Monday, December 5, 2011

Quilted Patchwork Tea Cozy

Each year, my sister, my mom, and I attend a holiday cookie exchange that is hosted by my former viola teacher.  Usually about 10-15 people attend and we all sample and trade new cookie recipes.  A plethora of differently flavored teas are also served, so I thought it would be fitting to make a tea cozy as a hostess gift. (If you're attending this year's cookie exchange on Sunday, keep this a secret!)

I used the Retro Mama pattern to assemble the cozy but I came up with the patchwork pattern on my own.  Retro Mama includes some great patchwork suggestions with the pattern but the size of my scraps just wasn’t going to work.  I took to Excel and came up with this simple design.  

Patchwork Tea Cozy

This was my first try at designing my own patchwork pattern, and after the cozy was finished I realized that I should have accounted for the seam allowances as much of the red fabric on the top is cut off.  Next time!

Patchwork Tea Cozy

I am still pleased with how this turned out.  I added an extra layer of insulation to make sure that the cozy is extra cozy.  I had some drapery liner in my stash for reasons unknown (I think I picked it out of the remnant bin at Joann), so I added that to the quilt sandwich, which included a layer of batting. 
I have been in love with all of the horizontal quilting that I’ve seen lately, so that’s what I went with.  And I love how it looks even if it did take quite a while to stitch all of those lines!

Patchwork Tea Cozy

I purchased the Retro Mama pattern because I had no idea how to go about sewing the pieces together and not having exposed seams.  Now that I see how to do it, it’s pretty simple.  If you don’t know either, I highly suggest getting the Retro Mama pattern—it’s only $6!  This project was the first time I had ever used a triple stitch, which basically sews three stitches forward and then reinforces them by sewing three stitches backward, and so on and so forth.  What results is a super strong seam.  I’m pretty sure this tea cozy could be used daily for the rest of my viola teacher’s life and then be passed on to her daughter and be used every day for her life and it still wouldn’t fall apart.  This thing is solid.

As luck would have it, I had a good amount of binding left over from Henry’s quilt and the color went great with my patchwork.  Hurray for shortcuts!  I think the blue adds the perfect amount of wintery iciness.  Plus I love a hand-sewn binding!

Patchwork Tea Cozy

I highly recommend the Retro Mama pattern.  It is really easy to understand and results in a sturdy and reversible tea cozy.

Speaking of quilting, Nick, my parents, and I went on the annual Holiday House tour in Newtown on Saturday.  We love seeing the historic houses all decorated for Christmas.  Our favorite of the houses was decorated by Terrain, which really wasn't fair to the rest of the houses.  Terrain definitely knows what they're doing.

There was a quilt show at the church in town as part of the house tour.  They displayed the quilts by draping them over the backs of the pews.  It looked awesome in there!  Of course I had forgotten my camera and my phone, but Nick was nice enough to take a few shots for me with his phone.

A lot of them were hand quilted and a lot were pretty old.  One dated back to 1896!  It was great to see that many of the quilts were still in one piece even after being so well loved.

Most of the quilts were made with traditional patterns and fabrics, which isn't my favorite, but it was awesome to see all of the shapes and colors across the pews!

1 comment:

  1. Wow, those quilts are so beautiful! How fun to see them!


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