Sunday, 10 October 2010

Wooden Blocks

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Sewing life has been busy with blocks, making and receiving.  I had four blocks through the post- it is like my birthday everytime, plus two more blocks which I haven't posted here yet.  Amber's beautiful selvedge books all stacked up (see more of her work at One Shabby Chick)

Patchwork Book Collection

and fresh today, Anna's (noodleheads) zingy cute fruity bowls

for kerry

Each bee member is so talented, it is such a pleasure and delight to see what we come up with.  Anna has next month and her theme is 'desserts'- lots of ideas for that.  

Meanwhile, I am block building for Bee a little bit Japanese.  Natalies month and she had a forrest theme.  Block size is 11" tall and up to 36" wide.  I wanted to try some different techinques out.  My first wide block was inspired by Charley Harper's wonderful Birds and Words book  I could make a 100 blocks from this book alone.  I had the image in my head and I did freezer paper piecing as a construction method using Ruth B McDowell's book fresh from the library.


This method seem to suit me.  You draw the block out on freezer paper, dull side, mark the outer edge and then put lots of tic marks on and notes to help accurate joining.  Cut the pieces out with the seam allowances added and join away.  It helps to have a copy of the design to match the piecing too but that never seems to happen for me, I jigsaw all the bits together until it works!

I love this methid, it works well for me.  Prep takes a while but once I'm sewing I'm on a roll.  The leaves are backed with heat n bond lite and free machine stitched.   I'm really happy with this one.

For the second block I wanted to trial Terrie Sandelin's vellum paper method as I know I couldn't pice a block of 1" squares accurately enough without some assistance.

You can see the squares drawn out.  The method involves some water based glue to hold edges and seams in place whilst you flip the paper and sew through paper and fabric.  


The good points are the accuracy is great but I wasn't keen on the glue and the paper was a bit too strong when it came to tearing it away.  It is good for tiny pieces of fabric and I will use it again but with stronger piecing thread- I had to double stitch a few times.

The block turned out OK, I was rather overly inspired by some tree blocks on Flickr (see their loveliness here and here) and perhaps I am better following my own design ideas rather than borrowing too heavily from someone elses, it doesn't look as free as the other one but it was an interesting exercise and it is good for a forest!  I like all the animals peeking out.


Have a good start to the week x
sib blog

5 comments:

  1. Oh, Kerry! I love my blocks! They're both gorgeous! Thank so so very very much :)

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  2. I love all of your work, but that selvage block really catches my eye. Great stuff here!

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  3. beautiful work there!

    I love those trees too... :)

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  4. Wow, oh wow! Your trees are both just fantastic. I am esp. partial to the Charley Harper inspired one. There is a quilt that someone made of Charley Harper designed birds that is just amazing. Love him!

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  5. Gosh, I love the tree - amazing. I also love the fabric on the little patchwork squares.

    Florence x

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