It’s easy to make fabulous butterfly wings using netting, sparkly fabric, and your serger.
While our wings are made to be worn with any outfit, if you’re using these wings for a costume, you could stitch them directly to a t-shirt or sweatshirt down the center back from neckline to waistline.
What you’ll need (for child up to approx. 4 feet tall):
- 2-1/2 yards 58″-wide polyester organza with glittered accents
- 2-1/2 yards 54-72″-wide nylon netting, color to match organza
- 12-20″ matching soft elastic for wristbands
- 48″ (or longer) ribbon for waist tie
- T-shirt or sweatshirt (to use as pattern guide)
Make the Wings:
1. Make the pattern using a T-shirt or sweatshirt that fits. Referring to the diagram and folding the fabric in half as shown, mark the wing outline on one layer of organza. Cut out wings on marked line.
2. Using the cut organza wings as a pattern, cut one more wing pair from organza and two wing pairs from netting.
3. Unfold and layer all four wing pairs, having the right side of the organza pieces facing outward and the two layers of netting sandwiched between. Pin at least 1″ from the edges, then serge along the outer edges of the wings. We used a serger for this project because it finishes the edges so nicely, keeping the organza from raveling, and it trims the layers even.
4. Cut two pieces of elastic 1″ longer than the wrist measurement (elastic should be slightly stretched but not snug or tight around wrists when ends are overlapped 1″). Sew overlapped edges to highest edge of wings—this will be the point that you marked 6″ up from cuff of shirt.
5. Using waistline of shirt as a guide, place ribbon at waistline, tacking through all layers to secure a few inches away from center of back.
Doing the Math for Other Sizes:
If the set of wings is being made for someone TALLER than 4 foot tall, the width of the fabric (58″) may not be wide enough for their wingspan. To figure the yardage you’d need, take armspan measurement, wrist-to-wrist, and add 12. Double that measurement so you can cut two wing pieces (front and back or two inside layers of netting). Divide by 36 for yardage needed.
If you didn’t take time to measure your armspan before you went to the store, your armspan is usually equal to your height. Now, for those of you who aren’t “mathy”, I’ll give you the inches.
If you are 5 feet 6 inches:
5 feet 6 inches = 66″.
66″ times 2 is 132″.
132″ divided by 36 (to convert inches to yards) equals 3.67 yards (3-2/3).
Measure wrist and add 1″ for each wristband–double that for the amount of elastic needed.
Measure waist and add enough for tying for the ribbon.
*These wings are based on a design by Heidi Boyd originally featured in Halloween Tricks & Treats 2008 ©Meredith Corp.
Noa Pogany, 11, who learned how to sew last year, made 100 pillowcases to donate. She and her mother, Allison, delivered the pillowcases to the pediatric intensive care unit of a local hospital. “These pillowcases were going to be the only things to brighten up these kids’ rooms,” Allison says, “and show the kids and their parents that people outside of the hospital were thinking about them.”
To most of us a pillowcase may not be a big deal. It’s something we barely notice as we lay down to sleep each night. But for some (such as the kids in the intensive care unit in the story above), they can be a great source of comfort and joy during a time of stress and uncertainty. Whether it’s a piece of home in a sterile hospital room, a little return to normalcy for those in homeless shelters or women’s shelters, or just a reminder that someone else in the world cares, a pillowcase can make a huge difference in your community.
We started our One Million Pillowcase Challenge in 2010, and in just a few years quilters and sewers all over the world have donated more than 689,000 pillowcases to those in need! That’s 689,000 smiles and sighs of relief! We’ve heard countless stories of how this Challenge has changed lives in communities across the country, as well as given many quilters a community to share a great cause with.
With the holidays coming, we wanted to challenge our community even more! We’re hosting our third annual 24-hour sewing event for charity! From Friday, September 16 at 3pm to Saturday, September 17 at 3pm, we’re hosting the One Million Pillowcase 24-Hour Sewathon. We have an event planned at our offices in Des Moines, Iowa. But there are 24 events in 15 states already scheduled! Encourage your local quilt shop to host an event or find a shop in your area here. Many people are hosting their own private events with family and friends, too! Invite your sewing buddies over for some snacks and a few hours of sewing!
Want to stay up sewing all night with American Patchwork & Quilting? Mark this date on your calendar and follow us on Facebook! We’ll be posting pictures, videos, pillowcase count updates, and have fun giveaways from our sponsors! Post photos of your own events or pillowcases you’ve made to our Facebook page or hashtag them with #APQSewathon on Instagram and Twitter!
To celebrate this fun event, we’re hosting a blog hop! See pillowcases made by our our designer friends and sponsors:
- American Patchwork & Quilting
- Celine Perkins
- Coats & Clark
- Fabri-Quilt/Paintbrush Studios
- Handi Quilter
- How To Sew
- Jacquelynne Steves
- Make It Yourself
- Melissa Corry
- Michele Foster
- Moda Fabrics
- Pat Sloan
- Sarah Maxwell of Designs by Sarah J
- Sheila Sinclair Snyder of License to Quilt
- Timeless Treasures
- The Splendid Sampler
Thanks to everyone who has donated over the years and our wonderful sponsors for helping us spread the word about this cause. And we can’t forget to thank the quilt shops across the nation that have collected pillowcases in the community and held pillowcase-making events in their stores. No matter how big or small your donation is it really does make a huge difference in another person’s life!
To most of us a pillowcase may not be a big deal. It’s something we barely notice as we lay down to sleep each night. But for some, they can be a great source of comfort and joy during a time of stress and uncertainty. Whether it’s a piece of home in a sterile hospital room, a little return to normalcy for those in homeless shelters or women’s shelters, or just a reminder that someone else in the world cares, a pillowcase can make a huge difference in your community.
We started our One Million Pillowcase Challenge in 2010, and in just a few years quilters and sewers all over the world have donated more than 689,000 pillowcases to those in need! That’s 689,000 smiles and sighs of relief! We’ve heard countless stories of how this Challenge has changed lives in communities across the country, as well as given many quilters a community to share a great cause with. This special block for The Splendid Sampler celebrates those quilters and aims to spread awareness about this cause!
Thanks to everyone who has donated pillowcases over the years! No matter how big or small your donation is it really does make a huge difference in another person’s life!
Want to help? Check out the links and information below!
Can you believe we’re halfway done with The Splendid Sampler? We’ve made 50 beautiful blocks! That’s more than five months of learning new techniques, meeting new designers, and sharing our projects with others. And I’m having a blast doing it! Seeing all my blocks laid out together brings me so much happiness (and I have to admit, I’m a little proud, too.) I didn’t think I’d be able to keep up with the schedule, but every time a new block comes out, I read the designer’s story and feel so inspired to start sewing. (We were block 16! Did you make ours? See the block + a special project using it here.)
We’re doing a giveaway to celebrate reaching the 50th block! Three lucky readers will win a free pattern from our online store APQShop.com. Comment on this blog by August 6 and tell us how many of The Splendid Sampler blocks you’ve finished. Also include “#giveaway” to be eligible to win.
*No purchase necessary to enter or win. Subject to Official Rules here. The Splendid Sampler Giveaway begins at 8:00 a.m. C.T. on 08/03/16 and ends at 11:59 p.m. C.T. on 08/05/16. Open to legal residents of the 50 United States, and the District of Columbia, 18 years or older. Limit one (1) entry per person using only one (1) email address. Void where prohibited. Sponsor: Meredith Corporation.
Follow Along On the 50 Block Celebration Tour
Aug 4 – Joanna Figueroa is Block 50
How do I get involved?
- Visit the official The Splendid Sampler website and sign up to receive email notifications when new blog posts are made.
- Take a tour of the participating designers’ websites via the links on the right side of the website.
- Join the Facebook group for inspiration and news!
- Use hashtag #TheSplendidSampler to tag photos you share on Instagram.
We can’t wait to see your blocks! Our editor Lindsay Mayland will be blogging regularly and posting pictures on her Instagram, so make sure you follow her at @lindsmayland and us at @allpeoplequilt to see her progress!
–Lindsay Mayland + American Patchwork & Quilting
In the August 2016 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting, we explore photo inspiration with Joanna Figueroa of Fig Tree & Co. In the magazine, Joanna shares eight tips to take photos that can serve as the muse for your next project. Then she challenged herself and fellow quilt designers Laurie Simpson and Vanessa Christenson to design a project inspired—in color, texture, or pattern—by one of her travel photos. Two of the quilts (Joanna’s Photo Finish quilt and Laurie’s Just Rosy quilt) appear in the August issue, while Vanessa’s Frill Seeker pillow, above, appeared in the June 2016 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting.
See the travel photo that inspired the pillow:
Photo credit: Joanna Figueroa
Can you see where Vanessa drew her inspiration from?
1. The color: The purple color of the flowers in the photo translated to the purple fabrics of the pillow.
2. The motifs: Beautiful flowers in the photo appear as fabric rosettes as the pillow embellishment.
3. The texture. The building in the photo shows a gradation of brick colors. Vanessa used an ombre print for the fabric rosettes to mimic the gradation.