Counting Down the Days
Trina Gallop Blank
Here we are, the countdown to Christmas is on! Janome asked me to kick off a short series with a focus on accessories, and that inspired me to put together a little last minute project that makes use of the buttonhole foot (with a little video below) for creating quick, personalized gift tags.
If you are super speedy, there’s still time to start and finish some last minute handmade gifts. I don’t know that I fall into that category though, so now is the time to focus on wrapping what I did get done!
Fabric/cloth bags are making a big comeback right now. I made quite a few last year – just a simple construction, unlined and a drawstring closure. They sure are handy and add a special touch to any gift (bought or handmade).
This year, I’m taking it up another notch with handmade Christmas gift tags!
These are a fun little project and that can be whipped up in an afternoon or evening. I love that you can personalize each tag to the recipient. The tags can be as simple or elaborate as you like.
- Cardboard, to create a stencil
- Fabric, craft cotton or felt
- Interfacing, medium weight
To start, I created my own template out of cardboard so that all my gift tags were the same size.
My tag was cut three inches wide by four inches tall. I cut two even diagonal corners at the top to make it look like a tag.
You can certainly adjust your tag to make it bigger or smaller. The template is just so all your pieces are cut to equal sizes.
I used my new template to cut out my materials. Two pieces of craft cotton or felt (for one front, one back of the tag) and one piece of interfacing to give the tag some structure.
Place your fabric or felt right sides together and layer your interfacing on top. Sew using a quarter inch seam along all sides, leaving an inch opening at the bottom.
Turn your tag right side out and press to smooth (careful if you used felt so that you don’t use too high a heat setting on your iron).
Close the open seam by top stitching around all sides with a quarter inch seam.
Next I like to make the button hole. This makes a nice finish for attaching the ribbon that will tie your tag to your gift!
Using the buttonhole foot, I used the memory buttonhole stitch on my Skyline S7. If you don’t have a memory buttonhole stitch to make a custom buttonhole, just make a small buttonhole.
Here’s a little video showing how I went about using the memory buttonhole on the Skyline S7.
Now it’s time to personalize and there are so many ways to do this.
I like to take my free motion quilting foot and have some fun. I tried a number of different designs. For this one I used a raw appliqué process. I cut out a cut tree design from another piece of fabric and then just secured it to my tag by stitching around the edges.
I also played around with some other design ideas including using just a single initial and thread painting on a Christmas tree. And I free motion quilted all the names on my tags.
I also made a few tags with raw edges. I sewed them wrong sides together with the interfacing sandwiched in-between so you don’t need to turn them right sides out after. These were made using a thicker fabric.
There are endless possibilities to make these customizable to the recipient. Have fun and be sure to post your designs to the Janome Canada Facebook page!
What is your favourite way to wrap gifts? What Christmas gifts are you making handmade this year?