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Fabriflair Radiant Star: A Guest Tutorial with Amy Barickman of Indygo Junction

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Caution! You’re entering the 3-D Zone – but you won’t need those dorky glasses… and I promise nothing will appear to fly out of the screen at your head! We’re working in 3-D with a new product from our friends at Indygo Junction: Fabriflair™. If you’re familiar with English Paper Piecing, you’re two-steps ahead already. Fabriflair™ is dimensional paper piecing. We’re delighted to have Fabriflair™ creator, Amy Barickman of Indygo Junction onboard with a Guest Tutorial. She’s sharing some of her favorite cutting and stitching techniques, and she has a discount coupon code for Sew4Home visitors to use on any of the five Fabriflair™ kits

For us, Amy made one of her 60-sided Large Radiant Stars, using an Eclectic Elements Foundations Charm Pack by Tim Holtz for Coats Fabric, which we selected from Fat Quarter Shop. FQS has a huge selection of charm packs, as well as all the other most popular pre-cuts.

You’ll see in the Guest Tutorial below how you can easily fussy cut from either the 5” x 5” charm squares or 2½” jelly/designer roll strips. Of course, you can also pull from your own fabric scraps, but Fabriflair™ kits are a great way to use some of your favorite leftover pre-cuts for a beautifully coordinated finish.

A huge thank you to Amy and Indygo Junction for sharing with us today, and for giving us a special coupon code for a 15% discount on any Fabriflair™ kit! Details are at the end of the article, and we’re excited they chose to run the discount through the end of the year! These amazing 3-D beauties are perfect for so many occasions, but the stars would be especially gorgeous for the holidays. You can bet we’ll be back with more inspiration.

Amy Barickman of Indygo Junction – creator of Fabriflair™

This dimensional fabric piecing product was inspired by a vintage star in feed sack fabric that I found at an antique show; it’s the spark that set off our line of Fabriflair™ kits.

The Radiant Star Kit comes in Large, which is 10” and Small, which is 5”. Each kit contains 60 pre-cut matte board shapes to cover in fabric as well as full instructions. All you need to supply is fabric, needle and thread, and a fabric glue stick.

For a softer finish, you can add a layer of lightweight batting between your fabric and the matte board template. Though this is an optional step, we've found adding batting can actually make it easier to stitch the pieces together. When you stitch, you are pulling the needle through the fabric only. The addition of the batting lifts the fabric, making it easier to catch with your needle.

Cut the shapes from your favorite fabric collection or coordinate colors for a variety of fabrics to match your room décor. As mentioned above, using pre-cuts with your Fabriflair™ Radiant Star kit is a simple way to get perfectly coordinated patterns in small pieces. The 5” squares and 2½” strips are ideal for the Star kits.

These beautiful works of art are a fabric lover's dream. We've dubbed them "material amusements for needle and thread,” and in the (almost!) one year since they've been on the market, we’ve received delighted responses from customers. What fun it is to have an optical sculpture (that’s eye candy to you and me!) that displays your love of fabric and needle work. It’s definitely a conversation starter among friends!

Once you’ve completed your Fabriflair™ Radiant Star, there are endless ways to use it. Hang several in varying sizes from fishing line to create a starry ceiling. Fill the inside of your Large Star with weight and use it as a doorstop or bookend. A filled Small Star would make an awesome paper weight. And, how cute is it hanging on this stand as a tabletop display?!

Fabric

Choices, choices, choices! You can’t go wrong when choosing your fabric from a pre-cut pack. The 2½” strips are an ideal option because you can easily cut out your fabric pieces with just two diagonal slices.

With the 5" x 5" pre-cut squares, if you cut very carefully you can get two pieces from one square. Most 5” pre-cut packs come with 42 squares so you can create either the small or large star with just one economical pack.

Fabriflair™ is also a grand way to preserve and reuse treasured textiles. Up-cycle special clothing, like Grandpa’s ties or a collection of fabric from special occasion gowns. Vintage linens can also be used to create a memorable piece of heirloom art. The star shown below was made from thrift shop flannel shirts and pajamas!

Part of the fun is custom cutting motifs, also called fussy cutting, in order to center a unique element in some or all of the star points. I love the way the butterfly is positioned here on our Eclectic Elements Star.

The Fabriflair™ Process

English Paper piecing is used in quilting to get intricate designs pieced together without losing their crisp edges. Fabriflair™ takes this and adds dimension turning matte board and fabric into stunning shapes. Below is a video from the Indygo Junction YouTube channel that showcases the process and shares the other kits we offer.

Stitches

As with all traditional English Paper Piecing, the fabric shapes are hand stitched together. Although usually carefully hidden in quilting projects, we sometimes like to let our stitching show, adding to the dimension and texture of the Fabriflair™ shapes. We often use no.10 crochet thread in a contrasting color, especially with the blanket stitch.

Whip Stitch

This is one of the simplest stitches used in sewing. The whip stitch is a more hidden stitch, and is the best choice if you prefer more of a classic look to your piecing.

Blanket Stitch

This stitch is basically catching your previous thread with the next stitch every time you make another loop. We find it to be the fastest way to assemble Fabriflair™ and it creates a dynamic finish to the edges of your star.

Embellishments

The inherent beauty is in the fabric, but you can also embellish Fabriflair™. This can be done while your Star is in process by stitching buttons and/or beads in the centers of the Star “faces” or after assembly by gluing the buttons or beads in place. We found a package of mixed wood buttons in our stash that was perfect with the Tim Holtz fabric, but you could also use a fabric covered button kit, like the ones from Dritz®, to make coordinating fabric buttons.

Get started with your own kit (and save 15%)

If you’re interested in buying a kit, please visit Indygo Junction and use the code SEW4HOME to take 15% off your entire Fabriflair™ order! You can also find our kits at some of your favorite independent sewing and craft retailers.

Once you've made a radiant star, or any other Fabriflair™ kit, we'd love to see the results! Join us on our Facebook Indygo Junction Sewing Pattern Group. Or, tag us on social media @indygo_junction and use the hashtag #fabriflair.

Stay up-to-date on all the latest patterns, offers, and news from Indygo Junction by joining our free newsletter list. You’ll be the first to find out about what’s new with Fabriflair™ and so much more.

Thanks to the Sew4Home team for helping us spread the word about these fun piecing projects. And we agree, “you can bet we’ll be back with more inspiration!”

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Comments (15)

SewAndsews said:
SewAndsews's picture

What a great idea for my husband and Bro-I-L's old ties!

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

SewAndsews - Amy has made several from ties and they are SO pretty. Let us know how yours turns out!

EllenB said:
EllenB's picture

I'd love to make some of these for gifts but I'm also confused about IJ pricing on the kits and patterns.  The prices for the kits are $2 higher when I click the links, prices for the digital patterns stay the same.  I emailed IJ several days ago, but haven't had a response.

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@EllenB - We've alerted Indygo Junction to the confusion. It should be sorted soon. 

EllenB said:
EllenB's picture

Thanks so much.  These would be terrific for Christmas!

Diane Beavers said:
Diane Beavers's picture

Thank you Amy and Sew4Home...I actuallyhave some Tim Holtz Eclectic Elements scraps and I'd love to give the star a try.  

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@Diane - You're welcome. Let us know how your star turns out!

Janice Lahr said:
Janice Lahr 's picture

 The small Radiant Star pattern is listed at $9.99.But if you click the link the price jumps to $11.99.  So, which is it?  That higher cost would cancel out the 15% discount from S4H.

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@Janice -- Indygo Junction offers both a full kit for the Small Star (which is the link we used) at $11.99 as well as a digital option (PDF) without the pre-cut templates. This PDF is available in iether the large or small size for $8.99. You can certainly reach out directly to Indygo Junction if you have additional questions about ordering.

Katelyn S. Bolds said:
Katelyn S. Bolds's picture

I love these as a project because the hand stitching can be very theraputic. Great project to add to a movie or Netflixing night.

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@Katelyn - That's a wonderful idea!

Sequana said:
Sequana's picture

I made the large star last fall and loved how it looked.  In fact, since I didn't use "holiday" fabric, it's still being displayed here.  Every once in awhile I move it somewhere different and enjoy it all over again.  I did use the batting; it made the stitching easier and I liked the soft look it gave to the star.  Now that I see how cute it is hanging from that little stand, I think I have the new summer look I'll enjoy.  I like projects with such versatility.

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@Sequana - What a great idea to create a summer look. The options and versatility with these beauties are really endless!

Sally M. said:
Sally M.'s picture

In a hurry right now and I haven't read it all yet - but would like to say, this is absolutely beautiful.  How brilliant is this!

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@Sally - It's quite brilliant, and fun... and so pretty when it's done. We're a little in love. 

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