lfullington | AllPeopleQuilt.com Staff Blog - Part 4


186 posts.

Make It Tonight: Quick-Sew Santa Sacks

Fabrics: Retro Christmas collection by Cynthia Frenette and Remix Metallic collection by Ann Kelle both forRobert Kaufman Fabrics


Fill this make-it-in-minutes Santa Sack with real gifts for under the tree. Not only is this great as a toy/gift bag, it’s the right size to use as a pillowcase or a laundry bag. The Elf Sack is for a smaller stash of treasures (all elves know great things come in small packages). This project is courtesy of our sewing blog, howtosew.com. Visit daily for new sewing projects and easy home decor.



Materials for Santa Sack:

  • 1 yard cotton print
  • 1-1/3 yards 7/8″-wide polyester ribbon
  • Water-soluble marking pen


Santa Sack finished size: 30×20″ (fits a standard-size bed pillow)


Materials for Elf Sack:

  • 1 yard cotton print
  • 1-1/3 yards 7/8″-wide polyester ribbon
  • Water-soluble marking pen

Elf Sack finished size: 15×22-1/2″

*Yardages and cutting instructions are based on 42″ of usable fabric width. Measurements include 1/2″ seam allowances. Sew with wrong (unprinted) sides together.



Cut Fabric for Santa Sack:

From cotton print, cut:

  • 1—35-1/2×41″ rectangle


Cut Fabric for Elf Sack:

From cotton print, cut:

  • 1—28×31″ rectangle




Assemble the Sack:


1. Using water-soluble pen, make marks on one long edge of rectangle 7-1/2″ from top edge, 8-1/2″ from top edge, and 1/2″ above bottom edge.


2. With the wrong sides together, fold the Santa Sack rectangle in half to make a 35-1/2×20-1/2″ rectangle. (Fold the Elf Sack rectangle in half to make a 28×15-1/2″ rectangle.) With markings facing up, pin long edges together and across short end at bottom of rectangle.


3. Sew along pinned edges using a 1/2” seam allowance. When you reach the dot marked 7-1/2″ from top edge, stop stitching and backstitch. Cut threads. Resume stitching (beginning with a backstitch) at marked 8-1/2″ dot, leaving a 1″ gap in stitching. The gap in the seam will form the opening for the ribbon casing.

4. Continue sewing along long edge. At bottom corner stop with needle down in the fabric when you reach the dot 1/2″ from bottom. Lift the presser foot and pivot the fabric and continue sewing across the bottom of the bag.


5. Press side seam allowance open.


6. Turn under top 5″ of bag to inside; press.

7. Open up pressed edge. Press under cut edge 1/2″ for hem


8. Refold to inside at 5″ mark with 1/2″ edges still turned under; pin.


9. Sew bag top 4-1/4″ from top edge to secure folded hem. Make sure you’re not sewing the bag shut. TIP: Use a masking tape strip to mark 4-1/4″ line as a guide for even stitching.


10.  Turn bag right side out; press flat.


11.  Stitch two more rows 2-1/2″ and 3-1/2″ from top edge. The opening in the seam should fall between these two rows to make the ribbon casing.


12.  Using a large safety pin at one end of the ribbon length, thread ribbon through the casing opening. Keep ribbon as flat as possible as you pull it through stitched casing and bring it back out through opening to make drawstring.


13.  To prevent drawstring from being pulled out accidentally, pull ends through casing so both ribbon ends are sticking out evenly; use the large safety pin to pin ends together. Machine-stitch through the middle of the casing (opposite the opening) to secure the drawstring in place.


Fabric: Spot On collection by Robert Kaufman Fabrics

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We Heart It, It’s Free

Once a month, we highlight our favorite free quilt and sewing patterns around the web!


Festive Fabric Folding by Sewn Into the Fabric

Give the gift of jelly rolls this year! See these easy tutorials for folding 2-1/2″-wide fabrics strips into fun and festive shapes that are perfect for giving!

Click here to get the free pattern.


Handmade Felt Gift Tags and Ornaments by Diary of a Quilter for Skip To My Lou

Work with cheap crafts felt to create beautiful and fun gift tags and ornaments! Embellish with a little stitching for an easy way to add a handmade touch to your presents!

Click here to get the free pattern.



Trim-Tied Gift Bag from A Quilter’s Table

Choose a fat quarter of your fave holiday fabric and some cute trim. That’s seriously all you need to make this cute gift bag!

Click here to get the free pattern.



Ruffly Trees from Bonnie at Riley Blake Designs

These simple trees are adorable for a centerpiece and so fun to make! It’s perfect for using leftover strips of Christmas fabric.

Click here to get the free pattern.


Toasty Rice Hand Warmers with Lavender by V and Co.

They’re cute, they’re quick, and they’re perfect for cold winters! Make them as gifts for everyone on your list — or yourself!

Click here to get the free pattern.


Christmas Tree Table Napkins by Candice Ayala of Regal Appeal for Michael Miller Fabrics

They’re DIY fabric napkins that are folded to look like Christmas trees (which is pretty much the cutest thing ever!). They’re perfect for hostess gifts or to set a festive table!

Click here to get the free pattern.

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Trend Talk: Watercolors

Every month, we highlight a trend in quilting and show you how you can add this hip style to your projects!

Watercolor-look and painterly fabrics are emerging in many different fabric lines. Providing anything from a bold pop of color to a calming ombre brushstroke, these fabrics look great as blenders or the main focus!



Watercolor-look fabric for your shopping list (in order going clockwise):

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Blogs We <3 This Month

Once a month, we highlight blogs our staff is reading right now!



Don’t Call Me Betsy

Designer Elizabeth Dackson is the paper-piecing queen. Her use of color (especially solids) is so fun. And besides that, she’s a Craftsy teacher, so you know her tutorials are super helpful! Even if you’re not a person who likes paper-piecing, Elizabeth’s blog is so fun to look at. Her quilts range from bold and stunning to tiny and cute. And she does a great job mocking up her blocks in different colorways, so you can visualize the project with your own fabric!

Read her blog here.




Fresh Lemons Quilts

Designer Faith Jones makes stunning modern quilts that use both traditional patchwork and paper piecing. From common blocks to complicated designs, Faith’s quilts are not only eye-candy, but totally make us want to start digging through our fabric piles. Plus, she gets scrappy with fun ways to use a variety of prints in her projects.

Read her blog here.



Sew Mama Sew

This is one-stop-shopping for sewing projects. Blog owner Kristin Link (and her talented contributors) offer free patterns for handmade quilts, gifts, clothes, and more. With new tutorials popping up daily, you’ll never run out of sewing ideas! Whether you’re looking for something specific or just want inspiration, this blog is perfect place to jumpstart your creativity!

Read this blog here.

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Perfect Your Skills: Seeing Contrast

Trying to ignore color and just study contrast is not an easy task. When looking at fabrics in a store or from your fabric stash, try these techniques to determine the contrast or value. Select possible fabrics for a project, then perform one or more of these tests to see if you’ve included enough contrast in the group. If you need more contrast, substitute lighter or darker fabrics until you have a variety of values.



1. Try squinting. Closing your eyes slightly limits the amount of light they receive and reduces your perception of color, so contrast becomes more evident.


2. Use a reducing tool. Purchase a reducing lens or a door peephole. These tools reduce an image, making color less obvious and contrast more apparent when the fabrics are viewed. Taking pictures with your phone or looking through a camera also works in this regard.


3. Look through red cellophane. This technique conceals the color and allows you to see the continuum of values from light to dark.


4. Make black and white photocopies. Photocopying completely masks color and can give an indication of contrast between and within pieces of fabric.