Just take a deep breath and stitch, she said, so I did!
I’m so excited about my Spring Wreath BOM, I’ve just finished the first block and I’m well chuffed with it!
This is a block of the month quilt designed by Andrea Walpole of Raggedy Ruff designs, it has raw edge applique and free motion machine embroidery which is new to me, so I was somewhat apprehensive about that bit of the quilt, but that was one reason for choosing to make the quilt…apart from the fact that it is just gorgeous!
Last time I showed you the block I had just laid on the applique shapes…
Andrea just holds them in place, no glue, no bondaweb, I wasn’t quite that brave, I used a tiny dot of glue, just enough so the pieces would stay put. To start with I had to stitch all round the edge of the pieces, I think the free motion quilting I’ve done did help but there are quite a few wobbles! I also had to outline the eyes, Andrea had a really helpful tip for this, I traced the eye onto the freezer paper pattern, cut out the hole, ironed it in place and then stitched the circle right next to the edge of the paper, it worked!
Next was what I think of as the actual embroidery. Andrea’s instructions are really good, lots of diagrams and photos, she also has tutorials on YouTube, which although they are not of this specific design, they help with general technique enormously. I’m using a selection of Gutermann threads at the moment rather than the specific threads used in the design. If I get really into machine embroidery I might start investing in the special threads, but for now Gutermann will suffice.
The trickiest bit I found was the eyes, lets face it they can make or break a picture so the pressure was on!! I did the darker hare first and you can tell! He looks like he has too much mascara on and I stitched that much there is almost an eyeball of thread at the back!! The second hare came out much better, less is more I think! The leveret’s eye is so small I more or less gave up with detail as I couldn’t see what I was doing! All in all I’m pretty pleased with the eyes.
Really it was mostly a matter of doing varying zig-zags over the design, sometimes it flowed really easily and other times I found it hard to get the direction right, I found it easier if I turned the block round so I was stitching down but that wasn’t always feasible.
The stitching is easiest to see on the back where it shows up clearly on the stabiliser, mind you, you can also see the big blob of an eye!
By the time I got round to stitching the flowers and the dandelion heads I was just going for it, some work well, others not as neat but I love the overall effect.