Crazy Patch Valentine Holder
by Melissa Shields
Create a fun “Crazy Patch” Valentine Holder to contain the cards you’ll receive this Valentine’s Day. This also makes a great kid’s project to take to school, and it’s a fun stash buster that teaches some new techniques. Use a bunch of leftover hexies to create the crazy heart Valentine, or cut new ones from coordinating fabric prints. A die-cutting machine, such as AccuQuilt, Sizzix or Cricut, is especially helpful for this process. (The heart template can be cut this way, too!)
WHAT IS A CRAZY PATCH
Crazy patch is an old quilting technique that was a way to use up scraps and practice embroidery. Traditional crazy patch didn’t use just one shape but many different shapes and where the fabrics overlapped, embroidery was added. This isn’t a piece that’s going to be washed, so the edges are left raw. Free-motion quilting (FMQ) holds it all together. The quilting also adds a subtle texture to the piece.
- (1) 8” x 12” rectangle of Sulky Fabri-Solvy™
- (1) 8” x 12” rectangle of Sulky Stiffy™ Tear-Away Stabilizer
- Sulky 30 wt. Cotton Blendables Thread in Redwork
- Sulky bobbin thread
- Size 90/14 Organ quilting needle
- Approximately 75 hexies (1 ½”)
- Empty cardboard box (a trimmed file holder or empty cereal box works great too)
- Paint or wrapping paper (to cover the box before attaching heart)
- Heart template
- Glue gun & glue sticks (to attach heart to box)
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CRAZY PATCH HOW-TOs
Peel the paper backing away from the Fabri-Solvy and place the sticky side face up on a flat surface.
Place the hexies right side up on the Fabri-Solvy, overlapping the edges by about 1/8″.
Set the machine for free-motion stitching. Install a 90/14 Organ quilting needle. Thread the needle with 30 wt. Blendables thread and load the bobbin with 60 wt. thread.
Free-motion stitch over the hexies using a favorite pattern or random design. (Non-slip quilting gloves are great tools to maneuver the fabric under the presser foot.)
Wash away the stabilizer by submerging the piece under water, running water over it and squeezing it out. Repeat until all the stabilizer is removed; let dry.
Using the heart template, cut the heart out of the fabric.
Place the heart right-side up over the Sulky Stiffy stabilizer.
Set the machine for a satin stitch. Satin stitch the heart perimeter.
Tear away the excess stabilizer beyond the outer stitching, leaving the excess inside the heart to help it stand.
Paint the box or cover it with decorative wrapping paper.
Attach the heart to the box using hot glue.
TIPS FOR CRAZY PATCH VALENTINE HOLDER
Sulky Fabri-Solvy is sticky! It holds fabric with no problems, but it also sticks to you and your shirt if you try to rush. Slow down and take your time on this step. The rest goes quickly. Here are some additional tips for creating the Crazy Patch Valentine heart:
- Overlap the edges of the hexies so you don’t have holes. You are making fabric! But if you have a few small holes, it’s OK! No one will notice them.
- You may have to rinse the fabric more than once. If it’s still stiff after it dries just rinse it again. A drop or two of mild detergent will help, too.
- Satin stitching can be intimidating. Practice on scraps to adjust the machine settings until the desired results are achieved. The settings for one machine might not work for another machine. They are all just a little different. For the featured project, the machine was set for a zigzag width of 3 and a stitch length of 0.8 mm. That is a good starting point if you’re new to satin stitching. Don’t pull the fabric when sewing; if the machine isn’t advancing the fabric, adjust the stitch length.
- Use the inside of the sewing machine foot to guide the fabric. Just like in traditional piecing, use the outer (or inner) foot edge to maintain a straight seam. Pivot at the lower-edge corners and at the center point. Slow and easy will win the race and if there’s a minor goof, only you will ever see it.
MORE USES FOR HOLDER
Try making several hearts and joining them at the upper edges to make a unique bunting.
Swap this holder for your inbox at work and add a machine embroidered phrase, like a conversation heart. “The Doctor Is In”, “Lovely to Meet You”,” FAX ME”, “CUTIE Pie”, all are great options.
Make two hearts and stitch the left edges together to make a card that opens and closes. Use a Hera Marker to create a crisp fold-line along the edge. Then write a message inside on the Stiffy stabilizer.
Remove the Stiffy stabilizer from inside the heart and applique it onto a mini quilt. Hang the mini quilt on your door or gift it to a friend.
The ideas are endless! What will YOU do with your heart?