Yesterday’s Rolling Snowman placemats are done and with Christmas just around the corner I thought I would share with you a project that can be made in no time at all.
We all end up needing a last minute gift or decoration so why not follow along and make this festive tree – quick and easy quilted wall hanging.
- 12″ square fabric for the tree – green or whatever color you want your tree to be
- 2″ piece of fabric for trunk
- 10 ¼″ x 13 ¼″ piece of background fabric – something that the tree will show up on and stand out
- 10 ¼″ x 13 ¼″ piece of backing fabric – I used the same as the background
- 10 ¼″ x 13 ¼″ piece batting – I used a piece of 100% cotton batting and a piece that is 12″ square
- a 12″ square Stitch-N-Steam
- thread for quilting, stitching and piecing
Making the tree
I wanted my tree to be textured and to do that I’ll use some Stitch-N-Steam by Unique. For complete instructions on how to use this product check out a previous blog post I did called Using Stitch-N-Steam is as simple as 1-2-3. The Stitch-N-Steam is a nylon fabric that shrinks when steam is applied and creates texture in the fabric it is sewn to.
I like to add a layer of batting between the nylon fabric to give a bit more dimension to what I’m creating.
With the tree fabric on top I chose a dark green Sulky Rayon thread that blends in to stitch the three layers together. The closer the stitching is together the better texture you will get. I just did a free motion meandering stitch as I want lots of texture in my tree.
Once it’s stitched I then used my iron and applied steam to the piece and watched it shrink. That’s the fun part. You barely see the green thread I used to do the free motion quilting which was my goal as I didn’t want to take away from my gorgeous fabric. This is one of those fabrics I bought lots of and have used over the years and sadly only have a little bit left.
The tree is simple – just stacked pieces in gradating size.
The fabric now has texture and I need to cut out my tree pieces from it. I traced the template onto a card stock paper and then traced around them on the back of the textured fabric with a black marker. The black marker works quite well on the nylon fabric.
Once drawn I cut them out and placed them on my background. I made the tree a bit wonky by turning each piece on a diagonal and making the tree look crooked. I think the wonky positioning of the tree sections gives the tree a bit more character.
Making the background
The background for this piece is relatively small so I decided to use the Thread in a Bottle to baste the 3 layers together rather than using pins or basting with thread.
I put a line of glue on the batting about a ½″ from the edge all the way around. No finger painting required this time and I placed the fabric down on the batting and smoothed out the piece. The glue secured it in place nicely. The backing fabric I added in the same way.
Adding the tree to the background
Since the back fabric on the tree pieces is nylon I cannot use a fusible web to secure the pieces on the background as the nylon will melt once I put heat to it. I’ll use the No-Sew fabric glue for this step.
I’ve put a thin line of glue along the backside of the pieces about a ¼″ from the edge of each piece. Starting with the trunk of the tree I built the tree by adding and overlapping the next piece.
Stitching the tree
Stitching the tree is fast and easy with a free motion satin stitch using a red Sulky rayon thread. I wanted the tree to stand out so figured red stitching would easily do that.
The tree is in place and it looks great but I’m thinking that the background actually needs some quilting because it looks rather plain. Just a few straight lines will do the trick I think.
It was hard to choose a thread but I decided to go with a 60 weight Polylite Sulky thread. This is a fine thread and I chose this one because I figured it wouldn’t blend in well to the background and not show up too much.
Well, I was kind of wrong – it stands out a lot on this background but I like it. Being a 60 weight and finer thread you also must remember to use a smaller needle. I used a 70/10 Microtex needle.
I spaced the quilting lines 2” apart and ended up having to stop and start around the tree which meant tying off and burying thread ends again but oh well it didn’t take long with the help of the self-threading needles I showed you earlier this week.
Now if I had quilted the background prior to putting the tree on that would have been so much easier but I was thinking it wouldn’t need to be quilted since it was small and the stitching of the tree would act as the quilting. Alas I wasn’t happy with the unstitched background and so had to work around the tree.
Now for a binding, some embellishments and a hanging sleeve then my project will be complete. This festive tree – quick and easy quilted wall hanging really is quick and easy not to mention fun too.