Harry Potter Bookcase Quilt: Block 9

Harry Potter Bookcase Quilt: Block 9

This week I tried something super crazy with the two of the books – I added flaps created in the embroidery hoop! Stay tuned for the embroidery files and a tutorial on how to use them.

<Julie Chen Voice> BUT FIRST </ Julie Chen> Here’s the block:



Block Splitting

I split block 9 into two 5″ blocks. I’ve sketched out the general plan for most of the rest of the quilt and I could see the “blocks” in it even though they are supposed to look like shelves. I found the worst 10″ blocky offender was the Hogwarts Express book ends and Gilderoy Lockhart books. As far as I could tell, the simplest solution was to offset the 30″ section of the train by some number of inches. The quickest way to do that – split a block. Because I like nice easy numbers, I split in half 5.5″ by 10.5″ to be finished 5″ x 10″.

Trees and Spells

The tree on Flesh Eating Trees of the World is very much inspired by one of the bad guys in the Dragon Warrior/Dragon Quest game series. (Mashup #2 for those keeping count). It stitches out applique style the same as the Kissing Concoction from Week 3.  I played with the idea of not completing the satin stitches all the way around each of the applique objects. The unfinished edges ultimately go into the seam allowance and disappear. It does take a little bit of fussy measuring and cutting, but I think the end result is pretty fun! Here is what it looks like before it is trimmed and sewn into the quilt.


I did try to use fill instead of satin stitches around the green part of the trees and I like that too, though I think I will use it very sparingly in the future. I also painted the black section of his mouth with Jacquard textile paints. I had intended to give him a tongue like the Dragon Warrior version, but decided that it needed a little “less” so I backed off a bit.

Spellman’s Syllabary is relatively simple. I think the spines need a break now and then from all of the crazy ornate embroidery and this seemed like a good time to take it down a notch.

Beginner’s and Advanced Guide to Transfiguration

Now these were fun! I noticed the images of the actual books had closures that looks something like flaps. I decided to try to get that into the quilt and try something that had been floating around my head for a bit. I’m pretty sure I’ve broken somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 quilt/embroidery rules. Feel free to gasp as necessary.

You’re Always Preparing!

I started with my background fabric hooped with my favorite cut away stabilizer. I fused a bit of Misty Fuse on the back of my accent fabric. Since the Misty Fuse gives the fabric a bit of heft, I did not starch or otherwise treat the applique accents.


Just Go!

The first thing the embroidery file will do is stitch out a marking line. I placed the Misty Fuse treated accent piece so it completely covered the marking line. Next, the machine will stitch a stay stitch in the exact same spot as the marking stitch. I removed my hoop and cut the excess fabric as close to the stay line and I could get it. Since my book is going to be larger than my hoop, I allowed the excess of the accent fabric to flop around the top and bottom of the hoop. I realized a little late that I should not have trimmed beyond the stay stitch. It isn’t a huge deal, but it does finish nicer if the cut follows the contour of the soon to be satin stitched line.


We’re Walking….

Once I was at this point, I put the hoop back in the machine and it stitched the satin stitches to finish the edges as well as the letters in the center of the book. If you’re using the files – you could stop here and have a perfectly lovely flat pair of books. Also, the letters can be left off. I made an acronym for “Beginner’s Guide to Transfiguration” and “Advanced Guide to Transfiguration”.  They will not be seen unless the flaps are opened, but I really wanted something to be there – just in case they ever do get opened.

Next I took my embroidery out of the hoop and hit my two accent pieces with a hot iron. Remember that misty fuse? Now everything is fused down nice and flat. The sides will go in the seam allowance so there shouldn’t be any issues with it hanging all loosey goosey and not being finished all the way around in the machine. Slick eh?


I trimmed the book to 3″ wide (finishes at 2.5). I used the edge of the satin stitch lines as my guide and cut 1/4″ from the finished edge. This way when the books get seamed together the satin stitch lines connect up nicely.

Nuthin’ but a flap

To make the flaps I first stitched the design on the front of the fabric. I used a lightweight tear away stabilizer that completely and easily removes. A wash away could be a good choice here too, but I don’t have any. ha! Once the decorative stitches finish, I added the accent fabric as I would a standard applique with one big exception – the fabric goes right side together. The machine will then stitch the seam around just beyond the decorative stitches. Once completed I cut both flaps out with a 1/4″ seam allowance.


I trimmed the corners, turned the flaps, pressed them, added a button and button hole with my sewing machine and pinned it to the book as one big flap unit. I basted the flaps in place with an 1/8″ seam to keep them from slipping around with the real 1/”4 seam. Since the two books were right next to each other and the seams get so thick, I offset them by about 1/4″. It doesn’t line up perfectly, but it does make the seams much happier.



The Files

If you want to make the books too, here’s the embroidery files in .pes format. Feel free to use them at will and let me know if you have any questions or comments.


Want More?

See everything there is to know about this quilt and pick up more embroidery files and tutorials on TBZ’s Harry Potter Project of Doom Index page.


The next block finishes the second shelf! I might be unusually excited about that!

What say you?