Friday, 18 September 2020

No Curves! Drawstring Bag

Hello beginners!   
I am writing this project for you with a lot of detail and a few techniques for learning.   
Of course, anyone can sew this cute little bag for a quick and easy project. 
1 Fat Quarter (this will measure approx 18 x 21" to 20 x 21".   Either size will work well.  
5" of coordinating fabric x WOF (width of fabric).  WOF is normally about 42".  

Coordinating thread and a full bobbin.  

Sewing machine and basic sewing supplies.  

Iron and ironing board. 

A standard ruler and rotary cutter such as a 3" x 18" ruler or a 6" x 12" ruler.  

Sewing scissors.


Step 1.
Iron your fat quarter so it is nice and flat.  

Step 2. 
Using your ruler and rotary cutter, cut off each corner of your fat quarter leaving a 3" diagonal edge.  (2 photos below)

Step 3.

Using your iron, turn under each diagonal edge approx 1/4" and iron the fold.   Turn under a second time and iron again.  

Sew these edges using a 2 - 2.5mm stitch, keeping your stitches as close the edge of the hem as possible.  Reverse the stitches at each end to secure the hem. (photo below)

Step 4.

On each of the 4 sides, turn under 1 1/2" and iron this fold in place. (2 pictures below)



Step 5. 

Open the fabric up so you can see the fold line that you just ironed in place.  

Step 6.

Turn under the very edge about 1/4" and iron it in place, being careful not to 

iron over the 1 1/2" fold line. (photo below)


Step 7.

Fold again on the original 1 1/2" line, press, then sew the hem in place, leaving the open mitered corner for your drawstring. Reverse the stitches at each end to secure the stitching. (photo below)

If the miters don't turn out perfectly even (photo below), this is absolutely fine.  You are inserting a drawstring thru the hem and will not see the imperfection.  


Step 1. 

Cut 2 WOF (width of fabric) strips 2" wide each.  You can use a rotary cutter and ruler or a pair of scissors to cut the fabric. 



Step 2.

With right sides together and folded in half lengthwise, sew the raw edges of the long sides of the strip together using a 1/4" seam,  reversing at each end to lock in the stitches. You have created an inside-out tube. (photo below)


Step 3.

Attach a safety pin to the edge of the tube at one end. 

Step 4.

Stick the safety pin into the opening of the tube.

Step 5.

Feed the safety pin thru the tube to turn it right-side out. 

Step 6.

Press it nice and flat, working the seam to the edge as you press.  (photo below)


Step 7.

Repeat this process for the second strip, so you will have 2 drawstrings. 

Step 8.

With a safety pin attached to one end of each drawstring, insert thru the mitered hems as in the diagram below.  



Step 9.

After the drawstrings are each thru 3 sides, tie the ends together with small knots.  


Step 10.

Pull at each knot to close your cute little bag.

You did it! 

Congratulations on your gorgeous accomplishment!  

 Thanks for checking in and sewing with me, Melanie 


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Wednesday, 2 September 2020

Temperature Quilt / September 2020 - August 2021

Sponsored by


September always feels like a new year to me and with the MQG announcing a Special Exhibit of Temperature Quilts at QuiltCon 2022 in Phoenix, this is a fantastic time to start my very own.

I love fall weather and it's a very inspiring time to start a Temperature Quilt here in Canada. The days are sociable. The nights are cool for sleeping. The skies show a picture of pretty clouds and the colours of blue. 

The warm, cold, colder, and coldest fluctuations during the course of a year in Canada are extreme. This is going to create a fantastic colour story on the quilt top. 

Weather in Calgary always involves a look at the Sky, so I am adding this element to my Temperature Quilt.

 It started with a sketch.  

My plan is to Improv these blocks.  They will measure 5" cut.  The angle of the sky portion is important to the improv so that not too many seams have to line up when piecing the finished blocks together. 

 Then a decision about what colours felt warm and cold (and colder and coldest!).  
Yes, that -30C and lower is a real thing people! Eeek.
Not really looking forward to that part of the year.

 Putting the written palette to fabrics.  

 September 1 - Block 1 of 365.  5" Square. 

Day 1: September 1, 2020 
High:  26 C 
Low:  5 C 
Sky:  A mix of Cloud and Sun
 If you would like to use my design for your own Temperature Quilt 
please hashtag #melaniestemperaturequilt. 

Thank you for checking in, Melanie 

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Saturday, 25 July 2020

Lightning Block - MQG Modern Monthly Issue 06

I am beyond excited to have my design, "The Lightning Block", selected as the Block Study for ISSUE 06 OF THE MQG MODERN MONTHLY

In this issue you are in for a wonderful surprise of beautiful patterns from the MQG.  Many talented designers have been included.  An annual membership will allow you full content to the MQG site and patterns.    

 Lightning Block designed by Melanie Rudy
Photography: Laura Loewen

 "Clamshell Quilt" designed by the MQG 
Block Design:  Melanie Rudy 
Made by:  Patricia Heath
Photography:  Laura Loewen

 "Lanterns Quilt" designed by the MQG
Block Design:  Melanie Rudy 
Made by:  Melissa Wong
Photography:  Laura Loewen