Thursday, July 18, 2013

Ringing in the Joy in July

Joy in July

I have been having so much fun making Christmas projects this July!  (This is the first year I have ever done this, even though I have said to myself for many years...."Next year I will start some holiday projects early in the summer..." )


It  all began with making a Christmas item for our July  Across The Pond Sew Along .

Merry Gift Boxes      block design by Clover and Violet

Next,  I couldn't resist making a  ( well it turned out to be 11 .... so far!) gingerbread men!  Amanda,  over at The Patchsmith  has some totally cute gingerbread men patterns  at her Craftsy patterns page.  (As well as lots of other adorable Christmas patterns!)

Gingerbread cup mug rug     pattern by The Patchsmith
Gingerbread bunting        pattern by The Patchsmith
Amanda also just released a free pattern, called Charm Pack "JOY" Bunting.   Hasn't she been a busy gal lately!!
Well, Amy,  over at Amy Made That!  , made hers already .... and of course,not to be outdone by Amanda and  my sister, I wanted to make my version immediately after I saw theirs!
Amy's  Joy Bunting          pattern by The Patchsmith
Amanda's  Joy Bunting   pattern by The Patchsmith

Susie's Sunroom  JOY Bunting              pattern by The Patchsmith
I made my bunting with  charm squares from a pack of Merry Medley  by Sandy Gervais for Moda fabrics.  I love the fabrics, because there are bells and music.  I actually used some blender gold/tan fabric for the backs of the squares, and the "ribbon".  (I wanted to save more of the little 5 inch squares for another project that was brewing around in my mind.)

For my ribbon:   2-    2 inches x wof  blender gold/tan
Sew the 2 long strips together, to make over 80 inches long
Iron a center crease in the long strip
Fold each raw edge to the center fold line and iron
Fold these together (you have no raw edges now) and it is about 1/2 inch wide

I inserted each block, with the raw edges tucked into the ribbon.  No raw edges showing now!
Don't tell Amy that I copied this from her, ok?

On my mantle
I guess while I was in the mode of doing applique.... I remembered a really cute pattern that I recently WON as a giveaway from Beulah at Sowing Stitches blog.  She sent me 2 Christmas applique patterns (and a template for mini dresden plates) for a giveaway prize.

                                            The pattern ~
'Bell -Ringer Santa'     pattern designed by Jan Kornfeind @ Country
I was drawn to this pattern immediately, because I loved the artwork of this design, and I am a bell ringer in a bell choir in church, for over 30 years now.   I knew I had a color theme now, based on my  Merry Medley charms pack.

Susie's Sunroom    Bello-Ringer Santa   applique wallhanging   Pattern by Jan Kornfeind @ Country Appliques

Fabrics used:
      Normandy Court  by Michele Amore  Benartex    (snow swirls)
      IQSC Birdsong Moon and Stars Black    Kathy Hall with Jo Morton  Andover  (night sky)
      Moda Marbles   Moda    red coat
      Merry Medley Charm Pack   Sandy Gervais   Moda   (coat trims and various parts)
      Quilters Linen   Robert Kaufman    (white beard)
      Blender gold/tan vines    JoAnn  (pouch)
      Curtain taffeta scrap ( his sack)
      Plaid border      Poppies   by Exclusively Quilters 2007
Heat-n-Bond Lite  for ironing on applique pieces

I like this pattern. Jan Kornfeind  put the applique shapes separately on a sheet, so I could tape it onto the window, to copy the reverse side to my heat-n-bond paper.  She includes directions to make a pillow , too. The pattern came out in 1995, but I looked on the net and she has a web site now, with all of her old world Santa patterns available.       

I have never made any applique this big before, but decided to "go for it!" after  having made a lot of mug rugs (designed by The Patchsmith and Amy Made That!)   and loved it.
After I laid out all of my fused pieces on to the background fabric, I  consulted  with Amy about how I should machine sew my appliqued pieces on this wall hanging. (Thanks, Amy, for your advice!)  I decided on a blanket stitch on my Viking Topaz. 
I embroidered his eyes by hand.  I used a red colored pencil for his cheek blush.
After stitching around each piece, the shapes started to come alive
I used a satin stitch at a few places, for the creases in his coat arms and boots, and for his beard and pouch buckle.
Has anyone noticed that the above picture has another CUTE detail added finally???

The BELLS!!!!!  As soon as I started cutting the fabric, I went online to order some little "liberty bells" in 3 sizes.   I found an awesome site:
I got 3 different sizes of these sweet little bells  :)  *heart*

Three  sweet little bells 
Bell Ringer Santa wall hanging  with JOY Bunting  
Susie's Sunroom     Bell Ringer Santa    and    JOY
I also *heart*  this Moon and Star black sky fabric-IQSC Birdsong by Kathy Hall  Andover.  I did order some more of that for my stash.   

I really enjoyed stretching myself to make something that I never attempted before. Thank you , Beulah, for the lovely giveaway prize!

Please link up any pictures of projects that you make for Christmas early, (not just July!), at  our ATPSA Flicker page.  Look it over for some ideas and inspiration.  Take a chance, and stretch yourself to make something with a new technique!

I'm off to my sewing room!

   I am linked up to :         Sew Darn Crafty @ Sew Many Ways                               And Sew We Craft Together  Linky Party @  And Sew We Craft


  1. Susie!
    Awesome Job!!!! :)
    Your work is beautiful! Some how I knew the Bell Ringer Santa was the one for you!!! Now, I better get busy and start thinking about Christmas! My goal for this year is to have all my seasonal sewing complete by Thanksgiving...hmm I better shake a leg.
    You've inspired me! Now to decide my theme for the year...snowmen, winter birds, trees...

  2. Beautiful work! I just love the JOY. I need to get going on Christmas projects too :) Thanks for sharing with us.


  3. How impressive are you? The bell-ringer quiltie is perfect and Amy was spot-on advising on a machine blanket stitch. It allows the detail of the picture to be the focus. Your buntings are divine too. The ric-rac for the gingerbread men is such a good idea and I love your JOY bunting - it goes so well with the quiltie. Okay - now Christmas is all sorted perhaps you might take a summer break!!

  4. Oh, wow - all of these projects turned out so beautifully! The buntings are so festive...easy to store, too, huh? And that bell-ringer Santa is going to make a fabulous focal point this Christmas. He's your patron St. Very very very lovely!

  5. It seems you are all set! I'm wondering around if I should make some or not. It's so hot but you got some great inspiration here so we'll see.


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