I must have had old Hollywood on my mind when I got to sewing, because this project is actually the perfect accessory for any fine lady's boudoir. And what gal doesn't need a little more glamour in her life? : )
6 coordinating fat quarters (or one project bundle)
Other Materials and Notions:
For Fabric Bowl-
Trimmed paper templates (download PDF templates here)
*Note: print both page one and page two at 100% with no scaling*
Copier paper for paper pieces (I used cover stock)
1/4 yard of Pellon Peltex 71F - Single sided fusible
Washable glue pen or straight pins (to help baste the paper piece)
Hand sewing needle
Basting thread (I used white)
Coordinating thread (I used a beige color)
For Quilted Mat-
12" x 16" piece of batting
Perle Cotton Set (in Ecru, Medium Rose, Very Dark Rose, and Coffee Brown (or one thread sampler)
Walking or darning foot for quilting
Removable fabric pen
Fray Check (optional but helpful)
Fabric stabilizer (I recommend Pellon Sol-U-Film Lite)
Quilting thread (I used a medium rose color)
Cutting the Peltex Shapes:
Take one paper template each of the smaller outer petal shape and the larger inner octagon shape. Affix these to a piece of thin cardboard (like from a cereal box) and trim around the cardboard to make two cutting templates. Then using these templates, trace and cut from the Peltex eight outer petal shapes and one inner octagon shape.
Part 1: Making the Fabric Bowl
(1) Then grab the 3.5" x 3.5" pieces of fabric in the Crossweave. Also grab one of the 4.5" x 4.5" pieces of fabric in Print A and all of the cut Peltex shapes. Following the manufacturer's instructions, fuse the 3.5" x 3.5" pieces of fabrics to the smaller Peltex petals and the 4.5" x 4.5" piece of fabric to the Peltex octagon shape. Then trim around each Peltex shape leaving a generous 3/8" fabric allowance.
(2) Next, baste around each fused Peltex shape using your favorite English Paper Piecing technique, folding the fabric corners in and wrapping evenly as you go*. Set aside for now.
*Note: If your are new to English Paper Piecing, I have written a tutorial here showing how my favorite technique.
(3) Then grab the 3.5" x 3.5" pieces of fabric in Prints B, C, D, and E. Also grab the remaining 4.5" x 4.5" piece of fabric in Print A and the prepared paper pieces. Using a swipe of glue pen or a straight pin, secure the center of each petal-shaped paper piece to the center of one 3.5" x 3.5" fabric piece. Also glue or pin the octagon-shaped paper piece to the 4.5" x 4.5" fabric square. Trim around all paper pieces leaving a generous 1/4" fabric allowance. Then baste around each prepared paper piece, once again using your favorite English Paper Piecing technique.
(2) Next, begin attaching the eight basted Peltex petal shapes to the edges of the basted Peltex octagon using a whipstitch. When whipstitching the shapes together, make sure to grab only a few threads of fabric in each stitch to make the stitches as invisible as possible (see above).
(3) Once all the Peltex petals are attached, continue by whipstitching the petals together along the edges to form a shaped bowl. When finished, carefully push the bowl right-sides out.
(4) Next, begin attaching the eight basted paper petal shapes to the edges of the basted paper octagon also using a whipstitch. You may want to arrange the fabrics so that the same prints are directly opposite from one other along the central octagon as shown.
(5) Once all the petals are attached, continue by whipstitching the petals together along the edges to form a shaped bowl. When finished, carefully remove your basting stitches and papers.
(6) Then fit the two bowls snuggly together as shown, lining up all the edges carefully. Using an invisible ladder stitch, sew around the top edge of the bowl attaching the outer shell to the inner shell.
Then remove your basting stitches from the Peltex shell and press the bowl gently from the interior to help smooth out the fabric and improve the fit of the lining. You may also want to include a tack stitch in each corner of the octagon to further secure the lining to the outer shell.
Part 2: Making the Quilted Mat
(1) Grab the 6.5" x 6.5" piece of fabric in the Crossweave, plue the two 6.5" x 1.5" and two 8.5" x 2.5" pieces of fabric in Print A. Piece these together as shown in the diagram above to form a frame around the Crossweave Square.
(2) Then using the removable fabric pen, free draw a heart shape roughly in the center of your 6.5" square. I purposely drew my heart to be a little wonky to add some hand-drawn character to the embroidery design, so don't be worried if your heart isn't perfectly symmetrical. This will be the initial stitch guideline for the embroidery.
Note: I also applied Fray Check around the outside of my block to help prevent fraying while stitching.
(3) In order to add a little structure to the softness of the Crossweave for embroidering, use a fabric stabilizer to help keep the stitching and underlying fabric from pulling and distorting. I recommend using Pellon Sol-U-Film Lite since it washes out easily and completely after stitching without leaving any residue or bits of interfacing behind.
Cut the Sol-U-Film to a slightly larger size than your embroidery area and simply use the embroidery hoop to hold it in place behind the fabric while you stitch. Then using the perle cotton thread, backstitch the initial heart-shape. Finally embroider additional hearts radiating outward and inward from this initial heart, alternating the thread colors and types of stitches used, as desired.
(4)When finished stitching, remove the hoop and follow the manufacturer's instructions to gently wash out the remaining Sol-U-Film Lite. Allow your fabric and stitching to air dry completely before proceeding.
(5) Once your fabric has completely dried grab the two 10.5" x 2.5" pieces of fabric in Print C as well as the two 10.5" x 1.5" pieces of fabric in Print D. Stitch them to the original embroidered block as show in the diagram above. Then press well to prepare for basting.
(6) Layer and baste the pieced/ embroidered top, batting, and 12.5" x 16.5" piece of backing in Print C. Then using the perle cotton thread, hand quilt if you like around the outer perimeter of the Crossweave square. I did four lines of four different colors. I also added some additional machine quilting to help secure the quilt layers together (see below).
(7) Once your mat is completely quilted, sew together diagonally the 22" x 2.5" strips in Print D and press in half length-wise to prepare the binding tape. Leaving an 8 inch tail of binding at the beginning and starting about 3 inches in from the corner of one of the longer edges, sew the raw edge of the binding tape to the outer edge of your mat, mitering the corners as you go.
Stop sewing about 8 inches before the beginning stitches. Join the binding edges together, then finish sewing the binding edge down. Finally, press the binding to the back and finish it either by machine or by hand as preferred.
Then enjoy your new vanity set!