I think I am a normal(ish) person. But I'm lacking a certain ability to attain preciseness with fabric pieces. I see quilters with their rulers and pencils and graph paper and I'm in awe. Plotting out the right angles and squares and how many half square triangles can drive me a little batty. It just doesn't seem to come to me to have such an organized approach. When I worked on my Farmer's Wife sampler blocks last year, I struggled with accuracy and surprised myself when I could see it visibly improve with practice.
But I'm still not where I'd like to be when it comes to the business of preciseness.
I'm just too slap dash, or something. Can an old dog learn new tricks.
I think that is why I enjoy applique...it gets me away from the whole geometry thing.
And I also need help positioning and that is where my large, rather clunky light box comes in handy.
With almost all these blocks requiring stems, I put myself in Stem Making School yesterday.
Making smooth curved stems is essential to good applique (I've discovered). The thinner stems in particular were a real problem for me. I had myself a little frustrated when I made the decision to take a break and look up some videos on stem making. Watched this great video from Gay at Sentimental Stitches.
And reviewed again the marvelous tutorials offered by Quiltmania, one for each of the twenty blocks.
Quiltmania Tuesday Flowers Video Tutorials
Besides admiring their wonderful manicures, I learned about cutting the fabric on the diagonal so it would have some give for curves and also starting out with more fabric than you'd think you'll need even for the skinniest stems.
A good rule of thumb for all quilting.
So you see I have no excuse for wobbly stems. I've been taught by the experts! Photos later on so you can see whether or not I've gotten the hang of it.
What a beautiful magazine this is! I've also had to correspond with the folks who manage it and they are wonderful. I don't think I've ever looked forward to getting my copy as much with anything before.
And I should mention that Quiltmania is once again hosting a mystery stitch along. The first two blocks have been released.
The designer is Michelle Yeo and she is using fabrics by Penny Rose Designs for Riley Blake, .
This is Block 1. Isn't it pretty?
The Splendid Sampler book has been published. It looks so nice and what a wonderful stitch along it turned into. I read over 30 000 people worldwide took part...is that possible? Were there really that many?
The facebook page is still active and there are bonus blocks available for free download.