Superhero Teacher Pouches

This year for Teacher Appreciation Week, we made Superhero pouches. Ok, there was no we. It was me…

Does this look familiar? I started using this printed fabric that I designed when the kiddo was in preschool, and I’ve used it every year since. We started with totebags back in 2015…

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What a silly little kid! You can find the tutorial and the printable gift tag here. Then a couple of years ago we made a one hour basket using the same superhero fabric! I designed the fabric when then whole tradition started. You can even order it here from Spoonflower. It’s sized to make the fold over pocket on the totebag.

This year I changed it again and went with quilt as you go pouches!

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I just happened to have a large pile of colorful 7″ zippers, so the pouches became about 5×7 inch pouches. Perfect for holding a gift card. I didn’t add a tag, but I’ll have to come up with something clever for when I do this again next year! Stay tuned!

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The front has a little quilt as you go. Then you turn them over and there’s more quilt as you go! To make the pouches there are a million tutorials out there to use. I went with Sotak Handmade’s QAYG pouch tutorial for a reminder. I’ve made pouches a million times (ok, maybe slightly less than that), but I always like to skim over a tutorial before I do it to make sure I remember how. ha! Not sure why, but I do!

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These are my two favorite backs. The funny thing is, they are QAYG, but I didn’t add any quilting on top on either of these. I did on all the others. So I think it’s funny that my favorites don’t’ have quilting to show. and just like my quilts, sometimes I like the backs better!

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I also order my quilt labels and my ‘everything else’ labels from Spoonflower. The little ones are slightly hard to read. But I’m using them anyway!

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The Teacher’s are Superheros fabric has so many more options than just tote bag pockets. It was fun moving outside the ‘bag’ (Ha! Get it…) and trying something else with the labels. Teacher Appreciation week has passed, but it also works for end of the year thank you gifts and holiday gifts.

Should I make pouches again next year? Or try something new?

Courthouse Steps Mini Quilt

My first quilt finish this year.

I’m off to a slow start this year with my broken leg in January, but I’m hoping to catch up soon!

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I started this one to submit to the Curated Quilts Mini Challenge for the ‘Stripe’ issue coming out later this year. The challenge was:


Please use “balance” as inspiration for your quilt design. Balance can be interpreted at many different levels and we encourage you to explore what balance means to you. You can improvise or paper piece your mini quilt. We love seeing how creative everyone is and appreciate all forms of piecing in your mini quilts. The color palette we would like you to use is included in the image above, soft grey, jade green, bright pink, bright blue, purple, and highlighter yellow. 

Originally I was going to make a striped mini, with circles cut into it and in the circles the lines were going to go in a different direction. Maybe I still will make that one, but I saw a lot of others using circles and I didn’t want to anymore. But I kept making my stripes until I figured out what I wanted to do!

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Balance was the inspiration…

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I started my stripes picking out some of the colors from the challenge. Well, all of them except green and purple. I started with paper piecing the stripes, still unsure where this was going.

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I drew lines on a large piece of freezer paper and started sewing. The lines are spaced in 1/4″ and 1/2″ increments.

Doing this wasn’t very quick and it gave me time to realize where it was going.

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To balance the color, I went all grey. To balance the precise straight lines, I went improv.

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It almost killed me, but I finally got up the nerve to cut into all my stripes. They were so pretty just the way they were that I didn’t even want to cut them!

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The traditional courthouse steps quilt pattern was my third ‘ode to balance!

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I was falling in love with this mini quilt and knew I couldn’t keep it small enough to submit it for the challenge and that was perfectly fine with me! The challenge submissions can’t be bigger than 16″ square. This one ended up about 24″ square. Maybe one day they will do a Courthouse Steps issue and I’ll submit this then. in the meantime, I’m just loving on it!

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I also got new labels this year. Similar to all my other ones, but these are put together a bit different than last years version. Maybe I’ll do a blog post one day! I think these are my favorite.

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I love a good challenge to get me trying new things! I had never freezer paper pieced anything, much less small lines. I wouldn’t have picked these colors together, yet I love them! I had a great time making this one, even if I struggled for the design for a while.