Friday, July 27, 2012

Mini Design Boards

I found a wonderful set of tutorials by Lori Holt of Bee In My Bonnet to make mini design boards!  And you just know I had to make me a couple...

My sister Carol and I visited the new Hobby Lobby while she was here... the first visit to any Hobby Lobby for both of us!  (We were there for almost 2 hours!)  I found some art foam board with adhesive backing...

Lori posted that you can get 6 - 10x10 inch design boards from a 20x30 inch art foam board, which were perfect for her Farmer's Wife blocks.  I decided that I would like 2 - 10x10 in. and one 15x15 in. boards and made the cuts using a dull blade on my rotary cutter and a ruler.

After retrieving some batting remnants from the bin, I peeled off the adhesive backing and stuck the art foam board to the batting.

Using my ruler and rotary cutter, I trimmed the batting even with the edges of the foam board.

Et voila .... three mini design boards!

I decided to put the binding on the boards to protect the edges and cut 2.5" strips of fabric for the binding.   After pressing in half...

...I folded the edges to the center and pressed again.

I chose not to to the zigzag stitch down the center to hold down the raw edges because I'm essentially lazy.  Using my hot glue gun, I ran a line of glue down the center of the binding strip...

...and glued the binding to the edges of the design boards, overlapping the ends.

Next, I ran a ribbon of glue down each edge and glued the binding to both sides.

Lori Holt demonstrates this on her design board binding tutorial so check it out!

"Okay," you are thinking.  "What do I use these for?"

A mini design board would have come in VERY handy during the Civil War QAL, saving me from running between the sewing machine, cutting board, and computer as I tried to lay out the fabric pieces so I could sew them together without messing them up.   Lori demonstrates here:

 Photo courtesy of Lori Holt @ Bee In My Bonnet

Lori noted that you could arrange several blocks on the design boards, stack them, and then carry them to a sew-in without disturbing the pieces!

 Photo courtesy of Lori Holt @ Bee In My Bonnet

With Barbara Brackman's upcoming QAL honoring the fight for women's suffrage, I'm sure I will be using my new design boards!   Thanks for such a great tutorial, Lori!


  1. Good Idea there! Love, love, love Hobby Lobby :)

  2. I have about 15 design boards in 3 different sizes and I couldn't quilt without them now. Use them ALL the time. Aren't they handy?
    I opted not to put binding on mine because sometimes I use them to audition blocks when I run out of room on the design wall, and I want to be able to do that without the binding fabric interfering. I have thought about using white or cream binding, but haven't done it yet.
    I don't know about Hobby Lobby (we have one, I just haven't purchased my foamcore board there), but at Michaels they will cut the board for you for free. I take advantage of that. : )

  3. What a great idea!
    I'd love to make some - I'm in the UK so no Hobby Lobby! Do you know if the board is widely available??

  4. I could definitely use some of these! Sometimes I lay out my block pieces on a large book to move it around without moving the pieces.

  5. Hmm, I somehow missed that tutorial on Lori Holt's blog. I'm glad you demo'd it. They look really cute and professional with the binding trim. I love Hobby Lobby. It turns out there isn't one here by my new home, but it is worth a day trip.

  6. Looks like you could lay out a confusing block so you'd know what to sew where. Might save some Unsewing. (I hate that.) Thanks for the idea.

  7. What a terrific idea, especially stacking them for transport. Love it. Will need to do this. the board I have in the house has no adhesive maybe I can do an iron on til I get to the store. Nothing ventured nothing gained.

  8. I made a bunch of these boards when I was teaching a technique to my old guild. I love them for playing with block ideas in front of the television in the evening, then I can just carry it into the studio to sew the next day. I wish I had made them a long time ago.

  9. Wonderful idea. Have a Hobby Lobby about 10 minutes from my house and am there about once a week.

  10. This is a wonderful idea! I have a bunch of these boards just laying around...soon they will have a purpose!

  11. Awesome idea for bindings!!!! Especially, with the little quilts. Loving the mini design board!!!!!!!!!

  12. Thank you so much for this post. I want to let you know that I posted a link to your blog in Creative Busy Bee Craft Inspirations, under the Page 3 post on Aug. 11, 2012. Thanks again.