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Sew this fun Halloween miniature quilt wall hanging and use up some of your stash of scraps!
Hooray for fall! We love Halloween in our house, but not the uber creepy, scary elements of the season. I wanted to create a wall hanging for my granddaughters but it needed to be something that will age gracefully with them.
I want them to be able to enjoy it in their youth now, but hopefully also cherish it in their grown up years as something grandma made for them by hand. I plan to make a seasonal series of these wall hangings for the girls. Here is one of the girl’s quilt hangers with the first quilt that I made for it.
The beauty of a wall hanging versus a bedquilt is that it won’t get spilled on, played with, machine washed zillions of times or hung in a window where it’ll fade into lost heirloom oblivion. Maybe the collection will even make the grade and go to college with them to decorate their first home away from home!
Click below for our free VeryCreate pattern and tutorial for making my original mini quilt using our fun primitive embroidery designs and a few scraps from your stash of fabrics.
I made two versions, and here is the second option:
Click here to download a free pdf template of the center panel to embroider.
Print out the patterns on regular computer printer paper, aligning the overlaps so that they match up at the overlap. Tape together the two pieces and set aside to trace onto your center fabric later. (I just use my kitchen window, but if you have a light box, that would be great!)
You can enlarge it or reduce it however you like, but keep the dimensions the same if you plan on using my pieced blocks cutting instructions below.
For each wall hanging, you will need:
The downloaded pdf pattern
One piece of parchment colored cotton fabric sized: 15 inches x 13 inches
(You will need this much extra so that you can fit it into a handheld embroidery hoop). You can dip dye your fabric in coffee or tea if you want a really aged, pioneer look. I decided to keep it in its original state.
Brown and fall colored fabric scraps with light, medium and dark variations.
1/4 yd cheddar reproduction fabric for sashing, cut into 1 ¼ inch strips from selvage to selvage (the long way)
22 x 16 inches cotton fabric for the backing PLUS one piece 2 1/2 inches x 22 inches for a hanging tube.
Batting cut to size of backing
Black embroidery floss
Fabric for binding
For each block gather four colorways and cut:
cut two 2 ½ inch squares Dark scrap cotton fabric
cut two 2 ½ inch squares light scrap cotton fabric
cut four 1 ¾ inch squares Medium, or light or dark scrap cotton fabric for the four corners of each block
cut one contrasting fabric 1 ¾ inch square for center of block
For each block, you will need one center square, four matching corner squares and four pieced X Squares. In this example, I used two cream and two of my darkest darks. (I know I picture four of them here, but I ended up making extra, so plan on two lights and two darkest darks for each block).
Quilt blocks are the best when there is a contrast of light and dark color pieces and medium and small prints or solids. You’ll wonder why it doesn’t have the zing that you’re looking for if that contrast in pattern and light/dark is missing.
Construct the X blocks:
Gather two light squares and two medium or dark squares.
Lay one dark/medium square and one light square right sides together and draw a diagonal line from one corner to the opposite corner. You can use a quilting marking pen, chalk or a pencil. Stitch on both sides of the drawn line using a scant ¼ in seam.
Cut the two pieces on the drawn line and press open, towards the dark side. Trim off the corners.
Repeat for the second pair.
Assemble the X Squares:
Take two of the above pieces and lay them right sides together with opposite colors touching each other and aligning the seams so that they meet directly on top of each other. You can fold back a corner to check and see how well the seams are aligning. Adjust as needed.
Draw a diagonal line from one corner to the opposite corner. Stitch a scant ¼ inch seam on either side of the line.
Cut apart on the drawn center line. Take each half and clip to the stitching line on either side of the seams like the photo below:
Pro tip: Here’s a quilting trick to reduce the bulk in the seam intersections:
Now that you have clipped each intersection, finger press the seams open with each flap going in opposite directions. See below:
It makes a nifty checkerboard appearance on the back and makes a nearly flat center point.
Iron your little X Square really flat.
Clip the corner flaps off. Trim each x Square to 1 ¾ inches square. Voila, four X Squares!
Assemble the quilt block:
Select your corner squares and one center square and assemble the block similar to this:
Make sure the dark hour glasses of the X Squares are facing the correct direction or you’ll have to unpick your stitches and redo it. (Guess who did it wrong and learned the hard way). I learned to have the dark part of each hour glass X touch the center square. That pretty much kept me from making the same mistake over again.
This is where you should pin your work, then turn it over and double check before you stitch it down. It’s easy to get confused and mix up the order. Just keep the center square in the center and you’ll do great.
Stitch the first row together, then the middle row, then the lower row. Then stitch the three rows together.
Now you can repeat the clipping technique on each bulky point intersections on the back.
It takes a few minutes to clip and finger press each of the eight crossroad meeting points, but just look at how flat and fun the back is! I actually learned this a looooong time ago, but I had forgotten it, as I’ve done most of my sewing efforts in making garments and home decor, not patchwork. But, after reading one of Jo Morton’s great reproduction quilt books, I had one of those memory “return from oblivion moments” and thought “Hey, I remember that now! I’m gonna make something small with all my scraps and make the seams flat instead of like Mt. Everest.” I have to admit, I love how it turned out! You can check out her wonderful reproduction quilt books at the links at the end of this article!
I am so inspired by her beautiful quilts. I just gaze at the photographs in her books and on pinterest and adore her work. I don’t have her gift of color selection, nor access to all her fabric choices, but I work with what I’ve got on hand and it all turns out beautiful. Afterall, If you loved the fabric enough to buy it in the first place, it will turn out great.
Steam iron the block as flat as you can get it. You might even spray a little starch on it and iron it stiff to hold it’s shape.
Here’s my not-so-perfect block. As you may be able to tell, I’m NOT about precision and micro-accuracy when I quilt. The photo is large, but actually this is a pretty small block in person. This picture is before I squared it up and trimmed it to 4 ¼ inches. Trim each block to 4 ¼ inches square
Set finished blocks aside and trace a copy of the design of your choice onto muslin or ecru cotton fabric. Outline stitch using three strands of cotton embroidery floss. Iron flat.
Trim the finished embroidered block to 13 ¼ inches x 10 inches and set aside.
Quilt Top Assembly
Using the cheddar sashing, sew one strip along the top and bottom of the small quilt patchwork blocks as in the photo below. You will need three blocks and four small pieces of sashing to complete one side panel.
Repeat for a total of two side patchwork panels.
Sew a long sashing strip to the two long sides of each of the two patchwork panels. Press seams to away from the patchwork. Set panels aside.
Coming back to the embroidered panel, sew one sashing strip to the top and bottom of the panel.
Iron the seams away from the center.
Lay out the panel pieces on either side of the embroidered center panel and stitch in place. Press seams away from the center panel. You’re almost done! Wahoo!
Lay the backing right side down, making sure the edge with the quilt hanging tube is on the upper side, away from you. Lay the batting on top, then add the pieced quilt top right side up.
Baste in place using your favorite method. Then quilt by hand or machine as desired. (I love hand quilting. This little wall hanging is ideal to quilt by hand while relaxing in a few evenings. My lazy uneven stitches look right at home on a primitive pattern like this one!)
Trim the raw edges of the quilted wall hanging and bind using your favorite method. Here, I just used the overhanging fabric from the back and folded it over to make a casual binding.
Create a safe hanging tube:
on the 2 1/2 x 22 inch strip of backing fabric, fold down the short ends ½ inch (raw sides together) and iron flat. Stitch across the raw edge of each of the ends. (This will anchor the fabric so you can slide a dowel through the hanging tube once it’s finished and the dowel won’t catch on the ends of the fabric.
You could opt to stitch the raw edges down with a zig zag stitch, but my sewing machine was put away at this stage, so I grabbed some fusible web and ironed that sucker down.
Here’s what I used:
Now fold each of the long edges over, wrong sides together and iron a ¼ inch fold on each side.
Lay the backing fabric right sides up and position the hanging tube along the top of the long side about ½ inch from the top edge. Sew along the fold of each long edge, using an invisible stitch and leaving the short ends open. This will form the tube for a dowel or hanger to slide through when you are ready to hang your quilt.
Here’s my inspiration:
Here is where I bought my original quilt hanger.
And here is where you can find similar ones for fast shipping:
Don’t forget to sign your quilt or make a quilt label for the back and sew it in place with an invisible stitch.
Enjoy your charming and quaint halloween wall hanging or use it as a table top decoration, and congratulate yourself on using some of your scrap stash! Show us some pictures of your creations!