Stitching The Nutcracker Quilt

The Nutcracker, Machine Quilting, Lori Kennedy

Good Morning, Quilters!

Slow and steady wins the race!  I have to keep reminding myself of that…

In the past few weeks, I have had only a few minutes at a time to work on my Nutcracker quilt.

I know that is something you all understand!

The Nutcracker, Machine Quilting, Lori Kennedy

I really loved the ideas for increasing the size of the smaller pattern to a life-size Nutcracker.  (See comment section)

I hope to find an overhead projector–someday.

For this project, I segmented the small pattern and made 300% increase photocopies and then taped them all together.

It was a painstaking process and I don’t recommend it!

Then I taped the pattern and the fabric to a large window (like a lightbox) and traced the pattern.

This was awkward too because the window wasn’t quite large enough…

I was highly motivated to press on, because I couldn’t wait to start stitching!



I’m challenging myself to use a variety of motifs–Do YOU recognize any of the tutorials?

The Twist


Sweetheart Border

Greek Key


Beginner Loops


Lots more quilting this month–including The Sunflower Sampler Quilt Show!

What about YOU?

Are YOU spending a few minutes a day on one of YOUR quilts?



A day without quilting is like a day without____________?

We’d LOVE to hear!


PS…All tutorials, images and information are the property of Lori Kennedy at The Inbox Jaunt and are intended for personal use only.  Feel free to re-blog, pin or share with attribution to The Inbox Jaunt.  For all other purposes, please contact me at  Thanks!

60 thoughts on “Stitching The Nutcracker Quilt

  1. As an alternative to a projector, consider scanning your image and printing it as a poster. There’s an online free site that will prepare it, you can do it from Word, or several other softwares. Google “print as a poster” for a variety of techniques.

  2. Lori, thank you for the wonderful tips and inspiration you offer to us on a daily basis. Regarding an overhead projector, I found mine on craigslist. Hope this tip helps.

  3. This is an amazing project! I think you live several lives to do all that you do…..thank you for this most recent year of your generous sharing!

  4. Mr. Nutcracker is looking pretty darn good. The double or triple outline stitching really helps set off the areas and preserves his image. I especially like your approach of a narrow echo rather than restitching on top of the same lines. the long start lines look great. Are you thinking of using different color threads in some of his clothing or the background?

  5. Lori, most schools have what’s called an opaque projector (– it takes your printed sheet and projects it on the wall, so you don’t have to use a clear flimsy), and I have found that most of them will allow you to use it there at the school. . . especially if you happen to know one of the teachers who will vouch for you. Give it a try next time! :o)

  6. I love your nutcracker. Hang in there. It will get done. You may want to check any school surplus stores for overheads. Many are moving to computer projectors.

  7. Awesome quilting designs, Lori! I recently bought a used longarm machine and found your blog. Love how you make really complicated looking things from simple patterns. I just perused each of the links in this blog today and I’m anxious to try every one of these border designs! Simple, yet beautiful. Love your blog! Keep it up……and thanks!

  8. A day without quilting is like a day without sunshine! Your nutcracker is looking fabulous! Can’t wait to see which other quilting designs you use! I sense you are having a lot of fun! Christine x

  9. A day without quilting is like a day without coffee! Lori, what kind of pencil are you using for marking on this quilt? Glad you found a projector that works for you. Have a Very Merry Christmas, enjoy your family & make many memories.

  10. Is that a special pen you use for marking your quilt lines? If so, I would be interested to know the brand. Thank you.

  11. I got my overhead projector at the local county surplus sale for just $10–keep an eye out for city, county or state surplus sales…you’d be surprised at what you can pick up there for a song.

  12. You can also take your picture/pattern to a copier store (Kinko’s, Staples) and tell them you want it enlarged 300% (or whatever). They do the math and run it through a copier that produces the size you want. It’s not expensive. I think I paid $3. for a 200% enlargement.

  13. A day without quilting is like a day without fun, boring! ; ) I love the idea of a life size motif, he is amazing! What a fun quilt to pull out at Christmas time.

  14. Lori, thank you. All your work is beautiful and your love oozes through the blog entries. The Nutcraker is outstanding. Best of the special season to you and your family. Ljp

  15. I bet that Nutcracker, if photographed, would make a fabulous Christmas card !! Send me one? COD, of course… LOL. He is stupendous !
    A day without quilting is a day with a nagging feeling that I lost or forgot something really important.

  16. PS..I saw cute 6 inch Nutcrackers in a store for 88 cents. Started to buy one…but each was painted differently from the others… Hmmm… which one to choose.. walked away without one.. Lori, I can’t wait to see what his boots will look like on yours!

  17. P.P.S. Uh, all of you in path of the cold front, please stay warm and don’t take any safe. The world needs each and every quilter it has ! We are cool in south Georgia but nothing like what is predicted for the North. Prayers for electricity and gas to keep going and heat homes.

  18. Thought about Projectors – Go to a library or church. They may have one to borrow. Why clutter space with one more thing (unless you’d use it alot)!

  19. Lori, I use to make designs the EXACT size I need them. Check out their free trial. I ended up buying $30-ish package because that level will keep all of my designs–then if I need a different size, the previous one is still available for me to use. It prints your design on as many pages as necessary, with or without registration marks (and where to cut off excess paper), and I tape them together, but I don’t need to redraw anything, just scan the original into my computer. Great for clip art and many other things!

  20. This nutcracker you are quilting is fascinating. I could outline a nutcracker, but deciding on what and where to do the different FMQ designs is what I would have a problem with. Thanks for sharing this.

  21. The perfect projector…. Smart Beam – it’s only two inches square… and you can plug your phone into it and project an image any size just move closer or farther… it has decent sound too! So you can stream a movie on your phone and lay in bed with a pack-o-grandkids and watch a movie on your ceiling! Yes I’m the bestest Grammie ever! Haha. I got mine on Amazon for $115. Helga

  22. About 3 years ago, I planned a non-holiday quilted wall hanging that I wanted to be about 5 ft long. Your Nutcracker has been so intriguing to me…to see how you solved some of the logistics. I was thinking I would begin my own project after I sewed quilts for my family members..Recently I made a new list of the quilts I planned for family. I was shocked to see that if I continue on past time schedule, it will be 4 more years before I can do my own project..Not acceptable.. So I asked at the library yesterday about a projector, remembering the suggestions folks gave you RE the Nutcracker. There is a projector available for the public and they will even help me adjust it to get the best resolution projected onto my paper for drawing the project. This is exciting because getting the pattern drawn was the key to really starting the project. I have been collecting fabrics for 3 years already. Lori, one night I saw a lifesize Nutcracker as decoration in a yard in St Augustine during Christmas. I took a photo but the picket fence and decor lighting didn’t yield a great photo. However long it takes for your Nutcracker, I wish you the best and fun with it too.!

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