Archive for the ‘Saddle Pads’ Category

Tools & supplies post can be found here

Next up in this “sewing series” of posts – quilting!

I stitch all of my english saddle pads on my sewing machine. Yes, pre-quilted fabric does exist. There is a really nice in-scale material that a lot of tack makers use, however, I’ve only seen it for sale from overseas websites, and it’s quite expensive to have shipped to me. Also, you are limited to what colors it comes in, unless you want to get into dyeing fabric yourself. As far as I know prints don’t exist? I could be wrong of course.

So the main reason I quilt it all myself is for the freedom to use whatever color I want, or whatever print I want. Also, I wanted my work to look different from what everyone else was using. 😉

This post will show you how I quilt both a large and small square pattern. It’s really simple, and once you get the hang of it you’ll blaze through without thinking. 🙂

I make my English pads from a layer of felt and a layer of cotton, but you can use whatever material you’re comfortable with.

All of my quilting is done before cutting out the shape of the pad. I do this because more often than not, the layers will shift as you sew them together. This could really mess up the shape of my pad if I cut it out beforehand.

To start, sew a diagonal line starting at one top corner. If you like, you can draw this in with chalk and a ruler. (it will not go corner to corner unless your fabric piece is a perfect square)
Take your time with this line – this will be your guide for the remaining stitches.

Instead of using measurements, I use the foot of my sewing machine to determine how far apart to keep my stitching.
Here’s how I position the fabric for the small quilted pattern. I want my “guide line” to be in the center of the left side of the foot.

When sewing the second line, I keep my eyes on that guide line to make sure it remains in the center.

Success!

This process is repeated over and over again, until the entire piece is covered with diagonal lines.

Next, you’re going to do the same exact thing, but in the other direction. Starting at the opposite top corner, sew another diagonal guide line. Take your time with this one too. You want this line to be straight and perpendicular to the previous stitching.

Continue just as before, until the entire piece is covered. This piece is ready to be cut now.

The larger square pattern is created the same exact way. The only difference is the distance between the stitching. Just like before, I use the sewing machine’s foot to measure the distance. In this case, I try to keep the edge of the foot around 1/8 of an inch from the guide line.

Completed!

Don’t be discouraged if your squares aren’t quite square! My earlier pads never were. It’s taken a lot of practice to get my quilting consistent. (and sometimes it still isn’t, shhh!)

If you’re having trouble, it’s perfectly fine to draw in your quilting lines beforehand, and use those as a guide for sewing. You can experiment with different sizes and patterns too. After all, real saddle pads come in many different styles!

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February’s over already… wait what?

I never made time to work on this month’s tack project, which annoys me, but I’m trying not to be too hard on myself because I’ve been working (and completing!) many sewing projects, mostly for the shop.

Here’s one of two blankets I finished. Adding a neck hood was a spur of the moment idea and I’m really happy with the result. I haven’t worked out a pattern for a full hood yet, but I’m sure I will eventually.

I mentioned draft sized blankets a while back, which I am working on… I’m just waiting on hardware at the moment! In the meantime my poor FVO is practically buried with in-progress saddle pads. There are blanket pieces piled on there somewhere too.

“Help me…”

A couple weeks back I received some new galaxy print fabric. (I’m always on the lookout for it, what can I say??) I’m so in love with this one and want to make galaxy patterned EVERYTHING… so far I have a couple English pads plus a cut back western one. (still in progress) There will definitely be some in my Etsy shop in the near future. (along with half a dozen other novelty-patterned pads)

My blog also reached a new milestone this month: 500,000/half a million views! I know, I know, numbers really aren’t important but I’m still excited to see that I’ve reached 500k. XD

And last but not least, Desktop Stables has an Instagram account, which I’ve been having fun messing about with. After refusing to upgrade my basic “dumb” phone for years, I’ve finally made the switch to a smartphone. I’m slightly irritated with myself for how much I like it already. 😛

I think that’s it for now… yay for a boring catch up post! Here’s hoping March goes well…

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We are two weeks into the new year and I’m already struggling with my resolutions. (no surprise there!) I’m also struggling with bad back pain from work. What is with my body lately? I swear something is always hurting enough to cause problems. :/
Sooo I’ve been trying to sort out the cause of that as well as focus on what makes me feel better, like stretching and heat and not standing and… anyway…

As far as hobby stuff goes, it’s been really helpful for me to set small goals to complete by the end of the day. I’ve found that it gives a nice feeling of accomplishment. So even with stupid pain, I’m still getting stuff done, yay!

First, I completed another trio of foal blankets:

These will be going up on my Etsy shop (which is re-open) sometime in the near future, so keep an eye out if you’re interested.

I’ve gotten a few saddle pad orders done, including an updated Hogwarts-inspired one:

I also managed to solve the “I-have-no-room-cause-I-have-too-many-horses” problem, (for the time being) by switching the hobby closet of doom’s shelf with a big plastic one, leaving the small one free for moar ponies.

My goal of making a piece of tack every month isn’t going well at all, but that’s because I can’t decide what to make. I’ve got two and a half weeks left, aghhhh!

But I am working on a few new blog posts, the first of which is very wordy so it’s been taking a while. Also, last month I started putting together a hobby resources page, which I made visible around the new year. I’m still adding to it so if you have any suggestions, feel free to mention them!

I think that’s it. Now I’ll go clear off my desk and try to figure out what tack piece to make. Maybe.

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