fabric heart garland

Oh {wo}man this was a difficult project!  I'm really happy with the way it turned out however it was a beast to complete.  As always I started with an inspiration photo...

bananasaurus rex
Cute right?  I was determined to use all upcycled fabric for the garland, so I set off to clean out my closets and craft supplies.  I even asked a friend for any of her daughters clothes she was planning to donate because I knew they would have cute patterns.  And in a last ditch effort not to buy new fabric, I stopped by a couple of thrift stores.  Here's a pic of my fabric collection for the project.

Look at those thrift store prices for the fat quarters!

With the inspiration photo in hand I estimated the size of the muslin square (2.5"x 2.5").  I also noticed some squares held two hearts so I doubled the length for those.  After that I created a heart shaped template with cardstock paper, traced the template onto my fabric and cut out my hearts.

In the first assembly attempt I thought I could cut corners by sewing straight down the middle of the heart or vertically down the square.

The single stitch plan didn't work very well; it was just too clumsy. So I decided to sew all of the muslin squares on first as you see below and then go back to sew the hearts on.

 In the end there are 2 stitches on each square, one vertical and one horizontal.

And here's the final product!  It took about 6 hours to complete this one strand and I hope to finish another to hang above this one.

Lessons learned:

  • Muslin is not the best option for the base square.  The weave of the fabric is too loose and the stringies were driving me nuts!
  • Quilting fabric worked best for the hearts.  The fabric from the upcyled cotton t-shirts wasn't stiff enough and those hearts tend to flop over.
  • Use a much thicker string than I did. The crochet yarn I used kept twisting after the garland was assembled and it was a real pain.


Jennie said...

I love these hearts! You inspire me, Mrs Roundy.

crafty welder chick said...

this is soooo cute! It would be great for a wedding too.

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