Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Couple of Tutes...OR...One Bloomin' Long Post....

Ha!  This will probably be a tutorial you all have tucked neatly under your belts.  You are all very talented and experienced quilters and crafters.  But the lovely Molly came to me last night and asked me to teach her how to make a here goes.....

 I use a set of round cookie cutters (biscuit cutters for my UK friends) for making yo-yo's....but I also find them useful for other purposes when you need circle shapes.

Choose a circle...but be warned these yo-yo's get very small so pick a circle larger than you think you will need.  Trace the circle on the wrong side of your fabric and cut out on the line...

Then turn under the raw edge slightly less than a quarter inch....and with your threaded needle in hand {double strand and knot at the end} stitch a running stitch....turning the edge under as you go.  If you make your running stitches a little larger - the hole in the center will be smaller....if you make your running stitches smaller - the hole in the center will be larger :)

When you have reached the spot where you began stitching....gently pull the thread to gather the stitches....

Pop it inside out so the right side is on the outside will look like a teeny little pilgrim cap!!!

Pull the thread so the center closes....and now you have a yo-yo!!!   Take a couple of tiny stitches in the folds to hold it secure....and you are done :)

Now the other tutorial I have planned is the cute little house block...probably something you know how to do as I will forgive you if you just want to pass on by to the next much more exciting blog ;)

I do this block in stages - the roof and sky and the house and ground.  The block I am making is a 12 inch square block.  I usually over-size everything and then cut it down later.  So this block will be 12 inches before adding the borders.

I begin on the house part without the roof....for this block I cut the white {background fabric} 6 inches by 5 inches - this is for the left side of the house.  I cut the left side of the house {the side with the window} 6 inches by 3 1/2 inches....
I cut the left house side into two pieces to add a window and sides {house fabric} to go onto both sides of the window....bottom of the house under the window is 2 1/2 inches by 3 1/2 inches....and my window is 2 inches by 2 inches....the sides are 1 1/2 inches...remember I over-size so I can cut it down if I want to....

I took a piece of ribbon for curtains and folded it so it would fit across my white window ...and stitched the curtain onto the window square at the top....


Then I add the sides to frame the window....then the top above the window and the bottom underneath the window.... see I will trim this up nicely so the sides are even....

The door is done pretty much the same way...although for this house I wanted an arched I curved the top of my door {convex} and the piece of house that goes above the door I curved {concave}...make the concave piece a little larger than the convex piece so you can ease in the arch....and mine turned out a little bit wonky....these are teeny pieces!!!

looks frightening doesn't it?

Once your door is done, add the other side of the house and the other piece of background fabric....
I added a window to the door in just the same manner...Now, on to the roof....
I want an angle in my roof and the background fabric on both sides of the to get the right angle, place the background fabric underneath your roof fabric.  For the left side of the house I have the left side of the roof just over the background fabric enough to catch both pieces when I angle it.  Position your straight edge at an angle and cut...most of the background fabric will be off to your left....just the opposite for the other side of the roof....

Another tip about the want the measurement of the bottom of the roof to be just slighly larger than your house measurement.  It looks okay if the roof is a little larger than the house but not if the roof is smaller....
Now your house is in three pieces....the roof and background sides - the house and background sides - and the them together!!!

Molly did the embroidery and I will add some borders....hope I didn't bore you too much:)


  1. So I discovered your blog today and what eye candy and inspiration. Thanks for sharing. I love Molly's embroidery and your creativeness. Loved the tutorial on the spike borderand the house--love how you hand quilt your quilts--I could go on all day now--but thanks so much for the inspiration.

  2. Bore me!??? Can't wait to get started!

  3. I love the shape of this house, Mary. I plan to use your great tute to make the April block for a Calendar of House Bee that I belong to! Thanks for sharing your "not boring at all" talents!

  4. I LOVE this block!!!I'm pinning it to Pinterest because I do NOT want to forget this tute!

  5. Ah of the first things I could sew! In fact I made a whole quilt out of those once! And can you believe...I sold it in a garage sale!!! DUH!

  6. your blog is my new favorite. you had me with your liberated spider webs but am a sucker for yo-yo's and cute houses!

  7. Oh I love your little house blocks!! Thank you so much for showing us how. :o) And thank you for clarifying the yo-yos. I always get confused where to tie them off and then I have strings that are loose. :o)
    Thank you for teaching us!! :o)
    Sincerely, Trish

  8. Thanks for BOTH how-to's. I've never made a yo-yo, and while I get the general idea, it's nice to see how someone else already figured out the specifics AND took photos :) The curtains in your house block are so fun - I love it!!

  9. Thank you, Molly! :) Sure glad she asked about making a yo-yo! I didn't know that about the smaller and bigger stitches. How cute is that house?! The curtains...cute! I'll definitely make a house block! Thank you, Mary! :)

  10. That little house is darling! You had me at the curtain. And then...the sweet little door...and the flower box is so precious!

  11. Love that house with the curtain, I am going to give it a try. And I love yo-yos, thanks for the reminder on how to make them.

  12. A house blog has been on my to do list for some time - looking forward to having a go at this template-free version - I may even have to make a whole town!


  13. This is so adorable and you make it look easy. Thanks so much.