Saturday, November 19, 2011

It's Casserole Season!

First off, a big thank you to my hostesses last weekend when I visited Gananaque, Ontario, Canada for a quilt technique workshop. We had a great day filled with scrappy quilt techniques. The day before the workshop, I arrived in Canada and couldn't wait to go visit the two host shops!

First, a quick stop at Wilton Creek Fabrics in Harrowsmith, Ontario revealed a wonderful array of fabrics and notions to delight any quilter. Shelly Lasalle and I selected some holiday prints featuring red cardinals so I could make a Hopper Topper later that evening.

The top was finished in an hour or so, and I'm sure, by now, she's done some beautiful quilting to finish it up. Dress up your holiday table or give a handmade gift - you must go buy a kit! The project looks something like this one, but her kits are even prettier and much more Christmas-y!

If you don't live near Shelly, ask your local quilt shop if they have any Hopper Topper kits. The patterns are available now!

Then I scurried off to Picket Fence Fabrics in beautiful Brockville, Ontario, right on the St. Lawrence River! No time for sight seeing, besides it was already too dark to take photos, you'll just have to take my word for it - or better still, go see for yourself! What a great shop full of fabric treats!

While at Picket Fence Fabrics, owner Jennifer Hodge showed me her demo for a Furoshiki Wrap. One and one-quarter yards of fabric, that's all you need to make a great hostess gift, perfect for holiday parties!

Carry holiday purchases, wrap a gift, or tote a pot luck casserole. A few folds, add some twists and knots, and your fabric becomes a fabulous wrap, then open it up to create a festive table topper for the hostess' table!

Here's what you do.

Cut a 40" square from your fabric. Then fold the edges under about 1/4" a couple of times and topstitch to make a hem. You're done with the sewing part!

I like to fold each corner in about an inch, then fold the edges over the corner fold to make a mini miter.

Fold the fabric in half along the diagonal, right sides together.

Then knot the folded corners.

Turn the fabric right side out, and place knots 'inside' the bag.

Then place your casserole on the bottom of the bag. If your casserole is hot from the oven, place a couple of batting scraps underneath the casserole for insulation to protect the table or counter top.

Pull the un-knotted corners up and make a generous square knot, creating two 'tails.'

Twist each tail tightly and make a square knot at the very end to make a handle, and away you go!

To make a hobo bag, Follow the same process to make the triangle, knot the corners, and turn right side out. Pull remaining corners up and make a square knot to create a slouchy shoulder bag.

With small variations in the placement of the knots and folds, the possibilities are endless!

Enjoy holiday fun!