Easy Sewing for Springtime

Easy Sewing for Springtime
In northern climes, evidence of spring is trying mightily to assert its appearance. Tiny green blades of lawn grass tentatively sprout among last years' straw-like remnants, tight buds appearing on bare willowy branches and the sun's warmth barely discernable but somehow suggesting of warmer days to come.

Consider the following easy to sew springtime projects to lift spirits out of winter doldrums:

Garden Flags
Garden flags are easy to sew and make for cheery announcements for spring, for gift giving or a special occasion proclamation for all to see. These happy, waving flags add a bright spot of color and visual interest to home, garden or business.

Metal powder-coated weather resistant garden flag holders can be purchased from local hardware stores, a variety of usual shopping place or even a thin willow branch or dowel rod could be used to hang the flag with twine or cord from a porch or fence railing.

For a small size flag use a 15-inch x 20-inch piece of heavy nylon or canvas fabric and for a larger size 20-inch x 30-inch works as well. Flags made as indoor window decorations could be hung using window suction cups or strung on cording to grace a mantel.

To decorate the flag, cut out simple fabric shapes using cookie cutters as templates, free clipart or finding inspiration from children's coloring books for ideas. Cut out the desired shapes, then machine-stitch onto the flag using a narrow zigzag or satin stitch around the shapes' edges to secure to the background fabric. Once the shape is stitched to the background fabric, cut away the background fabric from the now appliqued shape’s underside so that the garden flag may show the design from both sides of the hanging flag.

Hem-finish the fabric rectangle edges with a narrow straight-stitched hem. Turn under one short end an additional 1-inch to make a rod-pocket for the metal rod, branch or cording to slide through. If the fabric allows, spray a fabric protector onto both sides of an outdoor garden flag to provide some UV protection from sun fading.

Place the garden flag along a driveway, sidewalk or hang on a fence or patio for a cheerful touch to outdoor spaces or in a window or a mantel for colorful indoor décor.

Springtime Fabric Rag Wreath
This simple project involves using a wire wreath form and many torn or cut strips of fabric in spring colors. Tie the strips using a single knot onto the rings of the wreath form. Many fabric strips bunched together on the form will keep them from loosening. Strips can be approximately 2-inches by 6-inches or any size for the look desired. Many strips are needed if the wreath is to appear full. Muslin strips can be interspersed with the fabric strips for added fullness. Great craft for kids to help with too.

Bordered Table Runner
To brighten the kitchen or dining table make one rectangular table runner in a seasonal fabric that incorporates an easy decorative border, use 1 yard (or more if your table is longer) of 45-inch-wide fabric. Cut the fabric in half lengthwise. You will have two equal pieces. Trim the second fabric piece 6-inches narrower in width than the first keeping the same length measurement. Right sides together sew the two long edges using a 1/4-inch seam, turn right-sides out, centering the narrower fabric length over the larger one so the long edges show as a border, press. Finish the short ends by turning under, press and stitch closed.

Note: If a traditional triangle point on the table runner ends is desired, fold finished short ends to meet in a point then stitch across to secure. Add decorative buttons or purchased tassels if desired.

Here’s hoping the last lingering patches of snow melt quickly as we sew happy, sew inspired.

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