Monday, July 2, 2012

Christmas in July - Simple Patchwork Quilted Christmas Card Tutorial

Today I'm excited to introduce our first tutorial for Christmas in July! Jess was one of the first people that I really hit it off with in the online quilting world, and it's been nice to lament school, finding a job, and boys being silly with her. Plus of course the quilting! She just recently won the baby quilt category of Bloggers' Quilt Festival [woo!], and has a great simple project for us to really get our heads in the holiday sewing game. Take it away, Jess...[and make sure you read all the way to the end of the post for a great giveaway!]

Tutorial: Simple Patchwork Quilted Christmas Card

Hi, I'm Jess, and I blog over at Quilty Habit! I've been sewing for two years and I just finished undergrad (and looking for a teaching job). In addition, I'm getting married this October, so I'd love if you stopped over and said hi, and came back again to see all the crazy things I'm making for my wedding! :)

I'm super excited to participate in Christmas in July! Today I'm sharing a tutorial for a project that I've used in the past, and for one I plan to use many times in the future. It can be streamlined and simplified in a thousand and one different ways: the quilted card. This project takes about 15 minutes... maybe less (and you can do several at once!)

  • 1 12" x 12" piece of cardstock (scrapbooking paper works great!)
  • 1 6" x 6" piece of cardstock (same color or different, depending on your taste (I chose white to go with green
  • Charm pack of Christmas fabrics (I used Kate Spain's Flurry)
  • Glue stick
  • Thread, pins, scissors, rotary cutter, sewing machine

*Quick note: the 6" x 6" card made from this tutorial will not fit into most envelopes; you may have to adjust your measurements and your cardstock cutting. It made more sense to give these measurements than the crazy ones that would accompany the many different kinds of possible envelopes you have. Of course, you don't have to do patchwork, either; you can do any design to fit your card size!

1. Cut your cardstock in half (at the 6 inch mark). Put one half aside, and fold the strip you are using in half. You should now have a folded card that is 6"x6" when folded, 6" x 12" unfolded. You can even make two cards with one piece of cardstock!

2. Choose five of the 5" squares for your charm pack to use for the patchwork. You can do 9 different squares if you want. Above 3 of the 5 squares I chose.

3. Take one of the charm squares, and cut a 2 1/4 wide strip. Cut THAT strip twice into 2 lengths of 2 1/4. The pictures above shows the little piece of extra you will have after.

4. Repeat for all other charm squares. You will have more than 1/2 of the charm square left each time, so put it aside to make more patchwork cards later. Never let that go to waste!

5. Once you have 9 little squares that are 2 1/4 x 2 1/4, decide on your layout and pin in three rows, across.

6. After this initial sewing, you'll have three rows. PRESS! This step is so important! For patchwork I always press my seams open for the most accuracy.


7. Pin the rows together. Repeat (sew, press). Now you have a little patchwork square!

8. Unfold your card and pin the patchwork to the front, centered. Don't worry about the pins making marks in the paper (or the sewing you are about to do); it will be covered up.

9. Quilt your patchwork as desired. Beforehand, you *may* want to use fusible interfacing to make the patchwork more sturdy, but I did not because I didn't know how much weight it would add to the card overall.

I decided to quilt along the seams, 1/4 of an inch away. I would recommend using a dull needle for this part if you have one on hand, and sew slowly!

10. Slowly zig-zag stitch your way around the patchwork to help with those raw edges. This is an important applique step.

11. Finally, take the cut piece of 6"x6" cardstock (either the color of your card, or another color), and use a glue stick to glue it over your quilting lines. It makes the card look crisp and clean. You could write a message on top of it, or even draw a picture!

12. Finally, write your message. You probably will want to personalize it when December approaches, or maybe you'd like to just get that done now ;) Just think - you could have a stack of Christmas cards waiting to be sent out!!

Overall, a very thoughtful, homey feel, don't you think? Perfect for Christmas.

This project is extremely versatile, as I said before. They don't have to be Christmas cards; they can be Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or Christmahanukwanzaakah cards. Season's greetings. You could even make cute gift tags this way (and you wouldn't have to worry about covering up the back!) Here's a picture of some notecard thank yous I made previously, using this method:

Thanks to Rebecca for hosting, and I'm looking forward to seeing all of the projects in the linky at the end of the month! I hope you'll try making cards!


Thanks Jess! I never thought to add the extra piece of cardstock to cover up messy stitching. Genius. Adds a much more professional finish.

Make sure you leave Jessica some love and comments here or over at her blog :)

And now, for today's giveaway! 

Pictures used with permission from Urban Stitches

Anna from Urban Stitches contacted me and wanted in on all the Christmas in July fun! So we're giving away a charm pack of Joy, which is Kate Spain's newest holiday line. I absolutely loved sewing with Flurry last year, so I'm excited about Joy!

Anna will ship directly to the winner. But she didn't want those who don't win to be sad, so she's giving everyone a 10% discount at her store for the entire month of July!!! Awesome! The discount code is SewFestive10, and she has such insane prices that getting any sort of discount at all is even more insane. Charm packs for only $6.50? Hell yeah. It's under $6 with the discount!! That's like HALF OFF retail price. I can't get over it.

To enter today's giveaway:
1. Leave a comment telling us what kind of holiday gift you normally give for people like neighbors/teachers/etc. [Hint: a quilted card and a plate full of cookies is all this girl needs; please email so you can get my address and get those cookies headed my way].
2. U.S. residents only [don't worry international peeps, your day is coming! also, please feel free to still leave Jessica a comment!]
3. You MUST leave an email address if you are a no-reply blogger. If I don't have an email address for you then I'll pick a new winner.

That's it! We're keeping it easy on the first day :) The giveaway is open until next Monday, July 9th, at midnight EST. I will announce the randomly drawn winner on Tuesday!


  1. Is it terrible that I usually would give a gift card...haha. This will be only my 2nd Christmas giving handmade gifts. I'm interested to see others' suggestions!

  2. I usually give bath and body works lotions and such, but this year I am going to try and go the handmade route.

  3. Usually it's a small bag of Christmas goodies, like spritz cookies, caramel puffed corn, frosted sugar cookies or chocolate waffle cookies... Hmmmm, I might have to do some Christmas in July baking!! :)

  4. Homemade plate full of crackers, cheese, salami and cookies. Great tutorial. This really looks easy now that I have seen your tutorial. Thank you for a job well done and a chance to win JOY charms. I love JOY and can't wait to make a Christmas quilt with the charms. A girl can't get enough charms, especially with such a great discount going on!

    Sandi T.

  5. Cookies! I love to bake. My mom also has a much-requested pie recipe that she guards with her life. She makes like 20 every Christmas for people. I've long been put to work churning out these pies, so I know the recipe too and make it for people in my life as well!

    I've got plans for the Joy charm pack, win or lose. :) Thanks for the heads up on the great prices--that's useful!

  6. I make goodies and give big plates or containers of goodies to people! YUM!

  7. I usually bake. And give chocolate. (I actually have fabric with pictures of chocolate on it - for friends on a diet!)

  8. (Pls. don't count my comment for the giveaway - I'm in Canada) For random small or unexpected gift-giving occasions I have a stash of zipper bags on hand - I can tuck little goodies in the bag, or even do a co-ordinated 2 bag set :) Also great are little fabric baskets (I like Pink Penguin's tutorial) with a cello bag of cookies or crafty/sewy supplies tucked inside :)

    I'm very happy to receive homemade food goodies -- for those of you that give them, please keep doing that, lol!

  9. Before I started sewing, gift cards were my staple for non family members but now it can be a pillow to a quilt depending on who it is. I love being creative.

  10. I have gift wrapped giant candy bars in the past with a note saying that I was to busy to make homemade fudge. I have also given popcorn with a story called the "parable of the popper" taking about how well we pop and show our talents, it is a good one.

  11. It used to be gift cards but now for Christmas I'll give a plate of "snowballs" - the butter cookies and decorated sugar cookies. I love them. They melt in your mouth!

    I love the snowflake and will try this. I'm just getting into paper piecing. It's fun. Thanks for the giveaway!!

  12. I love to bake during the Christmas season! And sometimes I will try and get a few quilts done for family members during the holidays as well.

  13. Generally home baked goodies.

  14. I usually make cookies and wrap them up in a nice tin. :D

  15. I've got a great family recipe for peanut brittle that I always get requests for. So, usually that goes into a nice box or tin and is given away to everyone. This year I think I'll pair them all with a cute patchwork card! Thanks to Jess for the great idea!

  16. I usually give out baked goods, I have about 8 different cookie and candy recipes that I bake every year. Thanks

  17. Love the idea - great looking card. (International girl)

  18. I have sometimes made wine bottle bags out of Christmas fabric. Shows off the bottle of wine so well!

  19. My family in the past has always given baked goods as gifts.

  20. For my grandchildren's teachers and special friends, I make handmade cards or dishclothes with a special theme. I start these early, June usually. Something handmade lets them know how special they are in our lives.

  21. I've seen fabric used on cards but this is like a step up. hehe. It's almost a mini mini quilt. A quilt top at least. I've given decorated baskets with some goodies, a zippered bag and actually one year the class helped me make a photo album for a teacher's baby's first year. Thanks for sharing your idea.

    Thank you and Urban Stitches for a super giveaway and a chance to win.


  22. For my nieghbors and co-workers I bake up cookies and add some home-made caramels, wrapped pretty... love the homemade quilty cards. So cute! Thank you for the chance to win.

  23. What a fun card to make! Thanks for the tutorial! My favorite thing to give is a jar filled with the makings for cookies.

  24. I love baking sugar cookies for holiday friends and neighbor treat. Love the quilt cards. Thanks for sharing! And for sharing some JOY!

  25. Neighbors usually get cookies or a box of specialty chocolates. Coworkers and support staff get a mug full of candy....this year, I may even include a mug rug with the mug of candy. Thanks for the chance to win!


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