Thank you for the feed back on the tutorial # 1 - glad that you are getting something out of it.
I thought I'll rabbit on a bit about fabrics, the most important thing is to look at fabrics as a source of components for the various bits of the applique shapes. Quite a lot of fabrics in the Kaffe Collectives are rather busy and usually I can find lots of things in it to use for appplique. When I open my fabric package from GloriousColor, I pull each fabric to it's full width and look for the interesting areas to use.
take the " Coleus" fabric below, those leaf veins are great for bird's tails for example, or a little tree?
and the bit below might be good for the body of the bird or a fruit or a vase - with the lines going horizontal. The leaf shape next to it, is also interesting, for a flower perhaps? Move your freezer paper templates around the fabric and see! Don't look at the fabric as a whole, find the components, you'll be surprised how many useful portions there are in a fabric.
Here is another great fabric, " Scallops" - I used this for the dog's body in the quilt. I can see quite a few different animal bodies with this fabric. If you look at the other colourways you'll find even more useful items.
Still the " Scalops" fabric - can you see a tree?
Or with this one - you can use this for the cat's face if you include some of the lighter area below it. Or - if you position the tree template half on the 3rd layer and the other half on the lower layer, the tree will be more interesting than a plain green fabric, don't you agree?
This one would make a great tail or a vase?
This " Shell Montage" fabric is one of my favourite - in all colourways! I've used this for a lot of bird parts and flowers, again move your templates around and see what you can find.
I've used this portion as the standard tree in the " Pond" block.
This " Feathers" fabric is fantastic, can you see a lot of use for this one?
Or this bit?
This is the " Brassica" - it is all yummyness. Trees, flowers, bird wings, leaves?
I love this fabric " Mirage" , used it a lot in the " Roseville Album" - it would be great for one of the biggish tree, then you can put a lot of different colour circles for the fruits.
And this is the " Ombre", my favourite, it comes in 2 new colours. I used it in the " Fountain" block, I love the way the " arbour" changes colour.
I also love stripes, very useful for vases or planters or building structures. Also in pieced blocks, see the " Wheel" in the quilt.
This fabric is great for the big pieces as well as for the small animal parts. I've used it in the
" Disc" block. I can see bird wings here!
I've used this fabric a lot, not sure of the name but if you go to the GloriousColors website you'll find it there. Great for the larger trees, as the colour moves from red to pink with touches of greens.
And this one " Floral Burst" I think it is called. If you use this for the bigger trees, the tree will have quite a few colours in it.
In a real class, it is much easier to show useful fabrics. I hope you get the idea with the few examples above. The only thing is that I very rarely do classes these days as I have a day job!
I am due to teach in New Zealand though, in July 2013 at the Taupo Quilt Symposium for 3 days. Love to see you if you are in that part of the world!
The next item I'm going to move on to, is the " Double Circle" blocks that form the borders and sashings. For these blocks, I have these nifty gadgets which I purchased at quilt shows. These circle template stacks are made by a company called " Victorian Textiles " but they they are wholesalers. I've checked with Kathy at " Material Obsession" and she has these in stock if you think you might need them. They come in 3 different packs, one is in 1" - 5" diameter, the next is 5 1/2" to 8" and 8 1/2" - 10" and they come in 1/2" increments. They look like the photo below. Each circle has cross hairs on it so you can line them up.
If you read the instruction, for these double circle blocks, you are asked to cut 5" square for the background ( the green) and 4" square for the outer circle ( the yellow ) and an interesting 2" circle for the focal circle ( the purple) You can also buy the stack of squares!
Press the squares so that you can see their midlines.
I've lined up the 2" circle on top of the 3" one and drew the circle on it. I'm going to use this as a guide later.
I've used the 2" circle to mark the area, also mark with pencil the centres - I've put the pins there show you in case you can't see the pen marks.
Now, line up those marks on the purple fabric with the creased centre lines on the yellow fabric.
When done, put the 3" circle with the drawn in 2" on top and line it up with the appliqued circle and the pressed midlines. You'll have below.
Place the marked yellow fabric on the green and line up the creased line and applique the circle.
When done, turn it and onto the wrong side, you need to mark the 4" square. I've also drawn in the 3" circle inside the 4" square. This is the sewing line of the block. If you are going sew using the machine later on, mark the 3" circle inside a 4 1/2" square.
And cut away the excess fabric using the 4 1/2" square, see below.
Finished block - easy, right!
Now, a little bit about which applique block to do first - you might like to think about this. I'll go through each applique block in more detail in the future tutorials.
I don't know about you, but the first block always seems to be the hardest to crack. I think it is because you need to " get into it". I know writers, painters who need to do a trial run first each time they sit down to do some work. I think you need to get the hang of the fabrics in your stash. So, I'll choose a block where you don't need to do a " major" decision - eg the Folly or the House blocks where you have to decide what the roof and building structures would need.
I did the Pond block first - the actual pond itself. I did all the applique of the pond's animals, press and would use the completed piece in the block. By using this as an entree, you'll break the ice. You'll loosen up.
The other block which would serve as an entree is the Fountain. Not too many decisions here.
I'll try to do another tutorial soon, depends if I can get through the day job faster! Cheers, Kim McL