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Post by SweetSue on Sat Jan 14, 2012 9:33 am

I thought I'd share some pictures of my latest projects. They have been a lot of fun because they have been very inexpensive to make. This first one is a small Christmas quilt made mostly from material I've had on hand for years. It is the "Trip Around the World" pattern.

Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ 400508184

This next quilt didn't cost me a cent since it was made using 2 denim shirts and some plain denim fabric that I had on hand as well as the batting and backing. I had to piece the binding, but luckily I had enough to finish the quilt which measures approximately 36" square.

Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ 400508185

One of my favorite things to do is to shop at thrift stores. I have found that uniform/logo shirts are many times made from very good quality fabric. I have found some to be in excellent condition and relatively inexpensive (sometimes under $1.00). By cutting them apart I can have as many as 80 - 4" squares from one shirt. For example: The red and white checked quilt took only 2 shirts with some left over. Cost? Approximately $2.00. Denim clothing was the source for the dark denim on the red, white, and blue one. So these quilts have been fun to do and easy on the wallet. I have not graduated to hand quilting yet, but I will be tying these 3 also.

Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ 400508189

Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ 400508188

Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ 400508186

Thanks for looking. I would enjoy having you share ideas of other frugal fun.
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Post by Sonshine on Sat Jan 14, 2012 10:13 am

Those are beautiful. I tried my hand at quilting several years ago, but could never really get it right. I did manage to make a tied quilt for a baby shower that turned out well though.

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He who cultivates his land will have plenty of food,
but from idle pursuits a man has his fill of poverty
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Post by PATRICE IN IL on Sat Jan 14, 2012 11:00 pm

Very cute mini quilts and good idea on shopping the thrift store for shirts to cut up for your quilts.
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Post by Sonshine on Sun Jan 15, 2012 1:13 am

Sweet Sue, would you be interested in teaching an online class on making those mini quilts? I really would like to learn how to do quilting.

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He who cultivates his land will have plenty of food,
but from idle pursuits a man has his fill of poverty
Proverbs 28:19[b]
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Post by Rohn on Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:14 pm

Sonshine wrote:Sweet Sue, would you be interested in teaching an online class on making those mini quilts? I really would like to learn how to do quilting.

Thanks for your interest in my simple and fun quilting projects. I would be willing to post a few more pictures and give some tips, measurements, etc. I have recently started into a few busy months ahead but will try to be back in touch.
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Post by SweetSue on Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:22 pm

Rohn wrote:
Sonshine wrote:Sweet Sue, would you be interested in teaching an online class on making those mini quilts? I really would like to learn how to do quilting.

Thanks for your interest in my simple and fun quilting projects. I would be willing to post a few more pictures and give some tips, measurements, etc. I have recently started into a few busy months ahead but will try to be back in touch.

Smile Woops! I answered under my DH's name Very Happy No, he's not the quilter! I forgot to sign in under my own name. He's into the more manly projects such as leather and woodworking. Haven't got him on the sewing machine yet and don't have any plans to do so.
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Post by Sonshine on Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:33 pm

LOL I didn't realize you were Rohn's wife. I think DH is going to be ordering, ,or has already ordered some of your husband's leather goods.

I look forward to you sharing your quilting projects. When you get ready to start instructing us I'll make it a sticky so it stays up top. I think if you start off by letting us know what supplies we'll need any of us that are interested can do it as you teach us. Now, just to let you know, I do have a sewing machine, but prefer doing most of my sewing by hand. For some reason that seems easier for me. Although we're looking for a treadle sewing machine. If I can find one, I don't have any problems using them and am more comfortable with them.

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He who cultivates his land will have plenty of food,
but from idle pursuits a man has his fill of poverty
Proverbs 28:19[b]
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Post by SweetSue on Sun Jun 09, 2013 9:01 am

Sonshine wrote:Sweet Sue, would you be interested in teaching an online class on making those mini quilts? I really would like to learn how to do quilting.

It has been a long time coming, but here are some tips for making the mini quilts. I apologize for not posting sooner. If anyone has questions, feel free to ask. I'm not an expert but enjoy having fun with these inexpensive projects.

DIRECTIONS FOR MINI QUILTS

Supplies:
Scissors, straight edge ruler, cutting mat, rotary cutter.
If you don’t have the mat and rotary cutter, use a 4” square template.
Fabric: (To make a 36” square quilt from recycled shirts)
You will need 2 – 3 shirts for the blocks plus an extra shirt or two for the binding strips. A jumper or skirt would give nice lengths for the strips. The binding will be folded and sewn on the edges so you will not want it to be too thick and be difficult to work with.
I enjoy shopping at thrift stores and have found that uniform/logo shirts are many times very good durable quality and may be in new condition. But you may enjoy using shirts from your own stash.
Making the Blocks:
For a 36” square quilt you will need 100 blocks, 10 x 10.
One shirt, depending on the size should yield 60-70 4” blocks. After washing the shirts, cut them apart along seam lines. No need to be extra fussy about this step as you will be trimming things up later. I don’t save cuffs or collars, but I do save the buttons for another use. Iron the pieces if necessary as this will make cutting the blocks easier and more accurate.
Using a straight edge and rotary cutter and cutting mat (or a 4” square template and scissors), begin cutting 4” strips. For example, you should be able to get 12 – 14 squares from a sleeve.

Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ IMG_3629R_zps548f1504
Above shows a picture of a sleeve folded in half lengthwise.


Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ IMG_3630R_zpse2291e1b
This picture shows a 4” strip ready for the first cut to begin the blocks.



Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ IMG_3632R_zpsf2f42feb
This is a back yoke which can be used to get a few extra blocks if needed.


Assembling the Blocks:
All seams need to be consistent width. I recommend a ¼” seam. Decide what order you want the blocks to be in. I have used a simple repetition such as A B C, A B C, A B C, A. And then begin the second row the color B and pick up the repetition again. The colors are then in a diagonal pattern. Use any design that is pleasing to you. It may be helpful to lay out all your blocks ahead of time to get a good idea of how it will look and help keep you on track. I also like to number my rows with small pieces of paper. Since I work assembly-line style, it really helps keep me organized. Notice the papers numbering the rows in the photo below.

Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ IMG_3634R_zps0dbcaf6b

Once you have a row across assembled, iron the seams all in one direction. It is a good idea to alternate the direction of the seams for every other row as this will help to avoid bulkiness when assembling the rows together horizontally.
You should have 10 blocks across and 10 rows down = 100 blocks.
Assembling the Quilt:
Backing:
I like to use cheap sheets but use whatever you like. It can even be pieced if necessary to make it large enough. Cut the backing approximately 4 “ bigger than the size of your quilt as this will give spare room for shifting of the quilt as you tie. It’s always easier to trim off excess at the finish than to have to add on. (Do I sound like I’m speaking from experience?  )
Batting:
Cotton batting is my preference. The poly type batting works too, but I have found that they tend to migrate after a while, meaning that the batting begins to work its way out through the fabric in tiny “holes.” This is not a huge issue but something I prefer to avoid. Like the backing, cut it 4” larger than the quilt.
Layering:
Layer all three layer together: Backing – wrong side up; batting; quilt centered on top. Pin all layers together with safety pins, making sure there are no folds in your quilt.

Tying:
I use crochet cotton for tying. (It’s the thread that is used to crochet doilies and comes in a variety of colors and is available in craft departments at stores such as Hobby Lobby and Walmart.) Thread the craft needle with a double length of crochet thread – approximately 2 – 3 feet long. I found some special needles at Hobby Lobby that have been a wonderful help to me in this step. They are considered “easy threading” needles by Sew-ology. Instead of trying to thread the crochet thread, which tends to be a little too thick and split, through the eye of a needle, you can just lay the thread across the top of these great needles and use a little downward pull, and the needle is threaded! Wonderful time-saver for me!
Tie at every corner where the blocks come together. My corners are not always perfect, and so this tying helps to cover up my mistakes. You can do this step with the quilt lying flat on a table. Use small stitches and pull the thread through, leaving approximately 3” tails. Cut off thread. Tie. Move on to the next corner.
Hand-basting:
Once the tying is completed, hand-baste through all layers about ¼” from all edges. Now you can trim off any excess batting and backing.
Binding:
The binding can be one of the colors in the quilt or a contrasting color. Cut strips 3” wide. Piece them together to get the length you need for each side. Fold the binding in half lengthwise, wrong sides together. There are two options for applying the binding.
Method 1: If you prefer to do this step completely with a machine, it is best to apply it to the back of the quilt. Have all the raw edges even and pin as needed. Use a ¼” seam. Step 1: Do opposite sides first and trim off ends evenly with the quilt ends. Bring the folded edge of the binding to the front of the quilt and just cover the seam line on the binding. Top stitch very closely to the folded edge. Step 2: On the second set of sides, leave a 1” excess binding on each end. This will allow enough to turn under to cover the raw seams. After sewing the binding on the last two sides, bring the folded edge to the front and fold under the excess tails to help close in all the edges. It’s a little bulky at these ends but is necessary to give a finished look. Cover the seam line with the folded edge of the binding and top-stitch very closely to the folded edge.
Method 2: This method is basically the opposite of the other. You will apply the binding to the front of the quilt. Have all the raw edges even and pin as needed. Use a ¼” seam. Step 1: Do opposite sides first and trim off ends evenly with the quilt ends. Bring the folded edge of the binding to the back of the quilt and just cover the seam line on the binding. Hand-stitch the folded edge of the binding to the back of the quilt. Step 2: On the second set of sides, leave a 1” excess binding on each end. This will allow enough to turn under to cover the raw seams. After sewing the binding on the last two sides, bring the folded edge to the back and fold under the excess tails to help close in all the edges. It’s a little bulky at these ends but is necessary to give a finished look. Pin as needed to hold it in place as you hand sew.

Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ IMG_3642R_zps73bcf593
This picture above shows the binding sewn on the front. I then turned it to the back for hand-sewing as shown in the photo below.
Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ IMG_6114R_zps1940c5d6

Mini Quilts for Mini $$$ IMG_6116R_zpsc2720558
Enjoy your finished quilt! These small quilts are nice for a table topper or to hang as a decoration. And by using recycled shirts, they are affordable.
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Post by Sonshine on Sun Jun 09, 2013 1:11 pm

Those are so pretty. Since i'm not much of a seamstress, I don't hbae scraps to use. Guess I'll have to make a cun on tje facric store and see what I can find.

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He who cultivates his land will have plenty of food,
but from idle pursuits a man has his fill of poverty
Proverbs 28:19[b]
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Post by Farmfresh on Sun Jun 09, 2013 2:18 pm

Make a run to the Thrift store first. They often have fabric for sale there.

I am so cheap they say I am GREEN. LOL.
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Post by mountainmama on Mon Sep 30, 2013 8:03 am

I like the idea of the mini quilts. I've done quilting, but I'd rather do smaller projects that can be completed in a day. Most of the items I sew can be finished in a few hours, like tote bags, purses, etc. Mini quilts wouldn't take as long as the big ones. I really should make a few baby quilts for some upcoming bazaars or for shower gifts.

Sonshine, once you start sewing, you'll be amazed at how much fabric one can accumulate! I have tote bins full and the family calls it an addiction. LOL!

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Post by 12acrehome on Mon Sep 30, 2013 10:21 am

DW loves sewing and quilting, and these smaller quilts would be great for her to "play with" and work out new ideas with.

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