I have so much to share with you this week! Unfortunately, I need to start with some incredibly sad news… our beloved teacher Cindy Koehlmoos lost her dear husband Curtis this week, and we here at the Moose are devastated for her loss. Cindy has taught here at the Moose since our doors opened 20 years ago and she holds a very special place in all our hearts. Because of this, Debbie has taken her place teaching our beginning quilting class for the moment, but Cindy assures us that after taking some time for her heart to heal a bit that she’ll be back. Services for Curt will be this Monday morning, September 30th, and so Debbie has decided that the Quilted Moose will open late that day (approximately 12:30 p.m.) to allow her and our staff to attend the services for Curt – We know that many of you have met and learned from Cindy and if you’d like to send her a note of condolence or support, please feel free to do so by sending any emails or cards to us here and we’ll happily pass those on to her. Emails can be sent to: HeadMoose @ QuiltedMoose.com and letters and cards can be mailed to: Cindy Koehlmoos – c/o Quilted Moose -109 Enterprise Dr, Gretna, NE 68028. We thank you all in advance for your love and support of Cindy and your patience with us as we navigate through this difficult time.
Cari, one of our Moose staff members has been making her own Mini Hourglasses quilt in her own color way and I have to say… I love it just as much in her greens, creams and blacks version! If you’re sewing along with Debbie and Cari, don’t forget to post your progress on Instagram with #MooseMiniHourglasses, #QuiltedMoose and #Mooseitup! We have enjoyed seeing how others are progressing!
Lastly I wanted to take a few minutes and show you how to make your own “Twisted Pumpkins” that popped up in our fall shop photos last week – Debbie has them scattered around the shop and I’ve been obsessed with them! This is a Moose original pattern available for purchase, but Debbie has graciously allowed me to share it with you here today for FREE!
The full pattern shows you how to make 3 sizes, but I only had time to stitch up the smallest one this weekend! (Sorry, I had to try and catch up with my Marshal BOM, finish binding my Mooseketeers quilt project, watch the Packer game, oh! and fill orders for my Etsy shop, lol) But, I need to finish making the rest of these pumpkins for my fall decorating! They’re incredibly easy to make and require just a few supplies –
First you need the pattern which you can download for FREE by clicking the link below…
Or if you prefer a nicely printed version, stop on by the shop to pick one up – they’re just $2.00 🙂
Once you’ve downloaded the pattern run on over to the Moose and pick up some fabric (or grab some from your stash) any fabric will work, but I chose some of our gorgeous wovens to use. For the small pumpkin I needed just a 1/4 yard by WOF cut (width of fabric).
Next stop for me was our backyard – luckily we had some old branches in the wood pile (goodness knows what would have happened if I was forced to climb a tree lol) and I grabbed a couple of the small $.99 pumpkins that we had picked up from a farmer’s stand and set off for the garage. I immediately went in search of a small handsaw to chop my branches down to size but in my dear husband’s incredibly organized garage I couldn’t find one! So….. yup… miter saw it was lol (I said a little prayer) figured out how to turn it on, and zip zap.. quick as that I had some perfectly trimmed stems (no photos though, I was concentrating on keeping all of my fingers lol)
I took my poor little pumpkins and tried to pry off their stems (for a different look) and it wasn’t as easy as I imagined it would be! I ended up on the floor with a pumpkin between my legs and pulling with all my might until they popped off (again, no photos… simply because NO ONE wants to see me wrestling with pumpkins on my garage floor! 🙂
Lastly I wanted to make a trip to pick up some poly-fill and florists wire for the vine and leaves as the pattern calls for, but alas… I had a Green Bay Packer game to watch and orders to fill… so… I improvised (as we quilters are known to do) I dug out some old high loft quilt batting that I had purchased when I started quilting (very which I quickly shoved in the back of my sewing studio when I realized I wasn’t a fan) and began chopping it up and pulling it apart… voila’ I had some makeshift poly-fill! lol
I grabbed some quilting thread, turned on my iron, fired up my sewing machine and got started!
Sewing the “tube” for the pumpkin was easy! One quick seam down the short end of the 1/4 yard of fabric and I was done! The next step of finishing my edges wasn’t too bad either… I have a wool pressing mat and I simply laid out my fabric and used my Magic Pins to pin down the 1/4″ seam then gave it a quick press! I love the Magic Pins for ironing and I always have a couple stick into the side of my wool mat – you can iron right over them and then pull them out and stick them right back into the side of your mat!
Next was a quick and large running stitch along this pressed seam to gather up the bottom of your pumpkin. I used a some quilting thread and a large Tulip Sashiko needle which made this SUPER fast. The length and strength of the needle allowed me to hold a ton of stitches at one time. I had a bit of trouble gathering up the bottom of the pumpkin the first time as I pulled too darn hard and broke the thread (oops) so I simply pulled out my first attempt, then doubled up my thread before I knotted it (that thread isn’t breaking anytime soon I assure you lol)
After I pulled my (now super strong) thread tight and knotted it I had a half a pumpkin made! I pinned, pressed and gathered the other edge and, leaving my needle on the thread I opened the top a bit and added my makeshift poly-fill…
Then I just pulled that needle and tightened it all up! Leaving a hole just large enough to add my stem to the top of my pumpkin, I was done!!
All in all (minus the hunting for wood, finding the courage to use the miter saw and wrestle with pumpkins) the pumpkin itself took me all of 15 minutes to make! Granted the only “makeshift florist wire” I could find was speaker wire, and that simply wouldn’t do, lol, so I wasn’t able to add my vine and leaf, but I’ll save that for this weekend (after all… the Packers aren’t playing so I’ll have some extra time 😉
Not too shabby right!!? And super quick!! I can’t wait to make a few more… enjoy your free pattern (thanks Debbie) and share your Twisted Pumpkins with us on Instagram #MooseTwistedPumpkins (maybe you’ll even find my finished ones there)
Until next week my friends – Keep smiling, keep sewing and always, always be kind 🙂