Wednesday, April 20, 2016

More 6-inch block prep..."Still Life With Cat"

I feel like I have been cutting up some fruit for fruit salad...with a little cat added.

This little block will be part of the LITTLE TREASURES - Dog and Cat (1) bundle of patterns, very soon to be added to my web store.  It is called "Still Life With Cat."  I don't know what is more fun...coming up with new blocks or naming them.

I am having so much enjoyment trying to utilize some of my dotted fabrics in making eyes.  (Stash justification!)  For this cat head, I reverse appliqued the eye sockets, then "fussy cut" the dotted fabric so that the eye pupils would be in the right place. 

This way, the eyes look like they are recessed in the head, which, I guess, is normal, huh.  Sometimes I put the eyes on top, employing regular applique, so they "pop" and look prominent.  It is nice to have options!

Here is what they look like from behind...kind of owl-like...hmm...

...and this is what I "fussy cut" the eyes from...

These pictures may be redundant to the point of nausea for some of you, but I am still trying to convince some people that applique is fun and easy to do, even on a tiny 6-inch block!

I love my vintage pattern weights...I just found a few more on pleased!  They hold the apple and the cat head in place while I glue other pieces on top.  

To make the basket unit, I am working right on top of my pattern.  I will move to my light box when I am gluing the unit to the background (this is easier for taking pictures...).  

If I use TINY dots of glue for basting, my work shouldn't stick to the pattern.  If it sticks, shame on me!

First, the banana...see my tiny drops of glue baste in the next picture?  They will spread when the two fabrics meet and mash the glue dot, so I do not glue too close to where I will actually be stitching later.  

I pick up the banana piece with my long tweezers instead of my clumsy easy and quick!

Then, I put my weights down over the glued area after placing the banana.  I leave them there for a minimum of about 20 seconds, then move on to the next piece to glue.

Now, the green pear. 

(The hash marks on some edges of my freezer paper patterns tell me to leave a wider margin when I am cutting out my pieces.  That way, the overlapping piece will have plenty of fabric to "catch" as I applique later.  I allow 1/8-3/16 inches when I trim to turn under and about 1/4-5/16 inches when that edge tucks under another piece.)

Now there is a hole where the purple plum should go...

Before placing the basket piece, I am gluing the two cherries together while I can see the pattern so well.

Now I set my cherry duet aside, apply my glue baste dots,  place the basket, and add the weights.

Spare parts awaiting their turn in the glue-basting process...
stems, leaves, a cat nose, and a pair of cherries.

I remove my freezer paper pattern using my stiletto.  After I loosen a corner, I slide the shaft of the stiletto between the fabric and paper to gently separate.  I don't just grab the paper and peel...that might pull the glue loose and it makes the freezer paper too curly to store in a sheet pocket protector neatly (spoken like a true nut with obsessive/compulsive disorder).

Since the freezer paper is reusable for a few pressings, I save the patterns if I think I might make the block again.  I DEFINITELY want to break out of the reproduction fabrics at some point!

Sometimes I remove the paper before just depends on the complexity of the pattern.

Here is the tiny pink cat nose.  Thank God for tweezers!

I often put an arrow on pattern pieces to remind me of the orientation within the block...usually indicating the top of the block. Since my patterns are hand drawn instead of computer drawn, leaves and such are rarely symmetrical, so orientation is important.

All glue-prepped!  I am really missing the cat mouth, cat whiskers and cherry stems.  Once I have placed all the hand stitches, I will transfer the embroidery lines and do the final stitching.  

This Moda "Crackle" is one of my favorite backgrounds...EVER!

One new pattern prepped for stitching...several more to go!  I ran out of prepped blocks, so I must get several prepped so I have something to do in town tomorrow when I wait while getting the oil changed!  

I hate siting and waiting somewhere without something on which to stitch, and these little blocks are so portable!

In stitches,
Teresa  :o)


  1. do you glue your freezer paper down or just iron it? mine never wants to stay down that well so I do freezer paper on the back side and turn the edges under - I like your way if I could get the freezer paper to stick good enough- I have tried all brands and always it works the same - some stick a little better than others and some not

  2. Just fabulous work and detail! I love how you share your process and progress - makes it seem those tiny bits are really doable.

  3. I'm glad we can admit to being a bit OCD with our quilting. I love the new header on your web site but I do miss the kitty with the musical quilt. I want to see the cake and eat it! (Or something like that.)

  4. Such a darling block! I love it in your repros :0)

  5. Teresa, I don't think you should call it "strange fruit". Google the term and you'll find that it is a very negative term: a song about lynching sung by Billie Holiday. Sorree to be a wet blanket....

  6. Great information Teresa and such a cut block.


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