How To Make Ribbon Key Fobs

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Ribbon Key Fobs Detail

Ribbon key fobs are incredibly easy to make and so handy to carry!  If you’re wondering what to make for a fund raiser or just want to send out a little something to some friends, this is a great gift.

Ribbon Key Fobs in a Row

Here’s what you’ll need to make some of your own:

  • Key fob hardware, like these from Everything Ribbons on Etsy.  I used 1.25″ size.
  • Canvas webbing or belting the same width as your hardware.  (Got mine from the same shop.)
  • Ribbons  (I found great ones here and here.)
  • Fabric Scraps

Cut  the webbing and ribbon to 12″ lengths.  Then cut scraps of fabric 12″ x 3.25″ and “wrap” around the webbing.  Pressing with a steamy iron will help it stay in place.  Then carefully pin the ribbons so that the cut ends of the fabric will be hidden underneath.  Sew down either side of the ribbon.  If needed, neaten up stray threads from either end of the covered webbing, then insert into the fob hardware and use pliers to press firmly closed.  Add your key ring and you’re finished.

Ribbon Key Fobs

They’re so comfortable to carry and easy to find from the line of keys hanging up at the gym.  These will all be mailed to friends, and I already want to make more!

sarahsigres

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How to Bind a Quilt

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My friend Kim asked for a tutorial on binding a quilt, so even though there are plenty of tutorials already out there, I’m adding mine.  That’s one of the nice things about having a blog, it makes it easier to explain stuff like this.

So here goes!  First, choose a binding fabric and cut strips three inches wide across the width of the fabric.  (You can measure your quilt if you want to know just how much fabric you’ll need, but as a general rule a half yard is plenty for a baby quilt and a yard of fabric should be enough for up to a twin size quilt.)  Then take the first of your three inch wide binding strips and lay one face up to the left, and put another face down on top of it, so the ends meet up across each other as in the photo.  (The whole process will be easier if you keep it in your mind that left side faces up from underneath, right side faces down from the top.)  Draw a line from the upper left corner of the top strip down to where the lower strip ends at the lower right, making a little triangle shape out of the corner.

How to Bind a Quilt, Making Binding 1

Sew directly on the line you just drew, backspacing at the start and finish to secure your stitches.  Then trim, press the seam open, then fold the binding in half lengthwise and press flat.

How to Bind a Quilt, Making Binding 2

That’s it!  That’s all there is to making binding.  Keep going until you’ve got all the binding you need, then begin pinning it to your quilt.  Leave a little “tail” at the beginning, and pin the raw edge of the binding along the raw edge of the quilt.  Start in the middle of one side and pin to the corner.  Sew clockwise around your quilt.

How to Bind a Quilt, Sewing on Binding1

Using a walking foot, stitch with the edge of the walking foot along the edge of the binding and quilt.  Be sure to backstitch at the beginning and stop about the width of your seam allowance from the edge of the quilt corner.  Backstitch, cut your threads and get ready to pin the next side.  Pull the binding up, AWAY from the direction you’ll be stitching, then fold over and begin pinning along the quilt edge again.  There will be a little triangle of fabric under the top layer of binding.  This is going to make a nice corner on your finished binding.  Begin stitching near the corner.  Keep going in this way until you reach the side of the quilt where you started.

How to Bind a Quilt, Binding the Corners

When you get back to the side where you started, go on and sew a bit more of the binding down from the last corner, but backstitch and stop sewing a good distance from the tail you left at the beginning.  Leave an ending tail where you stopped.  These two ends are going to be sewn together in the same way you connected all the other binding strips, but it’s going to be a little trickier because they’re both connected to the quilt.  To help you know where to connect the ends, bring the tail ends towards each other until they meet, then fold them away.  Use a steamy iron and press where they’ve met so you have fold mark you can see.

How to Bind a Quilt, Connecting Ends 1

This is always the funkiest step for me.  The “ending tail” is to your left, so open it laying face up, then open the right side binding and lay it face down (without making a rotation, so it will still lay flat), and line up the right side’s edge with fold on the left binding.  Make sure the fold mark on the upper right piece is lined up with the top edge of the left binding.

How to Bind a Quilt, Connecting Ends 2

Just like before, draw a line from upper left to lower right, and sew along that line.  Be sure to pin well, and fold the quilt up a bit so that the binding pieces have the slack they need to stay together properly.  After sewing the line, check to be sure the binding “fits”, then just like before, trim the ends, press the seam open, then press the binding flat.

How to Bind a Quilt, Connecting Ends 4

Sew this last little bit of binding down and you’re finished with the machine sewing part of your quilt!  Then it’s time to flip the quilt over, fold down the binding and hand sew it down.  Pro tip: This is a great time to watch a great series on Netflix.

How to Bind a Quilt, Hand Sew to Back

And I can’t resist showing you the truth of how it really goes at my house.

How to Bind a Quilt, Kitten

It is easier without the kitten.  Trust me.

Kim, and anyone else, please let me know if any of it isn’t clear, and I’ll tweak it a bit!

How to Make Pennants

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Pennants

Pennants are EVERYWHERE, and no wonder — they’re cute, colorful and a great way to say, “Today is special!”  They’re also really easy to make.

First, you need a template.  Make a square of whatever size you like.  (Mine was 6.5″ because that’s the width of my wider cutting guide, and I think that made a nice size pennant.)  Fold the square in half, then cut on a diagonal.

How to Make Pennants

Open the paper again to see your pennant shaped template. Use this as your pattern piece and cut out a little stack of triangles.

How to Make Pennants

Take two triangles of fabric, place them right sides together, and sew along the “V” sides. I used two different fabrics for each side of mine. It gives a little more variety and made good use of my scraps.

How to Make Pennants

Then carefully cut along the point to get rid of excess fabric without cutting through any stitches.

How to Make Pennants

Turn your pennant right side out and press.  You can leave it like this if you like, but I top stitched along the edges.  I just like the look.

How to Make Pennants

To string your pennants together, pin them into the fold of some 1/2″ double fold bias tape. My standard pack was three yards long.  I left about an inch between mine, but you can bump them up together or space them further out, however you like.  This string took 16 finished pennants.

How to Make Pennants

To make the ends look more finished, open the tape, fold a half inch or so up and then refold and pin. Start sewing over this point.

How to Make Pennants

Then just stitch down the bias tape, and you’re done!

How to Make Pennants

Hang and enjoy.

Pennants

Let me know if you make some, I’d love to see them!

How to Keep Applique from Unraveling

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It wasn’t until I was about halfway through the applique on one side of my checkerboard tote before I realized making a few reverse stitches at the beginning and end of each circle was not the prettiest or most secure method.  Some little threads were starting to unravel even while I was still sewing.  How frustrating!  I searched online for tips and found one so simple and yet so helpful, I needed to share it with you.

Start with your design cut out and adhered to your fabric with HeatBond or similar iron on adhesive.

How to Keep Your Applique from Unraveling

Begin stitching with a zigzag stitch, following the shape of your fabric.

How to Keep Your Applique from Unraveling

After you’ve gone far enough away from sewing machine’s foot so that it won’t be in your way, peek underneath the fabric and gently pull the thread from the back side.  (Be sure your needle stays in the fabric to avoid shifting.)  You’ll see a little loop of the thread from the top of the fabric appear, and you’ll want to pull this thread through to the back side.  It may be easier to use the head of a pin to begin drawing it through.

How to Keep Your Applique from Unraveling

Then simply knot these two threads together to secure them on the wrong side of the fabric and trim the ends.

How to Keep Your Applique from Unraveling

Continue sewing to the end of your design and remove your fabric from the machine, cutting the threads from front and back.  Leave enough thread to knot the ends, and once again gently tug the thread on the fabric’s wrong side so that you can see the loop of thread from the front, pull it through, knot to secure and trim the ends.  This picture may show the “loop” a little better.

How to Keep Your Applique from Unraveling

The finished look is neat on the back:

How to Keep Your Applique from Unraveling

and the front:

How to Keep Your Applique from Unraveling

With no unraveling!  Ta-da!