Have you been bitten by the quilting bug? Try your hand at a beautifully simple organizer that you’ll use for years to come with this Pocket Wall Caddy project from the book QUILTING HAPPINESS: Projects, Inspiration & Ideas to Make Quilting More Joyful by Christina Lane & Diane Gilleland!
This project was excerpted from Quilting Happiness by Christina Lane & Diane Gilleland, and was shared with kind permission from Potter Craft.
Why do you love to quilt?
Is it the finished quilt itself, or the experiences you had while making it? Do you find more joy in designing a beautiful pattern or in improvising as you go? Are you happiest when making quilts for yourself or for others? Whether it is delighting in the colors and textures of your materials to the sweet satisfaction of curling up under a handmade quilt, quilting holds infinite possibilities for exploring the many joys of creativity.
In Quilting Happiness, you will find 20 timeless, adaptable quilting projects that will invite you to try a variety of design styles, as well as a wealth of tips and techniques, inspiring stories, and creative exercises to help you discover even more reasons to love quilting. Learn to make an inspiration board, create more meaningful quilts, or find lifelong quilting friends. Use this book again and again as a guide throughout your quilting life to spark your imagination on each rereading. Embrace new ideas on your quilting adventures and enjoy wherever they take you.
Quilting Happiness is scheduled to go on sale tomorrow, August 27th.
For more information about the book, check out the Quilting Happiness book page on the Random House website.
For further details about any of the techniques discussed in the project excerpt below, make sure you pick up your own copy of Quilting Happiness!
The Pocket Wall Caddy
Finished Project Size: 7½” x 23″
Christina: “This project is based on a wall caddy my grandmother keeps on her sewing room wall. It’s been there for as long as I can remember, and when I see this version on my studio wall now, it’s a nice reminder of her.”
Diane: “I have some cotton scraps that belonged to my great grandmother—they’d make such a nice basis for a wall caddy like this!”
Background: ¼ yard lightweight canvas
Pockets: 5 fat quarters or large scraps coordinating prints
Backing: ¼ yard coordinating print
Binding: ¼ yard coordinating print
Interfacing: ½ yard Pellon Fusible
Featherweight Batting: leftover scraps, see dimensions in Cutting the Fabrics
Dowel: ¼” to ½” diameter, two 9″ lengths
Ribbon: ¼” wide, 12″ length
Fabrics Used Here
Kokka Fabrics: Canvas (light upholstery weight)
Kokka Fabrics: Trefle Blue Stripes
Lecien: Gingham Birds
Art Gallery Fabrics: Summerlove Sweet Days Mist by Pat Bravo
Moda: Sunkissed Sweetwater Dots
Blue Hill Fabrics: Savannah c.1890 by Sarah Morgan
Cutting the Fabrics
Cut 1 canvas piece, 7½” × 27″.
Cut 1 batting piece, 7½” × 27″.
Cut 1 backing piece, 7½” × 27″.
Cut 1 print piece, 4″ × 7½”.
Cut 1 batting piece, 3½” × 3½”.
Pocket B (Star):
From star background print, cut the following: 2 squares, each measuring 4″ × 4″; 4 squares, each measuring 2¼” × 2¼”; 1 square measuring 7½” × 7½”.
From the star print, cut 3 squares, each measuring 4″ × 4″.
Cut 1 batting piece, 7″ × 7″.
Cut 1 print piece, 8½” × 7½”.
Cut 1 batting piece, 3⅞” × 7″.
Cut 1 print piece, 6½” × 7½”.
Cut 1 batting piece, 2⅞” × 7″.
Interfacing: Cut 2 pieces, each measuring 7½” × 20″.
Binding: Cut 2 strips, each measuring 1½” × 28″.
- Use a walking foot on your sewing machine for sewing fabric and batting together with no backing. The walking foot is also handy for adding binding.
- You might want to try using Dritz Wonder Tape, which is a double-sided adhesive that makes binding easier. Once you’ve sewn the binding to the front side of your caddy, put a strip of Wonder Tape on the back side, just inside the stitching line. Press the binding onto the Wonder Tape to cover and stick it down. Then, stitch in the ditch on the front side next to the binding, making sure your stitching is catching the binding on the back.
- You’ll need an erasable marking tool for this project. We recommend a FriXion pen, which erases with the heat of your iron.
- To give this project an especially nice finish, look for “dowel finials” or “dowel caps,” which are wooden shapes you can glue to the ends of your dowels. (See the Resources section on page 169 of Quilting Happiness.)
Assembling the Wall Caddy Pockets
This pocket will adorn the larger star pocket at the top of the caddy.
1. Use Diagram A for Steps 1 and 2. Fold the 4″ × 7½” Pocket A piece in half with wrong sides facing. Slip the 3½” × 3½” piece of batting into the folded fabric, making sure it’s snug in the fold and ¼” from each edge of the fabric. Press the fold with a hot steam iron. The piece now measures 4″ × 3¾”.
2. Edge stitch across the top edge of the pocket, ¼” from the fold. Stitch an “X” across the pocket, starting at the stitching you just did and going down to the corners.
Pocket B (Star Pocket)
We’ll refer to Half Square Triangles as HSTs. For details on how to assemble them, see page 155 of Quilting Happiness.
3. Pair up one 4″ × 4″ star background print with one 4″ × 4″ star print and assemble them into four HSTs. Repeat this process to make another four HSTs, for eight total. Square each HST to 2¼” × 2¼”. Press half the seam allowances toward the star background print and half toward the star print. (This will help you match them up in the next step.)
4. Use Diagram B for Steps 4 and 5. Pair up two HSTs that have their seam allowances pressed in opposite directions. Sew them together, taking care to nestle the seams (see page 157 of Quilting Happiness). Press the seam allowance open. Repeat this process with the rest of the HSTs to create four pairs.
5. Sew a 2¼” background square to each end of two HST pairs. Press the seam allowances toward the HSTs. These two units will form the sides of your star block.
6. Use Diagram C for Steps 6 through 8. Sew another HST pair to the top of the 4″ × 4″ star print square. Press the seam allowance toward the HST unit.
7. Now, place this unit right side up on your work surface. Place Pocket A on top of the 4″ × 4″ star print square, matching and pinning the side and bottom edges. Pin another HST unit to the bottom edge of the pocket with right sides facing. Sew along the bottom edge and press the seam allowance toward the HST unit.
8. Sew the side units from Step 5 to the left and right edges, being sure to capture the sides of the pocket in the seam allowance. Press the seam allowances toward the side units. Trim the batting out of the seam allowances to reduce bulk. Your finished star block should measure 7½” × 7½”.
9. Place the star block on your ironing board, wrong side up. Center the 7″ × 7″ piece of batting over the star (the batting should be at least ¼” from each edge). Turn these pieces over together and press them with a hot steam iron. Place a few pins to hold the two layers together, and quilt the star.
10. Pin the 7½” × 7½” background square to the finished star block, right sides facing. Make sure Pocket A opens toward the top! Sew through all layers along the top and bottom edges. Then, turn the piece right side out and press the top and bottom seams flat.
11. Stitch along the top of the star pocket, ¼” from the edge.
Use Diagram D for Pockets C and D.
12. Fold the 8½” × 7½” Pocket C print in half crosswise with right sides facing. Sew along the long edge, so the piece now measures 4¼” × 7½”. Press the seam open and then turn the piece right side out. Press it flat, centering the seam along one side.
Slip the 3⅞” × 7″ piece of batting into this fabric sleeve, so it’s snug in the folds and ¼” from each side. Press this fabric/batting sandwich with a hot steam iron and then edge stitch ¼” from the top.
13. Fold the 6½” × 7½” Pocket D print in half crosswise with right sides facing. Sew along the long edge, so the piece measures 3¼” × 7½”. Press the seam allowance open and turn the piece right side out. Press it flat, centering the seam along one side. Slip the 2⅞” × 7″ piece of batting into the fabric sleeve, so it’s snug in the folds and ¼” from each side. Press this fabric/batting sandwich with a hot steam iron and then edge stitch ¼” from the top.
Assembling the Wall Caddy
Use Diagram E for Steps 14 through 17.
14. Fuse a piece of interfacing to the back side of the canvas piece, lining it up with the top, right, and left edges of the canvas. (Follow the manufacturer’s directions for fusing.) Trim the second piece of interfacing so it covers the remainder of the canvas, and fuse.
15. Lay the 7½” × 27″ piece of batting on your ironing board, and then center the canvas over it, right side up. Press them together with a hot steam iron. Trim away any excess batting and place a pin at the top, bottom, and center to hold the layers in place.
16. Position the star pocket (Pocket B) on the canvas piece, making sure it opens toward the top. Pocket B’s top edge should be 2¾” from the top edge of the canvas. Match and pin the raw side edges. Stitch across the bottom of the pocket through all the layers, a scant 1⁄16″ from the edge. Don’t remove the side pins yet.
17. Place Pocket C on the canvas, with its top edge 2¾” below the bottom edge of Pocket B. Match
and pin the raw side edges, and then stitch across the bottom of the pocket through all layers a scant 1⁄16″ from the edge. Lay a ruler over Pocket C and measure 1 ¾” in from its left edge. Draw a vertical line at this point with an erasable marking tool. Measure 1 ½” in from that line and draw another line. Stitch through all layers along both of these lines. Keep the side pins in place for now.
To get a nice finish with this stitching, leave a few inches of thread tail at the start of your seam. Start the seam with your needle in the canvas right at the top of the pocket. Stitch forward one stitch, then backstitch one stitch. Continue stitching forward until you reach the bottom edge of the pocket. Backstitch one stitch and then forward stitch one stitch; then clip your thread, leaving another long tail. Don’t trim these thread tails yet; you’ll do it after sewing on the next pocket.
18. Place Pocket D on the canvas, positioning its top edge 2¾” below the bottom edge of Pocket C. Match and pin the side edges, and then stitch across the bottom of the pocket through all layers a scant 1⁄16″ from the edge. Lay a ruler over Pocket C and measure 3¾” in from its left edge. Draw a line at this point with an erasable marking tool and then stitch along this line in the same manner as in Step 17. Baste through all layers along both sides, starting at the bottom and sewing to the top. Remove all side pins.
19. Flip the piece over so the back is facing up. Gently pull the back thread tails from the pocket stitching. As you pull, a small loop of thread will appear. Use the tip of your seam ripper to grab it and pull it through to the back. Knot each pair of thread tails twice and then trim them so a little bit of thread extends beyond the knots. Flip the piece back over now and press it to set the stitches.
20. Layer the assembled canvas with the 7½” × 27″ backing print, wrong sides together, matching and pinning all four edges. Baste along the top and bottom edges through all layers.
21. Bind the sides of the caddy. Sew a binding strip to the right and left edges using a ¼” seam allowance (Diagram F). Press the binding away from the caddy, and then fold the raw edge of the binding so it just meets the raw edge of the caddy. Press this fold and then repeat this process on the opposite side. Now, fold the binding strip to the back of the caddy and secure it with a blind stitch (see page 167 of Quilting Happiness).
Finishing the Wall Caddy
22. Trim the excess binding from the top and bottom of the caddy. Place it on your ironing board with the back side facing up. Fold the top of the caddy down ½” and press the fold. Measure down 1″ from this folded edge and fold the top down again to this line. Press the fold and pin to hold it in place. Stitch through all layers a scant 1⁄16″ from the bottom fold of this sleeve. Repeat this process to create another sleeve at the bottom of the caddy. Be careful that you don’t stitch through the bottom of Pocket D when you sew the sleeve down.
23. Insert a 9″ dowel into each sleeve, and tie the ends of the ribbon around the top dowel to form a loop for hanging.