Welcome to Cabin Creek Stitchery + Free T-Shirt Quilt Tutorial (with step-by-step photos!)

Welcome to Cabin Creek Stitchery!  It is a chilly -4 degrees outside this morning with sunny skies and few clouds.  Perfect weather to stay indoors, nestled by the fireplace that heats our log cabin, and write my first blog.  So, what do I tell you?

Well, how did I get to this place?  One summer, my husband and I vacationed in an RV for a two week vacation with our two young children.  We made a wrong turn and saw a sign that read “New Log Homes For Sale”.  Hmmm, I wonder.  We walked the land, looked out at the mountains, listened to the water run along the creek and asked, “Do you think we can do it?”

That “wrong turn” became a new beginning for our family.  We left suburbia and embraced north country living.  We bought 8 acres of land, built a log cabin, and vowed to appreciate the beauty and nature around us.  This change helped us all.  It didn’t happen overnight, but it serves as a constant reminder to enjoy life and every day we have on this planet.  Our family unit is committed to creating a safe and nurturing environment filled with love.

As a family, we strive to work together and support each other.   My son loves to read about science and nature and how things work.  So when I found fabric with gears in the pattern, I had to buy some.  My daughter twirls around the house, fluttering and flapping her arms wishing she could fly so the fairy fabric was a must-have for her.  My husband hoed the earth in our backyard and we started a garden the first spring we lived here.  He split and stacked firewood to heat our home in the winter and I made salads from the vegetables we grew and baked homemade bread.  It’s a drastic change from working as a pediatric physical therapist, but so enjoyable.

So, how did Cabin Creek Stitchery come about?  Did the first glimpse begin when I was a young girl sitting by my maternal grandmother’s feet as she crocheted a baby blanket and I made a long foundation chain stitch?  Did the hours of making crafts with my mother at the kitchen table when I was in grade school start the idea?  How about when I received my first sewing machine so I could learn to quilt over a decade ago?

My first quilts were made to decorate the bare walls of our starter house.  Then came the flannel lap quilts to keep my husband and I warm in the cold, drafty room when we watched t.v. together at night.  Soon, I made baby quilts for my friends who were expecting their first child and then I couldn’t stay away from the sewing machine.  My husband would laugh when I bought fabric so I could cut it up into pieces and sew it back together again, but I loved the whole process.  Feeling the soft fabric, seeing the shades of colors and watching the pieces move together to create art was fun to me.  I would spend hours in my sewing room and get lost in the project.  Until, my son arrived and my attention turned to motherhood.

My children are a precious gift to me and I treasure the time I can spend with them.  I know they grow up too fast and the time is gone, so I put away the sewing machine and smiled and laughed and read and fed and rocked my baby every day.  Soon, there were two little ones giggling in the house and leaving messy fingerprints on all the surfaces in the house and car.  Every day I would give them all I had:  all my energy, all my efforts and all my love.  And it worked.  They grew and changed and became little people who played outside and explored the world around them.  They spent bits of time away from me and I enjoyed watching their wings spread and see them fly.  Yes, they still need me to love and nurture and care for them.  But, they also need time away from me.  And so, I get to dust off and uncover a piece of me that existed before motherhood:  the quilter.

But one house can hold only so many quilts.  And I was looking for new challenges.  So, when I was asked if I could make t-shirt quilts for a friend to give as Christmas gifts to her nieces, I was ecstatic.  Yes, and here’s a tutorial on making t-shirt quilts.

Cabin Creek Stitchery presents a free t-shirt quilt tutorial with step-by-step photos.

Cabin Creek Stitchery presents a free t-shirt quilt tutorial with step-by-step photos.

Step #1:  Gather colorful and sentimental t-shirts in a pile and wash.

Step #1: Gather colorful and sentimental t-shirts in a pile and wash.

Step #2:  Cut t-shirts along the seams.

Step #2: Cut t-shirts along the seams.

Step #3:  Measure the largest picture to decide template size.

Step #3: Measure the largest picture to decide template size.

Step #4:  Cut each shirt the same size.

Step #4: Cut each shirt the same size.

Step #5:  Here is my stack of 10” squares.

Step #5: Here is my stack of 10” squares.

Step #6:  Arrange shirts in rows.

Step #6: Arrange shirts in rows.

Step #7:  Use pins to secure squares together with right sides facing.

Step #7: Use pins to secure squares together with right sides facing.

Step #8:  Serge two shirts together for a secure seam.

Step #8: Serge two shirts together for a secure seam.

Step #9:  Attach shirts together to make one complete row.

Step #9: Attach shirts together to make one complete row.

Step #10:  Press seams flat.

Step #10: Press seams flat.

Step #11:  Complete each horizontal row.

Step #11: Complete each horizontal row.

Step #12:  Place horizontal row 1 on row 2 with wrong sides together.

Step #12: Place horizontal row 1 on row 2 with wrong sides together.

Step #13:  Sew seams securely.

Step #13: Sew seams securely.

Step #14:  Press seams flat.

Step #14: Press seams flat.

Step #15:  Use caution when placing iron on shirt decals.  Some will melt with heat.

Step #15: Use caution when placing iron on shirt decals. Some will melt with heat.

Step #16:  Pressing is key to successful quilts.

Step #16: Pressing is key to successful quilts.

Step #17:  Add borders to overall quilt top.

Step #17: Add borders to overall quilt top.

Step #18:  Square corners as needed.

Step #18: Square corners as needed.

Step #19:  Complete backing with borders as desired.

Step #19: Complete backing with borders as desired.

Step #20:  Unroll batting and cut to size of quilt with extra spare inches around all sides.

Step #20: Unroll batting and cut to size of quilt with extra spare inches around all sides.

Step #21:  Place backing wrong side up on flat surface smoothing out all creases.

Step #21: Place backing wrong side up on flat surface smoothing out all creases.

Step #22:  Place batting over backing.

Step #22: Place batting over backing.

Step #23:  Place right side of top over batting.

Step #23: Place right side of top over batting.

Step #24:  Quilt top as desired.

Step #24: Quilt top as desired.

Step #25:  Cut excess batting from borders.

Step #25: Cut excess batting from borders.

Step # 26:  Cut binding strips.

Step # 26: Cut binding strips.

Step #27:  Sew strips together for the length of binding needed for your quilt.

Step #27: Sew strips together for the length of binding needed for your quilt.

Step #28:  Press binding strips in half.

Step #28: Press binding strips in half.

Step #29:  Pin binding strip to edge of quilt.

Step #29: Pin binding strip to edge of quilt.

Step #30:  Sew binding strip to quilt top.

Step #30: Sew binding strip to quilt top.

Step #31:  Hand sew binding to back of quilt.

Step #31: Hand sew binding to back of quilt.

Step #32:  Stand back and admire your work.

Step #32: Stand back and admire your work.

Step #33:  Give your finished quilt to a happy customer.

Step #33: Give your finished quilt to a happy customer.

Please post comments and questions below.  Visit my facebook page at Cabin Creek Stitchery and email orders to dawn@cabincreekstitchery.com

 

11 Responses so far.

  1. lynne says:

    Congratulations Dawn on your new endeavor. Thank you for the photo tutorial. Love it.
    Lynne

  2. Nancy says:

    Keep blogging and stitching! Love to hear where life’s road has taken you. So happy for you and your family!

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