Friday, December 17, 2010

How To Make Easy Patchwork Quilt Christmas Balls... And My Yearly Holiday Mishap

Yes, it just wouldn't be Christmas without my yearly mishap, in which I hurt myself in one manner or another. This year I scored a double dip. Last week, as I was bringing in decorations from the guest house, I missed the first step on the back porch stoop and landed hard on the steps, on my poor thigh, which sent me to the ER for x-rays to make sure I didn't have a hairline fracture. Yes, it hurt that badly. However, I did save the decorations, which were still in tact. Hmmm... Ornaments: Cheap - Visit to the ER: Not Cheap. So, it was probably a bad split-second decision on my part

The next day (now this one is just plain stoopid), I accidentally washed a velvet chenille sweater which came out of the wash in an unrecognizable lump of wetness. So, in my panicked effort to block and reshape said sweater, I wasted an entire day working on it. In the process, I was leaning hard on the kitchen island and felt/heard my ribcage POP. I'm not quite sure what I did but it hurts like the devil today. The sweater actually turned out just fine after my overly exuberant efforts to stretch it into submission.

Anyway, I found a tutorial for making patchwork quilt Christmas balls and fell immediately in love with them. Therefore, I've been making them ever since. I think these are just so beautiful and you can make them while sitting and watching TV. You can follow my lame directions or you can watch the tutorial HERE.

The Supplies:

3" or 6" round styrofoam balls

gazillions of straight pins

3 different prints in fabric (or dozens of different ones if you plan to make many)

hot glue gun & glue sticks

some pretty trim, lace, rickrack or ribbon (or whatever you like to finish it with)

your imagination


1. You begin by cutting 3" x 3" squares of the fabric. You'll need eight squares for the starting group and sixteen 3" x 3" (of each of the other two fabrics for the rest of the project. For me, this was the most tedious part of the process. Once you have the squares cut, it's a breeze.

2. By folding the piece of fabric into a quarter, find the center and place a straight pin through the side of the fabric that doesn't have print. It doesn't matter where you start.

3. When you place the first pin, be sure that the piece is folded in half. Once you've inserted the pin, carefully fold down the upper left corner and secure with a pin. Repeat with folding done the right side the right side.

4. Now you can also insert a pin into each outside corner.

5. Exactly opposite of the first fold, you can start the 2nd fold, making sure to keep straight with the opposite fold.

6. Do the other 2 sides in the same way. Now you can begin the next fabric folds, starting in the same way.
7. I started about an inch from the center of the first set of folds, keeping with the straight fold lines, adding a total of 8 folds for the second row, thus making an 8 point star.

8. The next row I started about 1/2" down from the previous row of folds and added an additional 8 pieces (folds).

9. This where I tell you to just go watch the video. It's far better than my explanation. Seriously.


If you do a google search, you'll find lots of different designs. Anyhoo, I hope you like this because I'm completely crazy about the finished products and the possibilities of designs are limitless...


Jess said...

You are just too darn creative!! I love it! One day I am going to get into stitching! I should probably learn to sew a button on first though.

I would check out that popping rib thing...unless it goes away. Might have just been a weird muscle/tendon ping thing. Makes me cringe either way! Glad your hip bone (connected to your thigh bone) is in tact!

The Incredible Woody said...

Ouch! Hope the 'pop' wasn't a rib!! But I am glad to hear that I'm not the only one that is accident prone:)

Sjn said...

Thanks for the tutorial! Maybe I can do this next week when my daughters are all here to play.
You have to watch yourself girl, we are not as young and flexible as we once were. But, we are so much wiser, right?!

Bodaciousboomer said...

You are much more talented than I young one. I'll admire your work from afar.

Mental P Mama said...

Ouch! And, anything with a glue gun makes my eyes glaze over;)

Queen of Halloween said...

Love the idea! Looks so like origami I love it. Me too, with the glue gun obsession. Great for keeping the old fingers limber too...:)Thanks for finding and reporting this project.

Paxie Panicker said...

Gosh, glad you're not laid up in bed and you survived! The ornaments are cute but I'm not crafty. Thanks for sharing :)

pinkim said...

Love This!


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