There’s been a flurry of interest in the making of Christmas ornaments recently . . . understandably, since the holidays are fast approaching. Way back in the summer, I gave away some little kits for making a paper-pieced star ornament, in honor of the theme of the Hands of Friendship Quilt Guild’s annual Quilt Show.
In the interest of helping those of you wanting to adorn your Christmas trees with handmade ornaments this year, I’ve decided to put those instructions out here as sort of a brief and kind of “incomplete” tutorial so that you can make some star ornaments for your tree — or for whatever: put them on your packages, fill a basket, use them as party favors, give them as gifts, give them to all your quilting friends to use as pincushions! — use your imagination.
I’m calling this tutorial “incomplete” because first off, you’ll need some paper pieces to use, since this is done using the English paper piecing method. You can buy Paper Pieces from Paper Pieces. Each ornament uses 2 hexagons and 12 jewels. You can purchase the paper pieces in different sizes to make different sized ornaments. The one shown here uses the smaller size, but you can’t really tell that from the picture. Paper Pieces sells two different sizes of jewels, and it tells you right there which size hexagon to purchase to match up with it, so you can’t go wrong. Also, when you buy the paper pieces, they come with an instruction sheet that shows you how to do paper piecing, another thing that I’m not including in my tutorial. So . . . buy the paper pieces you need . . . use their instructions for doing the preparation with the paper, then start here to finish your ornament:
All it takes in the way of fabric for your ornament is some scraps. Here’s a chance to use up leftovers of Christmas fabrics, or little snippets of your favorite colors for the holiday. (I used red, gold, and blue to match our theme — I wasn’t making mine for Christmas at the time!) You’ll also need a wee bit of stuffing to stuff the ornament with.
When you have all your pieces prepared (according to Paper Pieces’ instruction sheet), stitch them together in the configuration shown above. You will have 2 units just alike. Press these units to ensure that the edges stay put, then remove all the basting stitches and paper.
Match the two units up, WRONG sides together, and using the same stitch you used to join all the pieces, begin whip stitching the two units together around the edges. Leave enough of a gap for stuffing the ornament. Stuff it lightly with a little bit of fiberfill or scrap batting, then finish stitching the opening. You can then add a hanging string if you wish, or you could even stuff it a bit fuller for use as a pincushion.
Easy, huh? You can whip up a dozen or so in no time and be all ready for the holidays!