Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Block 12 and a Guest Visitor

I asked Carole from Wheels on the Warrandyte Bus to be a guest blogger and she has been waiting patiently for the block she chose to be revealed.  You need to check out her blog too, Carole's fabric choices are excellent and she has a lot of Work in Progress to show.  Thank you Carole!

I was very flattered to be asked by Sharon to be a guest blogger for the Chester County Criswell quilt. She gave me a few different blocks to choose from and I picked the wreath block. 

Firstly I thought about which fabrics to use, I am making this quilt in blue and green rather than the original red and green. I like to have some similarity within the block and so I chose these two because they both had curvy bits in the pattern, echoing the curve of the wreath.

I wanted my wreath to be a perfect circle so I used a plate to round off Sharon's pattern.

I made the circular stem with bias using a 'Clover' tool. I have the fabric widths written in the box lid for my own reference (after throwing away the packaging long ago).

For the 1/4" bias I cut strips 3/4” on a 45° angle so that the fabric would curve smoothly. I fussy cut the fabric to incorporate the swirls.

I used the bias tool with a strip of visoflex, pinning it to the ironing board when you commence keeps everything together. I used 4 bias strips for the wreath circle.

The right side of the wreath is the same as the left but upside down so I printed out two copies of the pattern and stuck them together for a complete circle, then I pinned down the flowers and leaves. I didn't need to have the flowers on yet (as they go over the stem) and in hindsight I shouldn't have put them on yet as they became quite frayed and I actually lost one on of my bus journeys.

 I needle-turned the leaves and pomegranates first, then the stem and then the flowers. I sewed the inner curve of the stem before sewing the outer curve.  The flowers and pomegranates require some reverse applique so I placed yellow fabric underneath for the flowers and red for the pomegranates.

The picture below shows the reverse applique that's required for the pomegranates and flower centres. I forgot to cut some slits before sewing these down so I used a good quality seam ripper to cut into these parts.
Lastly I embroidered the pomegranate tendrils with a simple running stitch using 2 strands of DMC. When you are marking out the tendrils be careful of keeping them within the finished 12” block size, particularly if you round off the pattern as I did.

The finished wreath block.



  1. Carole, Great post and lovely work as always.

    1. Thanks Nancy! It's hard to believe that we have completed a year. Looking forward to seeing your wreath block.

  2. More than happy to wait - thanks again for the opportunity to be a guest blogger.

  3. I love seeing how others do their applique. thanks for sharing.

  4. Great work! Love checking out how others do their applique.:)

  5. Great to see how you work Carole - a beautiful block! I had never heard of the vliesofix strip going into the bias maker - what a good idea! Then I guess you iron the bias in place precisely without pins...hmm could have used that idea on my 20-odd yards of bias in my Carolina lily quilt - haha. Masses of little applique pins works fine but snags the thread quite a bit!

    1. Yes, then you iron the bias down, I should've explained that. It's great having no pins and it helps to give a very smooth finish. Yikes - it must have been a hassle with so many pins in your Carolina lily quilt.

  6. A great post Carole! It is always good to see how other quilters put their blocks together.
    I haven't used vliesofix with a bias maker before either.

  7. Thanks Miriam :)
    The next time you need to make bias you'll have to give the vliesofix strip a go.


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