Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Back to School

This time of year, the school bells ring again for so many of us and our children.  A house on a quilt is a symbol of our community and our lives together in society. It's no wonder that house quilts remind us of comfort and the togetherness of family, friends, and neighbors. They really appeal to us, maybe because "home is where the heart is."

Welcome Home, 64 x 64", by Alex Anderson 


Here's a delightful neighborhood of cheerful houses done in russet and gold. Internationally-famous designer Alex Anderson has brightened the traditional fall quilt by adding contemporary colors of aqua blue and rose pink, which make the maple leaves and houses sparkle against the dark background.

Little Houses, 48 x 60", by Ruth Powers


Ruth writes, "Much of my work is inspired by nature;  my daily walks fill my senses with color and design possibilities." Ruth has done an excellent job of selecting different blues and greens for the sky and earth, which complement the bright orange and orange-red of the homes. Ruth notes that this is a great pattern for using up fat quarters and scraps.

Little Old One Room Schoolhouse,  23 x 27", by Ruth Powers


The traditional schoolhouse of the frontier, complete with a bell tower, beckons us back to learning, as leaves swirl in the early autumn breeze.  Ruth Powers offers this charming scene as a pattern, along with many other creative designs.

Firelight and Chimney Smoke, 62 x 50, by Martha Milne at MachineQuilter (UK)


Martha Milne constructed this beautiful Amish-style schoolhouse quilt out of jewel-tone remnants. The light and bright windows in this quilt give the inviting illusion of a warm, glowing hearth within, which beckons us inside. A free pattern can be downloaded at Popular Patchwork and Quilting. Martha is renowned for her machine quilting; for her DVDs and tutorials, please visit the machinequilter website.

Little Amsterdam by Marilyn Wood


Marilyn Wood notes, "This pattern is from the [ North Sea Quilters of ] the Netherlands. The flowered fabrics in the houses and border are antique Dutch reproduction fabrics from Amsterdam, my husband's favorite city."  Marilyn's striped border adds to the lively, upbeat personality of this quilt, which was shown at the 2013 Arizona Quilters' Guild show.

Pedestrian Friendly, 60 x 60", by Pat Dicker


Pat Dicker used high-energy colors to create a lively town adapted from Sue Garman's block-of-the-month quilt,  All Around the Town.  Pat tells us, "I named the quilt 'Pedestrian Friendly' because the original design has cars on it, and I chose to leave them out, so that the 'residents' would just walk from house to house." 

Schoolhouse Block, 19 x 22, from "There's No Place Like Home" by Sonya Chinn at Sonya's Snippets


Quilter and teacher Sonya Chinn, creator of the Sonya's Snippets blog, sewed this charming scene for a block-of-the-month quilt which she calls 'There's No Place Like Home'. Sonya has added an individualized touch by placing the initials of her children's school on the quaint schoolhouse.  Sonya's complete quilt was based on the "Home Is Where the Heart Is"  pattern, shown below, by The Stitch Connection.

Home is Where the Heart Is by The Stitch Connection

Image credits:  Little Amsterdam was photographed by Quilt Inspiration. The quilts by Pat Dicker, Sonya Chinn, Ruth Powers, Alex Anderson and Martha Milne are shown with permission of the artists and were originally featured in 2010 at Quilt Inspiration.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Free pattern day: Tote bags !

Just in time for back-to-school or holiday projects, we've assembled a collection of 50  free sewing patterns for tote bags, shopping bags, backpacks, and duffle bags.  These are perfect for books, groceries, knitting, or anything else you need to haul around! You might also be interested in free patterns for purses and tablet and laptop cases.  (Note: this post was updated on August 19, 2015).


Nap Sack backpack free pattern by Debbie Mumm


Governors Island Backpack tutorial at The New New


Cargo Duffle Bag, free pattern by Anna Graham at Noodle Head for Robert Kaufman Fabrics 


Herringbone Haul it All Tote tutorial by Marion McClellan of My Quilt Dad at Moda Bakeshop


Drunkard’s Path Quilted Tote tutorial at Ricochet and Away 


Clermont Farms Quilted Tote Bag tutorial by Glenn Dragone at Moda Bakeshop (click for pdf)


Simple Six-Pocket Bag, 8 x 10 x 4", tutorial at Better Homes and Gardens



Sewing Mat Carrier Bag, fits an 18"sewing mat, free pattern by Melissa Peda for Free Spirit Fabric


Alex bag tutorial at Claire Turpin Designs 


Fancy Free multipurpose sling bag, free pattern by Melissa Peda at 100 billion stars 


Fancy Free Bag, version 2 by Melissa Peda

Felt Tote Bag tutorial by Martha Stewart


Black and White Currant Tote, free pattern at Henry Glass Fabrics 


The Big Tote tutorial by Shwin and Shwin (this tote has braid handles and a zipper top)



The Perfect Whatever Bag, free pattern by Bonnie Christine at Going Home to Roost



Meadlowlark Tote, free pattern by Carrie Bloomston for Windham Fabrics (PDF)


Back To School Kid Size tote, tutorial by Christina McKinney for Birch Fabrics



Secretary Bag tutorial by Sara Lawson at Sew Sweetness


DIY Tote with leather straps and snap button closure, tutorial by Bee Inspired as seen at Sew Sweetness 


Ipanema Beach Bag tutorial by Heidi Staples of Fabric Mutt for Birch Fabrics


Reusable Washable Shopping Bag tutorial at Sue Daurio's Quilting Adventures


Trail tote bag, cross-body style in two sizes with outside zipper, free pattern by Noodle Head for Robert Kaufman Fabrics 


Oversize reversible tote, free pattern by Megan Avery for Windham Fabrics
 

Dubstepper messenger bag, 10 x 12 x 3”, free pattern at Robert Kaufman Fabrics


Quilted tote bag tutorial at All People Quilt


Take Me To Class tote bag tutorial by The Sewing Chick as seen at Sew In Love With Fabric


Time Warp Tote, free pattern at Cloud 9 Fabrics (pdf) 


Reversible Tote bag, free pattern at Camelot Fabrics
 

Market Tote bag tutorial by Bijou Lovely Designs


Canvas Tote Bag tutorial by Mary Pepper for All People Quilt


Fashion Market Tote, free pattern by Whistler Studios for Windham Fabrics


Right Turn Bag, free pattern by Anna Maria Horner


Placemat Bag tutorial (make a bag from one quilted placemat) by No Big Dill


Chenille bag with name tag and pocket at Better Homes and Gardens


Lunch Bag tutorial by Ayumi at Pink Penguin


Color Beat Tote, free pattern at Robert Kaufman Fabrics


Square Bag tutorial by Anita at Bloomin Workshop


Mother and Daughter Tote Bag, free pattern at Oliver + S


Bias Tape Tote Bag tutorial at Martha Stewart 


Easy Pleazy Tote Tutorial at Pieceful Kwilter


Lazy Days Quilted Tote tutorial at Better Homes & Gardens


The Big Tote by Terri Stegmiller: here is the original post and the downloadable pattern


Classic Tote tutorial by Irene at Sew Mama Sew


Removable Tote Organizer at Martha Stewart


This handy three-pocket pouch is fashioned from a carpenter's canvas nail apron.  Cut off the apron straps, sew on buttons and twill tape loops, then slip inside a tote bag like the one shown.

Reversible Bag pattern and tutorial at Very Purple Person


Bag with Fabric Panel Insert, free pattern by Eldrid Røyset Førde at Kameleon Quilt


Fat Sack by Terri Atkinson at Atkinson Designs


Offset Chevron Tote tutorial by Mandy from Fabric Paper Glue


Hand Appliqued Petal Bag tutorial by Vanessa Christenson at V and Co


Quilted Chevron Tote Bag by Maureen Cracknell for Riley Blake Designs


Diana Hobo, free pattern at Think Liz


It’s a Cinch Bag tutorial by Sweet Verbena


Scrappy Poppy Bag, free pattern by Virginia Robertson for McCall’s Quilting


Gray and Orange Pocket Bag, free pattern at Better Homes and Gardens


Pillow Cover to Messenger Bag tutorial at Living With Punks



Carry All Tote with Ruffle Fabric by Vanessa Christenson at V and Co


Patchwork Conversation Bag tutorial at Sew Sweetness


Just Beachy tote bag, free pattern at Robert Kaufman Fabrics 



Row By Row H2O tote bag, free pattern at Timeless Treasures Fabrics 


Mesh Beach Bag tutorial by Martha Stewart



Image credits and links: All images are copyrighted by their owners. Please respect their generosity in sharing their free patterns, and the restrictions they have placed on the use of these designs. Complete information can be found at the designers' websites provided in the links.  If any links are broken, we'd love to know; email us at Quilt Inspiration.
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