Sunday, October 11, 2015

FW 7: Augusta and 14: Betty

Ere we go. Another week and my first big disaster in quiltland. I have really tried to catch up and get organised, or rather try to. I seem to be failing. I've even been dreaming about blocks. I am not sure why. Last week I managed to make one block from both of the quilt a longs; block 1: Addie and Block 8: Aunt. They were fine. See the post here. I felt good.

Block 14: Betty

This week I made two blocks but I began to notice all the things I was doing wrong and wish my blocks were more perfect. Some of my seams are tiny due to bad lining up of fabric. Some points are off because, well I donn't know. I haven't been starching. I should starch right? I do usually, i just wanted to catch up quickly. I feel like I could be doing better basically. So i feel a little disheartened. But I did get a mention on GnomeAngel's link party roundup! Yay! So i am trying to be upbeat.

I do seem to be learning a lot with each block which is definitely good. With the first two I learnt that using tracing paper to print out the foundation pieces onto is great. This week with block 7: Augusta (from the UK QAL) and block 14: Betty (from the US QAL) I learnt that tracing paper is in fact rubbish as soon as the blocks become complicated. It's too thick and heavy. Either I pull my stitches apart or I make my stitch length so tight that it sheers the paper in two. I am going to buy me some proper foundation piecing paper or just revert to bog standard computer paper.

I also learnt with Augusta that I need to be better about my seams and trim as I go along by folding the paper as shown on verykerry's blog. It really tidies everything up nicely.

I'd also like to iron my seams open as some of the joins are very lumpy. But I am not sure if it's possible with foundation piecing. I did realise that some of the blocks are so simple that you don't really need to foundation piece them. I also realised after I had constructed Aunt above that I should have used my preferred method of making multiple HST's at once. I have actually never tried sewing them from triangle shapes. It's rubbish, they just stretch. But with fussy cutting you don't have a lot of choice.

I also need a small rotating cutting mat. It would just make a big difference. Then I could trim at the sewing machine instead of getting up every five minutes to go trim something. It's annoying as I really don't want to buy more quilting stuff. I just don't have the space nor the funds. but some things are just really useful like this ruler above. I bought it on a whim to go in my project bag. I really didn't need it and now it is really useful as it has bold 1/4 markings to trim my seams with and is a great small size for cutting.

I have also started to do a bit of chain piecing. Not too much as some of the blocks are just too complex. I can only think about one section at a time. I swear I have been doing Block 3: Alice for an age now.

I just keep putting it down when it does my head in. I need to have a better system. I think the coloured pencils on the foundation paper might have to come into play as I can barely understand my current marking system.

But back to my disaster. This week I printed out my template with 'fit to paper' selected and it shrank it every so slightly to fit on A4 paper. Sigh. So my block was 1/2" too small. So I made it again. The one on the far left is the new block. And I got to change my fabric around which is always interesting. Not too bad as it was an easy block but I was hoping to get another block finished from the backlog. I can basically only just about manage one block a week currently so catching up is hard work. I think the first block on the right is nicer though which is slightly annoying.

Truth be told, when I lay out all my blocks together I don't really think they go! I am hoping as I repeat the fabrics and change the combos though that the whole thing will come together. I promised myself I wouldn't play safe and just use one colour way or fabric range. Of course when I look on Instagram I fall in love with many people's versions doing that very same thing. And part of me is sad I am not using repro fabrics as the ones I am seeing are really lovely.

Block 7: Augusta

But on a positive note, Block 7: Augusta was much easier than I anticipated. I was really pleased with it, even though it's a bit more garish. I love the blue print. I was really elated when I went back to Birmingham a year after buying a small fat quarter and there it was again.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and dramas with these blocks. It's good to know other people think like I do!