Sewing Circles

Thank you to everyone for such a great response to my Liberated Medallion!! 

I've had a couple of questions about how I sew my circles. 


My technique is nothing new, just the good old Freezer Paper method, but here's how I go about it...

Get a piece of freezer paper. (I just have to say 3 Cheers for whoever thought of using freezer paper with sewing- absolute genius!!) To draw a circle you could use a template from a particular pattern you are making, a compass or I like using some of my pretty saucers. 

Draw and cut out a circle of the size you would like your finished circle to be.

Iron the freezer paper circle, waxy side down onto the wrong side of the fabric. Cut out the circle with a quarter inch seam. 


Using your friendly iron press the quarter inch seam inwards over the edge of the freezer paper circle. Press it really, really well!! 


Go around the circle a few times to get a nice crisp edge. 


Nice crispy edges!! 


Leave the freezer in and pin your circle to the back ground fabric. You'll have to tuck the fabric under a bit as you go to keep those crispy edges.


To stitch, after making a knot, bring the needle up through the backing fabric and through the edge of the applique fabric catching just a few threads and then insert the needle back into the backing fabric and then repeat about every1/8th inch.

I got carried away and didn't take a photo of the next step but here's what you do -When you still have an inch or so to go reach in, loosen the freezer paper and pull it out. The rest of the circle edge will still hold it's shape from the good ironing you gave it. Continue sewing it down until the circle is completed. 

If you get carried away and sew the circle all the way around before removing the paper you can make a small cut behind the circle and pull the paper out. 

Press it with the iron and there you go - 
Hello Circle!!


Here's one of my early quilts, Summer Bubbles, that demonstrates my love for circles. 


The funny part was I'd finished the quilt top and while I was admiring it an idea popped into my head. Maybe I should have stuffed the circles. 
Now I mentioned the top was finished so I really tried to ignore the idea. 
But I couldn't ...
So I cut a cross behind each circle and stuffed in a circle of batting then sewed it up again.
It was a bit of work but so worth it to have puffy circles. 


I even hand quilted lots of circles on this quilt!


Just goes to show circles are good to have a-round - :0



Sewing Circles

30 comments

  1. Yes circles are fun - sewing circles, our circle of friends, Family Circle! OK, I'll stop! You do make a perfect circle, by the way!

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  2. Love those circles, thanks for sharing how you make them.
    That was a brilliant idea to add extra puffiness to the circles in Summer Bubbles. Lucky you hadn't basted the quilt when you decided to do that.

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  3. I love circles, great explanation of your method. The stuffed circles in Summer bubbles was so worth the effort you put into stuffing them.

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  4. Wow, thanks för showing how you did these fab circles! I'm entirely bookmarking this till I try.....

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  5. Very nice tutorial - thanks for sharing. And it certainly made a perfect circle for you! Those stuffed circles are actually a form of trapunto don't you think? Love the pretty big-stitch quilted circles too.
    Hilda

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  6. Great tutorial and some genius fabric combinations - but what exactly is freezer paper? I can see all kinds of applications for applique.

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  7. Love your Summer Bubbles quilt. It looks like a very happy quilt. Was it your own pattern? It is just giving me all kinds of ideas!

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  8. I love your summer bubble quilt! I hadn't seen it before. The rick rack is adorable and the quilted bubbles are perfect! What a super fun quilt.
    Thanks for sharing your process on making beautiful circles. Love your mix of prints. You make it loos so effortless.

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  9. Great technique- love the puffy circles!

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  10. Haha - love the humour! And that gorgeous polka dot saucer! So, when you say freezer paper, is it what I think of as waxed paper? Not baking paper but the other one? The paper that I use to put flower petals between two sheets and iron to make pretty wrapping paper? Does this even make sense?!! I LOVE your Summer Bubbles quilt.

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  11. Fantastic tutorial! Thank you :) Makes total sense and I will definitely try it! Love all your fabric choices as usual and those are beautiful saucers x

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  12. You always amaze me and are such an inspiration! Thanks so much for the tutorial and for sharing that gorgeous quilt.

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  13. I'm always curious about the story of the first people to grab freezer paper and use it in the sewing room. I'm sure there were a lot of raised eye brows. And more than a few who said, "Why didn't I think of that?!"

    Love your circle pattern makers (aka saucers)!

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  14. Thanks for the great tute! I've avoided circles because I didn't know how. Now I feel I can do them! LOVE your bubbles quilt, especially with the puffy bubbles and the hand stitched rounds. You do such lovely work!!

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  15. I'm thinking of medallions & I'm thinking of circles. I had consciously forgotten yours & that it had circles, but of course subconsciously I remembered.
    Lovely tute, I hope to be using it soon!

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  16. love the addition of the hand stitched circles! I am working on a circle quilt myself and I think I need to add the stitched circles - so cute!

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  17. Great tutorial! Very easy to understand.:) Love you bubble quilt and the hand quilted circles are just yummy.:)

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  18. I've never thought to leave the paper in til the last minute - doh! Great idea :o)

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  19. The jury is in another great tutorial. Keep this up and you'll have the beginnings of a book.
    Loved the saucers.

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  20. Glad you got around to posting this :) great tutorial!

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  21. Ive been thinking about circles a lot lately so your post is very timely!

    I even think I've got some freezer paper lurking round here ....

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  22. You are a well rounded girl Rachael! Your lovely quilts just have me spinning in circles! Lol! It is a great method....and freezer paper is the best!

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  23. Love the puffy circles! Thanks for the tips on doing the circles!

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  24. Love your perfect circles, both puffy and flat. You are so clever.

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  25. Well of course you would use a pretty plate as a circle template! Freezer paper is the BEST sewing invention, I use it all the time! Love your circle quilt too.

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  26. Thank you for your lovely summary of how you do circles. I guess I shall just have to gird my loins and get into a bit of hand sewing - I'm actually pretty good at it, I just avoid it cos it is slow compared to the machine. But the results are lovely! (Well yours are :-)

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  27. gorgeous! love it! miss seeing your stuff...i need to start reading blogs regularly again! how have you been?!!!! :)

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  28. I love circular quilt blocks! One day I will have myself a quilt full of circles.

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  29. I've never made one with freezer paper...must try ! Freezer paper is quickly becoming my sewing friend these days. I love the circle quilting on Summer Bubbles !

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  30. I MUST make this puff circle quilt. Appliqued Circles are on of my very favorite things to put on a quilt, but I never thought of stuffing them. I do my own free motion quilting though, so I wonder how hard it would be to skip around all those puffers. LOL. May have to give it a go on some hot pads first. You do have the best and most creative ideas!

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Thank you so much for leaving me a comment. I love to hear your thoughts. I don't always have time to reply but your wonderful words encourage me to keep sharing my work and stories.

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