Thursday, 7 April 2011

Cathedral Windows And Secret Garden Tutorial

Get your thimbles out team, we are going to do some rather pretty handsewing to make Cathedral Windows and a Secret Garden needlework case.  This is going to be a great deal of fun and your constant companion will be your iron... now if you are old like me you will remember the days when you took a travelling iron with you when you went on hols and if you have one of these, now is the time you finally get to use it, after all these years.

Firstly, I thought you would like to see what you could be making which is a full sized quilt.

But we are going to make just two blocks to make our needle case.

You will need: 
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Mat, cutting ruler and rotary cutter
  • Main fabric and contrast
  • A small piece of felt
  • Needle and thread
  • Tape Measure or ruler
Right then we are ready to start - now these are the important bits - you must be as precise as possible with your cutting out and folding - always put the guard on your rotary cutter and finally, measure twice and cut once.
1. Cut two 7 inch squares of your main fabric.
2. With the right side of your fabric facing down, fold 
over 1/4" of fabric all the way round and press it flat.

3. Fold the fabric in half lengthwise and press, now do 
the same widthwise, where these lines bisect is your 
centre point.

4. Fold each corner into the centre - we are now 
moving into origami territory.

5. Press the fabric flat, make sure each new corner 
is a sharp point.

6. Fold the new corner points into the middle.

7. Press all the corners into the middle.

8. Catch the opposing corner points with a 
slip stitch, do not got through to the layers 
beneath, just the points.

9. Your square should now look like this.  Now 
repeat the process for your second square.

10. Join together your two squares using a 
mattress stitch which will give you an invisible 

Knot your thread securely, then bring the thread 
to the right side of your fabric, placing the knot 
on the wrong side, nestled into the fold. Bring 
the thread across the opening and go down 
through the fold. Come up through the fold 
approximately 1/4 inch from the entry point and 
cross the opening. Keep your stitches rather 
loose and open until you finish sewing, then pull taut.

11. If you look at the pic above, you will see that 
the seam is invisible when you pull the thread taut.

12. Cut two contrasting squares, which fit within 
your two squares, these will form your secret 
garden.  Slip these squares under the joined 
triangles... now you know why I told you not to 
stitch all the way through.

13. Now cut a piece of fabric which fits the 
diamond shape between the two joined squares, 
this will become your Cathedral windows.

14. Roll the edges of the square over your cut out 
diamond and slip stitch the rolled edges, at each 
corner, catch the two sides together with a little 
bar stitch.

15. This is your classic cathedral window.  
Now repeat the rolling and slip stitch around 
each of the folded triangles, this will expose your 
other contrasting fabric which forms the petals 
for your secret garden flowers.

16. You now have your cathedral window and 
secret garden blocks.  In order to make it a little 
more interesting, I have added buttons... am 
thinking about adding loop to close the needle 

17.  Now cut out a felt oblong to fit inside the 
needle case, I have used pinking shears to make 
it look more attractive.  Top stitch the felt in 
place with a running stitch being careful not to 
penetrate to the right side.

18. Your case is now ready for the needles.

17. And there you have it... you can now 
do two sorts of hand quilted blocks.

I also have a method for doing this by machine... would anyone like to see it?


Picto said...

When you mentioned Cathedral Windows in your HM post it reminded me of some old work I done... Iput it on my blog with a link to yours.

OOhhhh I've never tried that 'mattress stitch' I'll have to give it a go. Lovely fabric you've used too.

Jan x

Ros Made Me said...

Thanks Jan, sometimes it is really nice to slow right down with a piece of hand sewing. Mind you I think I need to do more practice because my stitches have got so big an clunky... either that or I need new specs!

Becca said...

I don't really sew- I've always had a hard time with it.

I may have to try this. It's really cute, and looks so easy! :D Thank you for this.

SeniorCrafts said...

Ros - What an well presented tutorial! And a photo for each step - thanks for this! Nancy

Yarn Dependent Me said...

AHHHHH! I have to make one!!! I LOVE IT!

Joan Wells said...

Dear Ros,
I SO enjoyed making this, the points are bit pesky, but fabric is pesky stuff isn't it!
YES PLEASE, could you post the machine equal you mention here, I would love to try it.
Thank you very much,
Joan Wells.