The central circle is now appliquéd onto its light background ring, ready for the next stage.
This is the beginning of the second, outer ring. It feels as if it’s going to take forever… A small exaggeration, but there’s a lot of very small bits there. The large triangles alternate dark umber and slate, the small triangles alternate charcoal and golden amber, separated by a zigzag of limestone. Fiddly in the extreme, especially the zigzag, which has to be made up of two pieces. I considered making large limestone triangles and then appliquéing everything else to them, but it wasn’t successful; the fabric was too floppy to get nice straight lines, so I’ve persisted with the EPP method, which has the virtue of producing completely consistent shapes so long as you’re meticulous in how you sew the bits together.
There was some useful learning from the first circle:
• When making the triangles, fold down and stitch the edge which will be on the outside last. This means that all the excess will be pointing away from the outside edge.
• Press everything away from what will be the inner and outer edges.
• Trim seam allowances down as much as possible before joining the shapes, especially on corners
• Don’t stress if things don’t line up exactly. You can always unpick a bit of basting and ease out some of the seam allowance to make things line up.
• Do not press pieces basted with polyester thread too hot. You will melt the thread onto the fabric. Don’t ask how I know this, it’s a sore subject 😦
Sore enough, in fact, that it has meant I had to replace my iron. It has seen a lot of action, spent hundreds of long, long hours switched on, and was now regularly overheating, leaking boiling hot water onto my feet, tripping the household power socket fuse (entailing tedious trips down two flights of stairs and outside to the power board) and showing clear signs of corrosion on the charging pins (it was a cordless version, and had to be returned to the stand to reheat after every use). However, since I bought it on special offer about three years ago when it was on sale at one third of the normal price, I had bought two. Out with the old, in with the new. I must admit it feels a bit safer now, and I’m not missing the smell of burning insulation or the scalded feet….
In a recent post, Esther over at ipatchandquilt used a fantastic craquelure print on a block she was making for one of the F2F members. I saw it and immediately knew it would be perfect for this project, so she’s very kindly sending me half a metre when it’s my turn to receive my F2F blocks in May. I’m just waiting to hear if there’s anything I can make or do for her in return…
Once this big ring is done, that’s the end of the most fiddly EPP part of this piece. There are other rings, but they’re much simpler. Soon, I’ll be able to move on to FPP, and progress will be much faster.
But first, back to lots and lots of tiny stitches!