Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Woodland Quilt-Along- The Squirrel

Woah! We're at the final block of the Woodland Quilt-Along already!

This week's block is the squirrel. I just love his bushy tail!

The fun thing about squirrels are that they come in such a variety of colours. My original 4 inch squirrel was a red squirrel, but I had lots of fun using Cloud9 cirrus solids to create this grey squirrel.

I always love it when the courier van pulls up outside our house, because nine times out of ten they are bringing parcels for me and most of the time those parcels contain fabric. The majority of the time, I have a fair idea what will be in each parcel, so I was surprised when the courier pulled up yesterday.

I wasn't expecting anything was I? I wracked my brain and couldn't wait for the courier to come to the door.

It turned out that the box did hold fabric, and if I'd thought about it I could probably have guessed what it was. The lovely people at Lecien have sent me a whole pile of L's modern basics charm packs. They are perfect for making 4 inch blocks.

Of course, I couldn't wait to start playing so this morning I sewed up a squirrel and a bunny rabbit. I haven't quite decided what I'm going to do with them but I have two vague ideas. One would be to place them on the toes of a pair of sleepytime slippers for my daughter. Wouldn't that just be the best pair of slippers ever!?!
 Unfortunately, I suspect that I won't have time to do that so I suspect that they will be used to sew a new pencil case for my daughter as she has been nagging me for one for months!

Weekly Paper Piecing Tip

This week's tip has to do with the bottle that features in the photo above (although you can use any kind of starch or starch substitute that you like). I think that this is one of my favourite tips for creating a professionally finished block.

This tip is especially important for small scale piecing where seams can become bulky and pressing of seams can lead to ugly bumps and tortured looking shiny fabric. Personally, unless the piecing of a pattern is totally insane, I tend to keep the seam allowances 1/4 inch in size no matter what, This can lead to quite a build up of fabric at the back, but this tip helps to minimise the problems that the bulky extra fabric cause.

Once the block is complete, remove all the papers.

Initially, I place the block face down on the ironing board and give it a quick press to ensure that all the seams are pressed in the direction that I want them to be.

I then take a few layers of batting and place them on the ironing board.

 I take my block and lay it face up on top of the batting.

Spray the block with spray starch. I have tried a few different supermarket brands which I didn't like. One left a residue on top of the block. One turned the block yellow. These days I like to use Flatter by Soak which has the added bonus that it smells yummy!

Now press down hard on the block with your iron until the block is completely dry.

You will now see that the surface of the block is beautifully flat and the seams have not only been pressed into the batting, but they have also lost a lot of their bulk.

The good news for you guys is that not all of the fabric is for me! I have a couple of charm packs to giveaway at the end of the quilt-along, so make sure to join in and finish your woodland items.

If you are late getting started, it's not a problem. Each of these blocks only took me about and hour and a half to make (I wasn't rushing).

The patterns are available in a bundle and can be purchased from my Etsy, Payhip and Craftsy stores. For the duration of the quilt-along, the bundle will be available for the bargain price of US$7.50 (or as close to this as possible taking exchange rates into account!).

You can find a round-up of all the woodland quiltalong blog posts here.

P.S. No affiliate links here, just telling you what I use and why.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the pressing tip! I never thought to use batting to help press my bulky seams. I love your blocks.


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