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Jane A. Stickle Quilt block 3: JAS-A03 – Hunter’s Moon – Take 2

I had another go at A03 though it may not be the last.

While I think it’s an improvement on the first block, some things went wrong so the melons aren’t the same size and it looks a bit odd to me.

I’m not quite sure I even followed my own plan. I couldn’t get my head around all the layers and where to use freezer paper, etc.

This is the first time I use freezer paper by the way, and I love it. It made a world of difference to how smooth the sides of the melons turned out.

I planned to do reverse applique though in the end I did needle turn on one layer and reverse on the other.

So I cut 3 squares, a larger 5 1/2 in one for the top and 2 smaller 4 in squares for the other two layers.

Then I drew the circle on freezer paper. The diameter of the circle is 2 1/2 inches.

As you can see I was a bit confused about what I was doing because I drew two lines for the melons placement.

I eventually worked it out and cut out the centre.

Ironed it to the white fabric. And then I marked the line directly on the fabric where to cut the centre off.

Then the fun started. I cut the centre.

Pinned the smaller brown square underneath. It looks like I fussy cut the fabric but it was pure coincidence. I only realised later.

I appliqued the top fabric. As you can see things started to go wrong at this stage. The melons ends weren’t exactly touching.

Trim off fabric from the back.

Then I drew a circle in both the fabric and the freezer paper. This is again where I went wrong again.

The freezer paper circle wasn’t big enough or exactly round.

I pressed it to the wrong side of the fabric.

Cut around the circle and make small cuts around so that the fabric turned better.

Then place over the melons and finish the applique.

Trim off the white fabric as well and you’re done.

Not sure about how successful this second attempt is but I’m happier than take 1. What do you think?

Where to get the Jane A. Stickle Quilt patterns

Susan Gatewood’s paper foundation . All patterns are free though Susan says “I only ask that you consider making a donation to the Bennington Museum, in Bennington, Vermont. And if you do, it would make me tremendously happy if you would tell them that you have received help from me.” I totally recommend Susan’s patterns as they are very easy to use.

Jane A. Stickle Quilt block 4: JAS-A04 – Courtney’s Stethoscope

This block was a breeze compared with JAS-A03. The cross in the middle isn’t quite straight but I’m ok with that. It probably took me 2 or 2.30 hours to make though more experienced quilters should be able to make this block in half the time.

The more foundation piecing I do the more I like it. I don’t know if I’ll be able to go back to using traditional quilting methods after this. It’s so easy and worry free that it almost feels like cheating.

My approach with this block was the same as for A02. I measured all triangles, rectangles and other pieces, including the seam allowance, and cut them with an extra 1/4 in all around. Fabric waste was minimal.

I cut in yellow:

  • 1 piece 1 in x 3 1/2in
  • 4 pieces 1 in x 4 1/2 in
  • 2 pieces 2 in x 1 in
  • 4 pieces 2 1/2 in square

In white:

  • 4 pieces 1 in square for the corners
  • 4 pieces 2 in square cut into triangles on the diagonal

The beauty of this is that you don’t have to be extremely accurate in your cutting at this stage since you know you’ll be trimming. This makes the cutting a lot faster and worry free.

Stitch all pieces and assemble into the block as per Susan’s diagram.

Where to get the Jane A. Stickle Quilt  patterns

Susan Gatewood’s paper foundation . All patterns are free though Susan says “I only ask that you consider making a donation to the Bennington Museum, in Bennington, Vermont.  And if you do, it would make me tremendously happy if you would tell them that you have received help from me.” I totally recommend Susan’s patterns as they are very easy to use.

Virtual quilt

See all blocks I’ve done together in a larger size.

Jane A. Stickle Quilt block 3: JAS-A03 – Hunter’s Moon

I am not happy with this block for obvious reasons. I think I will make it again.

While I’m familiar with applique -this is an applique quilt I made a few years ago-, this block is was beyond my ability I thought.

Susan rates this block as medium difficulty. My rating is HARD with capital letters. Not only the pieces are tiny but they’re arranged in a perfect circle!

At the end of the post I have added some applique advice.

How to make this block

Cut the base.  It is recommended that you cut the square a bit larger than the finished size. You will trim at the end.

Find the middle by folding the square twice.

Pin in the middle.

Now, what I did was to cut the paper pattern without the seam allowance and used it to draw the shape on the white fabric.

I used a water soluble marker.

Place the wedges in a round and mark on each side using a compass.

And then trace a full circle.

Using a ruler make 4 marks on the circle. The marks are where the ends of the wedges go.

Now, making sure that edges are aligned start the applique… and do a better job than I did!

Tips on doing the appliqué

After the doing the appliqué not very successfully I did some research for future and I collected some tips from the Dear Jane website.
Templar heat resistant template sheets for appliqué templates instead of cardboard is better because templates are see through.
I saw a video with an appliqué method called freezer paper on top that looked promising but I haven´t tried it yet.
Other tips included trimming the seam allowance a little narrower at the pointy ends as well as using glue stick on the pointy ends by turning the edges and making a point and then applying glue stick to the pointy end on the wrong side of the fabric.
A toothpick can also be useful when turning the edge of the fabric before stitching.
Another interesting method I came across was tracing the pattern on the back of the fabric first. Then pinning the appliqué piece on the front and basting through the back along the lines so the basting lines would show on the right side of the appliqué. Then, with the basting line as a guide, turn the sides of the appliqué pieces in and stitch.
Reverse appliqué is another method that can be used.
For next piece of appliqué I´ll be taking some of the advice above and hopefully do a better job!

Where to get the Jane A. Stickle Quilt  patterns

Susan Gatewood’s paper foundation . All patterns are free though Susan says “I only ask that you consider making a donation to the Bennington Museum, in Bennington, Vermont.  And if you do, it would make me tremendously happy if you would tell them that you have received help from me.” I totally recommend Susan’s patterns as they are very easy to use.

Virtual quilt

Jane A. Stickle Quilt block 2: JAS-A02 – One-Two Buckle My Shoe

Block one of Jane A. Stickle Quilt (JAS-A01) was  kind of encouraging though it was a clear demonstration that this is a quilt that can’t be made in a hurry.

Block two, JAS-A02, was a tad easier than the first one or should I say faster.

This block has a whooping 40 pieces but after my experience with JAS-01 I decided to do the cutting a little bit differently. It probably helped that many of the pieces were half squares so to speak and a few squares and rectangles.

So basically I measured the side of the triangles, added 1 inch: 1/2 in for seam allowances and an extra 1/2 in to cover for miscalculations, turning of fabric, etc. and then I cut a square. And finally I  I cut the square in the diagonal.

For instance for the larger red triangles I needed to cut 4 squares because I needed 8 triangles in all. And for the large white triangles I cut just one square. And so on. This worked really well and I was quite pleased with this system. It may not work for all blocks but it may for some.

This block reminded a lot of some blocks from the Farmer’s wife quilt sampler but they were actually faster to cut because I didn’t need to be so precise. That’s the beauty of paper piecing, cutting the pieces can feel quite liberating. Even if your pieces aren’t exact you will be able to fix that as you do the patchwork.

And I didn’t waste a lot of fabric. Just 1/4 in around each piece.

So far I have been using fabrics that I used for Farmer’s wife but I realise that if I continue to do so both quilts may end up looking quite similar so I’m going to try and incorporate new fabrics in the mix as much as possible.

Carol gave me a tip last week. She left a comment with the following: ” if you stitch just a hair to the right of the lines, you get better points– the fabric just needs a tiny space to turn around the seam”. I’ll try that next time.

I hope my tips will help you in your Dear Jane trip.

Feel free to send in any extra tips or ideas you may have that helped you.

Where to get the Jane A. Stickle Quilt  patterns

Susan Gatewood’s paper foundation . All patterns are free though Susan says “I only ask that you consider making a donation to the Bennington Museum, in Bennington, Vermont.  And if you do, it would make me tremendously happy if you would tell them that you have received help from me.” I totally recommend Susan’s patterns as they are very easy to use.

Virtual quilt

See all blocks I’ve done together in a larger size.

Jane A. Stickle Quilt block 1: JAS-A01 – Pinwheel Gone Awry

Today I start a new “epic” quilt.

I finished Farmer’s wife quilt sampler a few months back and I liked it so much that here I am again starting another quilt. FWQS took me almost 3 years to make on and off and Dear Jane looks like it is a harder quilt so who knows. I’ll just take it a block at a time.

I’m making this quilt using foundation piecing mostly. Susan Gatewood generously has made all the blocks available for paper piecing.

I think paper piecing is the way to go with such complex and small blocks.

I started with block number 1: JAS-A01.

According to Susan this block is rated “Easy” and easy it is but also time consuming. I has 32 pieces.

I’m hoping that as I get better at paper piecing I will be able to piece blocks more quickly than this one. I didn’t time how long it took but it must have taken no less than 3 hours.

I’m happy with the result though the top corners are not matching. With paper piecing is easier to piece more accurately particularly if using smaller pieces.

The only drawback is fabric waste. Please leave a comment if you know how to reduce fabric waste when paper piecing.

If you’re making this quilt and you have any advice to offer feel free to post a comment.

Making the block

I printed the page making sure that I was printed at 100%. This is important because I have found that not all printers print accurately.

Then I cut all the pieces as per photo below.

Next step is folding along the seam line.

Then cut a piece of fabric that covers triangle A1 plus at least over 1/4 inch all the way around. Place over the piece to cover and pin. Note that the piece of fabric is pinned to the back of the paper.

Now this is when the previous fold becomes handy. Fold the piece back as per picture and trim the fabric leaving 1/4 inch allowance. See photo below.

Now, with right sides facing together, place the next piece of fabric. Align both pieces well at the edges.

Stitch from the front including through the seam allowances.

Do all pieces in the same way and then place them as per pattern and stitch in twos.

Make the inside square and then attach the corners. Use the pattern as a guide.

And the block is done. My block is 5 in square.

Where to get the Jane A. Stickle Quilt  patterns

Susan Gatewood’s paper foundation . All patterns are free though Susan says “I only ask that you consider making a donation to the Bennington Museum, in Bennington, Vermont.  And if you do, it would make me tremendously happy if you would tell them that you have received help from me.” I totally recommend Susan’s patterns as they are very easy to use.

See all blocks I’ve done together.

How to do foundation paper piecing

You can learn the principles of foundation piecing on this 2 minute video. These principles can be applied to any foundation piecing blocks no matter how complex they are.