With St. Patty’s Day taking a backseat to Easter this year, we thought we’d better do a little Irish Chain tutorial. Ever since I had my DNA done on ancestry.com and found out I’m 36% Irish, I’ve really been getting into this holiday. Celtic singers, river dancers, pots of gold, and corned beef & cabbage–who can resist such things?
A single Irish chain is basically a nine patch alternated with a solid block, but when done en masse it creates the overall diagonal pattern. We started with 2 1/2″ strips in green and white. Cut three strips of white and three of green 2 1/2″ by the width of the fabric.Arrange them in groups of white, green, white and green, white, green. Sew them together using 1/4″ seams. Press away from the white.
Cut 2 1/2″ sections from each set of 3 strips and arrange as shown. For the table topper we’re making, you will need 10 green, white, green and 5 of the white, green, white. Cut four 6 1/2″ square blocks from the white. Arrange and sew together as shown using 1/4″ seams. Press and admire your authentic Irish Chain. If you want to add that special something, draw shamrocks onto the paper side of Heat n Bond. Shamrocks are basically three kind of square-ish hearts with a stem. I have some growing in my kitchen window and they’re really cool, especially when they sport the little white blooms. Cut out hearts, arrange and press onto the big white squares. Embroider a little stem with 3 strands of green floss and blanket stitch around the edges of the leaves–like this.