Urban Scandinavian Sewing Book Tour & Giveaway



Today is my stop on the Urban Scandinavian Sewing Bloggers Book Tour! and I am delighted to be sharing this refreshing new book from Kirstyn Cogan. The tour began last week and runs through Monday, August 31.  I am joining five other talented sewing bloggers who are sharing their projects  and reviews of the book. Urban Scandinavian Sewing is available now at C&T Publishing and Amazon.

Book Tour Schedule:


Nicole from Modern Handcraft

Hilary from Young Texan Mama

Nicole from Snips Snippets


Jennie from Clover & Violet

Tessa from The Sewing Chick (that’s me!)

Alli from More Please Thank You


I have always admired the Scandinavian style for its light colors, simple lines and organic nature. With a Scandinavian heritage, Kirstyn exemplifies the style beautifully in her projects for the home, fashion and baby.The instructions are well written and every photograph is a breath of fresh air.

Naturally, I wanted to make one of the quilty projects, and chose the Quilted Bed Scarf. Measuring 80″ long, it fits across up to a queen size bed nicely, but I knew from the beginning that I would hang it on the wall. I have a pesky, tall narrow wall in my living room that was crying out for something handmade!




I have recently redecorated the living room (oh, let’s be real, I am still in the process of redecorating the living room) in a soft, coastal color scheme. The natural and white linens paired with a blue/green cotton evoke the elegant yet rustic, sand and sea feel I am going for.




All the quilting is done with a 30-weight natural thread that blends well with the linen as well as the blue fabric. I spaced the rows apart at random widths to give it a bit more interest. I find the best way to keep my rows straight is to use the edge of my presser foot as a guide and move the needle position to get varying widths.




The accent hand stitching is done with three strands of DMC cotton floss, color #3766. To get the stitches straight, I first drew lines with a Frixion pen – oh, I do love the Frixion pen!! Below is a little extra detail, just for fun!




Wood buttons add to the organic feel…




The back is a fun print – an older Dena Designs fabric that I just adore!  Nobody can see it, but I know it is there and that makes me happy!




It’s not easy getting a good photo of something so long and thin, so I had to take it outside…




And, if I change my mind, it can still go on the bed…




Did I say something about a giveaway?? 

As part of the book tour, Kirstyn is giving away copy of her book and a FQ bundle of her new fabric line, Urban Scandinavian, that is shipping to fabric stores near you next month, to two lucky winners! Enter below in the rafflecopter giveaway, open through midnight, August 30.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Be sure to also visit Kirstyn’s blog, http://www.kirstyncogan.com/blog/ for more inspiration and a round up of all the bloggers on the tour!

Thanks to Kirstyn for her beautiful book and thanks for stopping by,


Tutorial :: Cat Weave Mini Quilt

This tutorial is for the mini sized quilt only. It measures 21″ square and has a total of nine cats. A basic knowledge of piecing and quilting is required.


cat weave mini quilt diagram 1



  • Background fabric – fat quarter or (2) 3 1/2″ strips x w.o.f.*
  • 9 different fabrics for cats – 3 1/2″ x 12″ strip of each
  • 3/4 yards for back
  • 24″ square of batting
  • binding fabric – about 5″ x w.o.f.*

*w.o.f. = width of fabric

CUT from background fabric:

  • (4) rectangles 3 1/2″ x 9 1/2″
  • (10) squares 3 1/2″
  • (18) rectangles 1 1/2″ x 3 1/2″

BEFORE cutting the pieces for the cats, consider the diagram below. Notice there are two cats whose heads and bodies are separate pieces. Sorry kitties, it was necessary to avoid partial seams and facilitate the assembly! Decide which fabrics those will be – I suggest using small, busy prints here so that the seams won’t be noticeable.



cat weave mini quilt break apart


CUT from those two fabrics:

  • (1) square 3 1/2″
  • (1) rectangle 2 1/2″ x 3 1/2″
  • (2) rectangles 1 1/2″ x 3 1/2″
  • (2) squares 1 1/2″

CUT from the remaining seven fabrics:

  • (1) rectangles 5 1/2″ x 3 1/2″
  • (2) rectangles 1 1/2″ x 3 1/2″
  • (2) squares 1 1/2″




  • All seams are 1/4″
  • Press seams towards the darker fabric.


cat weave units diagram


UNIT A: Make two of these

  • Make two “legs” squares by sewing together three 1 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ strips – two of the same print with a background in between.
  • Sew a 3 1/2″ background square to either side of the legs square, be sure the legs are parallel to the seams.

cat weave legs panel


  • Make the ears by sewing two 1 1/2″ print squares to either side of a 1 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ strip. Mark a diagonal line through the corners, stitch on the line and trim to 1/4″. I like to press the seams open here.

cat weave ears


  • Sew an “ears” and  a “legs” to either side of a 5 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ rectangle (using all the same fabrics) to create a complete cat section.
  • Sew a 3 1/2″ x 9 1/2″ background rectangle to the left side of the cat section and the legs section from steps 1 and 2 to the right side of the cat section.

cat weave unit A break apart



UNIT B – Make three of these

Repeat the first and second steps in Unit A to create three more cat sections.

UNIT C – make two of these

  • Repeat the first and second steps in Unit A to create two more cat sections.
  • Sew the cat heads by sewing an ear section to a 2 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ rectangle of the same print.
  • Sew a 3 1/2″ background square to either side of the cat head square.
  • Sew a 3 1/2″ x 9 1/2″ background rectangle to the right side of a cat section.
  • Sew the head section to the left side of the cat section, the cat ears face towards the center.


Unit C break apart


And lastly, sew a 3 1/2″ background square to a 3 1/2″ square of each of the two fabrics that you used for the heads in Unit C.




Refer to the arrows in the diagram for the order to sew the sections together. Once the horizontal seams are sewn, sew the three columns together, lining up the seams where the legs and heads meet the bodies.







As with any quilting project, press well and trim excess threads. Cut a 27″ square of backing fabric and a 24″ square of batting. Layer the back, batting and top; baste together. Quilt any way that you like, I simply stitched vertical lines spaced about 1/2″ apart.

You will need to cut two strips for the binding, one was a smidgen short! Cut in the width you prefer, I used 2 1/4″ since I hand stitched the binding.

Once again, here is a photo of the actual mini quilt:

cat weave mini quilt in makower cats



I hope that you enjoyed the tutorial. Please contact me with any questions or comments!!



Cat Weave Mini Quilt

Not long ago, I bought a $2 book at the Goodwill book store called Baby Patchwork (Gianna Valli Berti; Sterling Publishing Co.) It was written twenty years ago, but I could see that the projects could easily be adapted to today’s styles. One that I especially liked was this cat quilt. With all the crazy cat ladies I know (you know who you are!), I was sure the opportunity to make it would present itself!




As luck would have it, I got a swap partner at the Stash Bash who is just one of those cat ladies and she asked for a mini quilt! Score!!

Unfortunately, when I opened up the book, I discovered that it doesn’t give the instructions for making the cat quilt, just a picture! Huh? So I had to figure it out, which was fairly easy except for determining how to avoid partial seams. One cat may have had his head separated from his body!


cat weave mini quilt


I decided not to have any partial cats falling off the sides. Floating cat heads are not pretty.

I get the biggest kick that this is a cat quilt made from cat fabric. It is Cats from the Henley Studio for Makower uk. Quilted with straight, vertical lines, it measures 21″ square.


cat weave mini quilt with back


More cats on the back and the stripe is perfect for the binding. The background is white Kona cotton, Robert Kaufman Fabrics.

It was super fun to make and my partner loved it. A win-win!! I would be happy to write a tutorial if anyone is interested!

Linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish it Up Friday and Confessions of a Fabric Addict – Whoop Whoop!


Thanks so much for visiting and Happy Sewing,



In Progress – Crazy Cats Mini Quilt

bundle of Curious Cats fabric from the Henley StudioI am not a cat a person. I am not a non-cat person, either, but I am not “into” cats like some of my friends are. Therefore, I don’t usually gravitate to cat fabric, but when I saw this line from Makower UK, I thought it was the cutest and wanted to have some.

So when an upcoming swap partner said she likes cats, I took the opportunity to buy a lovely half yard bundle. Serendipity, don’t you think?

I think it is the colors that make me love it so much – soft aqua, gray, pink and raspberry! That, and the cute smiling faces of the kitties. There is also a couple of little florals that have no hint of cat in them and will be useful in other projects.




I don’t want to give too much of the project away, just in case she reads my blog, so a sneak peak is all I can share. Let’s just say that it is cats made out of cats…




It makes me so happy – I hope she really likes cats! I am using the smiling kitties for the back and a pretty stripe for the binding:




If you are a regular reader of my blog, you may notice the different look! I have moved to WordPress – more about the final step and some insight tomorrow!

Linking up with Lee at Freshly Pieced for Work In Progress Wednesday (for the first time in forever!)

Happy Sewing,



Merry Mug Rug Blog Hop

christmas mug rug free motion embroidery the sewing chick

A small project like a mug rug is a great opportunity to try a new technique. When Jennifer at Ellison Lane asked me to participate in her holiday mug rug hop, I knew it would be the perfect time to try free motion embroidery with applique.

I was inspired by Poppy Treffrey’s book, Freehand Machine Embroidery, and the beautiful creations from my Flickr friend, Jackie {chloeandme}. It would probably have been a good idea to practice a little before making the mug rug, but instead I just jumped right in and started.

I began with some Essex yarn-dyed linen in flax and some sweet Liberty of London fabrics. I bought the prints in a sixteenth-yard piece bundle from this shop. These bundles are a great way to get an affordable assortment of these pricey prints.

To make the pattern pieces, I doodled the trees which was easy, but for the car, I found an image online and then traced over it on my iPad.  Because Liberty is lightweight, I used fusible web, traced the pieces on the paper backing (in reverse!) and cut them out. I drew in the hills and laid out the paper pattern pieces for placement.

Ignore the words, I had the crazy notion that I could free motion them, but they are so small that I decided against it. If I had more time, I would have stitched them by hand.

This kind of embroidery is done in layers, with the background areas done first and then adding each piece toward the foreground. I spray basted my quilt batting to the linen and stitched the hills first. I chose to go back and forth three times for the look I wanted.

Then I added the trees, one layer at a time starting with the bottom. The best tip I think I can give you is to not get stressed over every stitch. As I started this, I thought to myself, “oh my, this is terrible!” But as I added each layer and the piece began to take shape, each stitch becomes less important and the overall feel of my work began to come forward. This is supposed to be free-form and imperfect, that adds to the charm! Mine certainly could be better, and with practice, I will do a better job of the stitches being more on top of each other.

The car was added next, stitching around the outer edge. Then I drew in the details with a Frixion pen and stitched over the lines.

Then the presents were added and finally the free motion bow on the top!

A couple of fun button wheels finish the car!

The mug rug is finished by trimming the embroidered piece to size and layering it with a backing fabric – I used red and white ticking, an absolute favorite of mine. Baste around the edge and add a pretty binding.

There is no official mug rug standard size, make it whatever size you want. This is a generous 8″ x 11 1/2″, big enough for a big mug of cocoa and a cookie. Or two.

I hope this inspires you to try free motion embroidery and applique, it takes a bit of practice, but if you can free motion quilt, you can do this.

Thank you to Jennifer for inviting me to be a part of her Merry Mug Rug series. Be sure to visit her blog for a great giveaway for a $30 gift certificate to Southern Fabric and to see a list of the other participating bloggers.

Happy Sewing and Happy Holidays,

Tessa Marie

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