Sonntag, 23. Oktober 2011

Pirates and Dinosaurs Memory

Hi everyone.

Today, I want to share with you the first tutorial on this blog:

How to make a "Memory"-game out of fabric.

First, think about what you want to use as the pictures on your game.

I used fabric that my kids had picked themselves: two different novelty prints with dinosaurs

and pirates.

For the backing, I went through my stash and found some really cute fabric that was once meant to be a backing for a baby quilt, but since the boys are getting taller now, it was'n enough fabric anyway: blue and green stripes on white background.

If you want the cards to be a bit thicker, you might want to use interfacing/batting as well.

I went for Vlieseline H640 (Vliene H640 as it's called in English). H640 is a fusible batting that's a few millimeters thick. It was nice to be able to actually iron it on before sewing the cards together so that I did not have to handle a slipping sew-in batting as well... but that's all up to
you, whatever you prefer.

That's what I started with: (oh, please don't care about the amount of backing-fabric and batting shown on the picture... since I live way off from any quiltshop, I tend to buy a bit more all the time so that I can start a non-planned project whenever I feel like it)

There you see:
Blue stripes, green stripes, dinosaur and pirate prints and batting. That's about it.
Yes, of course you need a sewing machine, matching thread, ironing board and iron, and a damp cloth for the iron-on batting if needed - but I guess that's stuff you have on hand anyway.
Now for the amount of fabric for each game:
  • One panel of your desired novelty print (approximately 30 cm or 1/3 yard)
  • Backing fabric depending on how many "pairs" you can get from your panel. Mine was 9 pairs, so I needed 18 squares of fabric, 10 x 10cm ( 4" x 4" ) each, so 20cm or 8" of backing fabric were enough.
  • Batting/interfacing: since batting/interfacing usually is not as wide as your fabric, you need to calculate a bit. My fusible batting was 90cm wide (1 yard). You don't need much, just think about how many cards you have in total (mine was 18) and you cut the batting/interfacing a bit smaller to reduce bulk anyway. For my project, 16 cm (~6,5") were enough.
I know that this is not what you are used to when it comes to "materials needed", but since I
guess that you will not use the same prints that I used, the amount of fabric will vary for each one of you.

If you don't want to use fabric with printed squares on it, you can always use every other fabric that you desire. Just keep in mind that your kids need to like it and that the objects on the fabric are small enough that you can fussy-cut them to use them as the motifs.
(This is yet another perfect way to use some of your I-Spy squares - just in case you have doubles)

Now, the tutorial:

Step 1: Cutting
Fussy-cut the panel of your "picture"-fabric. Make sure you have pairs.
Cut the backing-fabric in the matching size (10 x 10 cm or 4" x 4" should fit)
Cut the batting a bit smaller ( 8 x 8 cm or 3 1/4" x 3 1/4" )

You should have something like this now:

Step 2: Batting
Now it's time to iron the batting on the wrong sides of the picture-fabric.
I just eyeballed it, I must confess, that's why some of my cards came out a little bit wonky, but I think that it's no big deal at all since the pictures might be a bit too distorted to be ironed into right-angle-pictures anyway.

You can measure it or make a stencil that's as big as your fabric squares, with a cut-out frame for the batting right in the center of it - it's all up to you how many hours of work you want to put into this project ;)

It should look like this when you are done:

Step 3: Pin and sew
(Optional: iron the lower seam allowance of the "picture"-fabric towards the batting. This will help to have a nice seam later on after flipping the inside of the cards out after sewing.)

Just a little picture to show:

Now go and pin the picture-fabric and the backing fabric right sides together:

It's time to start sewing now.
Decide where you want to start (I chose the bottom to start with). Make sure to sew all the edges and leave open about 5 cm ( 2" ) to turn the whole thing later on.

(No need to explain how to do this I guess.......)

I do my corners a bit different than most of you I guess since I do NOT clip the edges off. I sew them in - but that's just because my boys love to chew ( yuck! ) on fabric-corners. (I don't have to tell you what their pillowcases look like, do I??)

Here is a pic where you can see/guess from how I do my edges. If you want a tutorial about this, just let me know and I'll put something together for you.

Step 4: turning and topstitching:
Now that's the part that I dislike the most: turning the inside out. Use whatever tool you like, use knitting needles, screwdrivers, fingernails to get nice corners. A needle might help to get out the last teenzy weenzy bit of fabric to make the corners look as neat as possible.

After you have turned everything, iron the cards flat and make sure to have the two fabrics on one line where your opening was. This is important to make it look neat in the end.

After having ironed everything: TOPSTITCH and FINISH it!
I used some sort on invisible thread for the picture side since I did not want any color to mess up the picture - but that's all up to you.

Step 5: Step back and take a look at what you have created
Here are two pictures of the finished games.
I really hope that my boys will enjoy playing this game when they will be back home after a weekend with their daddy in a little bit. I usually make something nice for them when they are away ( I guess they already expect me to do so )

Ok. This was my first tutorial ever. I hope you liked it :)

If you make something from this tutorial, please be so kind and show me what you did - in the blogging world, it's all about inspiring each other, isn't it?

You may sell things that you made from this tutorial, but please do not copy this tutorial and post it as your own one.
If you link up to my page, please let me know about it.

I'm linking up this post at Flamingo Toes today - let's see if I'll be featured :)


  1. Well done! Great tutorial! Keep up the great work! And the kids will surely love it!

  2. I love your little fabric Memory game!! What a fun gift for your little guys! You did a great job on your tutorial too! Thanks for linking up! :)

  3. Just wanted to stop by and check your blog out. Thanks for checking out my wallet at I emailed you with the link to the pattern so let me know if you don't get it.

    I'm so pinning this fabric memory game and making it. SO adorable. Your tutorial is awesome!

  4. I love these-great for a handmade Christmas gift. Glad I found you from Craft Gossip!

  5. Thank you very much for the tutorial. I love your idea..looks so fun! :)

    BTW, thank you for stopping by my blog. I am new to the blog world and I'm really loving it!

  6. That is such a cute idea! Perfect for the upcoming holidays!