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Sunday, August 12, 2012

Quilted Coasters Tutorial- with Aurifil Poly Longarm Thread

Last week I got the opportunity to try out the new Polyester Longarm Thread by Aurifil.   I first wanted to see how it worked in my Janome DSM.  These quilted coasters were the result.
These coasters are very versatile, you can make them any size you want, and you really don't even HAVE to quilt them.  BUT, since quilting is my favorite part, I couldn't resist going a little feather crazy on these ;c)

Here's what you will need for 6 coasters:

*12 equal sized fabric squares (I used 6")
*6 squares of batting, that are cut 1/2" smaller than your fabric squares. (5.5")
*Glass-head Pins
*Safety Pins
*Sewing Thread
*Pretty Quilting Thread (suggested: Aurifil!)
*Sewing Machine (Walking Foot and Darning Foot recommended!)
*Iron and Spray bottle of water


1.  Cut your squares of fabric and squares of batting.  I used contrasting fabrics because I wanted to see what the thread would look like on dark AND light fabrics.   You could use all the same fabrics, or go totally scrappy if you wish.

2.  Lay one piece of fabric, Right-side DOWN, with a piece of batting centered on top.

3.  Flip this over, so that the batting is on the bottom, and the fabric is Right side UP.
Place a few pins in the center to secure the batting to the fabric.

4.  Now lay your next piece of fabric RIGHT SIDE DOWN  on top of the batting and 1st piece of fabric (so the right sides will be facing each other at this point ) a5

5.   Secure the edges with pins.   (These do not have to be glass head pins) a7

6.  Here's a photo showing what both sides should look like before heading to the sewing machine.  a9

7.  Start sewing your pieces together.   You will want to sew just under (scant) 1/4" seam. This is much easier with a walking foot.
Start sewing at about an inch away from one of the corners.

8.  Pivot at the corners, b2

9.  Continue sewing all the way around, but leave a couple inches UNsewn.  Backstitch to secure.

10.  Now it should look like this:  b6   Trim your corners if you want,  or leave them UNtrimmed for more rounded corners.  b8

11.  Flip the whole thing inside out - it should look like this:  b5

12.  Fold the seams of the open area in, and secure with a glass-head pin.  Spritz with water, and iron your quilt sandwich flat.  b9

13.  Start sewing around the edges, about 1/8" away from the edge.
c1  Remove the pin and secure the opening. c2

14.  Now they should look a little something like this:  c3   Really, you could stop here. . And most sane people probably WOULD!

15.  Lastly, if you wish, you can quilt as desired.  I chose to go feather crazy.  c4


***Also, if you would like to quilt your coasters like me, this is how I do it:
Start in one corner, and make a squiggly line:

Follow that line back to the beginning, and then start making your feathers on whatever side is easiest for you to start with.  For me it is the right side of the feather vein.  c6

Then go back to the beginning, and do the other side.  c8

I used Aurifil's Polyester Longarm Thread for the top AND Bobbin in this project.   It worked beautifully in my DSM (Janome.)  BUT, you will have to have a vertical thread holder because the cone is very big.  
I also quilted a whole quilt with this thread in my longarm (Juki.)  It did not work very well in the TOP, because the spool is so heavy, it didn't want to turn smoothly, making the tension mess up, and thread break.  BUT, I quilted the whole quilt successfully using it as the bobbin thread.   I actually LOVED it as the bobbin thread.   Not only is it totally lint-free, but it has that same amazing Aurifil property in that you can wind SO MUCH in just one bobbin!  I only had to use 4 bobbin-fulls for a 50" x 60" quilt!  What's not to love?!?! 


  1. Oh Katie! Your tutorials are so clear and make your projects look so easy. Your feather-crazy quilting is so drop-dead gorgeous! Good girl!

  2. I love the feathers - they're gorgeous!

  3. Hope this isn't a dumb question but are the feathers stitched freely? That is without a template of any kind?