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Symbols of Christmas + Patchwork Ornaments tutorial

Christmas's day, Sewing  |  April 30th 2011  |  0 Comment
{made complete with bag, template, and definition of symbols}
his tutorial will show you how to make your own set of ornaments, and if you click HERE, you will be able to download a pdf file with two printables, and also templates for your ornaments.  Be sure to click the green download button, and then choose a place you’ll remember to store the file.To begin, gather your materials.

For the ornaments:

  • Fabric scraps, at least 3″ by 5″ in reds, greens, golds, and white
  • Small scrap of white felt
  • Cotton quilt batting, such as warm & natural
  • Matching thread
  • Metal grommets and applicator
  • Skinny grosgrain ribbon, scraps of ricrac in gold
  • Sewing tools, including scissors, seam ripper, disappearing ink marker, pins, iron and ironing board, and sewing machine.

For the bag:

  • 9″ by 11″ canvas fabric
  • Freezer paper
  • Ink jet printer
  • Matching thread
  • 23″ grosgrain ribbon and small safety pin
  • Sewing tools, including scissors, seam ripper, disappearing ink marker, pins, iron and ironing board, and sewing machine.

We’ll make the ornaments first.
Step one.  Cut out your templates.

Step two.  Make a fabric sandwich.

With the wrong sides of the fabric together, tuck in a piece of batting. Iron the sandwich together.

The cotton batting will stick to the fabric with a weak hold when pressed together.  Cool, huh?

Step three.  Trace the template onto your fabric.

Step four.  Sew along the traced outline.

Using the tightest zigzag stitch your machine can make, at a medium width, trace the outline of the ornament on the fabric.  Be very careful not to force the fabric through too quickly.  Patiently guide the fabric along the outline without tugging.  This will keep the stitching even.

Step five.  Cut the ornament out.

Take your time so as to prevent trimming into the satin stitching.  If you do, don’t fret.

You can go back and restitch along the cut portion.

Step six.  Add grommet and hanging ribbon.  I wanted to be able to hang the ornaments on our Christmas Tree, so I added grommets and a little ribbon hanger.

You’ll need 10 inches of ribbon per ornament. Just thread it through, and tie a little knot to hold together.

Simple, yes?  Each ornament is made in the same fashion, with the exception of the bow.  The following are some tips for the more complicated designs.

Candle and Fir Tree
The candle and fir tree are made with two different fabrics, and must be pieced together before you make the fabric sandwich. Approximate the size you will need for each piece, but it doesn’t need to be exact.  Sew the seams at 1/4″.

With the candle, before you trace your design, add the felt wax with a single straight stitch.

Make sure your seams are matched front to back.  If you want, use a pin through one side and put it in the mirrored position on the other side.  Now you’re ready to sew the design you’ve traced.

When I originally designed the pattern, I put things together a little differently, but the method I have shown you is much easier.  Just ignore the dashed lines, and use that as your edge of the candle and flame.

Now you’re ready to sew, just as before.  If you’d like, you can switch up the thread color around the flame.

You’ll use the same piecing method with the fir tree.  Just be sure to fold under the extra seam allowance before you trace.

For the ornament and candy cane:

Decorate these designs before you satin stitch them together.  Make your fabric sandwich, and trace the design, then add your details.

Then proceed with your satin stitching and cut the ornament out.
For the candy cane, I just sewed red zigzags on the fabric sandwich, then satin stitched the outline.

Aren’t these fun?

For the bow:
To make the bow, cut a 3″ by 21″ piece of fabric.  I chose a fun vintage red print.  Fold the rectangle lengthwise, with right sides together, and sew a 1/4″ seam.

I like to use a safety pin to guide the fabric right side out again.  Press so that the seam is on one side.

Fold in the ends so that no rough edges show.

Go around the whole fabric strip.

I topstitched around the center of the bow to hold it together.

I added a grommet and a ribbon holder so the bow can hang out with the other ornaments.

Now your ornaments are finished.  You should have 8 different designs.

We’ll make a bag to keep them all tidy until it’s time to teach.  Simple and fun, I promise.

Step one.  Press a piece of freezer paper to your canvas.  (I got some tips for printing on fabric here.)

You’ll need to cut it to 8.5 by 11″.

Place the fabric in your paper tray.  Mine prints from the bottom, so I put mine in fabric side down.  Now pull up the printable from the pdf file, the one that has two columns and says “Symbols of Christmas” with some holly, courtesy of the Graphics Fairy.  Tell your printer to print…for safety sake I marked “other photo paper” in the advanced section.

Now remove the freezer paper from the fabric, save it for another bag if you want.

Fold the fabric over, right sides together, and sew the long side and bottom with a 1/4″ seam.

Finish your seams with a zigzag stitch, or use your pinking shears.

Turn right side out, and press the top seam inside.

Mark and sew two small button holes just below the fold mark.  Then pink or finish the seam.

Using your seam ripper, open up the button holes.

Fold the top down again, and sew it closed.

Trim your threads.  Using a safety pin, thread a 23″ long piece of grosgrain ribbon through the casing you made.

Your bag is done.

Finally, print the first printable on cardstock, and you are ready to teach your children the true meanings of the Symbols of Christmas.

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