Sunday, October 31, 2010

Veering off the path

Like all of you, I've been downloading the monthly BtCT blocks for eventual use in a quilt-sized project. However, when this somewhat homely block, #11, came spitting out of the printer, I knew I had to make it into something on its own, complete with all of those wonderful quilting motifs! I played with the layout a little, moving a few things and adding a few things. Then I started stitching on a black fabric, chosen so that the design would pop off of the background.

Although I'm usually an *all print* girl, I chose a solid red for the vase because I wanted to add the year, a detail I love in so many antique applique quilts. A scalloped red edge in the border echoes its top edge.

Next, a little embroidery embellishment with #8 perle cotton. And finally, the quilting!

This is where I am right now, ready to quilt the rest in a quiet pattern, black-on-black. I've posted lots of details of some of these steps on my blog over the last month or two and I'll post the final piece here upon completion.
I hope that my project will encourage those of you who love the blocks but aren't interested in making a full quilt to consider using one or more of them for smaller projects. The anonymous maker of the original Beyond the Cherry Trees quilt had a wonderful, quirky design sense. Why not take her ideas one step further and make them your own?

Block Two.....Check!

I got up, poured my coffee and sat and finished block 2.
 I like that all four sides are not symmetrical with their leaves. I pondered filling in the two spots, but then thought that since there are so many other blocks that aren't "perfect" this one will be ok. It's interesting that I don't notice these things on other peoples blocks, yet when it is my work, I become critical. I'm my own worst judge and jury. I keep reminding myself why I quilt and finished is better than....well, you know!
Happy Hallow'een

Thursday, October 28, 2010

My blocks so far

These are my blocks so - all up to date I am pleased to say!  Mine are all reverse as I do back-basting applique, and can't be bothered to reverse the drawing.  Anyway, there are going to be so many of these quilts out there, no one will care, least of all me!  I will make all the blocks if I can hold out long enough.

Laurel Block

Just received an invitation from Sharon to join this group, and all the blocks that are posted look fantastic! 

This is the only block I have finished so far.  I don't plan to make them all - just a few here and there that catch my eye.  Thanks so much Sharon - look forward to everyone else's interpretations of the blocks in this great quilt!

button, button, whose got the button?

I love learning something new, it only took, err, a few hours fiddle but it's finally working.  If you like it grab the code. If you would like to make any changes let me know.

<center><a href=""><img src="" /></a></center>

Add a HTLM/Javascript gadget to your page design, copy and paste above code and it should appear.

Kate's channelling the geek today!

Now, back to more important stuff - sewing.

4 through 12...

As I was getting my block pictures  organized (since I already messed up my order for #1 and #2) I realized I didn't even have pictures of a couple of my blocks.  So, not to add  to my confusion that I find myself in already and since  I have all my blocks done through #12, I am going to post them now  and then from here on out all I have to worry about is one block at a time per month.  So don't hate me, but I have been working on them a little longer than some of you.  ;D

#4....I think this one is my favorite so far.  Lots of red; and I love red!

#5....I love the placement of the flower on my basket.

#6....I like this block.  It's kinda dainty and I love  adding my red/white check here. 

#7...This one bothered me. The stems look like they are behind the bowl and not "in" it, but I guess that is my perfectionism at work.  I followed the pattern AND I love all the cherries and even that some of them aren't ripe (thus the green ones). 

#8...This one was kind of boring to work on.  I think it was because I was doing the same thing in all four corners.  Lot of pieces.  If I had it to do over again, I would place some of my reds in different positions.  I had numbered my pieces and then laid out the fabrics according to numbers rather than their actual placement.  Oh well.

#9...When you are trying to pretty much stick with one line of fabric, I found it hard to find a really good fabric for the bird, but I tried with this particular French General fabric to make the bird look as if he had feathers. 

#10...I like this block.  Maybe it is because of the big cherries.  Kind of a simple block, but I could almost see a whole quilt done up in this one. 

#11...I like the bowl, but the rest of the block is a little too sparse for me.  The one thing I did do with this block though is to use a woven fabric for the background.  I hope I didn't make a mistake by doing that.  It is much heavier than the rest of the backgrounds, but I really wanted that red dot.  There will be one more block with this fabric somewhere down the line

#, this one was a doozy.  Lots of little fingerlings.  Those hairpin turns were time consuming.  I like the block but am glad I don't have to make more of them. 

Well, I hope I didn't bore you too much.  I am caught up now.  So, I am off to start block #13. 

Blog updates

HI everyone.
OK, I've tried to find out how comments can get mailed to the mailbox of the person who posted the post. I can't figure that one out. I can enter your email through the admin section but that would give you ALL the comments. So, please check back after you posted, and if you need something answered, maybe we can reply via the comments section. That's what my other group blog evolved to doing.
I heard a rumor that someone might be making a button for us. If that happens, great. Please feel free to ask for what you would like.
There are others making this quilt, I've invited them to join so there may still be others hopping on board, whoohoo. The more the merrier.
This quilter declined to join, but I did tell her I would post a link to her webshots so CLICK HERE to see an amazing, and VERY different fabric selection of BTCT block. Love it!
Happy stitching this weekend.

Here's my third block...

I fretted over this block.  I so wanted to incorporate red into this block and just  could not figure out how to do a pineapple with some red, so I went ahead and did it in the yellow green and greens.  Then I have a friend stop by and say "why didn't you use a background with red in it?   Duh! My mind was just so focused on the applique pieces. Where was she when I needed her?   I would have been much happier with this block. So I just told myself that  there will probably be another block or two that is all "green".  Oh well.  It's done and again, it will work well within the whole scheme of things. 

Block 1-3

Here are my blocks so far. Individually I don't love each block, but the effect of them all together will be fantastic!!
I'm prepping block 4 today.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Whole Quilt

Here is a link to Gay's site where she has the whole quilt laid out. It's nice to see the whole quilt, sort of like the bulls eye of a target. Now we have a tangible to work towards.
Here are some of my thoughts. Faye, from Mimi's Passion, who is a brown noser and is all caught up and on track, has been kind enough to ponder my border issues. I counted roughly 165 leaves and cherries and when I look at the quilt, I think the cherries are the size of the circles on block 10. In the photo, block 10 is on the far right and it's the 3rd block away from the front.
Those circles are a smidgen over 1" in diameter. So what that translates to one is going to have the original to compare, so close in size will be good enough. If you make 5 cherries for the border every time you make a block, you will have 125 cherries ready to go once you start on the border. Same concept as the leaves. Also note, nothing on this quilt is the same size!
Minick & Simpson did a blog post about making berries/cherries here and here and you can see her sewing down perfect circles here.
I know there are the mylar heat resist circles, but you only get 4 per size. With the paper ones, (English Paper Piecing) you can buy a bag of 100 circles. If you baste and cinch your berries now, by the time you go to use them you won't even have to press or starch them, they will have a permanent crease by then.
This site, Paper Pieces, will custom cut circle templates. She quoted me approximately $5.00 for 100 circles. She will cut them any size. I'm going to order 2 packs of circles that are 1" in diameter for my border. If anyone else wants to order, I would do it from here since she is cutting them anyways for me. I couldn't find them anywhere else online in the U.S. Liz or Kate gave me a line on someone in AUS, but I thought the shipping would be outrageous.

When you post, please put your blogger name that shows up on the right side of this blog in the Labels. That way people can click on your name and see all your posts in a row. Or you can ignore me, I don't want this to be ridgid or ruley. Is that even a word? Oh well, I'm sure you all get what I'm saying.

Lets have fun and share and enjoy. I might take some time this weekend and jazz up the header, I'll have to see if I have time. I really am supposed to be quilting for others, but when the mood strikes for applique, I seem to be able to put everything else on the back burner. How about you?

I messed up.....

My "actual" first block is this one...

I was going by the names I had given my blocks in my file where I have all my pictures, so apparently I didn't know what I was doing at the time.  LOL  Anyways, the one I posted yesterday is my "second" block even though it was named #1 block. 

Anyways, I do want to mention that I am totally in love with "Perfect Circles".  This is a set of heat resistant plastic templates in several sizes.  This is how I am doing my circles.  There are two sets of these templates available and I have them both.

To date, I am only using reds and greens for my quilt. I had always wanted a red and green quilt and when this pattern came along, I just knew it was the one.

Block #1, Cherry Trees

Here is my first complete block.  I enjoyed doing it although it took longer than I expected.  My colour scheme is ivory background with scrap raspberry and yellow/green with splashes of orange, yellow and violet.
The vine will be the same throughout.  To make the cherries, I used this ruler that Maths students use.  It has 32 circles from very small to large.  Although the largest is about 2mm less in diameter than the pattern cherries it was close enough.  I cut my own cardboard templates (green circles) and used a size 10 circle, drawn directly onto the cherry fabric for the reverse applique.
My variations are: no embroidery.  I don't enjoy embroidery, although having seen Sharon''s block, I think I may have made a poor decision.  Hers certainly look more like cherries.  They look very cute hanging from their skinny stems.

That's it for now.  I'm keen to start block #2.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

#1 Cherry Trees block for me

As you can see, I am doing my Cherry Trees in scrappy reds and greens.  A lot of my fabrics are coming from the French General line, too

Welcome to Beyond The Cherry Tree

Hello everyone. First off, I've never set up a group blog so bear with me as I work out the kinks.
The reason I set this up is to have a place to share and motivate others along the journey of making a 25 BOM with an appliqued border. Here we can share our tips and tricks, frustrations and successes, and share photos of our work in progress.
With regards,