May 22, 2014

Spin Placemats

I finally have a finish to share! It had started to feel like a long time since I finished anything, and then I realized that's because it has been a long time...this is my first finish this quarter. Yikes!
I made these placemats a couple of years ago. It was my first time designing anything and, even though they're fairly simple, I was so excited when I sewed the first one together and found I had all the quilt math right. I know, it's easy to make me happy.

I wanted to make another version of them and actually write the pattern this time, so I made a set of four like this.

There is one big difference, which is the size of the large pinwheel. In the original set, it was a 12" pinwheel. This time I used a fat quarter bundle from Connecting Threads and a fat quarter isn't large enough to make four 12" pinwheels. So, it's 8" with a border. I quite like the new look.

I played around with the fmq on these. First, I did straight lines in the grey parts of the large pinwheels...

and this freeform pinwheel in the small ones.
I also stitched in the ditch around everything and stippled in the black border. I love how the quilting looks on the back.
Then I tried something new. I've always machine stitched my bindings to the front and then hand stitched them to the back, but I've been seeing a lot of pretty machine bindings online lately and decided to give it a go.

I started off by making a mistake right at the start. Machine bindings should be sewn onto the back first so the last side stitched (which ends up looking the neatest) is the front. Yep, I stitched mine to the front first. I could have ripped it out and started again, but I didn't. Too lazy.

Once I was finished the first side, I pinned the binding to the back all the way around. I found this worked nicely and kept things from shifting out of place. Now I see the appeal of the binding clips! On something this size I didn't find I stabbed myself very often as I stitched the binding, but I think it would be a different story with a large quilt.
Then I stitched slooooowly! That helped a lot.

It's certainly not perfect, especially around some of the corners, but all in all, I'm pleased with the machine binding. I'll be doing it again, especially for projects I want to finish quickly.

I'm still working on the pattern, but if you're interested in testing it for me, please let me know. You can leave me a comment or email me at piecefullydevoted at gmail dot com.

I'll be linking up with My Quilt InfatuationI Quilt, TGIFF, Can I Get a Whoop Whoop and Finish it up Friday and YOU Made it and Love It.


  1. Congratulations on a finish! Sometimes I think making a set of placemats is almost more time consuming than making a baby to lap size quilt because putting the binding on something that tiny can be a bit of a wrestling match, so I think machine stitching the binding is perfect for projects like this. I'm new to trying machine sewing binding myself, so it might be a good project to try to build up my skill level. I did take the plunge and buy some clover clips last week. I was hooked immediately, and I think you would like them, too. :)

  2. I really like the change to 8", and that it allows use of FQ's and more quilting options. Cute finish!
    And you can call me backward, but now that I have done a few machine bindings, I actually prefer attaching to the front.

  3. cool stuff. I wish I had a moment to test the pattern... good luck with it!!
    leeAnna Paylor

  4. Have been trying out machine binding too, but I actually enjoy the hand stitching so will stick to the old-fashioned method unless I am in a hurry.

    Would be happy to test the pattern for you.

  5. These are super fun! I especially love the yellow/gray fabric combo!

  6. Fun patterns. Love the gray and yellow. Thanks for linking up to TGIFF!

  7. I have been wanting to make some placemats. I would love to test the pattern for you.

  8. Visiting from Whoop Whoop! Will be following you on Bloglovin, cute mats!! Carole @ From My Carolina Home

  9. Very cute pattern and I love the quilting you added to each.

  10. Great placemats, it's so rewarding when all your calculations work out isn't it?!

  11. They are really pretty, well done for trying something new to you! I can't get to grips with machine binding, it just turns out a massive mess for me!

  12. Hi from Ontario - I hope your weather is as lovely as ours!

    Gorgeous placemats - I really like the grey and yellow combo, and the fun quilting designs - lovely! I used to do my (quilt) bindings by hand too, but when my hands got too "tetchy", I had to give it up. It certainly goes faster by machine!

  13. Straight line FMQ is awesome isn't it, such impact. And I like the continuous curve on the pinwheels , really brings out the pattern of the piecing. great mug rugs.

  14. Yellow and grey!! My favourite :) The quilting looks wonderful!



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