Often on those cold winter nights, your feet get cold, even while snug under the blankets. A quilted foot warmer, lying just across the foot of the bed, is just the ticket for a cozy night's sleep. With this beautiful in design on THE Dream Machine,
a colorful print and a few other touches, your bed will look so inviting that you might be tempted to take a mid-day nap. And when you do, your feet will be cozy warm.
- 4 yds. white cotton broadcloth for backing and 12 squares, sized for emb in 8x8. A piece 18 x 14" was cut to be sewn in the 8x8, 3 yds. print for sashing, binding and spaghetti bias
- 63" x 32" lightweight cotton batting
Note: Open batting and lay flat to relax after being bundled tightly. It will lie flatter after breathing a day or two.
- Embroidery, sewing, quilting, monofilament
- blue marking pen, double-sided tape, water soluble glue with fine tip, three 1" 4-hole gold buttons, glue stick
Optional But Helpful:
- hook or tube turning tool
- Brother lightweight water soluble stabilizer SA540
plus 12 other 8x8" non-sticky water soluble stabilizer pieces
- Designs: THE Dream Machine
built in design in the quilt menu, #11, quilting design download which is from Brother card #18, design 28 enlarged by 40% (An alternative to the built in design is Design exe01 26, available on iBroidery.com
- cd 18 028 40.pes
- Feet: Brother SA125 1/4" Piecing Foot
or Brother SA185 1/4" Piecing Foot with Guide,
Brother Walking Foot, SA191, Stitch in the Ditch Foot
- #1: Six blocks will be stitched as the design comes up. The design is not quite square, measuring 7.86 x 7.78". The remaining 6 blocks must be mirror imaged, not rotated.
- #2: Seam allowances are ¼".
Note: All seams are ¼"
- Cut, starch and press white broadcloth into 12 rectangles, 14" x 18". Mark vertical and horizontal centers with washout pen. Three rectangles can be cut from each 18" strip width of 42-45" fabric. Selvages may be included in measurement as they will be outside the hoop.
- Hoop Brother stabilizer and score around the perimeter at the edge of the frame. Remove paper to expose the sticky side. Hand press a piece of non-sticky water-soluble stabilizer to the Brother sticky stabilizer. Trim to fit just inside the frame.
- Carefully remove the frame from the machine and place on a firm, flat surface. Remove the inner frame, leaving the stabilizer in the outer frame undisturbed and in place. The perimeter of the hoop will be creased into the stiff stabilizer paper.
- Place double sided tape on the bottom of the inner frame, taking care not to extend beyond the flat area where the frame slides into the embroidery arm. Extending the tape toward the center is fine.
Note: For better visibility, colored painter's tape is substituted for double-sided tape. This shows tape placement.
- Place first broadcloth rectangle on a firm, flat surface. Insert the template into the inner 8x8 frame backed with double sided tape. Press it firmly against the broadcloth rectangle, matching centers and horizontal lines. The fabric will adhere to the tape, so the frame and the fabric can be moved as one piece.
Note: Don't fret over getting the fabric perfectly centered. There is plenty of extra on each side so that if you get it hooped at all, you will square it up easily.
- Put the inner frame back into the outer frame, carefully maintaining the original position of the stabilizer.
Note: Before I realized the importance of this, the stabilizer slipped just a little when the inner hoop with fabric was reinserted. The outer edge of the embroidery stitched through the heavy paper backing. When removing it from the stipple-like stitching, the bobbin thread was cut, and those loose top stitches had to be replaced by hand.
- Open design# 11 in the quilting menu. Add basting frame zero distance from the design. Baste with white thread or thread to match the color of your fabric. A few design stitches will be caught in the basting frame and may leave fibers in the design when basting is removed. Best to use thread which matches the fabric.
- Embroider 6 blocks with the decorative stippling-like pattern on the left and 6 more mirrored, with the stippling on the right.
- Remove blocks from frame and trim away only the stabilizers very close to basting threads. Do not cut the fabric yet.
- Repeat with remaining 11 blocks.
- Stitch the corners with contrasting thread over the white basting threads after block is removed from frame. The basting stitches create a perfect squaring-up line for the blocks. But when the fabric is soaked to remove the stabilizer, those threads often come loose. Even if they remain, it is hard to see them for squaring up. See image #9 below.
- Hand agitate and soak the blocks for 15 minutes or more, drain the water and repeat. Finally, run them through the gentle cycle on your washing machine with a small amount of detergent. There is a lot of water soluble stabilizer in the blocks and it must be completely removed. Allow to air dry.
Note: After soaking three times and air drying, the first block I pressed left so much residue on my iron that I had to clean it before continuing. That's when I decided to throw them in the washer. Success! No remaining stabilizer and a clean iron.
- Trim blocks ½" from the design. This is when the need for the contrasting thread corners is apparent. You will be so glad you did this.
4-Block Square Construction
- Arrange the 4 blocks as shown. With SA125 1/4" Piecing Foot, join the two upper blocks, then join the two lower blocks in the same manner.
- Press upper block seam to the right, lower block seam to the left. Sew the horizontal seam, stitching all four blocks into a square. That seam will not be joined to another block, so press the seam open to reduce bulk.
- Join the remaining blocks the same way, creating three 4 block squares.
Making Spaghetti Bias and Creating Celtic Knot Design
- Make 5 yards of spaghetti bias from print fabric. The bias shown was made from 1" strips. It is very important to cut the strips on the bias. Do not join the strips before making the tubes because strips more than 36" long are difficult to turn into the tube. Seams create too much bulk. If you have never made this trim, there are several on-line how-to videos. Spaghetti bias is so versatile and attractive that you will be happy to have this skill in your repertoire.
- Hoop lightweight tearaway stabilizer and one 4-block square. The design is about 5 ¼" square, so you must use a hoop large enough to accommodate that. Load the quilting design into your machine and stitch with thread to match the fabric. This will serve as the outline for your spaghetti bias medallion in the center of the square.
- Remove frame from machine but do not remove the fabric. Place on a firm, flat surface.
- Apply a fine line of glue along just 10-12" of the outline. Working in short lengths will prevent the glue from drying before you apply the bias. Begin at a point where there will be overlap and finger press the bias against the glue. Apply more glue as you work around the pattern.
Note: Anticipate when your bias is running short and end it at another overlap. Butt a new piece of bias against that and continue, ending by tucking the spaghetti bias under another piece at an overlap. Gently lift the already glued piece up just enough to insert the end of the new bias piece. Short leftover pieces can be used for short distances which run from one overlap to another.
- Allow to dry 5-10 minutes while still in the hoop. Then press by lifting the iron from place to place, not moving it across the bias. This will set the glue.
- Repeat this process on the remaining two squares.
- Remove the square from the hoop, leaving the stabilizer in place. With matching thread and a lengthened stitch baste through the center of the spaghetti bias. Repeat with the other two squares.
- Secure the bias permanently with monofilament thread and a tiny zig zag W 1.0 L 1.5. Stitch along both sides of the bias. See image #12. Remove basting stitches.
Assembly of Foot Warmer
- Measure each 4-block square. If necessary, square up so that each is the same size.
- Cut contrasting fabric into two 2" strips a little longer than the length of the 17" blocks.
- Seam one to each side of your chosen center square with ¼" foot. This is the sashing.
- Trim away the excess length of the sashing.
- Add remaining two squares to sashing.
Note: Use a rotary ruler to line up the top edge of the two side squares with the center square. Take care to position each square so the pressed open seam is placed horizontally-or vertically. Just make sure the three blocks have this seam lying in the same direction. The seams are visible.
- Press seams toward contrasting fabric.
- Cut two 4" strips from contrasting print the length of the short side of the blocks, approximately 23.5". Measure your piece for accurate measurement.
- Seam to either end, pressing seam toward contrasting fabric.
- Cut two more print strips the length of the long side, approximately 60" which likely will need to be pieced. Seam to the top and bottom of the 3-square piece.
- Press seams toward contrasting fabric.
Making the Quilt "Sandwich"
- Cut and press white broadcloth 30 x 65" (longer and wider than the quilt top), pull taut and tape firmly to a flat surface. This is the bottom slice of "bread" in the quilt sandwich.
- Place cotton batting over the broadcloth, smoothing gently to ease out any wrinkles. This is the "sandwich" filling, like pimento cheese, one of my personal favorites. Now aren't you glad you let the batt relax?
- Center quilted piece over the batting. This is the top slice of bread on the sandwich. Again, smooth out any wrinkles so it lies flat.
- Hand baste with quilting thread through horizontal center, through the long borders. Continue basting through the 22" sashing pieces and the side borders. Finally, hand baste an X through each of the squares, from corner to corner.
- Remove the tape and check the back for wrinkles. If there are any, unstitch and rebaste that area.
- Attach Muvit foot or walking foot. With monofilament thread, stitch in the ditch (Stitch in the Ditch Foot http://www.brother-usa.com/homesewing/accessories/accessorydetail.aspx?R3AccessoryID=SA191) between each vertical sashing piece and the embroidered quilt block.
- Stitch in the ditch around the perimeter between the contrasting border and the blocks.
- Stitch each vertical and horizontal seam in the 4-block square.
- Stitch a long, wide zig zag W 3.5 L. 4.0 with multipurpose J foot or open toe foot along the outer edge of the border. The right swing of the needle should just stitch "in the air," missing the border fabric. Take care to keep the white broadcloth from slipping under the batting and getting caught in this zig zag. I didn't and wasted time ripping out several inches of zig zag.
- Trim away batting and backing which extends beyond print border on all four sides.
- Cut 5.5 yds. print 2" strips. Seam together diagonally. Use laser to stitch at a perfect 45-degree angle.
- Press seam open and trim to ¼".
- Press 2" binding in half, rendering a folded piece 1" wide.
- Measure short sides and vertical middle. Mine, and probably yours, will be 23.5". MARK that distance from the top of the binding but do not cut it yet. If you have to pull binding taut to make the mark reach the end of the side border, you will have a tail to pull as you ease in the quilt. If not, great.
- Attach Dual-feed MuVit foot or walking foot to seam binding to side of quilted piece. Use the laser to help stitch a perfect ¼" seam allowance. These are the settings used on this piece.
- There many ways to do this. I used these settings with the laser along the raw edge and the needle in center position, 3.5. If you use the ¼" throat plate, just line the laser up with that. There is no need to watch the needle, just keep the laser snug against the edge of the fabric.
- Fold binding away from quilt and press seam.
- Apply glue stick to wrong side of quilt for 10-12" between seam line and cut edge. Wrap binding to back, press against glued edge, making certain that the folded binding covers the seam line. Hold in place with 1 or 2 pins. Continue until the side is wrapped with binding and pinned in place.
- Attach Stitch in the Ditch Foot, thread needle with monofilament. On right side of quilt, stitch in the ditch between the quilt and the binding.
- Repeat on opposite short side.
- Measure the horizontal center and the length of each long border. They should all measure 60". If not, trim a little from each border so the piece is rectangular, with equal measurements in each direction.
- Prepare binding as you did on the short sides, pressing, and measuring, but add 1" to the measurement. Again, mark it but do not yet cut.
- Attach MuVit foot and place binding along raw edge as before. But extend the end 1/2" before beginning to stitch into the border. Continue to the end, again leaving ½" beyond the border.
- Press seam line as in step #49.
- Trim corner to reduce bulk.
- Apply glue stick to wrong side of quilt and fold the ½" extension against the backing. Reapply glue stick inside fold and press in place.
- Continue along the entire long side, applying glue stick, folding binding, finger pressing and pinning every 5-10". Fold the second extra ½" against the binding.
- Stitch binding in place as in step #51.
- Continue binding second long side in same manner.
- Remove basting threads.
- Stitch buttons in center of spaghetti bias medallion.
- All done! Hurrah!
A few Q & A's:
- Why not place a 10" fabric square on the hooped sticky stabilizer and baste it in place? In my experience, basting loose fabric to hooped stabilizer almost always leaves significant puckering. I embroidered 12 blocks, soaked them and then pressed. PUCKER! PUCKER!! PUCKER!!! It was a do-over. Again, I embroidered 12 blocks, but hooped in the 8x8 frame. Whenever possible, I hoop the fabric.
- Why add another piece of water soluble stabilizer between the sticky stabilizer and the fabric? The Brother sticky stabilizer is specifically for lightweight designs. While this design looks lightweight, those candlewick-looking outlines in blue, green and gold are close and dense, thus requiring more stabilizer.
- Why not use a tearaway? Because it would shadow through unless you spent more time-lots more time-picking out stabilizer than embroidering.