I’m in the midst of several great quilling projects that I will be revealing in the next couple of weeks. And I am putting together the final touch-ups on a series for beginner quilters. So this Feature Friday, I’m going to show you a UFO of mine. (Unfinished Object). My appliqued State Flowers!
I wanted to learn the art of applique, so I started to design a 50 state quilt top of the state flowers. I’ve only completed 5 of them so far, and honestly have not worked on this project in about four years. But when I get it out and look at it, I get all excited about it all over again. I may add this project to my UFO challenge. Or at least plan on completed it one day this decade. Ha!
I started by sewing together four pastel squares of fabric for the background. The squares were 3 1/2″ square and when sewn together with 1/4″ seams, create a 6 1/2″ unfinished square.
I then drew out a line drawing of what I wanted to create. My method of applique is to work from the background to the foreground, so I numbered my drawing in the order that I wanted to piece the fabric.
I have a huge stash of fabric scraps, collected over many many years of quilting. Several years ago, I sorted all my scraps and put them in plastic bins according to color. This made it easy when it came to the applique designs to choose colors that are in the same colorway, but different shades.
These are my original drawings. I then trace the pattern onto freezer paper. You see, the shiny side of freezer paper, when ironed onto fabric, stays stuck until you want to remove it. And leaves no residue. Each piece of fabric is cut about 1/8″ larger around than the pattern piece to allow for folding the edges under.
Since I did not take pictures of the applique process, please check out this tutorial on Needleturn Applique by Rose Rushbrooke. It is very similar to the process that I used to create these squares. And Rose does a great job of explaining it.
On areas such as the veins in the leaves, I used a method called Reverse Applique. Where you baste down the “vein fabric” in the background first, and then applique the sides of the leaves over top of it.
As you can see, I have 45 more of the blocks to go. That is unless the United States adds another state or two before I finally finish this project.
In the meantime, it is pretty fun to look at and imagine what it might be when it is complete.
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