Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Technique: 4 patch block

Today I want to share with you how a 4 patch block is made. They are really very simple. We are working with 3 1/2 inch blocks today. The first thing you want to do is accurately cut 4 squares at 3 1/2 x 3 1/2 inches. They can all be different colors or 2 different colors.
Stitch 2 squares, right sides together, on one side with 1/4" seam. Then do the same with the remaining 2 squares. You will notice I am stitching in black, that is so you can see it better. Normally I piece in white or natural.
Press your seams to the darkest fabric. The next step is to look at your blocks, and put them together. If you used 2 colors, you want them in opposite corners of each other, as you see in the photo. If you used 4 different colors, then it doesn't matter.
Line up your seams. The way they were pressed helps them nest against each other. Stick a pin in the seam. Stitch together with a 1/4 inch seam. Press your seams.
You should now have a square that should measure about 6 1/2 inches.
You now have some options. You can finish it like we did with the hot pad tutorial, you can make more, and I will do a tutorial on 4 patch quilts, or you can set it aside and ad I do more techniques you can combine them to make a small quilt, wallhanging or some pillows. Let me know if you like the techniques and tutorials. I would love to see photos of your blocks.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Basic hot pad tutorial

Today I want to teach you how to make a basic hot pad.  For your hot pads you want to make sure that everything you use is 100% cotton.  The reason for this is that cotton burns and polyester melts. Also, make sure your thread is 100% cotton

Materials list
1 - 6 1/2 inch square of fabric for the front
2  - 1 1/2" x 8 1/2" rectangles of a contrasting fabric
2 - 1 1/2" x 6 1/2" rectangles
1 - 10 inch square for the backing
2 - 10 inch squares batting

You will take your 6 1/2" square of fabric and your 1 1/2" x 6 1/2" rectangles and on two opposite sides you will sew the rectangles.  Use a 1/4" seam allowance.  Once you have sewn the two short rectangles on, then press the seams towards the darkest fabric.

 You will now take the 1 1/2" x 8 1/2" rectangles and do the same thing.  Press towards the dark side of the fabric.

Now you have the beginnings of a hot pad.  Good for you.

Now, comes the fun part.  Layer and quilting the hot pad.  Sometimes I will free motion quilt them, but for this one I decided to just do a simple crosshatch with 2" squares.  So, take the top of the hot pad and mark 2" segments across the top and bottom.  Unless your fabric is directional it does not matter which side is the top.  Then turn the fabric 1/4 turn and mark again.  Now layer the top piece with the right side up, 2 layers of batting, and then your bottom fabric with the right side down.  (You have just made a quilt sandwich,  Good for you).  Now you will start at one of your markings and go all the way down.  Do on one side first, then 1/4 turn and do the same.  You will have some cute little squares on your hot pad.

In this photo you can see that one side has been 
done, and now I am doing the other direction

You are almost done with your first hot pad.  Good for you.  Trim all sides of the hot pad so front and back are even. Should be approximately 8 1/2". Now comes the binding  To do the binding, cut  2 strips of your fabric for the binding at 2 1/4" x 8 1/2" and then cut 2 at 2 1/4" x 9 1/2".  Take the 2 8 1/2" long pieces and fold in half lengthwise and press.  Stitch using a 1/4" seam to opposite sides of the hot pad on the front side..  Now, take the 2 remaining pieces and fold down a 1/4" on each of the short edges and press.  Fold in half lengthwise and stitch with a 1/4" seam to the two sides that don't have binding on.  Now you can do the next step by hand or machine.  It may get a little tough with the machine, so I suggest trying it first, if it is hard, then do this by hand.  You are going to fold the binding to the back and stitch it down.  

Now, your hot pads should look like this.  Yay!!!! great job.  

Be watching for more fun tutorials and tips and hints for learning to quilt.

I am asking you to please not share this pattern with others.  If you have someone who you think would like to do these, then have them visit my blog.  

If you don't sew or don't want to make your own, I would love to make some for you.  just send me a message to in the subject line, put hot pads.

Please let me see yours.  If you have an instagram, post it on there with #basichotpads . My instagram is @kathyskwiltsandmore