Folded Fabric TreesI have been busy these past few days making folded fabric trees. It all started innocently enough when my quilting group, Stepping Stones (of Binghamton, NY) had our annual quilting demonstration at the Roberson Museum. For the past few years we have had a ‘make and take’ demo when visitors to the Home for the Holidays event can make on ornament and take it with them. This year was folded fabric trees – and I was hooked!
I had a stash of Christmas motif fabrics and decided to make some from each of design. Well, several hours later of tracing an 8-inch lunch plate on each fabric (2 layers) and then cutting out along the line, I had enough for 76 trees!
Each circle was cut in half, and matched with a second half-circle. These were sewn together, with right sides together; leaving a 1.5-2 inch opening for turning on the straight edge of the half-circle. Press and clip corners, being careful not to cut into the thread.
Using a hemostat clamping tool, I turned each of the half-circle right-side out and pressed flat [you can hand sew the opening closed now if you want]. Fold the fabric from the curved edge to the straight edge – making the sections of the tree ‘branches’. The ornaments pictured have 4 folds, but 3 work well too. If you have directional fabric, sometimes you have to fold from the other side to make sure the motifs are upright.
Next I sewed a loop of 1/8-inch ribbon, knotted at one end, into a fold of the tree. This will be hidden inside once the tree is completed. Now it’s time to embellish!
Decorate the trees with trims, buttons, etc. prior to tacking the sides down. This will hide the sewing inside the tree and won’t show on the back. Once you are happy with your little tree, tack the sides with blind stitches and matching tread. [If you didn’t close the half-circle opening yet, this is the time to stitch it closed.] I put the star buttons on top once the other decorations were added – saves from getting your thread all tangled up.
Now I have LOTS more trees to decorate – will likely spill into next year too!
P.S. The Stepping Stone Quilt Club decorates a tree every year at the Roberson’s Home for the Holiday’s event with handmade ornaments. Members of the group also loan quilts to decorate the walls and hallways – it makes a really warm and cozy feel to the event.