefer, you can absolutely have a long-arm quilter do the quilting, and then you just have to bind it. You can search this site for lots of tips on quilting your quilt, and binding it!

Thanks to Cricut and Riley Blake for asking me to put together this series! I can’t wait to show you more quilting and crafting fun!

 

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.