Fabric Christmas Decorations part 3

patchwork star christmas tree decoration fabricHere is another easy little tutorial for fabric Christmas decorations. It is a patchwork star made using 12 diamonds, 6 for the front and 6 for the back. This is a perfect scrap project as the star can be made as large or as small as you like.

How to Make a Patchwork Star

patchwork star christmas tree decoration fabric

Star Tree Decoration

1. Make or find a diamond template. If you are making your own template, 2 equilateral triangles next to each other will make a diamond. Triangles with sides measuring 7 cm will make a star approximately 17 cm high.

2. Using the template, cut out 12 diamonds. Divide into 2 groups of 6 and arrange each group into  star shape. You might find it useful to take a photograph at this point to help remember how you have arranged them.

patchwork star christmas tree decoration fabric

Patchwork pieces arranged

3. Starting with one group, take 2 pieces, put the right sides together and sew along one edge. Open out and press seam.

patchwork star christmas tree decoration fabric

Join 2 pieces along one edge, RS together

4. Add another piece in the same way and press seam. Put it to one side and repeat for the other three pieces. Then join the two halves together. Sewing the pieces together in this way so that you make 2 halves of one star and then sew them together will be easier and neater than sewing each piece on separately.

patchwork star christmas tree decoration fabric

Join 2 halves of star, RS together

5. Repeat for the other group. Sew a button into the centre of each star.

6. Take a piece of ribbon and fold in half. Match the raw edges with where you want the top of the star to be .Place on top of one of the stars, with the right side up. Make sure that the loop of the ribbon is pointing downwards.  Put the other star on top with the right side down. Pin together, ensuring that the ribbon is well out of the way of where you are going to sew.

7. Sew around the edges, leaving an opening along one edge. Turn out. Stuff with polyester filling and sew up the opening.

I actually have one ready as a kit!patchwork star christmas tree decoration fabric If you would like to buy it, please feel free to send me a message!

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Gingham Heart Fabric Christmas Decorations

gingham heart fabric Christmas decorationIf you folks have read any of my other posts about making stuff for Christmas, you might have noticed that I like red and white stuff rather a lot.

Here is another easy tutorial for making fabric Christmas decorations, a little fabric gingham heart.

Fabric Gingham Heart Christmas Decorationgingham heart fabric Christmas decoration

You will need: scraps of cotton or polycotton fabric, scraps of felt, buttons, ribbon, polyester filling, paper and pencil, sewing machine (optional), needle and thread.

1. Find or make 2 heart shaped templates, a larger one and a smaller one. If you do not feel confident drawing a heart, you could print out a template or follow my instructions below for drawing a heart!

Draw round a cup. The cup I used for the  larger heart had a diameter of 8 cm. gingham heart fabric Christmas decorationCut the circle out and fold in half. gingham heart fabric Christmas decorationStarting about a third of the way along the fold draw half a heart shape. For the widest part, follow the curve of the circle. gingham heart fabric Christmas decorationCut out.gingham heart fabric Christmas decoration

2. Cut out 2 larger hearts out of cotton or polycotton and 2 smaller hearts out of felt.

3. Applique the felt hearts to the cotton ones. You might want to use a zigzag stitch, I just used a straight stitch.gingham heart fabric Christmas decoration

4. With the right sides together, sew around the hearts, leaving a small opening. Trim seams, clip curves and turn out.gingham heart fabric Christmas decoration

5. Fill with polyester filling and slip stitch the opening closed.

6. Sew a button onto either side.

7. Make a loop out of ribbon and sew onto the heart.gingham heart fabric Christmas decoration

The great thing about these is that once Christmas is over, you could hang them up in other places around your house!

You might like to take look at another of my heart themed posts! Burlap Hearts.

I also have a hearts board on Pinterest, Hearts.

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Fabric Christmas Decorations part 1

IMG_1136Now that Bonfire Night is over, it is officially not too early to start on Christmas!

These decorations can be made from scraps of fabric and in a variety of shapes and sizes, all from one easy template. Different shapes can be achieved by changing the number of pieces used.

How to Make Fabric Christmas Decorations

You will need: paper and pencil, a cup or glass, scraps of fabric, strong thread, ribbon (optional), beads (also optional), polyester filling, sewing machine, needle and thread.

1. To make the template, draw around a cup or a glass. The cup I used had a diameter of 6 cm. IMG_1067Fold the paper so that the circle is in half. IMG_1068On the fold,make a mark a little way from the circle. Make a second mark on the opposite side of the circle. Mine were about 4 – 5 cm away from the edge of the circle. IMG_1069Draw from the top of the circle to one of the marks, following the curve of the circle a little way, then curving the line slightly the other way. Repeat for the other side.IMG_1070

2. Fold in half again so that the circle is in quarters. Pick which side you like the best! Cut out.IMG_1071

IMG_10743. Decide how many pieces you want to use. 2 will make a more 2d shape, 6 will make a squat shape. Cut out the pieces you need.

4. With the right sides together, sew two pieces together along one edge. IMG_1087If you are using more than 2 pieces, add another by sewing it to one of the raw edge of one of the pieces already sewn. IMG_1088Repeat until you have joined all the pieces.IMG_1097

5. Join the last 2 edges, but only half way. Trim seams, clip curves and turn out.

6. Fill with polyester stuffing and slip stitch the opening shut.

7. To make a loop, you could make a loop of ribbon and sew it on.

If your decoration is a squat shape, you could make a loop using some strong thread and some beads. With a needle, thread on a bead, then push the needle through the decoration from top to bottom. IMG_1109You will probably need to squish the decoration so that you don’t end up losing the needle in the middle of it! Pull the thread through, leaving 8 ish cm at the top with the bead on.

Thread on 2 more beads. IMG_1111Draw the thread back through the first of the 2 beads, then back through the decoration bottom to top, then back through the bead at the top. IMG_1112IMG_1115IMG_1116Tie the ends of the thread together.

I made 3 different fabric Christmas decorations using this template.

For the squat one I used 6 pieces and the thread runs right through it and is held at the bottom by the beads. IMG_1129For the longer, thinner one I used 3pieces. IMG_1133For the white one, I used 5 pieces of felt. IMG_1124I didn’t turn it out and I didn’t use any polyester filling either. I sewed the beads to the bottom and a ribbon loop to the top.

Happy Christmas crafting!

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How to Make an Advent Calendar

People round here start Christmas early. There are people in my village who get all their lights up as soon as Bonfire Night is over. As today is Bonfire Night, I expect to see some Christmas lights appearing over the next week or so!

It might seem early, but it will soon be upon us!

So for those of you who like to enjoy Advent with your children, or on your own, here is a tutorial for how to make an Advent Calendar with pockets.

How to Make an Advent Calendar

Advent Calendar

Advent Calendar

1. From cotton or polycotton fabric, cut 24 rectangles measuring 11 cm x 14 cm.

2. Arrange them either on a table or on the floor. You’ll need some room! Once you have arranged them, you might like to take a photo to help remember how you have arranged them.Advent calender 1

3. Lay a piece of greaseproof paper over the top of the rectangles. On the greaseproof paper, draw a triangle with a rectangle at the bottom, ensuring that it covers the rectangles. This will be your tree template.

4. EITHER fold in all 4 edges of each rectangle, pin and press, OR cut 24 bits of fusible interfacing 11 cm x 14 cm and iron onto the back of each rectangle. Hem the top edge of each rectangle.

5. Using either cotton or polycotton backed with interfacing, or felt, cut the numbers for the pockets. If you are not confident drawing the numbers straigt onto the fabric, you could print some numbers out in a large font to use as a template. Applique the numbers to the pockets so that they number from 1 to 24. If you don’t fancy all that sewing, you could glue them on with fabric glue.

6. To make the tree, cut a piece of interfacing using the paper template made earlier and a slightly larger version out of cotton or polycotton. Iron on the interfacing, then hem the raw edges of the tree.

7. Pin the pockets to the tree, then sew along the two sides and the bottom of each pocket.

8. Depending on what you are planning to put in the pockets, you might wish to add a piece of dowel to the bottom of the tree. To do this, add some little pockets to the back of the bottom corners of the tree and tuck the ends of the dowel inside.

What you add to the pockets is up to you! It bothers me a little that Christmas seems to be about stuff, so I have divided the Christmas story (ie the one in the Bible!) into 24, and written each little section onto a label. The labels are numbered so I don’t get into a muddle! The labels go into the pockets, along with 4 sweets (1 for each of my boys!) and a Christmas decoration.

The boys have their own tree, so each night before bed, they take the stuff out of the appropriate pocket, read out the label and hang it on their tree along with the decoration. Then they eat the sweeties. Then they clean their teeth!

Other possibilities for the pockets would be a little toy, or The Night Before Christmas divided up into 24, or a do it yourself lego advent calender or a craft activity for each day.

If you use an Advent calendar with pockets, what do you put in them?



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How to Make a Wrap Skirt

Despite it having been quite warm the last couple of days, it is definitely time to shove the summer outfits to the back of the wardrobe and dig out the winter clobber.

Unfortunately I’ve got rid of some stuff that didn’t fit, had holes in and whatever, so I’ve been wearing summery stuff with leggings and a jumper.

After a little bit of though, I decided to start on my handmade winter outfits by making a wrap skirt. The main reasons being that a wrap skirt is very easy, very quick and you don’t need a pattern. It’s also a thing that suits most body shapes.

This is my easy little tutorial for how to make a wrap skirt without a pattern.

How to Make a Wrap Skirt Without a PatternIMG_0880

You will need:

3 m of fabric. I used cotton drill because it is thick and therefore good for winter.

A tape measure

Chalk or a pencil

Usual sewing supplies, ie sewimg machine/ needle and thread, pins etc

1. Take some measurements! Firstly waist, where the skirt will sit. Secondly hips, at the widest point. Lastly the distance between the two measurements.

Add 10 cm to the waist and hips measurements, multiply by 1.5 then divide by 3.

2. Divide your fabric into 3. Fold the first piece in half. Divide your waist measurement in half. Beginning at the fold, mark your waist measurement along the top of the fabric. Next, mark the distance between your waist and hip measurements on the fold of the fabric. From this, measure half of your hip measurement out from the fold.

The top button marks my waist measurement. The left hand one the distance between the two measurements, and the right hand button my hip measurement.

The top button marks my waist measurement. The left hand one the distance between the two measurements, and the right hand button my hip measurement.

3. Draw a line from your waist measurement at the top of the fabric, through the hip measurement, to the bottom of the fabric. IMG_0831Cut, then open out your first skirt piece.IMG_0834

4. Using the first skirt piece as a template, cut another 2 pieces the same size.

5. Join the 3 panels at the sides so that the shortest edges are at the top and it is one continuous piece.

6. Hem the sides at either end and the bottom.IMG_0878

7. To make the waistband, cut a strip 12 cm wide and 3 times as long as your waist measurement. You may need to cut 2 strips and join them. Fold in half lengthways and press. IMG_0864Open out and fold the raw edges into the middle. IMG_0865Fold in half lengthways again and press.IMG_0867

8. Find the middle of the waist band and the middle of the back panel of the skirt (the back panel is the middle panel). Matching up the middles, pin the waistband to the skirt. Top stitch along the waistband.


9. Put the skirt on. Mark where the waistband needs to pass through the skirt. Cut a slit, then sew zigzags around it to prevent it from fraying. If you have a buttonhole foot that does buttonholes big enough, you could use that instead.IMG_0877

That’s it! A wrap skirt without a pattern! It’s so easy you could make one up in an evening :)

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