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Desire to Inspire challenge

A few months ago I was asked to participate in the Desire to Inspire Challenge at Henry Glass Fabrics.  I was glad to say “yes” and now I get to share with you the results!



The fun thing about this challenge is that you have no idea what fabric you will receive.  Plus it’s free and yours to keep with the stipulation that you design a project with it. I was sent one panel and seven 1-yard cuts of American Dreams by Beth Logan for Henry Glass & Co.  This is a beautiful patriotic line of red, white and blues with a panel that has so many possibilities.

American dream panel


I have to admit that I had no idea what to do with any of this fabric when I first saw it.  I let it sit in my sewing room for a week and “percolate”.   I knew that I wanted to do something with the panel and I wanted it to be useful and pretty.  The idea of a set of placemats really appealed to me, and that was a good place to start.  I used one panel square as the focal point of each placemat and I pieced together some friendship stars to offset it.  I’m super happy with how they turned out:

Patriotic placemat by Julie Cefalu @ The Crafty Quilter


And with all of that fabric, I had to make napkins to go with them:

Placemat set by Julie Cefalu @ The Crafty Quilter


I’m going to have a very patriotic table setting when the July barbeques start up:

Patriotic placemat set by Julie Cefalu @ THe Crafty Quilter


I made 4 placemats and that left me with two panel squares to use on something else.  I’ve made one of them into a very friendly pillow:

Welcome friends pillow by Julie Cefalu @The Crafty Quilter


The other panel square is going to be a pillow, too, someday….

If you’d like to see more pictures of my projects and to read the answers to some questions that were asked of me, then please visit the Henry Glass Blog.  I’m sure you’ll find something to inspire you!


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  1. I love your creativity. Now you are ready to celebrate the summer and much more. I hope the placemats become a future tutorial. 🙂

  2. What a great project! I love that each placemat has the friendship stars, along with the different panel pattern. The napkins are just the right extra touch, too! You make me want to make something for the Fourth of July, too!

  3. How great is this panel!!! I love what you did with it. Super fun, and I love the pieced friendship star on the side of the placemats!

  4. What a creative use of the panel and fabric, Julie! The table set with the napkins and placemats looks so happy and inviting as does the throw pillow. Great work and wonderful post (both here and on the Henry Glass blog). Congratulations!

  5. Julie — your challenge turned out beautifully! love the fabric line and what you did with it! Of course, anything patriotic is my favorite, too!

  6. I have made a couple of wounded warrior quilts with my guild. I especially loved the idea of the placemats because of the design element with the pinwheels. I loved that it made you think family and 4th of July celebration.

  7. Wonderful project Julie! How inspired you sew the fabrics, so bright and sunny ideas. I read your answers, so much fun in such an intense work!

  8. Julie…I love these placemats. I really like the idea of a “side” border and I love how you did the blocks. Very clever…..

  9. Beautiful patriotic linens and pillow. Being employed with the Dept. of Defense I am partial to the red, white, and blue. 🙂 I hope the fabric will be available to purchase soon. How exciting to have been able to have this opportunity to create for Henry Glass & Co Fabric. Thank you for sharing!

  10. i am so impressed and, yes, inspired! I love your placemats! I especially like how the white around the star seems to kind of wrap around. I’m not exactly sure how to express it but it’s a detail that really caught my attention that I liked. I would love to make some pretty settings for our table and, like I said, your bright, cheerful patriotic set makes me want to get into that sewing room!

  11. Great challenge idea Juile…You pulled it off…Love the Idea of the Placemats…What a fantastic table setting……

  12. You really did a beautiful job on all the projects! Thanks so much for sharing with us. I am so glad I found your blog and am learning so much from your tutorial on the spring table topper.
    Thanks again!

  13. What a fun project, and really a challenge with such a short timeline. The placemats look wonderful, especially the stars and I like the edging on the napkins, too. A win.

  14. Really really pretty placemats and I love the pillow too! They are sure to brighten your July 4th celebrations.

  15. What a great project you turned out. So many times we see panels we like, but don’t know what to do with them. I will have to keep this in mind. You always have pretty things on your site.

  16. I love the star you chose for the left side of the placemat. I would love a set of these for my table. Great design for a super fabric line.

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