Friday, July 14, 2017

Almost Time for the Fair

At some point this spring I realized that the weekend I will be at family camp is the same weekend that the fair starts. So I was going to miss the morning you turn in your projects.

Not only would I not be able to help with the canning department (I'll miss my friendly judges and I know they'll miss me!), but on a personal level I wouldn't be able to turn in my projects.

Ack! I couldn't let that happen could I?

I thought on it for a while, whether I could impose one someone else to turn in my entries. I could think of a few people, but I wasn't sure I wanted to ask. And then a couple weeks ago, I saw my raffle quilt kit and pulled it out to see what I could come up with.

The theme for this year's blocks is "A Day at the Lake." They provided a 14" square piece of white and 10" squares of blue, "sand", a bright stripe and a dark brown. Early on I had the idea of a kayaker on a lake.

First step was looking at pictures online for a general layout and doing some sketching on paper. The kayaker, I traced onto double-sided adhesive and I traced the kayak onto a paper pattern.
 I stuck the adhesive onto the fabric (backside) and cut out the shapes.
For the background, I calculated how I could cut up a 10" square of blue (minus the selvage edge that they included in the measurement) and get the maximum coverage over a 12.5" block. Then I had to piece together the 10" piece of "sand" so it would cover 12.5" as well.

I used the white for the sky and I added a piece of yellow for a morning sun. (You're allowed to add two of your own fabrics.)

I cut away the white from behind the blue to reduced thickness. And after I had stitched the kayak onto the water, I decided I could cut the blue from behind it as well.
Since the kayak was only held in place with a little of glue stick (and not double sided adhesive), I could peel it back quite easily.
I used a stick-on/tear-away stabilizer when doing the zig zagging around the applique pieces.

It tore away easily enough, except where it was trapped behind the zig zag stitches. I thought about leaving it, but I just couldn't.
So a little time with a a dull needle and a pair of tweezers and I removed all of the stabilizer from behind all of the stitching. It'll make the block smoother and easier to work with while quilting (and satisfies my OCD at the same time!).

I used matching thread on most of the pieces with just a few touches of contrasting thread where needed, like here where I wanted to simulate the water on the paddle:
The last thing to do was to hide the loose ends where the stitching lines started and stopped.
I used the trick of using a separate thread on a needle to wrap around the ends and pull them under. (Works on short ends and you don't have to keep re-threading the needle!)

I pulled the ends in between the layers of the background and applique and you can't see a thing:
Here is the final block:
Once I had the block done, I knew I would have to find someone to turn in the block. Other projects I could submit next year, but this block is only relevant this year.

And the good news is that I did find someone who's willing to lug my stuff to the fair. :) I don't think I'll send everything I could, but I'll pull together a few projects. Which is nice...I'd hate to miss the fair entirely.

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