Wednesday, May 5, 2010

May You Be Inspired Days: Cinco de Mayo Coaster Tutorial

My mother just came back from a cruise that included Mexico and brought the twins a GORGEOUS set of Mexican hats. This has inspired me to full on celebrate the 5th of May, so happy Cinco de Mayo to you! As part of that, I decided the adults in the house needed something just as festive as the kids’ hats! So…… Hat Dance Coasters!

P5030032And here is how you can make them yourself! :)


  Mexican Hat design (or other Cinco de Mayo appropriate design) (Mine was downloaded years ago from one of the many “free” embroidery websites that only gives them away for 10 minutes or something like that and I honestly don’t remember which one and the file doesn’t have it in it. If anyone recognizes its original creator, I’d love to give credit where credit is due!)  
   4  4”x4” pieces of Moda Bella Solids in Country Red 
   4  5 1/2”x 5 1/2” pieces of Black Eco-fi Felt 

   4  4”x4” dollar store cork boards (mine were puzzle piece shaped, had magnets on the back, and were blue)
    Embroidery Thread ( I like Mettler, but I also use a ton of Sulky)
    Embroidery Stabilizer (I used Totally Stable, but anything will do)  
    Sewing Machine (and its accompaniments)
    Chalk (or disappearing pen)
    Coordinating sewing thread

Begin by transferring your Mexican Hat design onto your red fabric squares, keeping in mind that you have a half inch seam allowance all the way around. You could paint your design, screen print, or even appliqué your coasters into the spirit of the holiday.P5030009

I put all mine in one hooping by turning them 90 degrees and spacing them as far as my little hoop could handle. Then I chalked how to cut them apart, which you can see in the above picture because tailors blue chalk LOVES to be photographed with a flash. Did you know that? Blue chalk LOVES the paparazzi. Who would have guessed? :)

Then cut out 3/4” squares out of  each corner of the black felt. It should look like this.P5030013

At this point,  you can do like I WANTED to and use 505 spray to tack down your red square to the cork. Or you can do what I DID, which was realize that I was out of 505 spray, so I tacked it down with a bit of glue stick. When it all works right, it looks like this:P5030016 When it doesn’t, it looks like this:

P5030027 Don’t worry, you can fix it by doing this:

P5030029Make sure your design is where you want it on the front. And then use your rotary cutter to take off the excess from the back. No biggie. Not that I would know, as I NEVER make mistakes! (Didn’t you know that Cinco de Mayo is ALSO Opposites day?)

Now, sew the felt to your cork, folding the flaps around the square like this. P5030017

GO SLOWLY, as you are working with THICK stuff here. Even knowing how thick and heeding my own advice, I managed to do have a mangling accident on the second one:P5030021 Haven’t you always wondered what a needle ISN’T supposed to look like? If I hadn’t been going SLOW (and I mean hand-cranking it sometimes), this would have snapped and I’d have been picking it up from everywhere… no fun.

As I went, I mitered my corners. This is an option. You could also just square them off. Your choice. Since I was using a solid, it made sense. If I had been using a pattern, I might not have. If I was using a stripe, I DEFINATELY would have mitered them. That’s me. You do what works for you! :)P5030023

Here’s something to keep in mind, if you choose felt for your backing fabric like I did. Felt doesn’t fray, so you don’t have to worry as much about getting things EXACT. You can always trim back to your stitches. It’s more important that you sew where you want it and LESS important if the fabric is folded perfect.


These coasters were inspired by:
   Quilt-style square coaster tutorial  Great way to use LITTLE bits of fabric.
    Pinwheel Quilt Coasters  For a non-quilter, she certainly fakes it well!
    Circle Square Coasters :) This is a great way to get the look of a circle without the work of sewing curves. And she finishes her edges in a fabulous way!

And don't forget!

I'm gonna give away one of the items from this month's inspirations on June 1st!

All you have to do is:
1. Become a Follower of StressTheSeams
2. Comment on one of the posts this month telling me what you would love to win!
International readers will have to pay their own shipping, but American followers will get it for free!

I'll close entries at 1am eastern standard time on June 1st and use the fabulous random number generator to select one wonderful winner.

The prize will be a surprise for the reader, but I might just be looking at what they say....hint, hint! :)
So go become a follower and comment! And there will be other ways to get extra entries as the month goes on, so don't miss a day!



1. Follow my tutorial and make your own coasters. Then brag about it with a link to it here so I can see what you did!

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