I love the concept of this quilt-along by Amanda Herring ... it celebrates the qualities we value in friends. The Friendship Quilt Along reminds us of why we choose our friends ... because they're fun, trustworthy, gracious, dependable, honest, warm, loyal, humorous, empathetic, patient ... and more! In fact, all of the blocks and the templates that go with them are named after these wonderful traits. The quilt along will continue all Summer so you'll have time to enjoy the process of making the blocks + thinking about the feelings you enjoy when you think about your friends. Start here with Block #1. There you'll find more information from Amanda and see the links to the other designers who are taking part in the FUN block. I've taken a little bit a of a different slant on this block!
I followed the pattern instructions and use a variety of the templates to make my block ... including one of the FUN templates. I was using a combination of wool and cotton so I choose to use fusible web on my pieces and not turn under the edges.
After I traced the shapes on to the fusible ... leaving some space around them ... I placed the fusible side against the wrong side of my fabric and pressed in place. Then I used my scissors to cut out the shapes on the traced line. Don't forget to remove the paper backing! The shapes will be placed on the background of the block and pressed in place. Sharp scissors are important ... I like OLFA's 5" applique scissors best.
The flower template has a lot of curves so to make sure they came out round and not pointy, I clipped into the V of the curves first. It made is so much easier to cut each petal smoothly as I rounded the curve.
Because wool is thicker, it isn't easy to make it fuse to the background. I gave those pieces a little nudge with Roxanne's Glue Baste and Clover's applique pins.
My block fused in place and ready to stitch! My stem was too big ... I cut it the width stated on the pattern ... but because I wasn't turning under the edges, I trimmed it to 1/2" instead. The leaves and flower parts also weren't turned under so I had to make sure there was enough space allowed for the seam allowances later when it gets sewn with the rest of the blocks. They are just a little bit bigger than if you needle-turn applique but it all works out.
Using two strands of floss, I stitched the leaves and stem with a running stitch.
To stitch the large wool shape, I alternated whip stitches and cross stitches to give it texture. I like using floss for that reason, too.
A whip stitch held the scalloped flower in place but on the flower center, I just made long stitches over the shape both ways. I love how it softened the brightness of the yellow.
Using this fusible method, I had the block done in no time! I loved watching it develop by working it with a needle and thread. As you make this quilt, try this method on the other applique blocks in the pattern. Enjoy sewing ... and invite your friends because everything is more FUN when you include them!