Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Teacher gifts 2015

I am not by nature a person that leaves things til the last minute but this year's teacher gifts ended up being just that due to a number of factors. I had figured out what I was going to do... I just didn't have time to get them done sooner.

After doing some quick searching for ideas, good ole Moda Bake Shop came to the rescue when I came across a tutorial for the Turn On The Charm Placemats by Amanda Castor of Material Girl Quilts. Instead of following her instructions to the T, I deviated in that I left the charms intact for a quicker finish.

Here is one set all pieced together.  I used my final pack of Boho charms and some coordinating Red and Cocoa solid that I had in my stash.
I decided to do some straight lines for the quilting and had a rough plan after looking at the overall piece so I marked some guidelines and away I went.
My idea was to use the long solid chevron seams as my guide and quilt inside of those the distance of the edge of my walking foot.
Then I just used the 1st stitched line as my guide for the 2nd one. I used a Cocoa thread that matched the solid fabric.
Once I completed those two lines, I moved to the other side of the block and did the same thing.
I really was winging it with these and after completing the quilting in one direction along the long Cocoa seams, I stood back and took a look and decided to do the same thing going in the other direction along the long sides of the Red seams.
As soon as I completed that, I knew I had a winner.  I liked the result a lot.  It was simple and modern that suited the fabric well.
I literally completed these the night before they were gifted and grabbed a few quick photos outside that morning.
The binding was done by machine with a coordinating Yellow solid.  In this photo you can see the long rectangles and the 3 diamonds created by the quilting design.
Luckily I had enough yardage from the line in my stash for the backing, these getting the Brown dot print.
This is the completed set all ready to be delivered and I can report that Jammer's teacher was thrilled.  Mission accomplished.
The following night I had to complete the set for Sunshine's teacher. Sunshine chose the more subtle Sage Green solid version for her teacher.  It is interested how different they look even though they have the exact same charms in them.
Since I liked how the Red and Cocoa set turned out, I used the same quilting design on this one.
The quilting doesn't show as much on this version because of the more subtle colors overall.  I used a Sage thread that matched the solid fabric.
Here is is with the quilting completed in the late evening hours.
This is my morning patio shot.  They look all ready for a nice BBQ.
I used the same Yellow solid for the binding on these.
This set received the coordinating dot print in Sage for the backing. This used up the very last bits of my Boho fabric.
The final pic of the set ready for gifting and I can also report that the teacher was truly thrilled.
Giving hand made gifts to the teachers is important to me as I want them to remember the year as time goes on.  Hubs says that I should start next year's teacher gifts in January so I'm not so rushed again and I hear what he is saying.  I certainly will take his advice to heart.

16 of you added your own colorful comments:

  1. Very special gifts. We always have good intentions to start early but never seem to do that. I am sure the teachers will appreciate your time and kindness you have shown them.

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  2. As a teacher, I would be thrilled to receive these especially instead of another Starbucks gift card, mug, or candle. Well done!

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  3. Wonderful teacher gifts! Well done!

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  4. Those make such a memorable gift for the teachers. Great job.

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  5. You are sooo good Michele, I am sure these were a great surprise and appreciated!

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  6. I'm with Tanya....I'd probably get all teared up at the personal, homemade gift. Okay, no probably...I would! LOL!! Your thoughfulness would touch my heart and I'd smile everytime I used these!!! Well done!

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  7. As a retired teacher, I feel qualified to say that I know these gifts will always be remembered. Next year or the year after when the teacher is having a day of wondering if her/his time is appreciated, that teacher will remember the thoughtfulness of your gift and receive a spiritual lift or push to keep going. Your children will be remembered, too. Think of it as another positive bit of energy that was sent their way. Two other thoughts, if you don't have time to make a set of four placemats, a small table runner or even one mat is enough to make that teacher's day. The teacher won't know that you had intended to make more but ran out of time. Even taking a few minutes to write a short note thanking the teacher is very meaningful especially if you can note one detail about a project done at some point in the year. Thank you for expresiing your appreciation to these teachers!

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  8. Wow! those are amazing teacher gifts they turned out beautiful.

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  9. Nice gift!!!! Very pretty:)

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  10. Nice gift!!!! Very pretty:)

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  11. Those turned out so nice! I might need to make some now =)

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  12. Those turned out so nice! I might need to make some now =)

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  13. Both sets are great and I love how you quilted them.

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  14. Love the placemats! What an awesome gift!

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