Nan Baker and Margaret Brewster Willingham wrote a really fun and inspirational book that features Reverse Applique and Paper Piecing, and has a great variety of suggestions for each design. Above you'll see some of the designs in the book, and the bottom photo is actually a really cute version of an Advent Calendar, where you add the applique animals each day. There's another gorgeous tree shape calendar, plus table runners, quilts, and the tree skirt that I chose. But you can use the ideas, change the colors, and make something unique, for any season, not just Christmas.
Although Island Batik sponsored this blog hop, I purchased my Island Batik fabric for the top, the red, gold and green, and have them listed per yard in my Etsy shop. The Buttermilk background is from a previous Island Batik Ambassador box, though. I decided to play with color placement in the star blocks, and drew an "idea" of the block in EQ8, and used a few options for the color placement. The red center, with gold around it, and green and red points won. This is a foundation pieced block, using 4 quadrants. You do need to make note of each block section and keep them in order for the centers to match. I also suggest you color the spaces to make sure you're using the right color in the right space. Crayons or colored pencils work well. Follow the directions, they're good. Make one block at a time, so the units don't get confused. After I made 4 blocks, I decided to use some Embroidery Library designs for ornaments I've purchased, for the other 4 blocks. I wanted something a little different than the book, but still similar. Have you seen the others who took the designs and made something different, like a gorgeous pastel table runner and a pretty baby quilt? Check back on the blog hop posts! You'll be inspired and have fun.
Another shot, a different time of day, and the Buttermilk looks more white. The first photo is closer to the right color. The dark green has half-square triangles on it, the red has swirled dots, and the gold has flower petals. I think the colors look gorgeous together!
Details of the blocks. I LOVED using my selection of Aurifil 40wt for the machine embroidery, and 50wt for the foundation pieced blocks. It's so much prettier in person. And no, it's not quilted yet, because my long arm still looks like this. I plan to quilt it soon, though. I am just going to layer it, carefully, with the opening edges very close together, and then bind. We'll see if it works (look for the post in a later blog).
My son is going to visit this weekend to help me get it assembled. The handyman I thought I hired didn't show. I love my son, and we work so well together. I'm sure it will go smoothly now. Fingers crossed.
Lots of stitches! Aurifil 40wt Mako cotton, and 50wt in the bobbin. My Pfaff Creative 1.5 loves it!
So excited that Aurifil chose this photo for their Sunday blog post! I feel famous!
The top is sewn with large wedge shapes. Kind of like an elongated kite. Here's a progress shot of the top.
One thing I realized, if you're doing a different type alternate block: For embroidery designs that go in one direction, you need to embroider it on the diagonal of the block if you want them facing "out". I cut them a little larger, closer to 13 or 14", then drew a diagonal line from corner to corner, with a blue wash-out marker. I lined up the diagonal lines on my hoop, and made sure the design was centered on the blue X to start, and then did the embroidery. I used a lightweight fusible interfacing on the back of the fabric, too, to make sure it had enough stability for all the stitches. I used a tear-away stabilizer, as well. You can barely see the blue lines here, but they really helped! I should have measured the size of each ornament, though, as 2 are larger than the other 2, but I still think it's pretty. I'm still pretty new with the embroidery and the machine, lol I then trimmed the blocks down to the 12 1/2" size needed, using the diagonal lines to help center the ruler.
So, for information about purchasing the book, please see the links below. There's also a chance to win some Island Batik fabric and Aurifil thread using the Rafflecopter link. I think you'll find something wonderful to make from this book, and if you haven't tried Reverse Applique, you should. I was tempted, but couldn't decide on that or the embroidery. Embroidery won this time, but I do plan to do a Reverse Star for something. It's good to add new skills to your bag of tricks!
Thanks so much for visiting, and please check the other bloggers.
April 29 Joan @ MooseStash Quiltinga Rafflecopter giveaway