We catch up with Cindy Lammon who learnt her skill of sewing through two generations of sewers. Using traditional techniques and chipping away at her stash, Cindy is always brimming with more ideas than what she has time for, combining this with her love for geometry and fabric, Cindy creates countless projects which she shares with her followers on her blog.
Snuggle up in the cold winter months with this hour glass quilt, follow Cindy’s step by step on how to make your own from your favourite Liberty prints.
Tell us about yourself and when you discovered sewing?
I don’t remember a time when I didn’t sew! My Mother and Grandmother were both fabulous seamstresses although neither of them quilted. I grew up doing embroidery, crewel work, garment sewing and home dec sewing. My Mother had
some quilting magazines and I have memories of looking through them admiring the quilts as a teenager. I even attempted a quilt found in one of those magazines – a Double Wedding Ring. I used tissue paper templates and needless to say, it was a disaster!
I took my first quilting class after I had my first baby and needed some non-baby diversion. That was back in 1981 and I haven’t stopped quilting since!
My quilting career has included participating in guilds, retreats, teaching classes, working in quilt shops and writing quilting books. The most recent book is Simply Modern Christmas which came out in August 2013. It’s filled with 14 projects that evolved from my love of modern quilting.
You primarily quilt, what is it about quilting that you find so special?
I love fabric! Quilting allows me to use lots of different fabrics in one project. I think coordinating fabrics for a quilt is my favorite part of the process. I also have a
thing for geometry. Call me a nerd, but I love to figure out how different shapes can create a design. Because of my love for fabric and geometry, I have more quilts in my head than I could ever make in a lifetime!
Some of your designs are very complex, do you have to an expert a maths to do them?
I do think you have to have some math skills (and enjoy doing the math) to design quilts other than super simple ones. Luckily we have a wealth of designers and pattern makers that fall into that category today. If you don’t like doing math, there are tons of wonderful patterns in books, magazines and online. We’re really pretty lucky nowadays!
Has there been a quilt project that has been the most challenging?
One of the things I love about quilting is that there are so many techniques and design possibilities. I think that’s why I’ve been able to stick with it for so long. I’m never bored! Over the years I’ve embraced techniques that were new to me at the time, and it’s kept quilting interesting and challenging. Last year
I completed a 12 month paper pieced Block-of-the-Month and overcame my fear of paper piecing. This year I’ve made several quilts with curved piecing – Gathering Flowers Quilt and Flowering Snowball – which have been quite a challenge. It always amazes me how much easier things get with practice!
How do you start your design process for new projects and colour combinations?
I’m a collector. When I see a fabric line that I love, I buy several pieces of it that I think would look good together in a quilt. I also pick up patterns that I like. The fabric and patterns kind of hang out together in my studio. When I’m deciding on a new project, the fabric line and perfect pattern just seem to find each other in my mind. Does that make sense? I have a nice size stash, so I almost always add some stash fabrics into the mix for a quilt that’s unique to me.
How many quilts do you think you have made and what do you do with them after?
I’ve been quilting for a while, so I’d have to guess and say I’ve made a couple hundred quilts and just as many small wall quilts or table runners. We use my quilts in our home for beds, walls and throws. I’ve given lots of quilts away to both family members and charitable organizations. Many of my quilts are stored in one of two armoires and a large closet lined with shelving. I try to take them out on a regular basis to refold and just look at them. I really do love all my quilts!
What you will need:
12 different Liberty of London Tana Lawn Prints – 9” x 27”
3/8 yard Liberty of London Tana Lawn print for binding (54” wide
1 3/4 yards Liberty of London Tana Lawn for backing (54” wide)
2 1/4 yards solid white fabric (40” wide)
From 4 of the Tana Lawn prints, cut a total of 16 squares 6 1/2” x 6 1/2”
From 8 of the Tana Lawn prints, cut a total of 24 squares 6 1/2” x 6 1/2” and a total of 12 rectangles 3” x 5 1/2”
From the solid white, cut the following:
7 strips 6 1/2”, cut into 40 squares 6 1/2” x 6 1/2”
2 strips 3”, cut into 24 squares 3” x 3”
3 strips 5 1/2”, cut into 20 squares 5 1/2” x 5 1/2”
1 strip 5 1/2”, cut into 10 rectangles 3” x 5 1/2”
The design is created using two simple blocks, an Hourglass block and a Flying Geese block.
Finished size lap quilt – Hourglass Lap Quilt – 50” x 55”
Let’s start with the Hourglass blocks!
Step 1: Layer a white and a print 6 1/2” square right sides together. Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner. Stitch 1/4” on each side of your diagonal line.
Step 2: Cut the square in half diagonally on the drawn line to create 2 half triangle squares. Press the seam allowances to the print side. Repeat these steps with all 40 print and white squares.
Step 3: Layer 2 mismatched triangle squares right sides together, placing a print triangle to a white triangle. Align the squares so that the seams are butting up right next to each other. You should be able to feel the seams nestled together with your finger. I like to place a couple of pins along the seam line.
Step 4: Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner, going in the opposite direction of the previous seam line. Stitch 1/4” on each side of your diagonal line.
Step 5: Cut in half again diagonally on the drawn line. Press seams open.
Step 6: Trim the Hourglass square to 5 1/2” x 5 1/2” by placing the 45 degree line of your ruler on a diagonal seam and the 2 3/4” mark of the ruler at the center. Trim 2 adjacent sides this way, and then trim the block to 5 1/2” x 5 1/2”.
You’ll make a total of 80 Hourglass blocks, but you’ll only need 79 for the quilt!
The Flying Geese blocks are easy!
Draw a diagonal line from corner to corner on all 24 white 3” squares.
Place a marked square on one short edge of a 3” x 5 1/2” print rectangle (note the direction of the marked line). Sew directly on the line this time.
Trim 1/4” from the sewn line and press the seam allowance toward the white.
Repeat with a second white 3” square on the opposite edge of the rectangle. Sew, trim, press.
Make a total of 12 Flying Geese blocks.
Lay your blocks out as shown here on the quilt layout. Alternate a row of 9 Hourglass Blocks and Flying Geese on each end with a row of 5 Hourglass Blocks, four 5 1/2” white squares and two white rectangles on each end.
Sew the blocks into rows and sew the rows together.
Layer your quilt top with batting and backing. I quilted mine with a diagonal grid of straight lines. Super simple! Finish with the binding.
Add an extra touch to your gift-giving this Christmas with personalised Liberty print gift tags.
Christmas will soon be upon us and before you know it there will be a pile of presents to wrap. In preparation, why not make your gifts personal? Create these Liberty print letters in advance to make your gifts extra special; add glitter and sequins if festive sparkle is your style.
What you will need:
– Liberty print fabric
– Foam board
– PVA glue
– Decorations of your choice such as sequins, ribbon, metallic cord, beads
Step 1: Choose a font you would like to work with and print the initials in a large size of the person who will be receiving their gift.
Step 2: Cut the letters out and use them as a template for the foam board. Once you have drawn around them, use a scalpel to cut around the letters.
Step 3: Cut a piece of fabric which covers the size of the letter, make sure you leave a border around it.
Step 4: Trim the fabric to the shape of the letter, leaving around 1.50cm border, in some places this won’t be possible. Snip around the letter every 0.50cm to create tabs, these will be neatly folded over.
Step 5: Apply some PVA glue to the front of the letter and with the wrong size facing, place it on the piece of fabric.
Spread glue onto the reverse of the foam letter and on the sides and fold all the fabric around the letter.
Step 6: Add an extra layer of PVA glue to the front to give a shiny finish. For a gloss finish, cover in a clear varnish.
Step 7: We have decorated some of our tags with sequins, using ribbon loops to hang them on the tree. You can either keep it simple with fabric only, or embellish with extra decorations of your choice.
Step 8: To neaten the reverse of the tag, use the templates again to cut out card for the backing. Your personalised gift tag is now complete.
Share your festive Liberty print gift tags with us on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.
Having taken the world of DIY craft blogging by storm, The New Craft Society show us their latest sewing project.
Hannah and Rosie are the creative masterminds behind The New Craft Society sewing blog. With Hannah in Germany and Rosie in England, they put their DIY craft ideas together and share their projects with a broad online community. We chatted to Hannah about their latest projects, what handmade gifts are on the cards for Christmas this year, plus we bring you their step-by-step guide of how to make your own chic Liberty print quilted bomber jacket.
Why do you think it’s important to pass on crafting traditions?
Crafting is still increasing in popularity and we find this so exciting! How amazing is it that you can make something in the same way that people have for hundreds of years and apply the techniques to modern, stylish designs? We have both learnt skills from our own parents and grandparents and it is wonderful that this knowledge has been shared and passed on.
What inspired you to start your blog?
We’d both been crafting away at home and sharing our projects with each other, but we wanted a way to share our projects with a wider audience. I was living in Germany and Rosie was in England, so a blog seemed like the obvious way for us to put both of our projects in the same place and show everyone! Rosie came over to visit me in Berlin and we dreamed up the idea of The New Craft Society.
What is your favourite medium to work with, and do you prefer sewing or knitting?
At the moment we are both sewing a lot as we are working on our handmade Christmas gifts. My favourite medium is fabric, I love how quickly and easily a flat piece can be transformed. Rosie probably likes yarn best, although she loves sewing too. She loves how tactile yarn can be and is a bit obsessed with knitwear in general.
Will you be making any Christmas presents this year?
Yes! We always hand make all of our Christmas presents. It’s so much more personal and often has hilarious results. Last year I gifted my brother a hat that he could just about squeeze over the top of his head… This year we’re both planning on making everyone pyjamas in different Liberty prints.
Do you have any ambitious upcoming projects?
We’ve both been working on some Liberty print quilts for a while now. The process of hand quilting them takes ages so they were possibly too ambitious for the amount of free time we both have. We’re also starting to develop our own sewing kits which is very exciting!
What’s the biggest crafting challenge you’ve taken on so far?
I made a quilt for a friend’s wedding. Despite a huge amount of advice and help from my Nana, this quilt took me ages to complete. I had completely underestimated the amount of work involved. Next time I’ll be much more prepared.
What tips would you give to people new to making/crafting?
Just to keep experimenting and trying out new things. Don’t take on something too complex or that’ll end up very frustrating. It’s wonderful to see how your skills develop over time, so just keep doing little projects and learning!
What Liberty prints do you have your eye on at the moment, do you have any more Liberty print projects in the pipeline?
We both love the Grayson Perry prints and basically everything that came out of the Scandinavian inspiration trip. My favourite has to be Ianthe; it’s a bit more masculine than other Liberty prints and has amazing colourways. Rosie loves Poppy and Daisy at the moment and we’re both huge fans of Wild Flowers. We always have Liberty print projects in the pipeline! Have a look at our Instagram @NewCraftSociety for pictures of upcoming projects.
How to make your own Liberty print quilted bomber jacket:
“Ianthe is one of my favourite prints so I had been storing up this piece while I waited for the perfect project. This bomber was made from Papercut’s Rigel bomber pattern, which is an absolute dream to sew up. I’d recommend that you have some sewing experience before tackling it, but it is definitely a pattern that you’ll learn lots of new skills from – welted pockets and raglan sleeves! I made some adjustments to the pattern to create a quilted, fully-lined bomber…”
You will need:
– Papercut’s Rigel bomber pattern
– All of your pattern pieces cut out except the facing pieces
– 2m of cotton batting
– A walking foot – definitely not essential, but always makes quilting easier
– A fabric pen
– A ruler
– Thread that matches (or clashes) your fabric – this will be visible
– 2m of lining fabric
How to make:
1. Pin all of your cut out pieces to the cotton batting right side up. Cut around each piece leaving about an inch of extra batting around each edge, sometimes fabric can shift when quilting so this is just to make sure you have enough space to allow for this.
2. Using your quilting ruler, draw your first line at a 45° angle from the bottom of each piece. Do the same in the other direction to create a cross.
3. If you have a walking foot with a stitch guide there is no need to draw on all of the lines which makes this so much quicker. You just need to set the guide at the distance you want your quilting to be at – I would recommend between 1.5 and 2 inches – and then start quilting! If you don’t have a guide you’ll need to draw all of the lines on yourself before you can begin quilting. Complete this stage for the back, both front pieces and both sleeves.
4. After you have quilted all of the pieces, trim off the excess batting. You can now follow the pattern construction in the Papercut instructions.
5. After you have assembled the jacket, grade all of your seam allowances to accommodate the extra bulk you’ve added with the batting.
6. To line your jacket you need to cut out the back, two front pieces and 2 sleeves and assemble as instructed. For the front lining pieces make sure that you add on the extra length that is given in the facing pieces. This will cover up the edge of the waist band.
7. When the instructions say to add the facing, you need to sew in your lining. Turn the right way out and fit the sleeve lining inside each sleeve.
8. To secure the lining at the bottom of the bodice and end of each arm, use a slip stitch to secure it by hand.
Inspired to create your own bomber jacket? Browse our new season fabrics and get sewing!
Share your DIY clothing and other sewing projects with us on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook using #SewLiberty.
Personalise your Christmas tree with your own Liberty print Christmas baubles.
Decorate your Christmas tree this year with Liberty print fringed baubles. Our talented print designer Keighley Shepherdly has been busy making these decorations for when the office tree goes up; we show you how to make your own in five simple steps.
What you will need:
– Polystyrene balls – We chose 70mm
– PVA glue
– Liberty print fabric
– Twisted cord, stranded cotton or fish wire to hang
Step 1: First, choose the fabric you would like to use. Whether it is traditional Christmas reds and greens or classic Liberty prints, these baubles are quick and easy to make.
Step 2: Cut two circles of fabric, 4.50cm in diameter. Cut one of these into two, making two semi circles. The semi circles will be used for the top of the bauble to cover the loop and the full circle for the base.
Step 3: Make a loop from either stranded cotton or a fine twisted cord, ensuring it’s large enough to slide onto a Christmas tree branch. Stick this to the top of the bauble, hiding them with the semi circles.
Step 4: Begin by making your fringing. Cut a length of fabric about 1.50cm wide, the longest length you will need for a 70mm bauble is around 23cm. Cut about three quarters of the way through the strip, continue this process across the whole length of the strip. You will need 7- 8 strips to cover the whole bauble.
Optional: To add texture to the bauble, repeat step 4 using strips of metallic and coloured paper, beading, or cushion fringing.
Step 5: Lay out your strips of fringing to see which colour combinations work best. Using PVA glue stick one length of fringing around the bauble at a time, carefully keeping them straight! It’s best to work from the bottom up to ensure the fringing layers accordingly. Repeat layering around the bauble until the polystyrene ball is covered entirely.
Once complete, you can repeat the process with a multitude of bauble sizes to transform your tree into a Liberty print masterpiece.
Share your festive Liberty print gift tags with us using #SEWLIBERTY on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.