I’ve loved making these almost-no-sew “quilted” ornaments for several years. They’re easy to make, require very little sewing (or no sewing, if you decide to trim the equator with ribbon rather than fabric), and turn out beautifully every time. You can make these for Easter, birthdays, and of course, Christmas – or simply make some fun ones that match your decor or your favorite sports team! These make beautiful gifts.
What you’ll need
* A couple of fat quarters of cotton fabric in two colors, Fabric A and Fabric B.
* Fabric A should be cut into 26, 2 1/2in (64mm) squares.
* Fabric B, the accent color, should be cut into 16, 2 1/2in (64mm) squares.
* Cut one (1) strip of fabric in either color into a 2 1/4in (57mm) x 10in (25cm) rectangle -OR- cut 10in (25cm) of 7/8in (22mm) ribbon if you don’t want to sew
* 3in (76mm) foam craft ball
* Box of flat-head dressmaker or sequin straight pins
* 1/2yd (1/2m) of 3/8in (10mm) ribbon
* 1/2 – 1yd (1/2 – 1m) of 3/8-5/8in (10mm-mm) ribbon
* Button without a shank
* Hot glue gun and glue
* Liquid seam sealant
* Crystals, beads, other small embellishments (optional)
To start, you’ll need to find opposite centers of the ball. There are probably many methods for this, and it’s not crucial that you find the absolute center…but I like to try my best. The method below works well enough so that you’ll have a neat ornament.
Cut two pieces of the 3/8in (10mm) ribbon to 9 1/4in (23 1/2cm). Fold each ribbon in half and mark the center. Pin one of the ribbons around the equator of the ball, as shown in the top two photos below. Pin the second piece perpendicular to the first at the top of the ball, and wrap around, making sure the marked center of this ribbon crosses the first one. Place a pin at the bottom intersection.
Set the ball aside. Fold two (2) of the Fabric A pieces in half, wrong sides together, then in half again. Press with your iron if desired. The fold lines will help you find the center later. (I can’t share pressing photos because my ironing board cover is too ugly to show you!)
Fold the remaining squares – both Fabric A and Fabric B – in half, with wrong sides together. Press (on your board that’s hopefully prettier than mine). Then fold each short end toward the middle at an angle, to make a triangle. Press again. You don’t have to press, but I like how it makes each triangle nice and crisp….it might get boring, so put on some music and dance a little while you’re at it.
Admire all of your little fabric triangles, and get ready to start faux-quilting!
Open one of the two folded squares (not the triangles!). Place a pin in center, into the right side of the fabric. Pin onto the ball at the top center, making sure each point of the square is angled onto the ribbon guides. Pin all four corners down. Repeat on the bottom of the ball.
Place pins inside each of your pressed triangles by opening up your folds and pinning into the wrong side of the fabric at the center point. Slide the pin all the way into the fabric until it stops, and fold the triangle back up again.
Arrange four (4) of the Fabric A triangles onto the top square. Pin the points of the triangles at the center of the square (you can remove the pin you placed on the square originally). Arrange each triangle so the long sides – the bases – are aligned with the edges of the square. Once aligned, pin the triangles at each of their remaining two points.
Next, you’ll pin the second layer – the accent layer – with Fabric B. Measure about 3/4in (2cm) down from the center top of the ball, and pin the point of the first Fabric B triangle in between two of the previous, Fabric A triangles. Repeat with three (3) more Fabric B triangles (top right, below), making sure they’re the same distance from the center point. Pin four (4) more Fabric B triangles between the first ones (bottom right, below).
Switch back to Fabric A and prepare to pin the third layer. Measure about 3/8in (10mm) from the top of the previous points, and pin the point of the first triangle there, in line with a triangle from the previous row. Repeat with seven more triangles until the ball looks like the one in the lower right corner, below.
Repeat the previous steps with the remaining triangles on the bottom of the ball. The triangles won’t meet perfectly at the center, but this is okay! The bare section will be covered in the next steps.
If you’re sewing the center wrap, fold the rectangle in half width-wise with right sides together, so it’s still 10in (25cm) long but half as wide. Sew the long seam with a 1/4in (6mm) seam allowance, back stitching at each end. Turn right side out, press, and seal ends with seam sealant. Taking care to line up the top of this strip to one of the fold lines in your ball (making it the top of your ornament), hot glue the fabric all the way around the equator of the ball. If you don’t sew, cut a piece of 7/8in (22mm) ribbon instead and glue it over the equator.
If desired, make a pretty bow for the top of the quilted ornament. Glue it to the top, then make a loop of ribbon for hanging the ornament and glue it in place. Glue a flat button to hide the seams.
I enjoy adding crystals and beads to my ornaments (my affiliate Fire Mountain Gems and Beads is a great resource) for extra sparkle and bling! Try this ornament in several different colors and designs; you can alter the widths, number of triangles used in the accent layer, or mixing up even more colors to personalize your beautiful no sew quilted ball ornament!
P.S. – I delved deep into my blog – from posts I wrote for my former Blogger site that were transferred here – and found this beautiful Easter quilted ball ornament I made in 2009!
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Deanna McCool writes for sewmccool.com. If you liked this post, you’ll like to learn how to make this korked ribbon Christmas ornament. To make sure you don’t miss any posts, please follow SewMcCool by e-mail (the link is at the top of the right-hand column) or join me on BlogLovin’ – the button is just below the e-mail feed box! 🙂