Don’t be afraid to customize that border print!
This post shows how you can take a border print and use it in an unexpected way. We started with Michael Miller’s Love Nest. The border print that comes with this collection is just gorgeous. I decided to use Poorhouse Quilt Designs “A Novel Approach” tote pattern, which features fabric motifs or quilt blocks on the outer pockets. The instructions allow you to customize the size of the pocket based on the size of the feature design.
In case you missed it, here is a short video that shows Love Nest fabric that I am using in my cute tote! (This was right out of the box, so pardon the wrinkles!!)!
The pocket width to start with is 6” - perfect for the width of the bird design. However, the spacing between the birds was a little larger, so I increased the width of the tote to 23” so that I could accommodate the design. Easy! Just don’t forget to increase all of the related measurements!
Below left is a picture of half of the border print from this collection. The dashed lines show roughly where I cut the fabric apart.
For the pockets, I cut the border strip required. The Main section above pocket piece were cut to end just above the leafy plants. I then used the extra to piece my Main Tote piece with the pretty navy blue Love nest. The picture below right shows how it’s pieced together. The plain section in the middle will appear behind the pockets.
I quilted with Aurifil monofilament thread. On the pockets, I marked a 45 degree line in the middle and quilted with a walking foot; I echoed that line ¼” away then spaced the next line at 1-1/2” away. Here is a close-up of the pocket quilting:
For the Main part of the tote, I did slightly wavy lines (freehand) and echoed each of them at ¼” - I did cross lines to evoke the idea of stems. Here is a picture of the quilting before I assembled the tote. I really liked how the it turned out. I used Bosal’s In-R-Form for the base. For the pockets, I interfaced with a light fusible fleece, just so that I didn’t add bulk at the side seams. Because I used foam – I used a Microtex Sharp size 80 needle to quilt, and a size 90 topstitch needle to assemble.
I really love how this tote turned out and I hope you gathered some inspiration! Sometimes that border print just tells you what to do – all you have to do is listen!
Thanks for reading! - Kris