Christen Phillips

  • How to master the quarter inch seam

    Mastering the Quarter Inch Seam

    The quarter inch seam. One of the most tedious techniques to master in quilting. I can’t stress enough what a difference it makes when your seam allowances are consistent and your pieces are precisely trimmed! That alone can make the difference of a professional looking quilt vs. an amateur.

    Why is it Important to Sew an Accurate Quarter Inch Seam?

    All professional quilters use it. Your pieces will line up correctly when your seam allowances are even. If seam allowances are off, pieces will not match-up with each other when it’s time to sew everything together.

    Here are a few helpful tips to help you master the quarter inch seam.


    Y’all, this was a game changer for me. When I got my new Janome machine, it came with a big collection of sewing feet. My old machine had 1… ONE FOOT and then I purchased the walking foot so I could quilt. I didn’t know what all the others were for… I found that this foot makes your quarter inch seams almost effortless! Most newer machines will come with a quarter inch foot, but many older machines do not. It is worth the investment if you do not have one. You can pick up your own quarter inch foot for under $10 on amazon by clicking here. This is what you’re looking for:

    The quarter-inch foot allows you to line up fabric with the edge of the foot to achieve a quarter-inch seam. See how nice that is in the photo below?


    A quarter-inch foot will help your seam allowances, but if you don’t have one or you can’t get one… no worries, just tape your machine. This is a total cheap and easy fix you can do RIGHT NOW. I use washi tape (because its pretty!). It doesn’t leave any residue when you want to pull it up. You can use whatever you have on hand. Mark from the edge of your machine all the way leading up to the foot. Then just stay in the lines and make sure you are lining up your fabric right. Be meticulous about it!

    With just a little extra effort, your seams will be perfect! The best way to ensure that you have a real quarter inch seam is to measure what you’ve sewn and improved upon it until you’ve got it right. It may be frustrating at first, but pretty soon you’ll be a pro and the quarter inch seam will be second nature to you.

    Want a new pattern to try out your quarter inch seam guidelines on? Click here. You can join my e-mail list and I’ll send you a beautiful quilt pattern for FREE. It is suitable for the beginner and intermediate level quilter and will have you looking so impressive with your sewing skills!


    *This post contains affiliate links. That means that (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase a product that I link on my website, I will receive a small commission of that sale. I would never recommend a product that I do not already own or LOVE 100%.*

  • The (less than) 5 Minute Giant Pin Cushion

    Hey there! We’re going to talk pincushions today: An essential tool in the sewing space. More importantly, a DIY Giant Pin Cushion!

    I have a pin problem. I love them all and it doesn’t matter how many I have, I always seem to run low on the big projects. So then I just NEED to buy more, you know? Tell me you have that problem too so I know I’m not alone. Anyone?

    I’ve tried everything under the sun from little magnets and bowls and bulky little tomatoes. They all work wonderfully… but can I be honest here? They aren’t all that pretty. There I said it. I feel a bit vain, but it’s out there now.

    It was so easy to make my own… and it is oh-so-pretty! Now you can totally make your own custom pincushion too! Get this… I made it in less than 5 minutes – With things I already had. NO sewing required. And it is HUGE. Like, hold all (or most) of my pins, huge.

    5 Minutes? Yeah, and most of that is gathering your pins and putting them on your new cushion. – Bonus, it even has a handle!! This is almost like finding out your favorite dress has pockets!

    The (less than) 5 Minute Pincushion

    Things you’ll need (and you probably already have)
    1 Large scrap of your favorite fabric. A 10-inch square piece of fabric will work
    1 Large Mug – I got mine from the dollar store because it was cute, but any mug will do.
    A ball of spare stuffing that will fill your mug. You could also use quilt batting or even other scrap fabric you have around.

    1. Place your ball of stuffing in the middle of your square of fabric.
    2. Wrap the fabric around it gathering the edges to one side – think like a  party balloon shape.
    3. Put the material in your mug with the smoothest part of the cotton stuffing ball on the top. All the corners and edges go inside the mug. My mug is clear and you can totally see the stuffed fabric on the sides. There is no science to it or wrong way to go about it. Just cram it in there.
    4. Make sure all raw edges of the fabric are inside of your mug.
    5. Boom. Grab all your favorite pins and go for it!

    Enjoy your new pincushion and change the fabric out whenever your heart desires!

    Until next time… xoxo

    P.S. – What are some of your favorite simple DIY hacks you have made in the sewing room?

    Note: If you make your very own giant mug pin-cushion, I would love to see it! Tag me so I can see your beautiful new creation! #iseestarsquilting

  • A Place for the Chaos – Quilting Obsessions

    Hi, I’m Christen and I have many obsessions. Quilting, for me, was the answer for finding a way to channel all those passions into one field and find a place for the chaos.

    Do you know what passion is defined as?
    A “strong and barely controllable emotion”.

    If that doesn’t describe the way I see myself, I don’t know what does

    My biggest Passion? – Creating beautiful things.

    I am an artist to my very core. I’ve spent many years trying to channel my artistic tendencies into something that would suffice as a “real job”… only to be left empty, never really ‘fulfilled’. Maybe you can relate too? Maybe not.

    It is only in recent years that I’ve discovered that creating art for other people doesn’t inspire my soul. Creating beautiful things that are every single bit me without a care what other people think is what brings me joy. Sure, I still want to be accepted and liked. I’m only human after all. I still do the jobs that bring in money.

    Being an adult is what it is. “Do what you have to do so that you can do what you want to do”. In the tiny scraps of spare time, I squeeze out time to do what I want to do. Quilt.

    When I found quilting, it’s as if my heart had found its home.  And it does feel like home each and every time I finish a new quilt.

    I want other people to find this much happiness with scraps of fabric and a constant state of less-than-tidy craft space.

    I hope you’ll follow me and share my rose-colored glasses and wanderlust for the quilting world!

    You can join my email list below. I promise to only send out 1 email per week packed with some great quilting advice. No spam. Pinky promise 🙂

    [mailerlite_form form_id=1]