Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Christmas in July: Tree Skirt

Welcome to Benartex's Christmas in July Blog Hop here at Sew in Love with Fabric! We'll be sharing holiday-themed tutorials this week and beyond, so be sure to stop by each day to see a new tutorial and have a chance to win some fabric to get your own holiday sewing started!

Today Debby from Debby Kratovil Quilts is here sharing a tree skirt she made using the Homespun Holiday collection by Bristol Bay Studios (with a few blenders mixed in!). Check out Debby's tutorial and then head over to her blog to find out how you can win a fat quarter bundle of Homespun Holiday.

Here's Debby!

I love all things traditional about Christmas. I've been married for 37 years and have been gathering holiday trimmings, decorations, textiles, lights, etc all that time. Throw in 3 daughters and now 3 grandchildren, you know I'm swimming in all things Christmas. I have a little secret: in my last move or two I've misplaced my tree skirt. Gone!

I chose the Homespun Holiday Collection from Benartex for the purpose of making a traditional tree skirt using one of my new templates. It's a super-sized Dresden Plate ruler (I call it the "Vortex") which is multi-sized. You won't need my ruler to make our tree skirt (I offer the pdf of the template at the end of this post), so don't worry.

Well, let me first show you the fabrics, right? I didn't ask for all of them and I also asked for some of the Burlap Fabrics (blenders) which will work with Homespun Holiday.
Homespun Holiday Collection by Benartex
I also pulled out a few Fossil Ferns to see if they could fill in should I need them:
Fossil Ferns, still faithful after 15+ years
I was working with fat quarters, so this is perfect for those wonderful bundles you buy with no idea for a project in mind!

From each of the prints and the blenders I cut the following:
-- One 3-1/2" x 22" strip
-- One 9-1/2" x 22" strip
Pair one 3-1/2" strip and one 9-1/2" strip as you wish, taking care to have good contrast. Don't agonize over this step or get all "matchey-matchey." Sew with 1/4" seam. Press. Make 10 sets.

Ten sets of narrow and wide strips sewn and pressed
Now it's time to cut. Notice my template can flip-flop back and forth with no waste. Cut two wedges from each two-strip set. 
Cut two wedges from each set
Cut 10 wedges with the short strip at the widest end:

10 wedges with narrow strip unit at the widest
 Cut 10 wedges with the wide strip at the widest end of the shape:
10 wedges with the wide strip at the widest end of the shape
Now to sew and join the wedges in groups of fives. Notice that two sets begin and end with the wide fabric at the narrow end of the wedge; two sets begin and end with the short fabric strip on the narrow end of the wedge. Press seams open between the wedges as shown in one section below.

Four sections with 5 wedges in each
Decide where you want the opening and leave that edge unseamed. Select fabric for your lining (I found a Benartex Christmas print from a few years ago, about a yard), place tree skirt right sides together with lining and pin in place.

Pinning to lining
Now trim around entire skirt:
Tree skirt and lining pinned
First sew the two straight sides of the opening and trim excess wedge fabric:

Sew straight sides of skirt opening
Now we sew all around the outer curved edge and turn right side out. Press well
Tree skirt with lining, turned and pressed
Time for binding that center opening. It looked too small for me and so I trimmed away 1" from the curved edge:
Trim away 1" to enlarge opening
Enlarged opening
I cut BIAS binding from a wonderful stripe from last year, Season's Greetings by Benartex - just enough to surround the opening and give me a tie. I cut 2" wide strips.
Bias strips for binding
And, the final tree skirt!
Holiday Tree Skirt: 27" diameter
Here is the pattern for that wedge. Just print and transfer to template material. I suggest freezer paper. Since you will have more than enough fabric in your pieced units (from the first step), you might be inspired to make one or two more tree skirts!

Free Pattern: Tree Skirt Wedge Template

Thanks Debby!

Head over to Debby's blog to find out how you can win a fat quarter bundle of Homespun Holiday to play with!

And be sure to stop back each day of our blog hop for a different Christmas in July tutorial featuring our holiday fabrics!

Here's our schedule:

Monday: Santa Sack by Chris from Made by Chrissie D using Happy Holidays Snowmen
Tuesday: Tree Skirt by Debby from Debby Kratovil Quilts using Homespun Holiday
Wednesday: Throw Pillow by Kelly from My Quilt Infatuation using Ornamental Splendor
Thursday: Wonky Star Placemats by Kristen from KD Quilts using Santa's Here
Friday: Christmas Card Organizer by Melissa from My Fabric Relish using Frosty Forest
MondayTable Runner and Napkins by Nikki from The Girl Who Quilts using Frosty Forest
TuesdayWintry Wall Banner by Wendy from Ivory Spring using Shades of Winter
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  1. That is lovely. Each year I say I am going to make a new tree skirt and maybe this will be the year for it.

  2. What a pretty skirt. I don't put a tree up, but I can see making one of these for my daugher's family tree.

  3. For more years than I would like to admit, I've been saying that I really should make a tree skirt....that white sheet just doesn't look so good! This is so cute!

  4. Love how she fussy cut Santa for her tree skirt. Thank you for the tutorial and the template.


  6. Super cute.Thanks for sharing!

  7. Wow! Debby's tree skirt is very pretty and so easy to make. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Great design, Debby, and a good way to have fun with multiple fat quarters or "leftovers" (i.e. fabric not yet used!). My lone-star-based tree skirt is only a few years old, and still just right for our tree each year, but with something special appliqued in the center this design could make a perfect mid-sized table topper. Thanks as always for sharing inspiration and joy! (janeherbst at roadrunner dot com).

  9. Cute tree skirt. I moved this year too and finally threw out the old tree skirt that I've had since 1980! It is definitely time for a new one.

  10. I would make a runner for my piano for the holidays.

  11. Checked out the Facebook page . I'm loving the Santa Owls.

  12. Thanks for the template and the great tutorial!

  13. Great treeskirt!

    lin.web.28 at gmail dot com

  14. I would love to win this fabric to make a tree skirt. All of the quilts I have made and no tree skirt!

  15. One comment on the center hole. I made a tree skirt to donate to the local library several years ago. They use an artificial tree--and they have broom sticks for trunks, not nice fat trunks like natural trees have. I made the hole thinking "natural" tree, not "broom stick" tree. So when it is used now, there has to be something stuffed in around the trunk because the "gap-osis" is obvious.

  16. Awesome! Thank you so much for sharing!

  17. I really need a new tree skirt....the white sheet that I have been using for years is just not working for me anymore. This fabric is gorgeous!

  18. Nice creative tree skirt tutorial.
    I love making christmas tree skirts and selling it in my online store Linens'n'Curtains with free express shipping worldwide.
    Visit to explore more.

  19. I'm sorry but I am having difficulty with the measurements of each strip color. Is there a tutorial please.

  20. Any one know the measurement of the ruler? PDF for template is not available anymore.

  21. We're a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community. Your website offered us with valuable information to work on. You have done a formidable job and our entire community will be grateful to you.

  22. The link to the PDF is now broken, does anyone have the pattern to share?