Sunday, July 17, 2011

Blocks Galore!

As you know, this week was the first week of the summer sampler QAL. I managed to keep up with the schedule (except for the Friday blocks, they got done on Saturday morning), and am pretty happy with the 6 blocks I now have. 

I showed you the first, Virginia/sawtooth star on Monday, so here is the second and third. 

Greek cross:




Mosaic:



This is them with the rest of the blocks I have made for Paula's quilt so far... I think they look quite happy and at home don't you? My only reservation is the current mix between light and dark values, but I'm hoping that will ease a little bit as I make a few more blocks.



My favourite block from the quilt so far is love in a mist (5 and 8 in the picture), but they just take an absolute age to make! Maybe I can speed up the process with my GO!baby cutter? :-)

I've also finished my blocks for Judith, Miss July in the Brit Bee, which ordinarily I wouldn't be able to show you but she says its alright this month. She sent 2 gorgeous FQ's of Oakshott cotton in cranberry and white sand and wanted us to just run with it. 


I knew right away I would make her a "Laura special" (that's a circle of geese block to anyone else, its just I've made so many of the darn things I'm getting to be a dab hand at it!). I also knew that those blocks really do eat fabric. So I went with a simple pin-wheel block for the second, and tried not to use too much white in it. 

I'm really pleased with how the circle of geese block came out. All credit is down to the fabric really... can you see how the grain in the cranberry geese perfectly lines up with the circle and seems to emphasize the motion in the block? I'd like to say I did that on purpose, but it was more of a happy accident ;-)



It was a close call with the white fabric because I literally had about a 2" scrap left when I was putting the last paper pieced quarter together... lots of red though!

My final block for the week was a bit of a challenge. I saw Lynne's chubby dresden tutorial and knew right away that I wanted to use it for my 4x5 modern bee block. It was too much a co-incidence really because I had been favouriting circle blocks left right and centre all week on flickr and I just happened to have the tumbler die for the GO!baby lying around waiting for the perfect opportunity.

So I pulled a little stack of 12 fabrics in my own colour scheme (grey, green, aqua) including 2 sneakily pinched charms squares from my little apples pack and set about making a test block. 


It mostly went fine. And indeed, looking at the picture again, it seems pretty perfect. But if you get right down low next to the block, stick the flash on and take a macro shot, this is what you will find:

  
I mean, I do think the flash has highlighted the problem a little too well. But this is just not acceptable for the 4x5 modern bee. And its on every edge. Does anyone know what the problem is? Is it that my tumbler circle wasn't circle enough? Was the outside surround too small or large in diameter? Its is just dodgy sewing/pressing? Did my white fabric stretch because it was on the bias? 

I am at a loss. Any and all help accepted graciously :-)



7 comments:

  1. I don't know the answer to your question but I certainly can research the dickens out of it! This seems to have the best information that I could find ~ http://sohappytosew.blogspot.com/2010/05/applique-with-no-pins.html

    The common theme I found was that they were hand stitching the plate like an applique. I'll keep looking for machine sewing and what causes the puckering... oh, and I'll ask my mama but she's more 'hands on' then verbal so who knows what will happen there.

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  2. All your blocks are gorgeous but the most utterly gorgeous are the red and White ones......because they are for me !!!!!
    I feel very hounered that I am going to be the recipient of one of those special Laura blocks.

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  3. Loving your blocks!
    Is your outer circle hole a bit too small? (or too big?) Can't remember which way round it is - sure it came up on the dresden QAL threads.

    If a Go! doesn't sort everything, then I don't want one! (Big fib!)

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  4. Love your signature block, as I think you should now call it! Re your puckering dilemma, not much idea I'm afraid - does it help if you snip the seams? That helped when I was piecing a circle, but it was much smaller!

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  5. I love all your blocks. My absolute faves are the mosaic, love in a mist and your cranberry Brit Bee blocks.

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  6. I'm not a quilter - but those are all very beautiful and it's going to be lovely when done!
    ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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  7. You have been busy! Love all your blocks and have absolutely no circle advice because I don't have a clue.

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