I’ve been working on my Down the Rabbit Hole quilt this week and I’m making good progress!
My main task is to applique all the leaves on my flowers. Sarah (the designer) has 52 leaves on hers!! I think I must have spaced mine a bit more as I’ve got 38. I might add a few extra afterwards.
It took me a couple of evenings to cut out all the leaves and finger-press the edges under. I love Sarah Fielkes suggestion of using an acid-free silver gel pen to draw round the leaf shape. It shows up whether the fabric is dark or light, it won’t damage the fabric and it washes out afterwards! It gives a very easy stitching line to follow.
My first plan was to just use two or three darker fabrics for the leaves, however I cut a couple of lighter, softer greens to try and I liked the effect. In the end I used about ten different green fabrics, so about four from each one.
I have found it difficult to gauge how much smaller they would look once stitched. It looked pretty full when I was arranging them all but now I’ve started stitching them they look so much smaller! Maybe I’ll add a few more at the end.
This is my first real try at needle-turn applique and I can see the improvement already. I’ve stitched about a dozen on so far and the last few I suddenly cracked it, just how small an area you turn under at anyone time and how to use your needle and thumb nail to turn it. This was one of the reasons for doing this quilt-a-long, to learn how to applique properly, so I’m well chuffed so far!
In between stitching the leaves I’ve also started the next border. I love this border, it’s a row of cottages, I’m calling mine Coney Lane after the old word for rabbits. There are forty cottages altogether, ten different designs down each side, so I’ve to make four of each cottage. I spent quite a while ‘auditioning’ fabrics for Coney Lane. To start with I picked out different shades of purples for the cottage with greens, greys and browns for the roofs. It looked a bit too much and having looked at all the photos on the facebook page I decided I liked the continuity of having the roofs in the same colour. I chose a soft blue/green plainish cotton. I’ve still one more border to put round the centre and I still haven’t decided what to use for that, but obviously it will affect the cottages. I think it will be one of the darker fabrics in either purple or green, so I changed a few of the cottage fabrics so they are more lighter shades and a few greens as well. I had two choices for the background, this one is actually the one I originally bought for the border, then I got cold feet thinking it looked like fish bones!!! I debated on one I’ve got in similar colours but more floral, however I decided to stick with my original choice, they are trees on a misty hillside!
I made my first cottages last night. The roofs are paper pieced and the cottage is stitched in strips. The windows are tiny, 1″ square, my time with the tiny pieces of the Splendid Sampler quilt came in useful here, I drowned everything in Best Press! I love these little cottages, looking forward to making the other thirty-six!