Hand Tacked Strawberry Mug Rug
For months I’ve been admiring the gorgeous mug rugs made by my fellow bloggers and pinterestites. I have been procrastinating in regards to making my own because I wasn’t looking forward to cutting all those little quilt pieces, or sewing them together. Last night it hit me-I can make a mini tack quilt! What could be more fun than a Hand Tacked Strawberry Mug Rug? I backed mine in burlap, to give it an outdoorsy feel, and used Pellon as my batting. Pellon makes projects sturdier, and more professional in look and feel. Read on for the project instructions.
- sewing machine and basic sewing supplies (you will need an embroidery needle too)
- cotton fabric for your mug rug
- black embroidery thread- Yarn is pictured, but it was too bulky for the project, so I switched to embroidery thread.
- fabric and regular scissors
- strawberry pattern- I saved the image to my computer, then printed it in black and white as an 8 x 10 picture- Get yours here
Trace the pattern (cut the pattern into two pieces, so you can trace the leaves and strawberry separately) on the cotton fabric, Pellon, and burlap.
Lay right sides together on the strawberry, then put the Pellon on top. After you sew it together, you’re going to “turn it out.” The Pellon will be on the inside, providing fabulous stiffness to your strawberry mug rug. Layer the leaves and stem as pictured below, with the Pellon in between the burlap and cotton fabric. I chose to top stitch the stem/leaves because of the difficulty in turning it out. The result was wonderful. The ravelly pieces of burlap look nice along the edges of the stem. Pin the pieces together before sewing.
I used a small appliqué stitch (#8 on my Brother sewing machine) to go around both pieces. I switched to a larger, #11 stitch to accentuate the stem. Don’t forget to leave space at the top of the strawberry. You will have to turn it out after sewing.
After you’ve turned the strawberry out, fold the edges inward and machine stitch the opening in the top of your strawberry (I used the #11 applique for this). Next, it’s time to sew the stem and strawberry together. Pin the pieces together, and sew it in the back first. I used the #11 appliqué stitch, and sewed over it twice. Turn it over and sew along the bottom of the stem, or everywhere the strawberry and stem meet ( I switched back to the #8 stitch for this part).
I’ve always liked hand tacking, when it comes to quilts. My grandmother, Alma, had a quilt that I loved. She pieced old blue jeans and cotton blocks together, and tacked everything together with red yarn. Some day I’m going to break down and recreate that quilt. I used an embroidery needle (one with a REALLY big eye), and six strands of black embroidery thread to tack in my “seeds.” I followed the paper pattern. If you look at the strawberry paper pattern, you can see that the seeds run in slanted lines. The tacking method is pictured below. If you had quilting blocks, you would tack the corners of each block. Tacking is simply another method (other than quilting, which requires sewing lines, or sewing along certain shapes in your quilt) used to hold the layers of your quilt together and keep everything in place during washing, and etc.
You’re finished! I hope you enjoy sipping coffee from your Hand Tacked Strawberry Mug Rug all spring and summer long. See how nice the strawberry mug rug looks from behind? You always want your projects to look nice when the older women in your life decide to turn them over and check out your stitching. They are sizing you (and the quality of your project) up by checking out the hidden parts. May your sewing always be above reproach.
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